Chub Frank Hopes To Build Momentum During World of Outlaws Late Model Series Doubleheader at I-96 Speedway & Merritt Speedway
Series Veteran Aims to End Winless Streak at NAPA-Sponsored Michigan Events
CONCORD, N.C. - Aug. 20, 2014 - The upcoming World of Outlaws Late Model Series visit to the Wolverine State could be just what Chub Frank needs to spark a much-needed hot streak. With the national tour visiting I-96 Speedway in Lake Odessa, Mich., Friday and Merritt Speedway in Lake City, Mich., Saturday, Frank heads to one track where he's the only series regular to score a victory and another that's a strong fit with his driving style.
In 2007, Frank, 52, of Bear Lake, Pa., won the only previous WoO LMS event held at I-96, which welcomes the tour back for Friday's NAPA Lake Odessa 50 Presented by Keyser. For Merritt's NAPA Merritt 50 on Saturday, Frank makes his fourth visit to one of his more favorable racetracks.
"I'm looking forward to the Michigan tracks because we ran good there," said Frank, the veteran racer who owns 16 career WoO LMS A-Main victories. "Any track you win at, you always enjoy going back, and Merritt, it's a smaller track that's more along the lines of what I like. It's one of the tracks I really like."
Frank could use a pair of strong performances over the weekend to build some momentum for the remainder of the season. While 2014 has been an improvement on recent campaigns - his six top-five finishes are the most he's had in a WoO LMS season since 2009 - his program still isn't quite to the level he would like it. And there's the looming fact that his current winless streak on the series will reach the five-year mark on Friday.
"We've been better and more consistent, but we just need to get it a little bit better and find that little extra that helps you win races," said Frank, whose most recent WoO LMS victory came August, 22 2009, at Atomic Speedway in Chillicothe, Ohio. "Right now, we're just looking for good runs and trying to figure out how to step up a little bit more. We've been close a lot and had a decent car, but it seems like somebody is always going to get their car just right. That somebody hasn't been us lately."
While Frank is optimistic about his return I-96 Speedway, he doesn't expect to have any advantage over the other series regulars based on his 2007 victory. The track hardly resembles the half-mile oval on which Frank won. In fact, that track is no longer there.
Since the tour's last visit, I-96 Speedway has undergone major reconfigurations. A smaller 3/8-mile oval was added in the infield of the original track several seasons ago and hosted the track's weekly action through the 2013 season while special events were often held on the outer track. Finally, following the between the 2013 and 2014 seasons, the track's management started from scratch, replacing both the outer track and the inner track with a single 3/8-mile oval that was designed to be more symmetrical than the previous 3/8-mile configuration, which shared its front straightaway with the half-mile track.
If a completely new track isn't enough to wipe out Frank's advantage at I-96, seven years of technological advancements on dirt Late Model race cars should do the trick.
"Things have changed so much since then," Frank said. "Cars are different, shocks are different, everything's so much different now that anybody can go win there as far as whoever gets their car right. You can go back and remember somewhat about where you ran on the racetrack, but as far as any setup notes or anything, that stuff would be out the window anyway."
Even with a track that's completely different from the one he won on, Frank feels good about his return to I-96.
"It's still good to go back to a place you've won no matter how long it's been," Frank said. "Maybe we'll go there and have some good vibes that'll help get us going."
Frank might not have the results to show for it, but Merritt is a track that fits his driving style when the 3/8-mile oval's clay surface slicks over. In three WoO LMS races at Merritt, Frank has a best finish of seventh in 2011. It was a disappointing finish to a race in which he ran among the top five for much of distance before getting shuffled back late. He had another top-five run going in 2012 before suspension issues dropped him out of the event.
"We haven't had the finishes to show for it, but we've had some good runs there," Frank said. "We broke running top five and we've run up front a little bit, but it depends on what you get there as far as the track. We've had three or four different type surfaces there. When it's slick, that's what I look forward to. That kind of track just seems to fit my driving and the way I like my car."
Frank will indeed hope for a track surface that suits his driving style and his car's setup because adjusting his Rocket Chassis to an unfamiliar surface isn't one of his team's strong suits. With just one full-time crew member between Frank and teammate Boom Briggs, the team rarely has time in a race night to make major setup adjustments or keep a close eye on changing track conditions. That's been a major disadvantage for Frank in a sport where the driver and crew that best adjust their car to the racetrack is often the team who visits victory lane at the end of the night.
"You gotta be on it all the time as far as getting everything right," Frank said. "We're trying to win every night - I just know what we're up against. We have to be on when we get to the racetrack because we can't catch up. That's the biggest problem I'm facing right now. I just don't have enough help to catch up as far as changing the car around and stuff.
