Kemenah Captures First Florida Win in All Star Opener

OCALA, Fla. (February 1, 2018) – Chad Kemenah has enjoyed his share of All Star Circuit of Champions success over the years, however the six-time and reigning series had been denied Florida glory.

The Findlay, OH, racer changed that on Thursday night, rallying from the 17th starting position to win the season-opening 30-lap All Star Circuit of Champions feature event atop the 1/3-mile, D-shaped Bubba Raceway Park clay oval.

“We’ve been consistent over the past couple of years,” Kemenah said in victory lane.  “I hope this is a good sign, I need to win more races.”

With Kemenah gridding the field nine rows deep aboard the Kistler-powered Hunter Racing No. 10h, Parker Price-Miller and Tony Stewart led the way to the green flag in what proved to be a rough-and-tumble North American Sprint Car opener that had only 10 of 24 starters running at the checkered flag.

After the initial three attempts to start the race were waved off by cautions, Price-Miller gunned into the early lead with Ian Madsen quickly surging past Stewart for second before a flip after six laps precipitated an open red flag.

Stewart battled back around Madsen on the restart with Madsen involved in the next red flag seven laps later as Kemenah found himself up to eighth just two laps shy of midway.

Kemenah continued to climb and was fourth when another caution flew with 19 laps in the books just as Stewart was making a move on Price-Miller for the point.

That caution proved costly for “Smoke”, with Kemenah picking off both Dave Blaney and Stewart on the restart and then battling past Price-Miller for the lead on the 22nd round.

Following a pair of final cautions with four laps to go that eliminated top-ten contenders Kerry Madsen and Paul McMahan and then additional top contenders Mark Smith and Rico Abreu, Kemenah slipped away to pocket the $5,000 pay check.

In his wake, Stewart worked past Price-Miller on the 23rd circuit and held the spot to the line with Dave Blaney capturing the show position in the final rounds.

“It’s a lot better start than we had last year, but we didn’t have anything for Chad (Kemenah),” Stewart commented afterward.

“I’m happy with the whole night,” Blaney said after finishing third in the Groves Racing No. 70.  “Our car could maneuver all around the track.”

Price-Miller slipped back to fourth after leading the opening 21 rounds with Carson Short rounding out the top five.

(Vince Vellella photo)

The Vitals…                                                           

Series:  All Star Circuit of Champions

Track:  Bubba Raceway Park (Ocala, FL)

Car Count:  35

Quick Time:  Seventeen of 35 entries timed in below the previous track record with the 33rd to hit track topping the charts as Ian Madsen stopped the clocks at 11.392 seconds after Caleb Helms, Greg Hodnett, Tim Shaffer and Rico Abreu each enjoyed holding new track record status temporarily.

Heat Winners (starting position in parentheses):  Carson Short (1), Mark Smith (1), Cale Conley (2), Paul McMahan (2).

Heat Moments:  Short battled past Caleb Helms to win the first heat with the other three wired from the front row; Only two cautions slowed heat race action including Trevor Baker’s slowing mount in the second heat and then Tyler Clem’s hard contact with the wall exiting turn four in the fourth heat.

Dash Winners (starting position in parentheses):  Parker Price-Miller (2), Tony Stewart (2). 

“B” Main Winner (starting position in parentheses):  Sheldon Haudenschild (2).

“B” Main Moments:  Trevor Baker’s All Star rookie campaign is off to a rough start after flipping in turn three to avoid a spinning Bradley Howard midway through the 12-lapper.

“A” Main Cautions:  Ten.

First Start – Foreboding of what was to follow, John Garvin gets turned around in turn one.

Second Start – Cale Conley spins to a stop in turn two with race-ending front-end damage.

Third Start – The third try wasn’t the charm as Greg Hodnett spins in turn four and Tim Shaffer limps to the work area with front end problems.

6 Laps – The race’s first red flag flies when New Yorker Coleman Gulick goes for a turn two tumble.  The red is opened up.

13 Laps – Another red flag flies when Ian Madsen flips into turn one after frontstretch contact with Carson Short as the duo battled for third.  Short continued on.

19 Laps – Just as Tony Stewart is making a move on PPM for the lead, Max Stambaugh spins to a stop in turn four.

22 Laps – Tyler Clem stops in turn four.

Lap 23 Restart – Danny Dietrich and Trey Starks get tangled up in turn two.

26 Laps – Kerry Madsen and Paul McMahan get tangled up going into turn one and collect Sheldon Haudenschild in the mix.

Lap 27 Restart – Fourth-runner Mark Smith gets chopped exiting turn two and spins, collecting seventh-sitting Rico Abreu.

“A” Main Hard Charger:  Give it to Kemenah, who advanced 16 positions from 17th to pick up the win.

