Austin Beers nips dad Eric for quick time and guaranteed pick in Opening Day feature redraw

Photo: Walter Smth

(LEHIGHTON, PA 6-7-20) Eric Beers made his official return to Mahoning Valley Speedway a meaningful one by out-timing everyone for the guaranteed redraw pick in advance of the June 13 Opening Day John “Peepers” Yerger Memorial 77-lap Tribute, which is race number one of the Mahoning Valley Speedway Hall of Fame Series.

Everyone that is with the exception of one driver, his 17-year old son Austin, who stole the thunder of his celebrated father, who is Mahoning’s all-time Modified wins leader, by going 10.088-seconds to the elder Beers’ 10.134-seconds.

The timed dashes where part of the track’s Test and Tune days which actually began back on March 14 but was halted afterwards due the COVID-19 pandemic and resumed this past weekend.

Brandon Christman, a rookie and Jesse Bollinger, also took top honors in the Street Stocks and Hobby Stocks respectively and will head into Opening Night worry free as they too are automatically locked in the redraw for feature starting spots.

The Modified quick time was sponsored by MYRACENEWS.com which posted a $100 bonus to the fastest driver.

The classes where divided in groups for two sessions and 5-lap runs per session. When E. Beers drove onto the blacktop in session one it marked his first official time in action at Mahoning since August 2017 and he immediately darted to the top of the speed charts.

However, no sooner did the next and final group take to the clock then A. Beers blasted ahead of dad and all the rest. His 10.088-second lap was the fastest such for a Modified since 2016.

“It really felt good out there today and that despite we were on used tires. Really I need to thank my dad because he did a lot of the set-up on the car and when you can out run him here at Mahoning Valley that says a lot,” said A. Beers.

“This is huge knowing how many good drivers where here today and will be here next week too and so much pressure is off us now. The fans are going to be in for a great show with a lot of Modifieds and I can’t wait to come back Saturday and go for the win in the Peepers Tribute.”

Todd Baer, 10.222, Tyler Haydt 10.231 and Austin Kochenash 10.238 rounded out the top five. The Yerger Tribute will pay $2250 to win and $500 for 10th.

Christman came into the weekend with the fastest time from March 14 and it held up over the past weekend, giving the third generation rookie driver an impressive outing for his upcoming feature debut.

Likewise Bollinger showed his hand three months ago and when Test and Tune began and he then added and insurance lap with his 12.130 circuit.

This past Saturday and Sunday’s Test and Tune saw just over 100 cars take part in shake down runs in anticipation of the June 13 lid-lifter.

The track will be one of the very few asphalt speedways in action throughout the northeast and is anticipating a great turnout of cars.

Race time is 6:00 pm. The night’s line-up will also include Street Stocks, Hobby Stocks, Pro 4s and Rookie Hobby Stocks.

Adult grandstand admission is $20, $2 discount for active military, students and seniors 65+. Must have valid ID. Children 10 & under are free. Grandstand gates open at 3:00.

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