"We have to pretty much stay with a standard (setup) wherever we go and make small adjustments off of it. Hopefully we get everything right because if we get behind - which normally that's what happens - it's really hard for us to catch up."
Even with the challenge of working with slim crew, Frank has managed to put together a solid season. Improving on a disappointing ninth-place finish in the 2013 WoO LMS championship chase, Frank is fifth in the current points standings with nine races remaining on this year's tour. He has no plans of cruising to the end of the season, however, as fourth-place Morgan Bagley is just 30 points ahead of him and sixth-place Eric Wells and seventh-place Shane Clanton are just 30 and 58 points behind him respectively.
For Frank, who hasn't finished better than fifth in the series standings since logging his career-best result of second in 2007, improving to fourth by the end of the season would be a major boost.
"It's big," Frank said of the points battle. "Right now, we're trying to get to fourth - That's our goal. We know that third on up there's not really a chance to catch those teams. But right now, we're trying to stay in the top five and really trying to get to fourth. That would be like winning to us."
Gates open at 4:30 p.m. at I-96 Speedway in Lake Odessa for Friday's Napa Lake Odessa 50 Presented by Keyser. Hot laps get under way at 6:30 with racing action scheduled to kick off at 8. General admission prices for the event are $30 for adults and $15 for children ages 6-15. For more information, visit the track's website at www.i96speedway.com.
On Saturday, gates open at 4 p.m. for the Napa Merritt 50 at Merritt Speedway in Lake City. Qualifying is scheduled for 6 with racing following at 7. General admission prices are $30 for adults and $6 for children ages 6-15. Additional information is available on the track's website at www.merrittspeedwaymi.com.For more information on the WoO LMS, visit www.worldofoutlaws.com. Fans can also follow the WoO LMS on Twitter at Twitter.com/WoOLateModels and Facebook at Facebook.com/WorldofOutlaws .
Lanigan Overtakes McCreadie Late In Saturdays Gunters Honey 50 En Route To First Winchester Speedway Victory
Kentucky Driver Extends WoO LMS Points Lead With 12th A-Main Win of 2014
WINCHESTER, Va. - Aug. 16, 2014 - After starting the weekend with a pair of runner-up finishes, Darrell Lanigan returned to his preferred top spot Saturday night at Winchester Speedway with a victory in the World of Outlaws Late Model Series-sanctioned Gunter's Honey 50.
Lanigan, the two-time WoO LMS champion and current points leader, earned $10,650 for his series-leading 12th victory of the season as the national tour wrapped up a three-race weekend in the Mid-Atlantic region. The tour's all-time winningest driver earned his 65th career series victory in front of a near-capacity crowd at the northern Virginia track.
Advancing from his fourth starting spot, Lanigan, 44, of Union, Ky., overtook Tim McCreadie of Watertown, N.Y., on lap 44 of the 50-lap race and pulled away in his Keyser Manufacturing-sponsored Club 29 Race Car on his way to claiming his first victory at Winchester's 3/8-mile oval.
"I don't like second," said Lanigan, who settled for runner-up finishes Friday night at Delaware International Speedway in Delmar, Del., and Saturday night at Potomac Speedway in Budds Creek, Md. "It's always better to win, especially here at Winchester where we've struggled. To come here with our Club 29 car and get a win, it's awesome."
McCreadie, the 2006 WoO LMS champion who sits third in the current series standings, settled for second in his Sweeteners Plus Rocket Chassis, 2.360 seconds behind Lanigan at the finish. McCreadie started from the outside pole and took the lead from polesitter Dan Stone of Thompson, Pa., on lap 22.
Thompson's Stone's Excavating Rocket was third at the finish after riding out front for the race's first 21 laps. Rick Eckert of York, Pa., was fourth in the Rocket Chassis house car with Kenny Pettyjohn of Millsboro, Del., rounding out the top five in his Rocket car.
Lanigan made his way to third early in the event and rode patiently in the spot through the race's opening laps as Stone paced the field ahead of McCreadie. When McCreadie began to pressure Stone in traffic around lap 15, Lanigan closed in on both drivers to make it a three-car battle for the lead.
After taking several looks under Stone in traffic, McCreadie pulled ahead for the lead on lap 22 as Lanigan looked to take second. Lanigan overtook Stone on lap 27 and erased what little advantage McCradie had built in just a couple of laps.
Lanigan pressured McCreadie as the leaders raced through heavy traffic, pulling alongside multiple times before finally completing the winning pass when McCreadie slipped high on lap 44.
The race's only caution on lap 47 gave McCreadie a chance to challenge Lanigan on a late restart, but Lanigan pulled away in building nearly a straightaway advantage before the finish.
