Topeka, KS – When you celebrate a birthday, it’s customary to make a wish and blow out the candles on your birthday cake.
Cody Agler celebrated his birthday at BriggsAuto.Com Speedway on Saturday night. He didn’t let on what he wished for, but what he received was a last corner, last lap pass of Steven Bowers Jr. to win the Washburn Tech Modified Main event.
Agler had a good car from the beginning of the night. He went from 5th to 2nd in his heat race. On the redraw for the lineups, Agler joined Justin Johnson on the front row after the inversion was put into play. At the beginning of the race Agler got out to the lead, but it would be short lived as he and Bowers would dice it up and Bowers would eventually get the top spot and hold it for a majority of the race.
Behind Bowers and Agler, several cars were fighting for position. In an unusual night, several cars would find their way into the infield or the pit area well before the checkered flag dropped.
The racing at the front half of the field began to heat up just past the half way mark. As the green flag laps continued Bowers, Agler, Johnson, Darron Fuqua and Josh Everhart all mixed it up. While the battles were starting to wage, lapped traffic was coming into the picture and on the last lap Bowers found himself in a lot of lapped traffic.
“We both (Cody & Steven Bowers) were keeping it clean I would pass him and he would come back under me. It was some hard racin,” said Agler after the feature, “I knew when I seen that white flag I had to do something, we come out of the corner and I knew I had a good run on him and I seen that lapper, so I was watching him and I knew I had to get it in hard and move up into his line that was going to be the only way I was going to pass him.”
Coming to turn 4, Agler put his car in the middle of Bowers and a lapped car. As he exited the turn he jumped just in front of Bowers and moved into his line on the race track. The move took away Bowers momentum and pushed Agler to the victory on his birthday.
Bowers would finish a close 2nd, 3rd went to last years champ Darron Fuqua, Josh Everhart scored a 4th place finish on his 1st night at the track and rounding out the top 5 was Tyler Schmidt, who drove from 15th to 5th in the A Main.
It was finally a new winner in the Casey’s General Store Pure Stock main event. The first two weeks went to Darren Davenport, but on this night the feature belonged to Randy Kohn.
The Pure Stock feature was one of the most exciting features of the night. Several drivers mixed it up. Positions swapped back and forth from the front of the field to the back of the field.
Randy Kohn and Randal Schifflebein Jr. led the field to the green at the start. Schifflebien, competing in only his 3rd race of his career, shot out to the lead. Unlike a rookie, he showed poise, patience and held a consistant line on the speedway. Unfortunately for Schifflebein, so did Randy Kohn and he has been to victory lane before and knows what it takes to get their.
Using patience, Kohn waited for Schifflebein to make a mistake. When it happened, Kohn took the lead away and walked off to the finish.
Schifflebein would hold on to finish in the runner-up spot, AJ Christian knocked down another top 5 finishing in 3rd, 4th went to a hard charging Jimmy Millard, who drove from 12th to 4th and Tyler Garst finished in the 5th position.
Ben Kates is a young racer from Tonganoxie. Over the years he has celebrated some ups and downs in his racing career. In his first trip to BriggsAuto.Com Speedway, he will have to chalk it up as a great moment in his career. He would win the White Line CDL Training B Mod Feature going away.
Marty Grist took control of the feature from the wave of the green flag. Grist would run at the top spot for a while. The early pressure for Grist came from Dustin Thulin. Thulin pulled up to Grist’s door a couple of times but very got enough steam up to get around for the lead. Contact between Grist and Thulin would end Thulin’s night with a right front flat.
Grist, meanwhile, had developed a push on the speedway. As he began to lose momentum, Ben Kates was gaining it. Kates would run by Grist and once he hit the lead, he checked out. It wasn’t that he checked out on Grist, but he ran away from the entire field. In the end he just needed to take it easy navigating lapped traffic to get the win. Kates started in the 7th position and drove to the win.
Ethan Isaacs continues to have good success at HPT in 2012, he drove to the 2nd place finish, Grist held on for a 3rd place finish, former Factory Stock Champ, Dave Samuels, had his best finish in a B Mod 4th and Brian Murphy moved from 10th to 5th.
For the 2nd straight week it was Terry Schmidt getting the win in the Super 8 at Forbes Landing Factory Stock division.
This week Schmidt would hear nothing but cheering from the BriggsAuto.Com Speedway fans this week after winning. He drove past the early leader, Zach Henery, and held off a hard charge from Brett Heeter to get his 2nd win.
Heeter would finish 2nd in his 1st visit of the year to HPT, 3rd went to Henery, Steve Herrick finished in the 4th spot and in 5th was Leif Weyer.
Next week the Super Saturday Showdown Series continues at BriggsAuto.Com Speedway.
For more information on Heartland Park Topeka, visit their website at www.hpt.com.