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Stone rolls to first victory at Speedway

September 12, 2010|By C.J. LOVELACE

Dan Stone is no stranger to Victory Lane, but he had never taken a checkered flag at Hagerstown Speedway.

On several previous occasions, Stone looked like he had the car to earn that elusive first win, but it always escaped him. Saturday night, luck was on his side.

With six laps to go, Roy Deese Jr. broke a rear axle, allowing Stone to take the lead of the Three State Flyers series finale. Stone was able to hold off series champ Jason Covert to take the 35-lap victory and $3,000 paycheck.

It was his first Late Model win at Hagerstown and 100th of his career.

"We've been trying to win here for a long time," said Stone, of Thompson, Pa. "We've lost a lot of races like Roy did there. I think he had the better car. We just hung in there and our car lasted. I guess I'll take it anyway I can get it."

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After Stone took the lead, it set up what appeared to be a fierce battle with Covert, who was lightning fast in his heat and dash races, but Stone pulled away to win by more than two seconds.

Cautions became Stone's ally, allowing him to save his tires.

"The track took a little bit of rubber there at the end," he said. "I knew as long as I didn't screw up too bad, (Covert) was going to have to be really good to get by me."

Alan Sagi finished third, followed by Marvin Winters and Kyle Lear in the top five. Hagerstown track champion Frankie Plessinger, Ronnie DeHaven Jr., Andy Anderson, Al Shawver Jr. and J.T. Spence completed the top 10.

Heat race winners were Covert, DeHaven, Deese and Stone. Brian Booze won the consolation race.

Scott Lebarron, of Dover, Pa., opened the evening's card by winning a special Three State Flyers 20-lap match race for the top 20 drivers in points. Thirteen drivers ran in the $2,000-to-win event.

Lebarron took the lead on the fourth lap from DeHaven, who experienced mechanical problems and came to rest on the front stretch. From there, it was lights out for Lebarron, who also notched his first Hagerstown feature win.

"It feels pretty good," said Lebarron, who edged Covert for the checkered. "There's a whole long list that never quits (getting us here). It takes the whole team to make it work."

Spence, D.J. Myers and Sagi made up the top five.

The Silver Spring Super Sportsman sprint cars were also on Saturday's card. Veteran Rich Eichelberger, of Dillsburg, Pa., made it three first-time winners at the track.

Eichelberger took the lead on the 10th lap and was able to keep Russ Mitten at bay to earn the 20-lap win.

"It was really great," said Eichelberger. "I just want to thank everybody at Hagerstown. This track is great ... best track we run on. Smooth, fast, racy, and they do a great job."

Jan Fannasy took third, followed by John Germen and John Stehmen in the top five. Carmen Perigo Jr., Rick Barr, Dave Socks, Mike Enders and Lanny Hake completed the top 10.

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