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Matt Sheppard Goes Flag-to-Flag To Win King of Spring 100

Matt Sheppard was fortunate Sunday night at Lebanon Valley Speedway. Sheppard finished second in his heat, but drew the pole during the redraw. Starting from pole, Sheppard led flag-to-flag to win the King of Spring 100 for his 90th career Super DIRTcar Series victory and a winner’s check for $13,500.

“Drawing the pole and not letting anyone pass you is the key,” Sheppard said while waiting at the pay window. “I had a pretty good car. I could move around a bit. The good starting got me open air and I was able to maintain. It was good enough.”

Sheppard started from the pole with Mike Mahaney alongside. Sheppard wasn’t the fastest driver in time trials, but when it came time to race, he was on it. He was able to quickly open up a gap on the field. Peter Britten moved up to third when Jack Lehner dropped out and was running down the two leaders.

Kyle Sheldon brought out the yellow when he spun on lap 17 in turn 4. On the restart, Britten was able to take second away just before another yellow came out due to issues for Mathieu Desjardins and Adam Pierson. Desjardins was done for the night.

Marc Johnson, who was fastest in time trials and won Saturday night’s weekly feature, was on the move at this point. He was able to get past Mahaney for third and stalked Sheppard and Britten. At this point, Sheppard didn’t have that large of a lead.

However, as the race continued on, Johnson fell back. Lapped traffic allowed Sheppard to stretch his advantage to three seconds.

Unfortunately for Britten, he suffered a right rear tire failure on lap 65 to bring out a yellow. During the tire change, a Dzus fastener came off of the car. At speed, this resulted in the Bat Man’s car looking like it had a cape. Despite the aerodynamic deficiency from having a chute on his roof, Britten recovered to finish ninth.

Mahaney took second back after the tire issue. Andy Bachetti moved up to third just after the restart. After a spin for Max McLaughlin set up a 10-lap sprint to the finish, Sheppard was able to hold on for the win.

Mahaney ended up second, then Bachetti. Johnson was fourth, while Jimmy Phelps was fifth.

Supporting the Super DIRTcar Series were two of Lebanon Valley’s weekly classes. The Sportsman class saw the heads-up field set by two heat races. Tim Hartman Jr. spun out in his heat race, yet recovered to win. That got him the pole with Kevin Ward alongside.

Once the green came out, Hartman was able to stake himself a small lead over the pack. Meanwhile, there was trouble brewing further back.

Bob Fachini spun in turn 3 to bring out the caution, but not before a chain reaction wrapped up Chris Lynch, Rob Maxon and Jeff Higham. Everyone involved would continue.

Rob Maxon, racing against his son Anthony, had a quick car, but no luck at all. After the previous incident, he tried to make his way back up the order. However, his night came to an end after he collided with Brady Cordova and spun entering turn 1.

Through the race, Hartman was never seriously threatened as he took his third victory of the year. Ward was second, then Matt Burke, Gary O’Brien and Corey Cormier.

The Pro Stock feature lineup was set without heat races. Shawn Perez started from the pole. Chad Jeseo was supposed to start alongside, but ended up starting in the rear of the 13-car field.

Perez proceeded to run the Pro Stock race of his career at Lebanon Valley. He was able to get out to a decent advantage over the rest of the pack. Meanwhile, Steven LaRochelle and Zach Sorrentino fought hard for second.

Jeseo charged up from the rear of the field, picking off drivers one at a time. He got to sixth relatively quickly, then spent a significant amount of time getting by Slater Baker.

Once he dispatched of Baker, Jeseo made it a four-man battle for second between himself, LaRochelle, Sorrentino and Dave Stickles. He got to third via a three-wide battle with LaRochelle and Sorrentino, then took second on lap 16.

Jeseo then ran down Perez for the lead. The two drivers battled until the final lap of the race. Perez was still leading when contact was made entering turn 3. Both Perez and Jeseo went hard into the outside wall and out of the race.

LaRochelle inherited the lead, then held on to take the victory. Sorrentino was second, then Stickles, Tom Dean and Ryan Crellin.

Super DIRTcar Series King of Spring 100 Results (100 laps): 1) Matt Sheppard, 2) Mike Mahaney, 3) Andy Bachetti, 4) Marc Johnson, 5) Jimmy Phelps, 6) L.J. Lombardo, 7) Alex Yankowski, 8) Mat Williamson, 9) Peter Britten, 10) Darren Smith, 11) Adam Pierson, 12) Steve Bernard, 13) John Virgilio, 14) Tim Sears Jr., 15) Felix Roy, 16) Kolby Schroder, 17) Max McLaughlin, 18) Tyler Dippel, 19) Larry Wight, 20) Kenny Tremont Jr., 21) Anthony Perrego, 22) Kyle Sheldon, 23) Keith Flach, 24) Matthew Desjardins, 25) Ronnie Davis III, 26) Chris Hile, 27) Jack Lehner, 28) Kyle Armstrong. DNQ: Timothy Davis, C.G. Morey, Justin Stone, Marcus Dinkins, Dillon Steuer, Mike King, Brett Haas, J.R. Heffner, Olden Dwyer, Josh Marcus, Eddie Marshall

Sportsman Feature Results (20 laps): 1) Tim Hartman Jr., 2) Kevin Ward, 3) Matt Burke, 4) Gary O’Brien, 5) Corey Cormier, 6) Keith Johannessen, 7) Chris Lynch, 8) Peter Lorenzo, 9) Brady Cordova, 10) Jeff Higham, 11) Cody Cordova, 12) Roger Hummer, 13) Anthony Maxon, 14) Frank Twing Jr., 16) Jim VanZandt, 16) Alex Palmer-Sawyer, 17) Rob Maxon, 18) Bob Fachini, 19) Daryl Nutting

Pro Stock Feature Results (20 laps): 1) Steven LaRochelle, 2) Zach Sorrentino, 3) Dave Stickles, 4) Tom Dean, 5) Ryan Crellin, 6) Slater Baker, 7) Fred Lee, 8) Gary Silkey, 9) Shawn Perez Jr., 10) Brian Keough, 11) Shawn Perez, 12) Chad Jeseo, 13) Johnny Rivers

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