Dave Baumgartner Leads Youth Contingent at Owosso

By Duane Turner

OVID, Mich. (August 7, 2004) –
“The Cannonball” Dave Baumgartner from Toledo, OH took control on lap three and never looked back to grab his first ever AVSS win at Owosso Speedway. “I had a car that just hooked up.” Stated Baumgartner in victory lane. “I was able to just drive around people when I needed to. I got the 10 car (Shane Butler) and the 20 (Brian Lay) on the first lap, and then Dennis (Craft) after that first caution on the restart. The car was just hooked up. We did not need that last caution though. We were actually starting to run out of fuel on the last lap. It was awesome! I have to thank my dad, Mike, Brian, Nick, Tracy, and Benny Rapp. Along with Telegraph Brake, Lyden Oil, Graphic Signs, Weld Racing, Impact Racing, Penske Shocks, Suspension Spring, and Performance Tech. Specialist.”

2003 AVSS Rookie of the Year Brian Lay and Dennis Craft would bring the field down to the start of the 30-lap event. The front duo would race side-by-side heading into turn one on the racy 3/8-mile high-banked oval. As the front row emerged from the second corner, they were still side-by-side. Through turns three and four, and heading back to complete lap one, Craft and Lay were still side by side, with Craft holding a slight advantage to lead the first lap. Craft would use the low side of the speedway to take the top position away from Lay in turn one on the second lap. Baumgartner, who started fourth, moved alongside Lay down the back straight, and raced two wide with Lay through turns three and four, with Baumgartner taking the second position away at the stripe. Just as the field completed the second lap, Ryan Katz spun out on the front straight after being hit with debris, knocking the wind out of him. Katz would restart in the 22nd position.

On the restart, Craft took the green flag, but spun the tires allowing Baumgartner to pull alongside and take the lead heading into turn one. From this point on, Baumgartner would set sail, leaving the rest of the field to battle for the second position. Two laps later, the fifth place running Shane Butler came to a stop on the front straight with a broken suspension ending his event. On the restart, Baumgartner began to pull away from the rest of the field. On lap five, Jimmy McCune would slip past Lay for the third position. One lap later, Jason Blonde would spin in turn two bringing out the third caution of the event. The restart had Baumgartner leading Craft, McCune, Lay, and Lee Boss from his eighth starting position.

One again, Baumgartner would show he had the car to beat by pulling away from second place Craft. At this point of the race, the race was for the fourth position between Lay, Boss and Bill Tyler. The trio would swap the position several times until lap 10 when McCune passed Craft for second, leaving Craft to hold on to third with Tyler, Boss, and Lay on his tail. Now a four-car battle erupted for the third position with Tyler taking third on lap 12, then Boss taking fourth on lap 13. This left Craft and Lay to battle for fifth, while Boss closed back in on Tyler for third.

At the ½ way point, Baumgartner continued to stretch out his lead over second place McCune with Tyler, Boss and Craft in the top five. At that point, Baumgartner began to enter lapped traffic that was racing two and three wide for position. On lap 17, Boss managed to move past Tyler for third. The rookie, and veteran raced for position for nearly 20 laps, while still moving forward through the pack, and closing in on the leader. A lap 23 caution appeared for the spun sprinter of Davey Brown after contact with South African Quintin Saayman.

The final restart still had Baumgartner out front, with Boss right on his back bumper. As Baumgartner came down to take the green, the near capacity crowd came to their feet in anticipation of a late race shootout between Baumgartner and Boss. As the duo exited turn two, Boss closed the distance. With all eyes on the lead duo, the race was on for third. Lay, who had fallen back as far as sixth at one time, drove the Katz Well Drilling machine deep into turn one, making it three wide with Tyler, and Jeff Bloom for the third position. Lay would take control of third one corner later, leaving Tyler and Bloom to battle for fourth.

Over the final two laps, Boss closed in the back bumper of Baumgartner exiting the corners and Baumgartner was running low on fuel. However, at the finish, Baumgartner had just enough as he took his first win of 2004 by a mere three car lengths over Boss. Lay was third with Tyler, and Bloom rounding out the top five. Craft, Blonde, who spun and restarted 22nd on lap five was seventh, with Mike Ling, McCune, and Curt Shumaker rounding out the top 10. “This went OK.” Stated Lee Boss after the race. “We got battling Bill (Tyler) and we just could not get away from each other. That slowed us up a little bit. Dave (Baumgartner) just had a huge lead. You need to keep driving, keep digging, and hope the cautions fall your way. The last restart gave us that chance, but Dave just beat us tonight.”

