Ponstein Captures First Sunoco Super Series Victory

Hudsonville, Michigan's Andy Ponstein, the 2002 Sunoco Super Series Rookie of the Year, took advantage of a mistake by race leader Jim Crabtree Jr. and then held off a hard-charging Jeff Lane to snag his first career win in 29 starts with the CRA Late Model traveling series Saturday evening at the Anderson Speedway.

Chris Hanna of Carthage was the Terry's RV Street Stock feature winner while point leader Ronnie Rose of Anderson inched closer to a championship by taking the victory in the Figure 8 headliner.

Coming into the Sunoco 150, point leader Bobby Parsley had won both events for the Sunoco Super Series at Anderson Speedway this season. With the inversion being only four by the draw, this set the stage for an exciting event.

The race had a complete restart when it appeared that Parsley missed a shift coming off Turn 4 on the start sending his mount momentarily sideways down the main straightaway. He collected Scott Hantz with Hantz slamming the Turn 1 wall. Hantz spent most of the evening making repairs and returned late for a few laps.

Upon the restart, Jim Crabtree Jr. jumped to the lead from outside the front row. The yellow came back on lap two when Bull Baker and J.R. Roahrig made contact with Baker spinning. Junior Hanley swerved wide to miss the altercation making contact with Kenny Tweedy, vaulting Tweedy's car high through the air and into the retaining wall eliminating him for the night.

The race ran smoothly until lap 40 with Crabtree looking very dominating. The red flew when the track became blocked with three cars stacked in Turn 2. In this altercation, race leader Crabtree spun into the melee but avoided contact.

 By Sunoco Super Series rules, since he spun to avoid the crash, he lost his position. Had he just stopped to avoid the crash he would of retained the lead. Andy Ponstein took the point, a position he would not relinquish.

A spin by Roahrig brought a quick yellow on lap 68 and then the race ran green all the way to lap 138. Lane at times was on the bumper of Ponstein with Hanley on the tail of Lane. When the final green returned after a two car tangle on lap 138,  it was a six-lap dash to the finish.

Ponstein held on for his first career victory. Rounding out the lead lappers were Lane, Hanley, Parsley, Tom Hernly Jr. and Crabtree. Lane was fast qualifier at 12.151 seconds.

In Street Stock action, Chris Hanna came flying like a shot out of a cannon from his sixth starting slot to grab the lead on lap seven of the 30-lap event to coast onto a convincing win, his first of the season.

The battle raged in the pack for second thru fifth for position and points. When the checker fell, Hanna chasers were Curtis Chapman, Rich Boyer, Terry Burton and Darwin Blankenship.

Chapman led the distance in the fast heat to score the win over Jacob Owens and Robin Burton.

Kevin Brooks took over from Gary Moore halfway thru heat No. 2 and then held off Hanna for the win. Ronnie Phipps was third. Point leader Rich Boyer was fast timer at 14.303 seconds.

A straight-up inversion draw always makes for an exciting Figure 8 with plenty of intersecting excitement. With the field strung out it was almost continuous action in the crossover.

Rose was pressured the distance by Joe Hart Jr. but Rose used patience and a watchful intersection eye to capture his fifth feature win of the season and his second checker in as many weeks.

Pursuing Rose were Hart, Johnny Magee, Ricky Tharp and Mike Perry. Riddle led the distance in heat No. 1 beating Chapman and Hart. Mike Phipps and Ronnie Phipps raced side by side to the checker in heat No. 2 with Mike defeating Ronnie by a fender.  Jeff Swinford was third. Rose was fast timer at 20.339 seconds.

For additional information contact Anderson Speedway at (765) 642-0206.