Doug Drown Hopes To Continue Sizzling Season On Big Stage Friday Night (May 24) At NAPA Wayne County Speedway
Red-Hot Ohioan Will Bid For First-Ever World of Outlaws Late Model Series Victory In ‘Buckeye 50’
ORRVILLE, OH – May 22, 2013 – Doug Drown is ready to give his sizzling season a serious heat check this Friday night (May 24) in the World of Outlaws Late Model Series ‘Buckeye 50’ at NAPA Auto Parts Wayne County Speedway.
A winner in six of his last seven starts over the past month, the 30-year-old driver from Wooster, Ohio, enters Friday’s action at the three-eighths-mile oval as the hottest dirt Late Model driver in the Buckeye State. But can he continue his run of success against a field filled with some of the division’s biggest national names?
“We’re definitely looking forward to running with the Outlaw guys and seeing where we stand,” said Drown, whose career-best WoO LMS finish in 15 A-Main starts since 2005 is sixth, in 2008 at Attica (Ohio) Raceway Park. “A lot of critics are saying we haven’t raced against a lot of competition this year, so I guess we’ll see where we’re at after Friday night. This will let us know if we need to keep working on our program or if we have a good baseline right now and can pretty much go anywhere and be competitive.”
While it’s true that six of Drown’s seven overall victories to date in 2013 have come in local events paying no more than $2,000 to win, the strength he’s demonstrated shouldn’t be discounted. In his first full season driving for Sean Weekley’s Newark, Ohio-based team, Drown has already won at five different tracks – Hilltop Speedway in Millersburg, Ohio (three triumphs), Midway Speedway in Crooksville, Ohio, Southern Ohio Speedway in Wheelersburg, West Virginia Motor Speedway in Mineral Wells and, just last Friday night, Wayne County – and recorded the richest victory of his 14-year dirt Late Model career (an unsanctioned Southern 100 score worth $12,000 on May 4 at Southern Ohio). Drown also accorded himself well versus high-level competition during February’s Winter Nationals at East Bay Raceway Park in Gibsonton, Fla., finishing as high as second in an A-Main.
For a driver who’s shown flashes of brilliance throughout his career but found it difficult to maintain consistency with mostly self-funded equipment, his spectacular early-season results have him floating on air.
“To be honest, I don’t even know how to describe how this year’s gone so far,” said Drown, who has 11 top-five and 13 top-10 finishes in 17 starts. “It’s kind of surreal, really. I’m not sure what we’re doing so right, but the car’s been really good so we’re just gonna keep doing what we’re doing.
“I know a lot of people are just saying that there’s not a lot of competition or whatever at the races we’ve been going to, but I don’t know about that. We’re winning races we didn’t win last year, and there were some pretty good guys who ran the Southern (100). Yeah, we lucked into the Southern (win) with (WoO LMS regular Tim) McCreadie getting that flat (while leading late), but we were good enough to be in position to take advantage of his bad luck.”
Drown’s breakout campaign has been made possible by Weekley, the 40-year-old owner of a commercial/residential electrical firm who has fielded dirt Late Models for more than a decade. Weekley, who spent several seasons behind the wheel before shifting to strictly an ownership role with such drivers as Aaron Scott, Cortney Clewell and Cody Parker, hired Drown in June 2012 and the pairing has been picking up steam ever since.
“We ran about 20 races together last year,” said Drown. “We had some success – we had six wins in that second part of the year – but we changed a lot this winter. We got with Mark Richards (of Rocket Chassis) and got two new cars, we switched shock programs from Ohlins to Integra and we switched from American Racer tires to Hoosier tires, so we weren’t really sure what to expect when the year started. But things went well in Florida (in February) and things have just been rolling so far around home.”
With Weekley providing Drown top-notch artillery (the team’s stable also includes two Malcuit and two Cornett engines) and the opportunity to race on a fulltime basis for the first time in his career, the young driver finds himself in an enviable position.
“I’ve always worked driving a semi (truck) and done other stuff and had my own team,” said Drown, who makes an hour-and-a-half drive to Weekley’s shop on a daily basis to maintain the race cars. “I never really had the time to put the attention into the car that is needed to really be on top of everything, and Sean gives me the opportunity to do that. Combined with his knowledge from being in it for years, it’s a good fit.
“It’s definitely everything I’ve ever wanted. It’s a great deal, a great situation to be in – absolutely the dream-come-true situation that I’ve looked for and hoped for. Having the best equipment makes my life easier as a driver. Everything I’ve ever had, I’ve always had to run tongue-hanging-out – you know, really push the limits of everything because it wasn’t enough so I had to make sure everything was perfect. Well, now we can be close and kind of make up for it in the seat and still do well.”
The only “bad” aspect – in relative terms – of Drown’s deal with Weekley is that Drown understands it’s most likely not a long-term option. Weekley has made no secret of the fact that he plans to step away from racing sooner rather than later.
