MECHANICSBURG - Fred Rahmer started on the pole and led all 25 laps of the opening night sprint car feature at Williams Grove Speedway on Friday night.
Rahmer, an eight-time Grove champion, extended his streak of winning at the Grove to 24 consecutive seasons. It was his sixth career opening day win and the 88th of his career at the Grove.
"Now, we just need more," Rahmer said. "I've got to thank Rob (Sell) and everybody involved. We were loose most of the race, but were fortunate enough to start up front. We got it done in the heat race to earn that spot. I couldn't be happier. The guys had the car real good. Believe it or not, I can still drive a race car."
Rahmer and Brian Montieth shared the front row for the start of the 25-lap main event. Rahmer got the jump off the fourth corner and was able to pull ahead of Montieth down the frontstretch and into the first turn.
Ryan Taylor would sneak under Montieth to take over the runner-up spot on the initial lap. Rahmer began to lap slower cars by the seventh lap, but maintained a comfortable lead over Taylor and Montieth.
The only caution flag of the event flew on lap 13 when Nicole Bower slowed to a stop on the front stretch. Taylor looked low on Rahmer on the restart in turn one, but it was Rahmer holding the lead off the second turn.
Taylor stayed right with Rahmer over the final 10 laps. He tried a slider in turns one and two, but couldn't make the pass. He tried it again in turns three and four, but got too high allowing Montieth to go back into second. However, Taylor returned the pass in turn two.
Rahmer, of Salfordville, would score the $3,600 win holding off Taylor and Montieth. Greg Hodnett and Donnie Kreitz completed the top five. Mark Smith, Brent Marks, Cory Haas, Lance Dewease and Logan Schuchart completed the top 10.
"I had Brian starting outside pole and he's usually on the cushion so that's where I figured I needed to be," said Rahmer. "I seen Ryan there at the end, but I got it done."
Marks, Taylor and Montieth won the 10-lap heat races for the 29-car field. Schuchart won the consolation.
NASCAR driver Dave Blaney was in the field driving a sprint car, but mechanical problems kept him from making the main event.