Griffith holds off Haudenschild for Attica AFCS win; Miller edges Gun for AFCS 305 victory; Irey takes late model checkers

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Friday, July 26, 2019
Contact: Brian Liskai – liskai2x@roadrunner.com

By Brian Liskai

ATTICA, OH. – A couple of years ago Caleb Griffith thought he was done racing. But, a family friend purchased a sprint car and made the call to Griffith, who, reluctantly, decided to give it another go. It paid off as the Sandusky, Ohio driver led all 30 laps of the 410 sprint feature Friday, July 26 at Attica Raceway Park on Morgan Stanley/Underground Utilities Inc. Night.

Griffith, Attica’s 2014 track champion, had to hold off a late race charge by hall-of-famer Jac Haudenschild to earn his third career victory at Attica in the Callie’s Performance Performance Products 410 sprints. The victory was worth $4,000 thanks to Spanky’s Pizza of Carey, Ohio.

“I’ve been poached here on late race restarts so many times. I’m thinking on that last restart…I look at the board and saw Jac had gotten back to second and I’m thinking if I can get rolling…he’ll have a shot in the first corner but after that I’ll be okay. I bumped the wing back for this end (turns one and two) and I caught the curb down here (turns three and four) and the second lap I saw him under me. I was thinking should I move..I didn’t know what to do. I pulled one from the Vic (crew chief) rule book and kept bombing the top,” said Griffith beside his Jeff Ward Demolition backed machine.

“I have to thank Jeff (Ward, car owner) the most. My whole family, all the sacrifices they’ve made. My brother-in-law Dusty and Vic…Brady helped me put all this together at the beginning of the year and get going. For awhile there on the other race car…you start to doubt everything you felt like you ever knew. You don’t know if you still know how to do this. We changed cars for tonight…didn’t change a torsion bar or shock and all night that thing has been awesome,” added Griffith.

And, with just three All Pro Aluminum Cylinder Heads/Kistler Racing Products Attica Fremont Championship Series (AFCS) Presented by the Baumann Auto Group 410 sprint races left to determine the $10,000 champion, the points tightened up. Buddy Kofoid came into the night atop the standings with Cap Henry second. Henry finished third at Attica while Kofoid came home fourth as the series heads to Fremont Speedway Saturday, July 27.

Mansfield, Ohio’s Matt Irey also held off a late race charge in the Summit Racing Equipment UMP Late Models to score his first win of the season at Attica. Ryan Missler and Doug Drown hounded Irey – Attica’s 2016 track champion – the entire 25 laps but Irey held on for his third career feature win at the track.

“I saw Ryan and got to thinking maybe the top was getting a little dirty with all the lapped cars and I was starting to get a little more free and I saw him and I figured if I cleared him off the corner I have to take his line. I moved down and the car got pretty good and that was the last I saw him. It’s been too long..been a rough year. We bent our main car two weeks ago at Wayne County so we pulled the back-up car out…that’s twice we’ve done that here,” said Irey beside his his Rod Eddleblute’s Garage/Flenner Well & Excavating/Mid-Ohio Graphics/Tru-Form/Kilgore & Harring CPA backed #36.

The Fremont Fence 305 Sprint feature literally came down to the blink of an eye. Fremont, Ohio’s Jamie Miller held off Tyler Gunn for his third straight Attica win by a difference of .081 seconds. Miller, Attica’s 2005 track champion, has won five overall features in 2019 (two at Fremont) and pads his lead in the KS Sales & Service AFCS Presented by Jason Dietsch Trailer Sales heading into Fremont on Saturday, July 27. The win is the 22nd in the 305 division for Miller at Attica and places him fourth on the all-time victory list.

“I tried to use all the track and then some. That last lap was…this thing was getting so tight there at the end, it didn’t want to turn. Once I got screwed up I could hear him back there and I knew he was going to try and slide me so I just left off and turned and drove right back by him. It’s pretty awesome to be fourth on the all-time list. I never really thought I’d be up there when I started racing in 1999. I have a ways to go to catch Paul (Weaver),” said Miller beside his Fostoria Mod Shop/Crown Battery/Sonic Hauling/Pen Monster.com/Brad’s Barbecue/Napa of Attica/Avon by Angie/Griff’s Engines/Color Street by Jaime Hennig/Reedtown Tavern/York Carpet Outlet/Branham Builders/Imprint Logo backed #26.

