A 2 hour and 45 minute delay following a downpour pushed back the start of Saturday’s night of racing. The modifieds and sportsman divisions both got in all their races, while the late models will run a make-up feature next Saturday.
Frank Cozze scored his first ever Saturday night 358 modified win at Grandview. Cozze had previously won the Super DIRT Series-sanctioned Traffic Jam 100 in 2000 and a Thunder on the Hill big block feature in 2005.
Cozze inherited the lead with two laps to go when leader Duane Howard broke off of turn 4. Three laps earlier Cozze took over second when Bobby Gunther Walsh also pulled into the infield, which ended his best ever feature run at Grandview.
Jared Umbenhauer captured his fourth sportsman win of the season over Paul Kline.
Frank Cozze broke through with his first win since returning to modified competition. Cozze had spent the last two years fielding his own 410 sprint car.
Ricky Yetter led the first 23 laps of the feature but was passed by Cozze as they took the two to go signal. Craig Von Dohren and Duane Howard would get by Yetter on the final lap as well.
Kevin Beach Jr. won again in the sportsman feature, his second at the speedway and third overall this season. Not captured on video, but Andy Cozze crashed in turn three after his steering wheel came loose.
Jeremy Becker (roadrunners) and Mike Walls (street stocks) were victorious in the two fendered classes.
Kyle Killian was looking to return to victory lane in the roadrunner feature, but his front end broke late in the race in turn 1. Killian’s car slowed as a result, was rear-ended by Marc Berzowski, and then hit head on by both Glenn Rowan and Terry Kramer Jr.
A fitting tribute was held for longtime Big Diamond racer Andy Fayash Jr. before racing began. His son, Andrew Fayash III, had a strong race going at the front of the field until his race ended in the Killian crash.
This past weekend Frank Cozze was revealed as the new driver of Norm Hansell’s #357 car, which will compete weekly in 2013 at both Grandview and Big Diamond Speedways.
While he never a regular, Cozze does have two big block modified wins at Grandview in the past. Below are highlights from his last win, which came a Thunder on the Hill on August 23, 2005.
With this race taking place eight years ago, it’s interesting to note the driver and car combinations in the race and what has happened since.
Cozze was driving his self-owned #44 mount and battled Billy Pauch for the win in Hansell’s #357 machine.
Duane Howard was in his last year driving Glenn Hyneman’s #126 big block car, which he will return to on part-time basis in 2013. Howard also drove for Hansell’s small block weekly at Big Diamond in 2005.
Howard replaced Jeff Strunk at Chad Sinon Motorsports in 2006 and Strunk went on to multi-season campaigns with both Hyneman and Hansell. Pauch also had two separate part-time stints for Hyneman since that time.