"I was just biding my time a little bit," Lanigan said of his battle with McCreadie. "I didn't want to press the issue and take us both out. When your car's good like that you can move around, so I was just kind of waiting on him there until I finally got a good groove going.
"I raced him clean and he raced me clean. It was definitely a good race. It's fun when you can race with people like that that you trust to run around."
McCreadie was happy to improve on his finishes of 11th and fourth on Friday and Saturday, but was disappointed to come up short of the victory.
"I must've been fading. I just tried to go where the track felt the best," said McCreadie, a two-time winner on the WoO LMS this season who recorded his fourth runner-up finish of the year. "It's tough to run second, but it's better than we were all weekend. I'll take it and hope we put on a good show for everybody."
After dropping back to third, Stone switched grooves and rallied back to pressure McCreadie for second late in the race. He felt that his car was capable of winning the race if he had found the quicker way around the track sooner.
"The track was faster at the beginning there and I was really good," said Stone, a WoO LMS part-timer who was looking for his third career series victory. "I think the track slowed down, but I didn't slow down enough with it. I was gauging myself off those lapped cars, but obviously those guys were real fast behind me. I just slipped up there for probably 10 laps and messed up."
The World of Outlaws Late Model Series returns to action Aug. 22-23 with a doubleheader weekend in Michigan. The series returns to I-96 Speedway in Lake Odessa for the first time since 2007 Friday night before heading to Merritt Raceway in Merritt Saturday.
Results of World of Outlaws Late Model Series Gunter's Honey 50 at Winchester Speedway (Finishing Position/Start/Driver/Laps Completed/Money Won):
1. (4) Darrell Lanigan/50 $10,650
2. (2) Tim McCreadie/50 $5,650
3. (1) Dan Stone/50 $3,000
4. (3) Rick Eckert/50 $3,150
5. (7) Kenny Pettyjohn/50 $2,650
6. (6) Vic Coffey/50 $1,750
7. (5) Jamie Lathroum/50 $1,450
8. (8) Larry Ramsey/50 $1,350
9. (10) Allen Brannon/50 $1,250
10. (11) Jason Covert/50 $1,100
11. (18) Eric Wells/50 $1,600
12. (12) Dale Hollidge/50 $1,050
13. (13) Gregg Satterlee/50 $950
14. (20) Tim Fuller/50 $950
15. (16) Morgan Bagley/50 $1,400
16. (11) Frank Heckenast Jr./50 $1,550
17. (15) Kenny Moreland/50 $770
18. (17) J.T. Spence/50 $750
19. (23) Shane Clanton/50 $1,280
20. (22) Mark Pettyjohn/45 $9,700
21. (14) Ross Robinson/49 $700
22. (19) Chub Frank/49 $1,250
23. (24) Clint Smith/49 $1,250
24. (21) Billy Beachler/45 $725
Time of Race: 17 Mins. 38 Secs.
Margin of Victory: 2.360 seconds
Yellow Flags: 1 (lap 47)
Lap Leaders: Stone (1-21); McCreadie (22-43); Lanigan (44-50)
2014 World of Outlaws Late Model Series Point Standings as of Aug. 16 - 29
1. Darrell Lanigan 4,108
2. Rick Eckert 3,846 (-262)
3. Tim McCreadie 3,804 (-304)
4. Morgan Bagley 3,650 (-458)
5. Chub Frank 3,620 (-488)
6. Eric Wells 3,590 (-518)
7. Shane Clanton 3,562 (-546)
8. Frank Heckenast Jr. 3,518 (-590)
9. Clint Smith 3,380 (-728)
10. Chase Junghans 3,282 (-826)
11. Rick 'Boom' Briggs 3,140 (-968)
12. Tim Fuller 2,412 (-1,696)
Hubbard Returns To National Spotlight with World of Outlaws Late Model Series Victory at Potomac Speedway
Former WoO LMS Regular Leads All the Way to Earn Third Career Series Victory
BUDDS CREEK, Md. - Aug. 15, 2014 - Austin Hubbard may no longer travel nationally, but he's still capable of competing with the best dirt Late Model drivers in the country. The 22-year-old Seaford, Del., driver proved as much Friday night at Potomac Speedway with a dominating performance in the 3/8-mile oval's World of Outlaws Late Model Series event.
Hubbard, the former WoO LMS Rookie of the Year who followed the national tour full time in 2010 and 2011, claimed a victory worth $10,050 at the high-banked 3/8-mile oval, leading every lap from the pole starting spot to score his first series victory since winning twice on the series in 2010.
"This is a huge deal for us," said Hubbard, who has continued to compete part time on the WoO LMS after scaling back his racing program in recent seasons. "I've always believed we could win these big races. We've got good cars and good people supporting us. I definitely know we can run with these guys and we proved it."
