Brent Marks Kicks Off Night 1 of the Tuscarora 50 with the All Stars in Victory Lane

By- Justin Snyder

Port Royal Speedway – PORT ROYAL, Pa. (Sept 10, 2021) Brent Marks held off everything Bill Balog had to give to pick up the FloRacing All Star Circuit of Champions presented by Mobil 1 feature victory at Port Royal Speedway Thursday night.

The 54th Annual Tuscarora 50 opener was worth $8000 courtesy of Folkens Brothers Trucking and Tedd Reitz and was Marks’ first career win with the series. The win also moved Marks into a tie for 30th on the all-time win list at the Juniata County oval with Bobby Davis Jr., Bobby Weaver, Don Kreitz Jr., and Lucas Wolfe with 12 career triumphs.

“It’s been a while since we had a super fast track like this and was definitely a little different than we are used to,” said Marks. “We’ll cherish this one tonight and come back for two more nights and I think we’ve got a shot come Saturday for the big money.”

AJ Flick and Balog led the field of 28 cars to the green flag and it was Flick getting the quick jump on the field to lead lap one over Balog and Daryn Pittman.

With Flick in cruise control out front, Marks started his trek to the front from his fifth starting spit and he moved past Pittman for a podium spot on lap six. Two laps later Flick caught the tail-end of the field, which allowed Balog to pull to the tail tank of Flick coming to start/finish line.

Balog and Flick swapped the lead in turn’s one and two and the two made slight contact in turn’s three and four to give Balog the lead. The move also halted any momentum Flick had to make a return attempt and gave Marks the runner-up spot.

Marks and Balog traded sliders on each other multiple times over the next two laps and each time Balog was able to pull back ahead. Finally on lap 11, Marks was able to hold off Balog’s crossover exiting turn four to lead the lap.

Balog settled into the runner-up position and one lap late Pittman moved past Flick to secure the third position. Two laps later served as a scare for Marks as he drove it into turn’s three and four looking to dispatch of the lapped car of Jeff Halligan and Halligan got up over the cushion and smacked hard into the turn four gaurdrail to bring out the red flag.

“It got pretty wicked there in lapped traffic. Being up front and running wide open, I was just trying to be careful as I could,” said Marks. “I want to apologize to the 45 car. We never made contact, but I just spooked him and he got into the wall. After that incident I knew I needed to be a little more careful in lapped traffic.”

Meanwhile, 21st-place starter Rico Abreu was on the move as well, as he was sitting in the 13th position on the restart. Marks blasted out to the front on the restart and two laps later Abreu powered his way into the top ten.

Marks again blasted out to a hefty lead, while Balog stayed patient in second-place. With 11 laps remaining, Marks was again buried deep in lapped traffic. Staying true to his plan to be more patient, the slower pace allowed Balog to close the gap significantly.

With five laps to go, the pair sat 4 car-lengths apart on the Speedway and with Marks attempting to go around the outside of a lapped car entering turn one the following lap, Balog made his move. He slid under Marks to take the lead briefly, but Marks powered back by down the backstretch.

Balog regrouped and was setting himself up to make one final run at the leader, but one lap later the caution flew for a slowing Hunter Schuerenberg on the frontstretch and set up a three-lap dash for the win.

The clean air was all marks needed as he again busted out to a decent sized lead. That left Balog to fend off Pittman for the runner-up position, while Marks cruised to victory. Marks crossed under the checkered flag by a margin of 2.289 seconds over Balog, Pittman, Cory Eliason and Flick.

Lynton Jeffrey, Abreu, Aaron Reutzel, Brian Brown and Lucas Wolfe rounded out the top ten. Abreu earned the $200 Valley Supply Hard Charger, while 23rd-place finisher Blane Heimbach earned the $1000 J&S Fabrication Warrior Award via random draw as well.

“It’s really hard as you’re keeping such a torrid pace and then you get to lapped traffic and you’ve get slowed down and that means the guys behind you are catching you,” said Marks. “I just tried to be as smart as possible there at the end and luckily we got that yellow and it allowed us to kind of regroup and control the pace.”
For Balog, the runner-up finish was a nice relief following and up and down rookie season on the All Star tour.

“We weren’t getting any worse as the race went on and we just kept getting better and better,” said Balog. “I didn’t realize there was only a handful of laps left and that caution kind of killed us. However I think we pretty much ran out of gas on the white flag lap, so I’m thankful for a second and we’ll go from there.”

410 Sprint Car Feature Results (30 Laps_: 1. Brent Marks; 2. Bill Balog; 3. Daryn Pittman; 4. Cory Eliason; 5. A.J. Flick; 6. Lynton Jeffrey; 7. Rico Abreu; 8. Aaron Reutzel; 9. Brian Brown; 10. Lucas Wolfe; 11. Anthony Macri; 12. Ian Madsen; 13. Dylan Cisney; 14. Logan Wagner; 15. Gio Scelzi; 16. Mike Wagner; 17. T.J. Stutts; 18. Spencer Bayston; 19. Justin Peck; 20. Tyler Courtney; 21. Hunter Schuerenberg; 22. Kyle Reinhardt; 23. Blane Heimbach; 24. Tyler Walton; 25. Zeb Wise; 26. Jeff Halligan; 27. Gerard McIntyre; 28. Tyler Bear.

DNQ: Hunter Schuerenberg (Provisional); Jeff Halligan (Provisional); Zeb Wise (Provisional); Tyler Walton (Provisional); Cap Henry; Kyle Moody; Skylar Gee; Steve Buckwalter; Justin Whittall; Devon Borden; Ryan Smith; Zach Hampton; Curt Stroup; Danny Dietrich; George Hobaugh; Curt Stroup; Michael Walter II; Jared Esh; Freddie Rahmer; Tyler Reeser; Pat Cannon; Sye Lynch.

Buddy Schweibinz scored his first career Penns Valley Meat Market PA Sprint Series 305 Sprint Car victory Saturday night at the Port Royal Speedway.

Rounding out the top-five was Devin Adams, Doug Dodson, Austin Reed and Kenny Heffner. Jeff Weaver, Nathan Gramley, Kruz Kepner, Kassidy Kreitz and Erin Statler completed the top ten.
Donny Wise started form the pole position and he led the first 10 laps of the feature. Schweibinz started the event in third and had moved into the runner-up position early in the event. He slipped by Wise for the feature with 10 laps to go and fifth-place starting Adams got past Wise as well for second one lap later.

A late caution with six laps remaining bunched the field back together, but the race was the rookies race to lose. Schweibinz went on to claim the checkered flag by a margin of 1.159 seconds to cap off the opening night of the Tuscarora 50.

305 Sprint Car Results (20 Laps): 1. Buddy Schweibinz 2. Devin Adamas 3. Doug Dodson 4. Austin Reed 5. Kenny Heffner 6. Jeff Weaver 7. Nathan Gramley 8. Kruz Kepner 9. Kassidy Kreitz 10. Erin Statler 11. Josh Spicer 12. Dustin Young 13. Ryan Lynn 14. Fred Arnold 15. Drew Young 16. Larry McVay 17. Mikell McGee 18. Josh Bricker 19. Reed Thompson 20. Donny Wise 21. Ronnie Rough 22. Garrett Bard 23. Domenic Melair 24. Cale Riegel 25. Nathan Emig 26. Jake Waters