MECHANICSBURG, Pa. — David Gravel scored a clean sweep of Friday night’s Williams Grove Speedway National Open preliminary by setting quick time, winning his heat race and then leading flag to flag to pick up a $10,000 victory.
The win was the second of the year at Williams Grove with the World of Outlaws NOS Energy Sprint Car Series.
Gravel and Cory Eliason started on the front row of the 25-lap main event and Gravel took command at the drop of the green, while Eliason made a few mistakes in the early going by jumping the fourth and first turn cushions, causing himself to fall backward.
Third-starting Donny Schatz got by Eliason for second when he first hopped up over in turn four on the second lap.
The first of two caution flags unfurled moments later, when Kerry Madsen slowed with failed brakes.
Gravel out-gunned Schatz on the restart, while sixth-starting Lance Dewease took advantage of another slip by Eliason in the first turn and motored into third.
Gravel’s pace was slowed for the final time with five laps recorded, this time for oil on the race track.
Dewease ran Schatz up to the wall in the fourth turn as the pair headed for the completion of lap six, but Schatz maintained the second spot while Gravel jetted away.
After losing a little ground after his move failed, Dewease was back for another try, this time completing the pass in the fourth corner only to see Schatz drop off of the cushion and reclaim the spot at the line.
The front trio then settled in as the laps began clicking off, with Gravel entering the rear of the field just as Dewease began mounting more pressure on the 18th lap.
With Schatz now trying the low side through the third and fourth turns, Dewease went to the middle groove and drew to Schatz’s outside in the turns, to no avail.
But then when Schatz went high through the turns again with three laps to go, Dewease seized the moment and drove off of the bottom to take over the position.
By then, Gravel had amassed a more than comfortable margin, one that didn’t allow Dewease to get close, although he did cut down the advantage by the finish.
Gravel took the win by 2.377 seconds.
Dewease, Schatz, 2018 Friday winner Gio Scelzi and Aaron Reutzel followed Gravel to the finish line.
Sixth through 10th went to Danny Dietrich, Brian Brown, Daryn Pittman, Matt Campbell and Brad Sweet.
Dietrich locked up the 2019 Williams Grove track title with his run in the main event.
It is the first Williams Grove track championship for the Gettysburg driver and his car owner, Gary Kauffman.
Heats for the 53-car field went to Gravel, Pittman, Brown, Dewease, Reutzel and Scelzi.
Twin dashes went to Gravel and Eliason.
Trey Starks scored the D-main victory, Dylan Cisney won the C-main and Tim Shaffer took the B-main.
Gravel set fast time over the field with a lap of 16.206 seconds, just a tick shy of the pre-weight rule lap record of 16.140.
To see full results, turn to the next page.