Haudenschild and Griffith brought the field to green for the 30-lap 410 feature with Griffith shooting into the lead over Haudenschild, Henry, TJ Michael, Stuart Brubaker, Kofoid and Jess Stiger. Henry took over the second spot on lap three right before the caution flew for Brian Lay who stopped on the speedway. When the green returned Griffith pulled away from Henry and his lead was nearly two seconds by lap nine.

Heavy lapped traffic came into play by lap 13 and Griffith lead began to shrink as Henry closed with Haudenschild, Michael, Kofoid, Brubaker, Travis Philo and Hunter Schuerenberg in tow. With 16 laps in Paige Polyak coasted to a stop giving Griffith a clear track. On the ensuing restart Griffith pulled away slightly but Haudenschild got up on the wheel and drove back into second. A tremendous battle was taking place for fourth involving Michael, Kofoid, Brubaker and Philo.

Schuerenberg took a nasty tumble on lap 21 but was uninjured. On the restart Haudenschild made a bid for the led, trying a slider on Griffith in turns one and two. Griffith was able to turn back under and maintain the lead and began to steadily pull away over the next hand full of laps. The battle for third was heating up between Henry and Kofoid as they closed on the leaders.

With two laps to go Haudenschild closed the gap on Griffith significantly and took a couple of looks under the leader. Griffith hit his marks perfectly and drove to the win over Haudenschild, Henry, Kofoid and Philo.

Ryan Markham and Irey paced the field for the 25 lap late model A-main with Irey gaining the advantage over Markham, Missler, Jeff Warnick, Nate Potts and Doug Drown. After a lap was scored, Markham slowed down the back stretch and Jim Gingery got into him bringing out the caution with Markham going to the pits. On the restart Irey pulled away from Missler as Warnick battled with Drown for third.

The second and final caution of the race fell on lap four for Jimmie Ward. When the green flew so did Irey, building up a pretty good lead over Missler, Drown, Warnick, Devin Shiels and Potts. But, lapped traffic came into play with 10 laps to go and Missler and Drown closed quickly on Irey. The trio ran under a blanket the next hand five laps. With just five laps to go Missler stuck the nose of his machine under Irey to challenge, But Irey moved down a lane and blocked the advance and drove to the win over Missler, Drown, Shiels and Mike Bores.

Zeth Sabo and Miller led the 305 A-main to green with Miller taking the lead over Sabo, Kyle Capodice, Luke Griffith, Jason Keckler, Tyler Street, John Ivy and Gunn. Miller immediately pulled away to a commanding leader while Sabo held his own in second. Miller’s big lead evaporated when Kevin Mingus spun on lap nine.

When racing resumed Miller again pulled away and in four laps had a two second advantage over Sabo while Gunn had worked his way to third. As the leaders raced into lapped traffic with 10 circuits remaining Sabo and Gunn battled hard for the runner-up spot with Gunn taking it as the caution flew for a Seth Schneider spin. On the ensuing restart Sabo was able to get under Gunn to retake second but Gunn returned the favor a lap later. Once taking command of second Gunn set his sights on Miller and methodically chipped away at his lead.

With three laps to go Gunn was on Miller’s rear bumper. Miller slipped off the high side of turn two on lap 23 but was able to maintain the lead. Miller and Gunn raced side by side out of two after taking the white flag. Through three and four they were side by side and it was a drag race to the checkers with Miller winning by a bumper over Gunn. Capodice, Sabo and Bobby Clark rounded out the top five.

There is no racing the next two weeks at Attica Raceway Park as the Attica Independent Fair takes over. Attica gets back to action on Friday, Aug. 16 on Columbus Equipment/Central Ohio Farmers Night. It is the final AFCS point night at Attica for the 410 and 305 sprints with the late models in action for the Attica/Oakshade Raceway Challenge Series. Also, the 305 sprints will battle for $1,000 to win presented by Griff’s Engines.

For more information go to www.atticaracewaypark.com or follow the track on Twitter @atticaracewyprk or on Facebook at www.facebook.com/atticaracewaypark and Instagram at attica_raceway_park.
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