Hubbard's victory came in front of a standing-room-only crowd as Potomac Speedway welcomed the WoO LMS back for the first time since 2004 in hosting the second leg of the tour's tripleheader weekend in the Mid-Atlantic region.
Hubbard's MasterSbilt by Huey Race Car was fast all night. He set fast time in his group during Ohlins Shocks Time Trials and dominated his heat race before earning the pole through a redraw among the race's top eight starters. He cruised during the opening stages of the main event before turning back challenges from Darrell Lanigan of Union, Ky., through the middle portions.
Lanigan pressured Hubbard on a number of restarts, but Hubbard pulled away from Lanigan and third-place finish Gregg Satterlee of Indiana, Pa., during the race's closing laps to take the checkereds with an advantage of 1.120 seconds.
The performance continued a stellar weekend for Hubbard, who finished third in Thursday night's WoO LMS A-Main at his home track of Delaware International Speedway in Delmar, Del.
"I'm telling you, this car is on point. It's been that way all weekend," said Hubbard, who claimed his third overall victory of the season. "I don't have to do anything to it and it just goes right around there."
Lanigan, the two-time WoO LMS champion and current points leader, settled for his second runner-up finish in as many nights in his Club 29 Race Car. Satterlee, who topped Lanigan to claim Thursday's WoO LMS event at Delaware International Speedway, finished third in a Rocket Chassis. Tim McCreadie of Watertown, N.Y., and Chub Frank of Bear Lake, Pa., both also driving Rocket cars, were fourth and fifth respectively.
The victory was a special to Hubbard not only because of the competition it came against but also because of the track at which it came. With his previous WoO LMS victories coming at Georgia's Screven Motor Speedway and North Dakota's River Cities Speedway, Hubbard was ecstatic to win a major event in front of many of his fans at the track where he claimed his first-ever Late Model victory.
"This means a lot," said Hubbard, whose race shop is roughly two and half hours from Potomac. "The first Late Model race I ever won was at this track and it's pretty cool to win a national tour race at this place too. I love this crowd and this track. It's always a lot of fun to come out here."
Lanigan entered the event hoping for a special moment of his own. The veteran racer scored the first of his series-leading 64 career WoO LMS victories at Potomac when the tour made its only previous visit to the track in 2004, but he was denied a return to the track's victory lane.
"I remember that race here," said Lanigan, who recorded his 20th top-five finish in 28 WoO LMS A-Mains this season. "It'd been nice to win here again. I really wanted to it, but second is a good points night. We'll take it and go on to the next one."
The race was slowed by seven cautions and saw a number of top runners fall by the wayside. Heat race winners Stevie Long of Mechanicsville, Md., and Keith Jackson of Edenton, Md., each gave up top-five spots, Long for an overheating engine on lap 14 and Jackson with a lap-44 spin. B-Main winner Dale Hollidge of Mechanicsville, Md., retired from a top-10 spot to draw a lap-21 caution, and Tim Fuller of Watertown, N.Y., slowed from 10th to draw a lap-35 yellow.
The World of Outlaws Late Model Series wraps up a three-race weekend Saturday evening with a visit to Winchester (Va.) Speedway. General admission gates open at 4 p.m. at the 3/8-mile oval with hot laps set for 6:45.
Results of World of Outlaws Late Model Series at Potomac Speedway (Finishing Position/Start/Driver/Laps Completed/Money Won):
1. (1) Austin Hubbard/50 $10,050
2. (7) Darrell Lanigan/50 $5,650
3. (3) Gregg Satterlee/50 $3,000
4. (6) Tim McCreadie/50 $3,200
5. (9) Chub Frank/50 $2,550
6. (4) Shane Clanton/50 $2,250
7. (8) Frank Heckenast Jr./50 $2,150
8. (22) Kenny Pettyjohn/50 $1,950
9. (15) Rick Eckert/50 $1,850
10. (20) Eric Wells/50 $1,650
11. (24) Chase Junghans/50 $1,550
12. (14) Ross Robinson/50 $1,050
13. (23) Clint Smith/50 $1,450
14. (2) Keith Jackson/50 $1,050
15. (11) Jason Covert/50 $850
16. (21) Morgan Bagley/43 $1,300
17. (12) Kenny Moreland/43 $770
18. (13) Vic Coffey/38 $750
19. (17) Tim Fuller/35 $730
20. (16) Jamie Lathroum/27 $700
21. (18) Dale Hollidge/21 $700
22. (5) Stevie Long/15 $700
23. (19) J.T. Spence/13 $700
24. (10) Dan Stone/10 $725
Time of Race: 28 Mins. 32 Secs.
