The Jeffer Scores Top 5 Finish at OCFS Hard Clay Open

Jeff Heotzler Small Block Modified 2a

Patience was the name of the game Sunday at the inaugural Hard Clay Open at the Orange County Fair Speedway.

The Jeffer decided to go with the Schrufer Racing 2A small block on Sunday after bringing both the 2a and the 14H big block cars to OCFS’s practice session the day before.

With it being a day race, the team figured a small block may fare better on the “Hard Clay”, especially when it came to tire wear.

After picking 59 out of 100, The Jeffer lined up 6th in the 3rd heat and had to get to 3rd to qualify directly into the 50 lap feature. He made quick work of 3 competitors and settled into 3rd by lap 3, where he would finish the 8 lap heat.

When it was feature time, The Jeffer rolled off the grid in 15th place. Slowly and steadily he began to pick off positions one by one, being sure to stay smooth to keep tire wear at a minimum. As the laps clicked off, The Jeffer meticulously carved through the field, glued to the guardrails on the bottom of each corner. It takes a tremendous amount of patience and concentration when navigating the tricky 5/8s mile on a hard, single groove racing surface as one mistake can mean losing multiple spots.

Restarts proved to be the most challenging as dusty conditions limited visibility and drivers fought hard for the bottom lane entering the first corner.

Despite being shuffled back to 10th on a restart around lap 35, The Jeffer clawed his way back forward, regaining the spots he lost and setting his sights on the leaders.

As the laps winded down, it seemed the faster the Academy Transmissions 2a got. The Jeffer stuck his nose underneath the 4th place running car on the last lap but just didn’t have the time to make it happen. The Jeffer took the checkered on lap 50 in 5th place, sealing a great effort by the Schrufer Racing team.

Next weekend will be a busy one as both the Accord Speedway and Orange County Fair Speedway open up their regular seasons. The Jeffer will look to continue the momentum with the 2A on Friday night at Accord and will pilot the Roberts Racing 14H on Saturday at OCFS.

It was good to see such a tremendous turnout of fans at OCFS today, we hope to see everyone back out next weekend as well!

*Thank you to Bobby Armbruster for the photo!

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