Stickler holds off challengers for victory at Showtime �By SCOTT LOCKWOOD Showtime Speedway �With 10 laps left in Saturday night’s Gagel’s Auto Parts Open Wheel Modified 50-lap feature at Showtime Speedway, Cody Stickler looked like he was on cruise control on his way to the victory. �But LJ Grimm had other ideas in the final moments of the race, and Stickler needed to make a big save just feet from the checkered flag to hang on for the victory in the event that headlined a memorable night of Short Track Madness in Pinellas Park. �As Scott Holly took the lead to open the main event chaos broke out immediately behind him as Leroy Moore Jr., Chris Zimmerman and L.J. Grimm were involved in a three-car spin. All of the cars were able to continue with Moore heading to the rear of the field for causing the caution. �Zimmerman wrestled the lead away from Holly on the restart. Grimm wasted no time charging back to the front and found himself second behind Zimmerman at lap four. Grimm grabbed the top spot a couple of laps later. �Kyle Bookmiller and Cody Stickler followed Grimm past Zimmerman to the front of the pack. Stickler passed Bookmiller for second on lap 12 and needed just a handful of laps to get to Grimm’s rear bumper. They would spend the next 10 laps running nose-to-tail around the quarter-mile bullring until Holly spun jn front of the leaders to bring out the caution just prior to the halfway point. �Stickler used a run on the high side on the restart to get the lead from Grimm, but the pass didn’t stand after Zimmerman lost and engine and tagged the wall in turn three. He made the same move work on the subsequent restart and took the lead as the field took the crossed flags for the halfway point. The pair were pulling away from the third place battle between Bookmiller and Richie Smith when another caution came out for a spin by Rob Pope Sr. �Stickler cleared Grimm on the final restart, but Grimm would not go away quietly. Grimm got into Stickler’s rear bumper in the final corner, but Stickler held off the charge and held on for the victory. Smith, Bookmiller and Ricky Coffin rounded out the top five. �Raymond Vann and Rick Haugh opened the 50-lap Hose Hydraulics Street Stock feature event with a spirited side-by-side battle for top spot that lasted for the opening 10 laps. Haugh finally cleared Vann for the top spot, leaving Vann and Cody Stickler to fight it out for second place for the next several laps. Stickler finally got to the runner-up spot on lap 15. �Back in the pack Rodney Tower avoided trouble when he took a ride through the grass, came out in front of the battle for the fifth spot and kept going without a caution. The first yellow flag of the race came out for Justin Amspaugh’s stalled car on lap 18. �Stickler vaulted into the lead on the restart with Haugh, Dennis Cantara and Jeffery Taylor directly in tow, While the leaders raced single file Tower was working his way back through the field and spent several laps in a battle with Mike Meadows and Anthony Breske. Meadows and Tower eventually joined the leaders to form a six-car freight train at the front of the pack. �Cantara got by Haugh for second with five laps to go and began closing on Stickler, who’s car began smoking in the final laps. Cantara made one last-gasp effort on the final turn to get the lead, but Stickler held on for the victory. Haugh held off Tower for third, whole Taylor rounded out the top five. �Stickler’s car failed post-race inspection and he was disqualified as a result, handing the victory to Cantera. �Josh Ryan and Steve Shea spent the opening laps of the 25-lap Tree Musketeers Mini Stock feature. Zak Graham, who won a heat race earlier in the evening, needed just a handful of laps to get to the front and passed both Ryan and Shea at the same time for the top spot at the five-lap mark. �As Graham started lapping the back of the field Dodge Carlbert - the night’s other heat race winner - worked his way up to second and started slowly cutting into Graham’s lead. Once the leaders cleared the lapped traffic Graham was on his way to a victory when the caution flew for James Grigsby’s stalled car just four laps from the finish. �Carlbert tried using the high line to his advantage on the restart, but Graham held off the challenge and took the win. Carlbert, Shawn Senokossoff, Brittany Hart and Shea rounded out the top five. �In other action Saturday night, Andy Superant charged from his 10th place starting spot to win the 15-lap Strictly Stock feature; and Russ Feightner held off a frantic charge by Mike Gamache to win the 20-lap Mini Stock Figure 8 race. �Showtime Speedway returns to action on July 4 with the Florida State Open Wheel Modified Championship. Street Stocks, Mini Stocks, Enduros, School Bus Figure 8’s and Outlaw Figure 8’s will also be in action along with a fireworks show.
Unofficial results from tonight's Mini Stock Figure 8 race.
Cody Stickler holds off LJ Grimm to win tonight's Gagel's Auto Parts 50-lap Open Wheel Modified feature. Here are the unofficial results.
Cody Stickler holds off Dennis Cantara to win the 50-lap Hose Hydraulics 50-lap feature. Here are the unofficial results.
Unofficial results of tonight's Tree Musketeers 25-lap Mini Stock feature. Zak Graham followed his heat race win with a feature victory.