Margin of Victory: 1.120 seconds
Yellow Flags: 7 (laps 13, 14, 15, 21, 35, 38, 43, 44)
Lap Leaders: Hubbard (1-50)
Provisional Starters: Smith (WoO points), Junghans (WoO points)
2014 World of Outlaws Late Model Series Point Standings as of Aug. 15 - 28 A-Mains completed (rank/driver/points/deficit to leader):
1. Darrell Lanigan 3,958
2. Rick Eckert 3,704 (-254)
3. Tim McCreadie 3,658 (-300)
4. Morgan Bagley 3,530 (-428)
5. Chub Frank 3,514 (-444)
6. Eric Wells 3,462 (-496)
7. Shane Clanton 3,450 (-508)
8. Frank Heckenast Jr. 3,400 (-558)
9. Clint Smith 3,276 (-682)
10. Chase Junghans 3,276 (-764)
11. Rick 'Boom' Briggs 2,194 (-902)
12. Tim Fuller 2,290 (-1,668)
Satterlee Survives Tangle In Traffic & Holds Off Lanigan for Fulton Bank 50 Victory at Delaware International Speedway
Pennsylvania Driver Rebounds From Recent Struggles with $10,050 WoO LMS Win
DELMAR, Del. - Aug. 14, 2014 - After a disappointing two-week trip through the Midwest, Gregg Satterlee returned to his home region and returned to form with a victory in Thursday night's Fulton Bank 50 at Delaware International Speedway.
Satterlee, 30, of Indiana, Pa., survived a close call in traffic and turned back challenges from Darrell Lanigan of Union, Ky., at the half-mile oval in southern Delaware, earning $10,050 for his third career World of Outlaws Late Model Series victory.
"We had kind of a rough couple of weeks, but that's part of traveling," said Satterlee, who scored just one top-10 finish in four WoO LMS appearances in traveling with the WoO LMS to Illinois and Wisconsin in late July and early August. "We're learning and getting better. I'm sure if we hadn't done all that traveling we wouldn't be standing up here (in victory lane) tonight."
Sixth-starting Lanigan, the two-time WoO LMS champion and current series points leader, was second at the finish, 0.343 seconds behind Satterlee. Fourth-starting Austin Hubbard of Seaford, Del., was just behind the two leaders in third, while Tim Fuller of Watertown, N.Y., advanced from eighth to finish fourth. Seventh-starting Ross Robinson of Georgetown, Del., rounded out the top five in a race slowed by four cautions.
Satterlee's victory featured plenty of drama. Starting from the pole, his Satterlee Petroleum Distributors-sponsored Rocket Chassis got the jump on outside polesitter Amanda Whaley of Millsboro, Del., who quickly dropped to the tail of the field after she pushed far up the track entering the first corner.
Whaley had made history earlier in the evening when she became the first female driver to ever make the redraw for a WoO LMS event with her second-place heat race finish. But her lap-one miscue dashed chance to become the first female to win a WoO LMS A-Main.
Whaley's push up the track created a scramble among the front few rows, and Lanigan took advantage to charge from sixth to second on the race's opening lap. He soon began applying pressure to Satterlee, making low-side bids for the lead through the race's opening laps with Hubbard lurking just behind in third.
The leaders caught the tail of the field by lap 14, setting up a tense battle. Satterlee opened the door for Lanigan to take the lead when he attempted to drive around tail-running Whaley on lap 17 and slid high in turn two. But Lanigan repeated Satterlee's mistake on the following lap, giving Satterlee room to muscle his way back into the lead on lap 18.
The excitement continued on the following lap when Satterlee got into the back of Nick Davis of Millsboro, Del., while trying to put him a lap down. The contact turned Davis sideways directly in front of Satterlee, but Satterlee stayed in the throttle and used more contact to push Davis' car up the banking and out of his path.
Satterlee made it through the incident without stopping, allowing him to retain his position at the front of the field as the race went under caution for Davis' stalled machine.
"I got into the one lapped car and turned him around. I didn't mean to do that, but he kind of come down on me," Satterlee said of the contact that nearly cost him the race. "When he hit me I had to just spin him out so I didn't get collected with him.
"I hit him way harder than I thought I was going to. I was hoping that the front bumper wasn't bent down into the racetrack or back into the tire. But luckily it was all good. These Rocket race cars are real strong and can take some abuse."
The caution for Davis calmed things at the front of the field as Satterlee began to edge away from Lanigan through the race's middle portions. But traffic again came into play in the final 10 laps, allowing Lanigan to close the gap and bring Hubbard along with him. The three leaders raced nose to tail through the closing circuits, but Satterlee kept his car glued to the track's dominant bottom groove and held on to claim the victory.
Lanigan settled for the runner-up finish in his Keyser Manufacturing-sponsored Club 29 Race Car, padding his already healthy WoO LMS points lead with his 23rd top-five finish in 27 A-Mains this season.