Third place Brian Lay had this to add: “The car started out very tight. We started on the pole, and fell back pretty early. I would move the wing forward, but then we lost some forward bite. At about 1/2 way, I started to move the wing back some, and the car settled down. The last restart, we made it three wide there, and just went for it. Bad race, but we ended up good.”

Lee Boss set the new speed mark at Owosso Speedway in Hamilton Trucking Qualifications with a lap of 12.846, eclipsing the old mark set by Jason Blonde by a mere .002 seconds. Blonde would take the United Trailer heat race, Bill Tyler took the Dowker Engines heat, and while the Hoosier Racing Tire heat went to Gary Fedewa. Ryan Katz advanced eight positions to earn the AVSS Hard Charger award with his 11th place run. Up next for the fastest short track cars in the world, a trip to Auto City Speedway located in Clio, MI. The 7/16-mile egg-shaped oval plays host to five AVSS event in 2004, with two of them rained out so far. Current points leader Bill Tyler grabbed the Auto City event back on June 12. For more information on the Auto Value/ Bumper to Bumper Super Sprints, log on to the official website at http://www.supersprints.com

Race Summary:
Hamilton Trucking Qualifications: 1) 8m Lee Boss 12.846 (105.091 mph) NTR 2) 24 Bill Tyler 13.026 3) 26 Jeff Bloom 13.037 4) 19 Jimmy McCune 13.206 5) 14 Dave Baumgartner 13.296 6) 10 Shane Butler 13.321 7) 70 Dennis Craft 13.322 8) 20 Brian Lay 13.328 9) 71 Curt Shumaker 13.347 10) 61 Jason Blonde 13.366 11) 4 Troy Underwood 13.377 12) 69 Davey Brown 13.434 13) 99 Mike Ling 13.458 14) 33 Kevin Feeney 13.458 15) 35 Ryan Davis 16) 7 Tyler Underwood 13.555 17) Z Quintin Saayman 18) 42 Gary Fedewa 13.704 19) 35 Ryan Katz 13.731 20) 61f Tom Fedorczyk 13.897 21) 11 E.J. Calloway 14.013 22) 3a Mike Astrauskas n/t

United Trailers Heat #1 (1:56.002): 1) 61 Jason Blonde 2) 99 Mike Ling 3) 19 Jimmy McCune 4) 35 Ryan Katz 5) 8m Lee Boss 6) 70 Dennis Craft 7) 7 Tyler Underwood

Dowker Engines Heat #2 (No Time): 1) 24 Bill Tyler 2) 20 Brian Lay 3) 61f Tom Fedorczyk 4) 14 Dave Baumgartner 5) 33 Kevin Feeney 6) 4 Troy Underwood 7) Z Quintin Saayman

Hoosier Racing Tire Heat #3 (1:55.047): 1) 42 Gary Fedewa 2) 8 Ryan Davis 3) 71 Curt Shumaker 4) 26 Jeff Bloom 5) 10 Shane Butler 6) 69 Davey Brown 7) 3a Mike Astrauskas 8) 11 E.J. Calloway

Auto Value/ Bumper to Bumper Super Sprints A-Main, 30 Laps (No Time): 1) 14 Dave Baumgartner 2) 8m Lee Boss 3) 20 Brian Lay 4) 24 Bill Tyler 5) 26 Jeff Bloom 6) 70 Dennis Craft 7) 61 Jason Blonde 8) 99 Mike Ling 9) 19 Jimmy McCune 10) 71 Curt Shumaker 11) 35 Ryan Katz 12) 4 Troy Underwood 13) 61f Tom Fedorczyk 14) 7 Tyler Underwood 15) 33 Kevin Feeney 16) 69 Davey Brown 17) Z Quintin Saayman 18) 3a Mike Astrauskas 19) 42 Gary Fedewa 20) 8 Ryan Davis 21) 11 E.J. Calloway 22) 10 Shane Butler

Lap Leaders: 1-2 Dennis Craft, 3-30 Dave Baumgartner

Hamilton Trucking Fast Time Award: 8m Lee Boss 12.846 (105.091 mph) NTR

Hard Charger: Ryan Katz +8