Bard Wins at Bedford Speedway
Coming into Saturday’s racing at Bedford Speedway, rookie sensation Garrett Bard had three wins in PA Sprint Series competition and one with the Laurel Highlands Sprint Series – all in less than three months. Now he can add a win to both lists, after taking the 25-lap feature co-sanctioned by the two IMCA/RaceSaver Sprint groups.
Bard led the entire race but hardly had it easy. With leaders entering traffic in about five laps, Bard had to contend with challenges from Drew Ritchey and Doug Dodson until pole-sitter and rookie Kyle Keen, running fourth, lost a right front tire on lap 9 and skidded along the outside guard rail before stopping in turn 2, ending an impressive return to racing two weeks after getting married. At the same time as Keen’s misfortune, Randy Sterling and Devon Adams made contact. All three cars were done for the night.
With three front-runners out, 10th-place starter Christian Rumsey inherited fourth and Tyler Denochick fifth.
The restart saw Bard again pull out to a healthy lead, although traffic entered the picture late and continued to make things interesting. In the fourth turn on the final lap, Dodson outraced Ritchey for second place, and Denochick held off Jaremi Hanson at the finish line to hold onto seventh.
Dodson continued his quest for IMCA/RaceSaver national rookie-of-the-year honors with his runner-up finish, followed across the finish line by Ritchey, Rumsey and Robby Bartchey.
On a night when half a dozen racers finished at least half a dozen spots higher than they started, Landon Price was the hardest of hard charger, moving up from 23rd to tenth, and Thompson moved up from 19th to 11th.
Heat wins for the 29-car field went to Scott Ellerman, Dylan Proctor and Stevie Kennawell, with Reed Thompson taking the B-Main. A fast track and some tough competition saw some veteran drivers – familiar with Bedford – forced to qualify via the B-Main.
Results from Bedford Speedway Saturday, September 21
HEAT 1 – 1. 8D-Scott Ellerman; 2. 95-Garrett Bard; 3. 29B-Robby Bartchey; 4. 99A-Devin Adams; 5. 00S-Randy Sterling; 6. 83-Larry McVay; 7. R6-Reed Thompson; 8. 11Z-Zach Newlin; 9. 46-Michael Alleman; 10. 6X-Brad Mellott (DNF).
HEAT 2 – 1. 92-Dylan Proctor; 2. 6-Tyler Denochick; 3. 880-Drew Ritchey; 4. 2-Erin Statler; 5. 91J-John Fiore; 6. 56-Jake Frye; 7. 86-Ron Aurand; 8. 97-Kenny Heffner; 9. 69-Landon Price (DNF).
HEAT 3 – 1. 17K-Stevie Kennawell; 2. 20-Doug Dodson; 3. 1J-Christian Rumsey; 4. 17K-Kyle Keen; 5. 36-Jaremi Hanson; 6. 3D-Dave Grube; 7. 33-Scott Lutz; 8. 26-Ryan Lynn; 9. 7-Jim Kennedy; 10. 21M-Cassandra Minium.
B-MAIN – 1. R6-Reed Thompson; 2. 11Z-Zach Newlin; 3. 86-Ron Aurand; 4. 33-Scott Lutz; 5. 69-Landon Price; 6. 26-Ryan Lynn; 7. 46-Michael Alleman; 8. 21M-Cassandra Minium (DNF). DNS – 97-Kenny Heffner; 7-Jim Kennedy; 6X-Brad Mellott.
FEATURE – 1. 95-Garrett Bard; 2. 20-Doug Dodson; 3. 880-Drew Ritchey; 4. 1R-Christian Rumsey; 5. 29B-Robby Bartchey; 6: Steve Kennewel. 7-Tyler Denochick; 8. 36-Jaremi Hanson; 9.83-Larry McVay; 10. 69-Landon Price; 11. R6-Reed Thompson; 11. 8D-Scott Ellerman; 12. 56-Jake Frye; 13. 86-Ron Aurand; 14. 2-Erin Statler; 15. 11Z-Zach Newlin; 16. 3D-David Grube; 17. 26-Ryan Lynn (DNF); 18. 91J-John Fiore (DNF); 19. 17K-Kyle Keen (DNF); 20-99A-Devin Adams (DNF); 21. 00S-Randy Sterling (DNF); 22. 33-Scott Lutz (DNF); 23. 17K-Stevie Kennawell; 24. 92-Dylan Proctor (DNF). DNS – 46-Michael Alleman; 21M-Cassandra Minium; 97-Kenny Heffner; 7-Jim Keennedy; 6X-Brad Mellott.