"We had a good hot rod," said Lanigan, a three-time winner at Delaware who was the runner-up at the track for the second straight year after fishing second to fellow WoO LMS regular Tim McCreadie of Watertown, N.Y., in 2013. "It sucks to run second, but sometimes you gotta do it."
The race's four yellow flags all appeared in the first half of the race. The lap-18 caution for Satterlee's tangle with Davis was the first break in the action, and a mid-pack tangle on the ensuing restart resulted in Andrew Mullins of Laurel, Del., spinning in turn and hometown driver Kerry King Sr. getting into the wall at the exit of turn two.
The third yellow waved when Whaley's left-rear tire blew, leaving rubber all over the front straightaway. The final caution appeared on the restart for a tangle involving Mullins, Davis and Pancho Lawler of Glenville, Pa.
The Fulton Bank 50 kicked off a tripleheader weekend for the WoO LMS in the Mid-Atlantic region. Action moves across Chesapeake Bay to Potomac Speedway in Budds Creek, Md., on Friday while a visit to Winchester (Va.) Speedway wraps up the weekend on Saturday.
For more information on the WoO LMS, visit www.worldofoutlaws.com. Fans can also follow the WoO LMS on Twitter at Twitter.com/WoOLateModels and Facebook at Facebook.com/WorldofOutlaws .
Results of World of Outlaws Late Model Series Fulton Bank 50 at Delaware International Speedway (Finishing Position/Start/Driver/Laps Completed/Money Won):
1. (1) Gregg Satterlee/50 $10,050
2. (6) Darrell Lanigan/50 $5,650
3. (4) Austin Hubbard/50 $3,000
4. (8) Tim Fuller/50 $2,550
5. (7) Ross Robinson/50 $2,500
6. (11) Clint Smith/50 $2,300
7. (3) Donald Lingo Jr./50 $1,400
8. (10) Rick Eckert/50 $1,950
9. (17) Kenny Pettyjohn/50 $1,400
10. (9) Shane Clanton/50 $1,650
11. (20) Tim McCreadie/50 $1,650
12. (16) Frank Heckenast Jr./50 $1,800
13. (12) Eric Wells/50 $1,500
14. (19) Chub Frank/50 $1,500
15. (13) Morgan Bagley/50 $1,400
16. (14) Boom Briggs/50 $1,350
17. (18) Pancho Lawler/50 $770
18. (21) Nick Davis/49 $750
19. (15) Andrew Mullins/25 $730
20. (2) Amanda Whaley/24 $700
21. (5) Jason Covert/23 $700
22. (22) Kerry King Sr./18 $700
23. (23) Chase Junghans/9 $1,250
24. (24) Dan Stone/3 $725
* Earnings include Winners Circle program and cash contingency award bonuses
Time of Race: 29 Mins. 50 Secs.
Margin of Victory: 0.343 seconds
Yellow Flags: 4 (laps 18, 18, 24 & 24)
Lap Leaders: Satterlee (1-16, 18-50); Lanigan (17)
Heat No. 1 (10 laps - Top 4 Transfer): Fuller, Lanigan, Clanton, Bagley, K. Pettyjohn, Davis, Defino, Coffey, Dennis.
Heat No. 2 (10 laps - Top 4 Transfer): Hubbard, Satterlee, Eckert, Briggs, Frank, Elliott, Stone, Lathroum.
Heat No. 3 (10 laps - Top 4 Transfer): Robinson, Covert, Smith, Mullins, Lawler, McCreadie, Byram, M. Pettyjohn, Schirmer.
Heat No. 4 (10 laps - Top 4 Transfer): Lingo, Whaley, Wells, Heckenast, King, Snyder, Warren, Junghans.
B-Main No. 1 (12 laps - Top 3 Transfer): K. Pettyjohn, Frank, Davis, Elliott, Coffey, Stone, Dennis, Defino. Did not start: Lathroum.
B-Main No. 2 (12 laps - Top 3 Transfer): Lawler, McCreadie, King, Byram, M.Pettyjohn, Junghans, Snyder, Warren. Did not start: Schirmer.
2014 World of Outlaws Late Model Series Point Standings as of Aug. 14 - 27 A-Mains completed (rank/driver/points/deficit to leader):
1. Darrell Lanigan 3,812
2. Rick Eckert 3,572 (-240)
3. Tim McCreadie 3,516 (-296)
4. Morgan Bagley 3,412 (-400)
5. Chub Frank 3,374 (-438)
6. Eric Wells 3,332 (-480)
7. Shane Clanton 3,312 (-500)
8. Frank Heckenast Jr. 3,264 (-548)
9. Clint Smith 3,152 (-660)
10. Chase Junghans 3,066 (-746)
11. Rick 'Boom' Briggs 2,966 (-846)
12. Tim Fuller 2,178 (-1,634)
Owens Battles Back at Cedar Lake Speedway, Tops Pierce for First Career USA Nationals Victory
Tennessee Driver's Dramatic Victory Pays $50,050 in World of Outlaws Crown Jewel Event
NEW RICHMOND, Wis. - Aug. 2, 2014 - Jimmy Owens added another crown jewel to his lustrous resume Saturday night at Cedar Lake Speedway, claiming a dramatic $50,050 victory in the 27th annual USA Nationals.