“Sean was up front with me last year and said he has one more year (of team ownership) in him, maybe two,” said Drown. “So if he’s not done racing at the end of this year, than supposedly next year will be it. He’s wanting to settle down with his family (wife Stacy, son Sheldon and daughter Skyler) and back off from racing, so he’s kind of told me that if any opportunity comes up, don’t hesitate to take it.
“Maybe he’ll keep racing if we’re doing well and have some money coming in, but hopefully something will come up if he does decide that he is done sometime in the future. So obviously, in my mind, this is hopefully a stepping stone for my career. Hopefully the opportunity Sean has given me will allow me to show what I’m capable of and lead to another opportunity.
“And if nothing else comes along after he’s done, then at least I can say I did a fulltime deal,” he added with a smile. “I hope that’s not the case, but right now I’m just kind of enjoying everything day-by-day.”
The next stop on Drown’s live-for-the-moment agenda is, of course, Friday’s $10,000-to-win WoO LMS A-Main at Wayne County. He’s never entered a World of Outlaws event feeling better about his chances.
“We definitely have confidence going into it,” said Drown, who will bid to become just the fourth Ohio driver to win a WoO LMS A-Main, joining Bart Hartman of Zanesville, Donnie Moran of Dresden and Rod Conley of Wheelersburg. “Last year we ran really well (in Wayne County’s WoO LMS event). In the heat race we were dueling with (Darrell) Lanigan (who went on to win the A-Main) before we had some problems – and that was with a 720-horsepower motor. Now that we have equivalent equipment to those guys, I really think that, if things fall right and we have a little luck, we’ll be able to have a good run.”
Drown, who dropped out of last year’s WoO LMS headliner at WCS and finished 24th, tuned up for Friday’s Buckeye 50 by entering the track’s weekly action last Friday night. He roared off with a victory and some knowledge he hopes to apply against the Outlaws.
“I learned that Wayne County can be extremely slick,” said Drown, the 2000 Rookie of the Year and 2005 track champion at WCS. “Keith Berner has thousands of laps more than me there, and he even agreed with me that (last) Friday night was the slickest it’s ever been at Wayne County.
“The good news is, it was good racing. It doesn’t matter the speed as long as there’s multiple grooves, and there definitely was. I ran the top, Keith ran the bottom, and I also ran the middle.
“We’re excited to go back,” he added. “Going there last week helped us a little setup wise and with the gear ratio for the new motor so we know where to be this week. Hopefully we’ll be dialed in right from the start of the night because it won’t be easy trying to beat Josh (Richards) and Lanigan and those guys the way they’ve been running.”
Wayne County’s pit and grandstand gates are scheduled to open at 4 p.m. on Friday, with racing set to get the green flag at 7:45 p.m.
General admission for Friday night’s program, which also includes racing for the wingless Buckeye Outlaw Sprint Series and the track’s Super Stock division, is $28. Reserved seating in the top four rows is $30 and pit passes are $40.
For additional information visit www.waynecountyspeedway.com or 330-465-2365.
Wayne County Speedway is located nine miles east of Wooster, Ohio, or 15 miles west of Massillon, Ohio, on U.S. Rt. 30, then one mile north on Carr Road.
Wayne County’s Buckeye 50 kicks off a big Memorial Day weekend for the WoO LMS, which moves on to Tyler County Speedway in Middlebourne, W.Va., for the Jackpot 100 on May 25-26. A 30-lap, $6,000-to-win A-Main tops the Sat., May 25, program and a 70-lap finale paying $15,000 to win is scheduled for Sun., May 26.
World of Outlaws Late Model Series Part Of Unique Doubleheader Friday (May 24) At NAPA Wayne County Speedway
For First Time Ever, National Tour Will Share A Racing Program With Wingless Sprint Cars
ORRVILLE, OH – May 20, 2013 – The World of Outlaws Late Model Series will be part of an unprecedented doubleheader this Friday night (May 24) at NAPA Auto Parts Wayne County Speedway.
The Memorial Day holiday weekend kicks off with a treat for race fans as the WoO LMS and the Buckeye Outlaw Sprint Series (BOSS) compete at the three-eighths-mile Wayne County oval, marking the first time ever that the renowned national full-fender tour will share a racing program with the wingless 410 Sprint Car division.
“We couldn’t be more excited about Friday night’s show,” said Jason Flory, a dirt Late Model driver-turned-racetrack promoter who is in his second full season operating WCS with his wife (and fellow dirt Late Model competitor) Kristin. “We know that the World of Outlaws Late Model Series has never run (on the same card) with wingless Sprint Cars so we see this as an opportunity to give the fans something really unique and hopefully hit a home run with it.”
The attention-grabbing, Southeastern Equipment-sponsored event, which includes the $10,000-to-win WoO LMS Buckeye 50 and a BOSS feature offering a $2,000 first-place prize, was set up after wet and cold spring weather wiped out last month’s planned two-day Buckeye 100 at Wayne County. When WoO LMS director Tim Christman suggested a Memorial Day weekend raindate for WCS’s World of Outlaws stop, Jason Flory quickly jumped at it – even though he already had the special BOSS race scheduled on Fri., May 24.
