Brent Marks learned a valuable lesson while running on the road with the World of Outlaws NOS Energy Drink Sprint Car Series.
When something doesn’t go your way, you shake it off ... in a hurry. It’s the only way you can rebound and salvage a situation.
That’s what Marks did Sunday night at BAPS Motor Speedway. After receiving a penalty for jumping the restart, the Myerstown, Pa., driver clawed his way to the front and passed Danny Dietrich on a late restart to capture the Select Collision Kevin Gobrecht Classic.
“One thing about going on the road is that you learn not to get discouraged and over excited about things,” said Marks after the $5,200 victory. “That happened to me [the penalty], and I was like, ‘OK, I just need to calm down and race my race again and not overdrive the car to get to second.’
“Sometimes being patient and running the car slower is actually faster, so I just kind of used my head a little bit and was as smart as I could to let my car come to me. Tonight, it all worked out for me.”
Ryan Smith took the early lead from his pole starting spot. Dietrich followed, with Freddie Rahmer sliding Marks for second, only to have Marks take it back by the time Lap 2 was scored.
Marks continued his assault on Lap 9, when he slipped past Smith for second. He trailed Dietrich by .793 seconds, when Brandon Rahmer spun in the fourth corner and forced the leaders to take evasive action with 10 laps down.
The restart was called back when officials determined that Marks jumped. He settled down but was forced to follow Rahmer and Anthony Macri before, finally, getting by Rahmer in Turns 3 and 4 at the completion of Lap 17.
Debris brought out another caution on the 20th circuit and erased Dietrich’s advantage. Marks used it to his and took second from Macri on the restart.
It appeared as Dietrich was going to score his second win of the season. He led by 1.175 seconds, when Devon Borden had fuel-line problems and rolled to a stop on the fronstretch with two laps remaining.
Dietrich, who had front-wing damage for much of the event, went to the bottom on the restart, with Marks blowing around the top. The two were separated by a car-length on the backstretch, and Marks slid into the lead through Turns 3 and 4.
“Really, my game plan when I got to Danny was to stick the bottom in one and two, because I was able to make that work a couple of times throughout the race,” Marks said. “I would get a run down the backstretch, but Jake [Sgrignoli] came and told Danny to go low on the restarts.
“So, I just had to make sure I hit the entry up top just right and get a good enough run off the corner, and I did that the last restart. I just got lucky there that we could make that happen.”
Said Dietrich, “Maybe I go to the top and when he slides me, I get back under, but it was getting to the point where it was getting harder to cross back over somebody. It’s the same for everybody ... everybody has a double-file restart, but it just sucks.
“We had the race won, and another competitor couldn’t get off the track when they’re 15 feet away from exiting the track. Not blaming him, it just sucks.”
Dietrich made one last bid for the win in Turns 1 and 2 on the final circuit, but Marks had too much momentum off the second corner. It allowed Marks to cross Dietrich over and take the win by .745 seconds at the stripe.
“It’s really satisfying, especially since I haven’t been in my own equipment in over a year,” Marks said. “I’m still trying to get back in the swing of things as far as just getting a handle on my setups and what I need to change in my car.
“The car was really good tonight, but it was still off a little bit. I know we need to get a little better to compete on the World of Outlaws’ level. We just need to keep working on it, keep my head, keep my head down, and know that we are there but need to fine tune on it a little bit.”
Dietrich settled for second, with Macri and Smith following. Dylan Norris charged from 17th to fifth and received Hard Charger honors.
In the 358 Modified main event, Billy Pauch Jr. led every circuit of the 30-Lap affair and was never challenged on his way to victory.
Pauch stared on the outside pole and beat Jared Umbenhauer into the first corner. Jeff Strunk, who started ninth, made an appearance at the front of the field by the time Lap 5 was scored.
Strunk was in second by the halfway point. He was able to cut into the leader’s advantage late, but Pauch went on to score the victory by .836 seconds.