Owens, the 42-year-old veteran dirt Late Model driver from Newport, Tenn., gave up the lead three times in the 100-lap World of Outlaws Late Model Series event but battled back each time to regain the top spot en route to his first career USA Nationals victory.
The race's most dramatic moments came in the final 20 laps when Owens raced back and forth with 17-year-old Bobby Pierce of Oakwood, Ill. The two drivers swapped the lead and swapped paint multiple times as the laps counted down before Owens finally pulled ahead for good on lap 95 and edged away to an advantage of 1.083 seconds at the finish.
"There was way too much excitement going on for me," said Owens, whose victory came in his sixth career USA Nationals A-Main start. "To bring this race home in front of a crowd like this is pretty awesome, especially putting on a show like we did."
Pierce, making just his third USA Nationals A-Main start, settled for second after leading laps 79-86 and 94. Two-time USA Nationals winner Jimmy Mars of Menomonie, Wis., finished third after charging forward from the seventh starting spot to lead laps 17-37. Steve Francis of Ashland, Ky., advanced from the 15th starting spot to finish fourth while 10th-starting Billy Moyer Jr. of Batesville, Ark., rounded out the top five in a race that ran green after three cautions in the first seven laps.
Mars was the first to seriously challenge Owens, reeling in both him and Jonathan Davenport of Blairsville, Ga., who ran second for much of the race's opening laps. Just as Mars was beginning to look under Davenport, Owens jumped the cushion in turn two, forcing Davenport to check up and allowing Mars to take second and pull alongside Owens for the lead.
Mars and Owens ran side by side for the following two laps before Mars pulled ahead on lap 17 and began to ease away. But Owens battled back, catching Mars just a handful of laps later as slower traffic came into play.
Owens pressured Mars for the next 15 circuits while Pierce worked his way into contention. It was a three-car battle for the lead by lap 30, as Owens began to pull to the outside of Mars and Pierce used the extreme low groove to look under both cars ahead of him.
Owens cleared Mars to retake the lead on lap 37, while Pierce pulled into second on lap 43. Pierce ran down Owens in traffic and was taking looks under the leader by the race's halfway point.
Owens and Pierce ran nose to tail for the majority of the next 25 laps with Mars just behind in third. Pierce upped the pressure around lap 75 before making a bold move to take the lead on 78.
With Owens held up slightly by a slower car in turns three and four, Pierce was able to pull alongside Owens and edged ahead at the completion of lap 78. The two drivers raced door to door into turn one, where heavy contact between the two cars allowed Pierce to pull into the lead and sent Owens up the track as Mars drove into second.
Owens quickly recovered, however, and jumped to the high side as he began making up the lost ground. Owens retook second from Mars on lap 84 and set his sights on Pierce as traffic again became a factor.
The high-running Owens wasted little time moving back ahead of Pierce, catching and passing the low-running leader by lap 87. He began to pull away from there and appeared to be headed for victory before another mistake of his own doing nearly cost him the race.
With Pierce pressuring him in traffic, Owens got too high down the back straightaway on lap 94 and scraped the wall. Owens was able to correct his machine without much damage, but the lost momentum allowed Pierce to pull alongside and edge ahead at the line.
Owens again battled back on the high side, driving alongside Pierce down the back straightaway and pulling ahead after the two cars made contact in turns three and four.
The third time out front proved to be the charm for Owens, as he pulled away in the final five laps.
"It's just good hard racing. We put on a show for the fans," Owens said of his back-and-forth, contact-filled battle with Pierce. "I knew Bobby was real good on that bottom. Once he got by me I knew I was gonna have to do something.
"I really was (surprised) because Bobby's really good at running that bottom. Once I got up on the top there and started rolling I thought 'Well man, I should've been up here the whole time.'"
Pierce attempted to mount one final charge after losing the lead, but his run was stymied by traffic in the closing laps. He was denied what would've been the biggest victory of his young career but settled for a runner-up finish worth more than $20,000.
"That was one of the most exciting races I've ever been in," said Pierce, who scored his third top-10 finish in three career USA Nationals A-Main starts. "To do it with Jimmy Owens just makes it that much more awesome. Coming here, I just was hoping to make the race. Finishing second, it's just phenomenal."
