Area driver has prayers answered, makes long tow from Missouri to Pennsylvania to earn win
- Kyle Reinhardt earned a 410 sprint triumph at Selinsgrove Speedway on Sunday night.
- Reinhardt raced in Missouri on Saturday night before towing to Pennsylvania.
- Reinhardt earned $4,000. Ryan Smith was second, followed by Steve Buckwalter.
SELINSGROVE — One day before he was set to race in a World of Outlaws event in Missouri, Kyle Reinhardt was focused on the weather forecast for Friday night in Pennsylvania.
Reinhardt wanted the opportunity to run in the Saturday night feature with the Outlaws and then head home for the rescheduled 410 sprint race at Selinsgrove Speedway, but he needed a little help from Mother Nature.
“It may be selfish, but I was praying for rain on Friday,” Reinhardt said.
The Adams County driver, who is originally from New Jersey, got his wish. The Selinsgrove feature was pushed back to Sunday night, giving himself and his crew the opportunity to make the 15-hour, 983-mile drive from Lake Ozark Speedway to Snyder County in time for Sunday’s event.
Fueled by coffee and about two hours of sleep, Reinhardt pulled into the parking lot at 3:30 p.m. and had less than two hours to get the car ready before hot laps began.
Despite the lack of sleep, Reinhardt continued his long weekend of driving, cruising into victory lane with his first 410 sprint victory at Selinsgrove Speedway and grabbing the $4,000 top prize.
“It was all worth it,” said Reinhardt, whose shop is located in New Oxford. “Just relief for my guys and everybody that put in the hours and the hard work. Just relief all around.”
Learning experience vs. Outlaws: Reinhardt put his name in the running to get a chance to race with the Outlaws and was excited when the opportunity came his way. He participated in a pair of events in Missouri, with his best finish in the second feature on Saturday at Lake Ozark.
A 19th-place finish against some of the sport’s elite drivers was a learning experience that Reinhardt was grateful to have during his first full season as a 410 sprint driver.
“It puts things in perspective,” Reinhardt said. “There’s a lot of guys up there that are just so good that we’ve got a lot of work to (do to) be like that, but at the same time, there’s guys that are out there on the road that we beat.”
While he was confident in his showing with the Outlaws, Reinhardt knows he has a long way to go until he’s at the level needed to achieve his goal of joining an organization such as the Outlaws and compete for victories against talents such as former NASCAR driver Kyle Larson and Hanover native Logan Schuchart, who won Friday's Outlaws event at Lake Ozark.
“You can’t expect to go out with the Outlaws in a place you’ve never been, well you can if you’re Kyle Larson or somebody like that, but we’re not at that level yet,” Reinhardt said. “They’re the best. I’m a pretty realistic person, I don’t expect to go out and beat them the first time. We went out there and made a race and that was a solid night for us. I don't know how many years down the road, but we would like to be on the road on some type of All Star tour or Outlaws tour, but there’s a lot that has to happen between then and now. I gotta win a lot more races before that happens.”
Running as much as possible: Reinhardt said the key to getting better is racing as much as possible, no matter whether you’re winning or losing. True to his word, he didn’t waste an opportunity to get back into his car on Sunday, even if it meant a grueling trip home.
After a race against some of the best drivers in the sport the night before, followed by an overnight drive and an unhealthy lack of sleep, he somehow found his way into victory lane on Sunday. In the end, he got the win, and if Reinhardt is going to reach his goals he knows that’s all that really matters.
“We went for it, we’re here and we took the checkered flag,” Reinhardt said. “So it’s all good.”
Smith takes second: Ryan Smith finished in second place behind Reinhardt, followed by Steve Buckwalter, Blane Heimbach and Chad Layton in the top five. Rounding out the top 10 were Logan Wagner, Freddie Rahmer, Dylan Cisney, Kyle Moody and Lucas Wolfe.
The heat winners were Reinhardt, Buckwalter and Ryan Smith. Rahmer led the time trials at 16.737 seconds.
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Will Brunson led all 12 laps of the roadrunner main to close the night, but after post-race inspection, the win was awarded to Curtis Lawton. The balance of the top five was Dustin Snook, Jake Jones, John Schreffler and Scott Dunham Jr.
Finally getting in a sprint program: Selinsgrove had twice before attempted to run sprint programs in May, only to cancel those shows when the track could not get permission from the state to operate during the yellow phase of the COVID-19 mitigation recovery plan.
Snyder County, where Selinsgrove is located, recently moved into the green phase of the program.
Everyone in attendance at the show was required to sign a waiver before entering the track acknowledging the risks involved in attending a large event during the COVID-19 pandemic. Also, because of social-distancing guidelines, the speedway was only permitted to open to fans at a limited capacity. Fans were encouraged to wear masks, social distance and follow health-and-safety guidelines.
Reach Rob Rose at email@example.com.