Umbenhauer held on for third, with Jack Butler and Louden Reimert completing the top five in an event that featured only one caution flag.
BAPS Motor Speedway
Kevin Gobrecht Classic
Feature (30 Laps): 1. 19-Brent Marks; 2. 48-Danny Dietrich; 3. 39M-Anthony Macri; 4. 6-Ryan Smith; 5. 92-Dylan Norris; 6. 24-Kerry Madsen; 7. 21-Matt Campbell; 8. 5E-Tim Wagaman II; 9. 37-JJ Grasso; 10. 16-Gerard McIntyre Jr; 11. 90-Jordan Givler; 12. 75-Tyler Ross; 13. 52-Blake Hahn; 14. 49H-Bradley Howard; 15. 4R-Doug Hammaker; 16. 11P-Greg Plank; 17. (DNF) 51-Freddie Rahmer; 18. (DNF) 99M-Kyle Moody; 19. (DNF) 1W-Brandon Rahmer; 20. (DNF) 39-Chase Dietz; 21. (DNF) 8-Devon Borden; 22. (DNF) 45-Jeff Halligan; 23. (DNF) 16A-Aaron Bollinger; 24. (DNF) 22-Bryn Gohn.
Lap leaders: Smith (1-7), Dietrich (8-28), Marks (29-30)
Heat 1 (10 Laps/Top 6 Transfer to Feature): 1. 6-Ryan Smith; 2. 51-Freddie Rahmer; 3. 16A-Aaron Bollinger; 4. 21-Matt Campbell; 5. 37-JJ Grasso; 6. 45-Jeff Halligan; 7. 39-Chase Dietz; 8. 72-Tim Shaffer; 9. 49H-Bradley Howard; 10. 9-Gordon Senft Jr.
Heat 2 (10 Laps/Top 6 Transfer to Feature): 1. 48-Danny Dietrich; 2. 52-Blake Hahn; 3. 16-Gerard McIntyre Jr; 4. 39M-Anthony Macri; 5. 75-Tyler Ross; 6. 92-Dylan Norris; 7. 1W-Brandon Rahmer; 8. 22-Bryn Gohn; 9. 11P-Greg Plank.
Heat 3 (10 Laps/Top 6 Transfer to Feature): 1. 5E-Tim Wagaman II; 2. 8-Devon Borden; 3. 19-Brent Marks; 4. 4R-Doug Hammaker; 5. 24-Kerry Madsen; 6. 99M-Kyle Moody; 7. 90-Jordan Givler; 8. (DNF) 67-Justin Whittall; 9. (DNS) 19T-Colby Thornhill.
Consolation (10 Laps/Top 6 Transfer to Feature): 1. 1W-Brandon Rahmer; 2. 39-Chase Dietz; 3. 49H-Bradley Howard; 4. 90-Jordan Givler; 5. 22-Bryn Gohn; 6. 11P-Greg Plank; 7. (DNF) 9-Gordon Senft Jr; 8. (DNS) 72-Tim Shaffer; 9. (DNS) 67-Justin Whittall; 10. (DNS) 19T-Colby Thornhill.
Feature (30 Laps): 1. 15-Billy Pauch Jr; 2. 88Z-Jeff Strunk; 3. 1H-Jared Umbenhauer; 4. 5-Jack Butler; 5. 16-Louden Reimert; 6. 747-Davey Sammons; 7. 29-Ryan Krachun; 8. 78-Briggs Danner; 9. 30-Craig Von Dohren; 10. 9-Joe Toth; 11. (DNF) 126-Dominick Buffalino; 12. (DNF) 18J-Steve Davis; 13. (DNF) 14RR-Joe Funk; 14. (DNF) 08-Bruce Hooper; 15. (DNF) 20-Rick Laubach; 16. (DNF) 19K-Brett Kressley; 17. (DNS) 401-Frank Cozze Sr.
Lap leaders: Pauch Jr. (1-30)
Heat winners: Buffalino, Danner