Like Owens, Pierce wasn't fazed by the late-race contact between him and Owens.
"We were both going for that spot and there's a lot of money on the line," Pierce said. "We don't get many opportunities to race for money like this and to be in that opportunity, it was just good hard racing. You just gotta go for it in that situation."
The back-and-forth battle between Owens and Pierce had Mars hoping he may be able to capitalize, but he ended up two positions shy of earning his first USA Nationals victory since 2009.
"We had a good car and got in the lead there. It kinda went away a while and then started coming back at the end," said Mars, who was gunning for a weekend sweep after winning Thursday's WoO LMS tune-up event and claiming both of the weekend's NASCAR Late Model features. "They got to running pretty hard there and I thought maybe something would happen between them two and maybe I'd luck up and get this thing anyway. But it didn't work out."
The race was slowed by three cautions. The first appeared with two laps complete when fast qualifier Mason Zeigler of Chalk Hill, Pa., spun in turn two. A stack-up between Billy Moyer of Batesville, Ark., Brian Birkhofer or Muscatine, Iowa, and Scott Bloomquist of Mooresburg, Tenn., on the ensuing restart left Bloomquist spun in turn four. The final caution waved with seven laps complete when Chub Frank of Bear Lake, Pa., slowed on the front straightway.
World of Outlaws Late Model Series competitors take the upcoming weekend off before heading to the Northeast for a three-race weekend. The series visits Delaware International Speedway in Delmar, Del., Aug. 14, Potomac Speedway in Budds Creek, Md., Aug. 15 and Winchester (Va.) Speedway Aug. 16.
Results of World of Outlaws Late Model Series 27th annual USA Nationals at Cedar Lake Speedway (Finishing Position/Start/Driver/Laps Completed/MoneyWon):
1. (1) Jimmy Owens/100 $50,000
2. (3) Bobby Pierce/100 $21,950
3. (7) Jimmy Mars/100 $10,000
4. (15) Steve Francis/100 $6,100
5. (10) Billy Moyer Jr./100 $5,100
6. (13) Shannon Babb/100 $4,550
7. (2) Jason Feger/100 $4,600
8. (4) Jonathan Davenport/100$5,700
9. (9) Billy Moyer/100 $3,900
10. (5) Tim McCreadie/100 $3,650
11. (16) Darrell Lanigan/100 $3,400
12. (14) Brandon Sheppard/100 $3,050
13. (17) Eric Wells/100 $2,850
14. (12) Scott Bloomquist/100 $2,750
15. (19) A.J. Diemel/100 $2,500
16. (27) Rick Eckert/100 $2,550
17. (25) Morgan Bagley/100 $2,350
18. (6) Jordan Yaggy/99 $2,200
19. (22) Don O'Neal/99 $2,100
20. (23) Wendell Wallace/99 $4,275
21. (18) Nick Anvelink/99 $2,050
22. (24) Mason Zeigler/52 $2,025
23. (26) Chub Frank/41 $2,060
24. (8) Brady Smith/25 $2,025
25. (20) Chase Junghans/25 $2,050
26. (21) Chris Simpson/24 $2,000
27. (28) Ryan Unzicker/23 $3,600
28. (11) Brian Birkhofer/11 $2,000
Time of Race: 35 Mins., 0 Secs.
Margin of Victory: 1.083 Secs.
Yellow Flags: Laps 2, 2 & 7
Lap Leaders: Owens (1-16, 38-78, 87-93, 95-100); Mars (17-37), Pierce (79-86, 94).
Provisional Starters: Bagley (WoO), Frank (WoO), Eckert (track), Unzicker (FANSFund)
2014 World of Outlaws Late Model Series Point Standings as of Aug. 2 - 26 A-Mains completed (rank/driver/points/deficit to leader):
1. Darrell Lanigan 3,666
2. Rick Eckert 3,438 (-228)
3. Tim McCreadie 3,388 (-278)
4. Morgan Bagley 3,292 (-374)
5. Chub Frank 3,252 (-414)
6. Eric Wells 3,208 (-458)
7. Shane Clanton 3,182 (-484)
8. Frank Heckenast Jr. 3,138 (-528)
9. Clint Smith 3,014 (-652)
10. Chase Junghans 2,962 (-704)
11. Rick Briggs 2,848 (-818)
12. Tim Fuller 2,036 (-1,630)
1. Darrell Lanigan 4,108
2. Rick Eckert 3846
3. Tim McCreadie 3804
4. Morgan Bagley 3650
5. Chub Frank 3620
6. Eric Wells 3590
7. Shane Clanton 3562
8. Frank Heckenast Jr. 3518
9. Clint Smith 3380
10. Chase Junghans 3282