TAMPA, FL 2/11/08 ..Were just glad to win a race, commented a beaming Freddie Rahmer, wiping the sweat from his brow in victory lane after winning the opening night $3,000 feature for 410 Sprints in the 32nd Annual East Bay Winternationals Monday night.
The non-stop race turned into a hard-fought win for Rahmer who led initially. But a turn of events near the mid-way portion of the race, made him sit up in the seat and battle to the end for his first checkered flag of the year.
After leading the first six laps, Fast Freddie explained, I started dragging my feet and Danny (Smith) took advantage of that. Smith capitalized on the fact that lapped traffic entered the picture in turn four and he scooted into the lead on lap seven.
However, the turn of events that affected the outcome of the race came on lap 10, once again in turn four, when Smith dove low to miss a lapped car that also decided to go low. Smith did a 360, but kept going, when he tapped the lapped car who also did a 360. Greg Wilson split the two to gain a position. Of course, while all this was happening, Rahmer was quick to zip by and retake the lead.
Driving for the second year for car owners, Chad and Jen Clemens, the winner used a J&J chassis with a Don Ott engine. Using Hoosier tires, VRP Shocks and an Arts Radiator, the car carries sponsorship from MHS Mike Staire Materials Handling Systems and Miller Brothers Chevrolet.
Crew Chief Tim Ewel had help from Little Freddie (Freds son), Greg Walsh and Bryn Gohn.
With six inverted from time trials, the feature line-up showed Smith and Rahmer on the front row, with Greg Wilson and Lance Dewease in row two and Eric Baldaccini and fast-timer Tim Kaeding in row three.
But, it was Rahmer who blasted to the front from the outside lane to take the lead originally and he managed to lap up to seventh position at the finish.
Smith described his night saying, I had a good car and I think the fastest car. But I got into that lapped car and was lucky to recover. He powered his own new Maxim car back up to second at the finish. The all white car with his familiar red No. 4 on the wing shows sponsorship from Doug Williams Trucking out of Brazil IN and utilizes Hoosier Tires, PRO shocks and a J&D Performance engine. For the second year, Cale Powers helps turn the wrenches.
Rahmers margin of victory over Smith was 5.393 seconds with Dewease, Kaeding and Wilson in the top five. Rounding out the top ten it was Chad Layton, Dustin Morgan, Baldaccini, Gene Lasker and Lee Stark. Heats went to Rahmer and Morgan while Wilson won the Prevatt Farms Strawberry Dash.
STATS 410 SPRINTS - EAST BAY RACEWAY PARK MONDAY, 2/11/08
1. 10 Tim Kaeding 12.548; 2. B4 Eric Baldaccini 12.616; 3. 30C Lance Dewease 12.656; 4. W20 Greg Wilson 12.679; 5. 51 Fred Rahmer 12.799; 6. 4 Danny Smith 12.828; 7. 25 Chad Layton 12.851; 8. 25X Aaron Ott 12.872; 9. 3 Sport Allen 12.993; 10. 8H Dustin Morgan 13.026; 11. 16 Lee Stark 13.087; 12. 44 Jason Johnson 13.171; 13. 02 Gene Lasker 13.316; 14. 80 Spud Gustin 13.506; 15. 18 Shane Butler 13.727; 16. 72J Johnny Johnson 15.738
1ST Heat 1)Fred Rahmer 2)Sport Allen 3)Tim Kaeding 4)Lee Stark 5)Lance Dewease 6)Chad Layton 7)Gene Lasker 8)Shane Butler
2nd Heat 1)Dustin Morgan 2)Danny Smith 3)Eric Baldaccini 4)Greg Wilson 5)Jason Johnson 6)Aaron Ott 7)Spud Gustin 8)Johnny Johnson
Prevatt Farms Strawberry Dash 1)Greg Wilson 2)Aaron Ott 3)Dustin Morgan 4)Jason Johnson 5)Lee Stark 6)Lance Dewease 7)Sport Allen
A Main (25 Laps) 1)Fred Rahmer 2)Danny Smith 3)Lance Dewease 4)Tim Kaeding 5)Greg Wilson 6)Chad Layton 7)Dustin Morgan 8)Eri Baldaccini 9)Gene Lasker 10)Lee Stark 11)Jason Johnson 12)Aaron Ott 13)Shane Butler 14)Sport Allen 15)Johnny Johnson 16)Spud Gustin
East Bay Winter
Nationals Sprint Cars