New Egypt, NJ (June 26, 2019) – At New Egypt Speedway’s Garden State Gunfight 3, Billy Pauch Jr. took top honors in the Modified race. In the Crate vs. Open Sportsman main event, Will Dupree was declared the winner. The Mike’s Performance 4-Cylinder contest was taken by Jimmy Avery.
As the 60-lap Modified feature got underway, polesitter Brandon Grosso hopped to the front with Jeff Strunk, Billy Pauch Jr. and David VanHorn in tow. With five revolutions recorded, Grosso was beginning to edge away from Strunk, VanHorn and Pauch Jr. Grosso’s margin over the field was a full straightaway when the yellow lights illuminated for the first time on lap twelve for a tangle between John Pakenham and Chris Grbac. When action returned, Grosso was still setting the pace with Strunk, David VanHorn and Pauch Jr. dicing for second. After a pair of caution periods on lap fifteen and seventeen, Grosso remained in control with Strunk, Pauch Jr., Van Horn and Duane Howard filling out the top five. By lap twenty-one, Grosso was pulling away from the pack but the activity behind him was heating up as Strunk was still riding in second and trying to fend off the third place running Howard and fourth place running VanHorn. Two tours later, Howard advanced into the runner-up position past Strunk. On lap twenty-six, Jimmy Horton slowed on the dirt oval and the caution flag waved one more time. On the ensuing restart, Grosso fended off his rivals to maintain the lead with Howard in second, Pauch Jr. returning to third and Strunk dropping back to fourth. Over the next few circuits with Grosso increasing his lead, the battle for second place saw Pauch Jr. acquire the spot from Howard on lap twenty-eight before Howard retook the position on lap thirty-one. At the fuel stop on lap thirty-five, Grosso, Howard, Pauch Jr, Strunk and VanHorn were recorded as the top five. During the brief break in the action, Howard relinquished second place to Pauch Jr. with a visit to the pits to replace a flat right rear tire. When the green flag waved to resume the contest, Grosso was on top with Pauch Jr. in second, Strunk in third, VanHorn in fourth and Mike Butler in fifth. With twenty laps remaining, Grosso had a several car length margin over Pauch Jr, VanHorn, Strunk and Danny Bouc. By lap forty-five, Grosso’s advantage had narrowed as Pauch Jr. began to use the lower groove in turns one and two to close in on the leader. On lap forty-eight, a multi-circuit duel for the lead began between Grosso and Pauch Jr. After a clean side-by-side battle, Pauch Jr. surged past Grosso to gain the lead with nine laps to go. Grosso tried in vain to return to the top on lap fifty-two but was repelled by Pauch Jr. With five to go, Pauch Jr. was approaching slower traffic when Cale Ross’s spin took place just in front of the leader and the yellow flag waved for the final time. On the single file restart, Pauch Jr. held off Grosso to remain on top. Over the last circuits, Pauch Jr. went unchallenged to claim his twenty-fourth Modified feature win. Behind the winner and second place finishing Grosso, late surges allowed Danny Bouc to finish in third and fifteenth place starting Frank Cozze to come home in fourth. VanHorn completed the event in fifth. The Modified heats were taken by Danny Bouc, Duane Howard and Davey Sammons.