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Close finishes excite fans at Plymouth Speedway

May 5, 2012

If Friday night’s racing is any indication of the kind of racing to be seen this season, it will be one exciting year at Plymouth Speedway.

Kicking off the night was the most intense Hornets race out of the four held this year. Sal Bustamante held the lead through the first half of the race until he was passed by Daren Miller. Bustamante wasn’t happy settling into second place, and the two battled for the top spot. It looked as if Miller had the win coming off the white flag, but a determined Bustamante – in front of an audience full of people on their feet – tried to pass one last time and slipped underneath Miller at Turn 4 to claim the checkers. This was Sal’s second win of the season. Other winners include Miller and Garrett Saunders, who finished fourth, following Sean Stuart in third. Jamie Henriksen closed out the field in fifth.

Kevin Gunkel dominated a field of four Late Models. “I got around (Shawn) Amor, and I figured he was right on me,” Gunkel said, but Amor was battling to keep second place from Mike Horvath, who finished third, as Gunkel pulled away. Charlie Cotton finished fourth.

It looked as if “Radical” Rich Boal was going to go two-for-two, winning last week’s Outlaw Late Model and leading the first part of Friday’s race, but Steve Stacy passed Boal, and “Flyin” Brian Ross of Plymouth was soon to follow. Ross and Stacy battled to the very end – held up by a few cautions during the race. Eventually, Stacy claimed the victory, with Ross less than .3 seconds behind him.

“To come third to them (Stacy and Ross), this is a win for me,” Boal said.

“We’ve been a little bit off all night tonight,” Ross said, congratulating Stacy on his first win of the season. “We want to thank all these fans for coming out and we’ll try to do a little better next week.”

Stacy, the 2011 track champion, said, “I had to work my butt off for that one. This is a good class of race cars. We need to keep working at where we’re at now and I think we can run toward the front every week.”

Other finishers in the field of 12 cars included: Shawn Amor, 4th; Zach Tanner, 5th; Roger Northrop, 6th; Keith Franz, 7th; Mike Shewchuk, 8th; Bobby Stremme, 9th and Scott Ross, 10th.

The Street Stocks finished off the evening, with David Long winning his second of two races in two weeks. He held off a half-second behind charge from Mike Cannon, while three hometown drivers followed: D.J. Frost and PeeWee Warren in third and fourth place, and Jeff Stetler in fifth.

“The top four cars finishing in less than a tenth of a second is a pretty tight field,” Long said.

For more photos, visit the Speedway’s Facebook page.

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