This was ARDC’s first race at Big Diamond since the 2012 season and ironically, Alex Bright was the winner of that race as well. Bright has added many accomplishments to his credentials within the last year – including a win in the Magic Man 34 in Australia last November and a fourth place finish in the renowned Chili Bowl in January of this year. Bright drives the Lightcap Electric #77 owned by his grandfather, Joe Hemler. He has won two of the last three ARDC events.
The top six qualifiers in the two heat races drew for their starting positions in the feature event. Bright shared the front row with Bethlehem, PA hot shoe, Kyle Lick. It was Bright who grabbed the lead on the start as Lick, Brett Arndt, ARDC newcomer, Tyler Brehm and Trevor Kobylarz raced in the top five at the start of the race. Kobylarz was on the move as he raced his way to third on lap two.
Bright started to pull away from the field but his efforts were negated when Bruce Buckwalter, Jr. drew a caution with just three laps on the books. On the restart, Kobylarz challenged Lick for second but it was 2013 ARDC Rookie of the Year, Tony DiMattia who was on the move, taking over 4th on lap five. Unfortunately, DiMattia was the reason for the red flag one lap later as he went for a wild ride in turn four. DiMattia was uninjured. Brett Arndt and Brian Gilmore headed to the pits when the yellow lights came back on.
With Bright out in front, Kobylarz again challenged Lick for second. Lick fought off the advances as they headed through turns one and two but Kobylarz made it stick when he raced down the inside groove on the backstretch. Lick fought back but Kobylarz held the position.
The race for fourth was heating up as the race approached the half way mark. Nick Wean raced Ryan Greth for the spot as Brenden Bright and Steven Drevicki were closing in. At the crossed flag, Bright led Kobylarz, Lick, Wean and Brenden Bright.
As Bright negotiated his way around some of the slower cars, the battle was on for third. Lick, Wean and Brenden Bright raced side by side and wheel to wheel for the last ten laps of the race. Inside, outside and down the middle, these three cars raced under a blanket for the third spot. Wean won the position in the final laps.
With the checkered waving, Bright took his third win of the season followed Kobylarz, Wean, Lick and Brenden Bright. Greth, Drevicki, Bruce Buckwalter Jr. who rallied back from the lap four caution, PJ Gargiulo and Tyler Brehm.
Gargiulo and Drevicki won the qualifying heats.
ARDC heads to Potomac, MD and Winchester, VA for action this Friday and Saturday.
FEATURE FINISH (25 LAPS)
1. Alex Bright 2. Trevor Kobylarz 3. Nick Wean 4. Kyle Lick 5. Brenden Bright 6. Ryan Greth 7. Steven Drevicki 8. Bruce Buckwalter, Jr. 9. PJ Gargiulo 10. Tyler Brehm 11. Clayton Glassman 12. Austin Burke 13. Tommy Kunsman 14. Brett Wanner 15. Tony DiMattia 16. Brett Arndt 17. Brian Gilmore DNS – Eric Heydenreich, Tim Buckwalter