Hardesty wins Armstrong Memorial

KERENS – Another great crowd was treated to fireworks on the track as well as the sky last Friday night at Elkins Raceway for the 25th annual R.H. Armstrong Memorial presented by J C Distributing.

In the Jenkins Ford Super Late Models, Cody Hardesty, Billy Holbert and Dusty Hamrick won the prelims. Taking the top two from each heat and drawing for spots for the dash, Hardesty would snare that win as well. Hardesty jumped to the point at the drop of the green, with Hamrick, Shane Hitt, Holbert and Charlie George following. Cautions slowed action on laps two, 12, 16 and 17. Hardesty fended off Hamrick lap after lap. The Oakland, Md., driver, behind the wheel of the Runnerup Properties/New England Truss and Joist No. 53, claimed his second straight win. It was also his biggest career victory, leading flag to flag to the $4,000 check. Hamrick, Hitt, Mike Benedum, and Butch McGill rounded out the top five.

After the Super Late feature, a huge fireworks display wowed the crowd, but soon the fog began to slowly roll across the fields. The Miller’s Used Cars Street Stocks took the track next. J. P. Tallman used his inside pole position to his advantage and snare the front spot at the outset. Barry Faris, Scott Bittinger, Dustin Isner and Michael O’Brien quickly filled the top five slots. On the restart of lap two, Bittinger zipped by Faris for the second spot and began to reel in Tallman. On lap four, Bittinger, in the Automotive Machine/Gold Digger racing No. 29, took the lead and never looked back. Jim Byers would cross in second. Isner, O’Brien and Faris were third through fifth.

The fog got a little thicker as the Budweiser FASTRAK Late Models came to the track. The $1,000 for the winner was handled by Schaeffer Oil and its representative, Doug Smith. Plus $500 in tools, courtesy of Doug Smith from Snap On Tools. On the first try at green, outside pole setter Daniel Hill got over the embankment in turns one and two and would eventually bring out the yellow. On the second attempt, Brandon McGrady took command with Kyle Thomas, Michael Lake, Matt Lopez and Joey Jenkins in tow.

Thomas would turn up the heat on McGrady as the Pennsboro drivers dueled for the spot. On lap seven, Thomas motored to the front. Lake passed McGrady for second and began to pressure Thomas. The Dodd’s Sporting Goods/Paint by Grover No. 32 of Thomas, laid claim to his second trip to victory lane. Lake finished a very close second. McGrady was third, Lopez was fourth. Hill climbed back to finish fifth.

The covering over the track became thicker as the Fast ‘N Friendly Pharmacy Modifieds came to the 3/8 mile oval. After three tries at green, the race was red flagged due to safety reasons. The Modified and Good Samaritan of Barbour County Mod Lite features will be run this Friday.

The Darren’s Pizza Shack Mini Wedges started the night off. It was little different than the entire year. Logan Hitt would collect his ninth checkerboard. Hitt’s Jenkins Ford/Leggett Motorsports No. 2* bested Kaitlyn Frazier, Abby Watson, Kylie Cross and Paige Bragg.

This Friday will be a regular show, plus the makeup Fast ‘N Friendly Pharmacy Modifieds and the Good Samaritan of Barbour County Mod Lite features.