The Box Score…

All Star Circuit of Champions – Thursday, February 1, 2018 Results:

Qualifying:  1. 18-Ian Madsen 11.392, 2. 24-Rico Abreu 11.474, 3. 49x-Tim Shaffer 11.475, 4. 2m-Kerry Madsen 11.509, 5. 70-Dave Blaney 11.521, 6. 14T-Tyler Clem 11.531, 7. 4-Parker Price-Miller 11.591, 8. 48-Danny Dietrich 11.653, 9. 7k-Cale Conley 11.663, 10. 27-Greg Hodnett 11.703, 11. m1-Mark Smith 11.718, 12. 13-Paul McMahan 11.728, 13. 17-Caleb Helms 11.766, 14. 5m-Max Stambaugh 11.802, 15. 10h-Chad Kemenah 11.813, 16. 21-Carson Short 11.835, 17. 17s-Sheldon Haudenschild 11.836, 18. 17b-Steve Buckwalter 11.841, 19. 14-Tony Stewart 11.858, 20. 14g-Coleman Gulick 11.895, 21. 44-Trey Starks 11.956, 22. 91-Anthony Fiore 11.980, 23. 45-Trevor Baker 11.994, 24. 51-John Garvin 12.013, 25. 5w-Lucas Wolfe 12.020, 26. 4x-Danny Smith 12.148, 27. 2c-Wayne Johnson 12.149, 28. 49h-Bradley Howard 12.153, 29. 1080-Jordan Mackison 12.321, 30. 7J-Joe Swanson 12.323, 31. 1p-Curtis Evans 12.350, 32. 40-Mark Imler 12.399, 33. 95-Hunter Mackison 12.487, 34. 40h-George Hobaugh 12.601, 35. 33-Brent Matus 13.080

Heat One (8 Laps):  1. 21-Carson Short, 2. 49x-Tim Shaffer, 3. 17-Caleb Helms, 4. 27-Greg Hodnett, 5. 44-Trey Starks, 6. 51-Johh Garvin, 7. 91-Anthony Fiore, 8. 7J-Joe Swanson, 9. 40-Mark Imler.

Heat Two (8 Laps):  1. M1-Mark Smith, 2. 2m-Kerry Madsen, 3. 24-Rico Abreu, 4. 48-Danny Dietrich, 5. 1080-Jordan Mackison, 6. 1p-Curtis Evans, 7. 49h-Bradley Howard, 8. 40h-George Hobaugh, 9. 45-Trevor Baker.

Heat Three (8 Laps):  1. 7k-Cale Conley, 2. 4-Parker Price-Miller, 3. 5m-Max Stambaugh, 4. 70-Dave Blaney, 5. 10h-Chad Kemenah, 6. 17s-Sheldon Haudenschild, 7. 4x-Danny Smith, 8. 17b-Steve Buckwalter, 9. 5w-Lucas Wolfe.

Heat Four (8 Laps):  1. 13-Paul McMahan, 2. 14-Tony Stewart, 3. 18-Ian Madsen, 4. 14g-Coleman Gulick, 5. 2c-Wayne Johnson, 6. 95-Hunter Mackison, 7. 33-Brent Matus, 8. 14T-Tyler Clem.

Dash 1 (6 Laps):  1. 4-Parker Price-Miller, 2. 21-Carson Short, 3. 24-Rico Abreu, 4. 2m-Kerry Madsen, 5. 13-Paul McMahan.

Dash 2 (6 Laps):  1. 14-Tony Stewart, 2. 18-Ian Madsen, 3. M1-Mark Smith, 4. 49x-Tim Shaffer, 5. 7k-Cale Conley.

“B” Main (12 Laps):  1. 17s-Sheldon Haudenschild (2), 2. 51-John Garvin (3), 3. 95-Hunter Mackison (5), 4. 14T-Tyler Clem (1), 5. 4x-Danny Smith (7), 6. 17b-Steve Buckwalter (10), 7. 5w-Lucas Wolfe (14), 8. 1p-Curtis Evans (4), 9. 91-Anthony Fiore (6), 10. 40h-George Hobaugh (12), 11. 33-Brent Matus (9), 12. 7J-Joe Swanson (11), 13. 40-Mark Imler (15), 14. 49h-Bradley Howard (8), 15. 45-Trevor Baker (13).

“A” Main (30 Laps): 1. 10h-Chad Kemenah (17), 2. 14-Tony Stewart (2), 3. 70-Dave Blaney (13), 4. 4-Parker Price-Miller (1), 5. 21-Carson Short (3), 6. 2c-Wayne Johnson (19), 7. 27-Greg Hodnett (15), 8. 95-Hunter Mackison (23), 9. 17s-Sheldon Haudenschild (21), 10. 17-Caleb Helms (11), 11. M1-Mark Smith (6), 12. 24-Rico Abreu (5), 13. 2m-Kerry Madsen (7), 14. 13-Paul McMahan (9), 15. 44-Trey Starks (18), 16. 48-Danny Dietrich (14), 17. 14T-Tyler Clem (24), 18. 5m-Max Stambaugh (12), 19. 18-Ian Madsen (4), 20. 51-John Garvin (22), 21. 14g-Coleman Gulick (16), 22. 1080-Jordan Mackison (20), 23. 49x-Tim Shaffer (8), 24. 7k-Cale Conley (10).

Lap leaders:  Parker Price-Miller 1-21, Chad Kemenah 22-30.