“We just didn’t want to lose the World of Outlaws show because it’s our biggest race of the year and it’s the only Outlaw (Late Model) race in Ohio this season,” said Flory. “Tim (Christman) said, ‘Friday of Memorial Day weekend is the only day we can come back that makes sense for both of us,’ so we decided we had to make that day work. We realized that running the World of Outlaws with the BOSS wingless Sprints would create a big purse for us, but we figured it would be worth it.
“We’ve gotten good (crowd) numbers for our BOSS races the last two years, so we thought, ‘Hey, maybe running the World of Outlaws Late Models and wingless Sprints together would be something different and interesting that gets everyone talking.’ I had thought about doing something like this but was never brave enough to try it, so I guess losing the 100-lapper last month pushed us to go for it.
“With the World of Outlaws Late Models blasting around the track and the BOSS wingless Sprints on the ragged edge sliding hard through the turns,” added Flory, “I think we have a show that’s going to appeal to both Late Model and Sprint Car fans.”
The cast of characters competing in the WoO LMS action will include some of the country’s top touring stars – including defending series champion and WCS World of Outlaws winner Darrell Lanigan of Union, Ky., points leader Josh Richards of Shinnston, W.Va., three-time ’13 victor Shane Clanton of Zebulon, Ga., ’06 Wayne County WoO LMS winner Chub Frank of Bear Lake, Pa. Rick Eckert of York, Pa., and Tim McCreadie of Watertown, N.Y. – and talented Buckeye State standouts such as Doug Drown of Wooster, Donnie Moran of Dresden, Charlie Duncan of Millersburg and George Lee of Loudonville.
The BOSS wingless 410 Sprint Car roster, meanwhile, will feature drivers from across the Midwest, including defending tour champion Dustin Smith of Russiaville, Ind., Tony Beaber of Gibsonburg, Ohio, Kirk Jeffries of Westerville, Ohio, Aaron Middaugh of Polk, Ohio, Brandon Spithaler of Evans City, Pa., and Mark Cassella of Weirton, W.Va.
WCS’s pit and grandstand gates are scheduled to open at 4 p.m. on Friday, with racing set to get the green flag at 7:45 p.m.
General admission for Friday night’s program, which also includes racing for the track’s Super Stock division, is $28. Reserved seating in the top four rows is $30 and pit passes are $40.
For additional information visit www.waynecountyspeedway.com or 330-465-2365.
Wayne County Speedway is located nine miles east of Wooster, Ohio, or 15 miles west of Massillon, Ohio, on U.S. Rt. 30, then one mile north on Carr Road.
McCreadie’s Late-Race Tangle With Lapped Car Sends Clanton To World of Outlaws Late Model Series Victory At I-30 Speedway
Despite Deflating Left-Rear Tire, Georgia Driver Holds Off Lanigan Over Final Five Laps For Third Win Of ‘13
LITTLE ROCK, AR – May 11, 2013 – Shane Clanton knows his third World of Outlaws Late Model Series triumph of 2013 was a product of good fortune.
After capturing Saturday night’s 50-lap A-Main at I-30 Speedway, the 37-year-old driver from Zebulon, Ga., could only shake his head at the unlikely turn of events that made him a winner in the national tour’s first-ever event in the state of Arkansas.
“I got lucky,” admitted Clanton, who was victorious for the second time in the last three WoO LMS events. “It was given to me because (Tim) McCreadie got into the lapped car. He had a better race car.”
Indeed, Clanton appeared resigned to finishing second after being passed for the lead by Watertown, N.Y.’s McCreadie on lap 43. But two circuits later McCreadie spun between turns three and four when he tangled with Robbie Stuart while attempting to lap the DeRidder, La., driver, sending McCreadie to the rear of the field for the ensuing restart and handing the top spot back to Clanton.
Then Clanton – despite running with a deflating left-rear tire on his Kennedy Motorsports Capital Race Car – held off a furious challenge from Darrell Lanigan of Union, Ky., over the final five laps to defeat the defending WoO LMS champion by a mere 0.259 of a second.
Josh Richards of Shinnston, W.Va., maintained his WoO LMS points lead with a third-place finish after starting sixth. Outside polesitter Rick Eckert of York, Pa., placed fourth and Billy Moyer of Batesville, Ark., completed the top five.
Normally a very demonstrative Victory Lane personality, Clanton was rather subdued after his latest success. The circumstances of his 19th career WoO LMS checkered flag left him unwilling to celebrate in his trademark roof-pounding manner.
Clanton started from the pole position and led the race’s first 42 laps, keeping Lanigan at arm’s length for the first half of the A-Main and then battling to hold McCreadie at bay after the 2006 WoO LMS champ passed Lanigan for second on a lap-25 restart. But McCreadie’s ability to keep his Sweeteners Plus Warrior car glued to the inside of the track ultimately proved too much for Clanton, who ceded the lead to McCreadie on lap 43.
McCreadie, 39, immediately pulled away from Clanton, but his bid came to a heartbreaking end on lap 45 when contact with Stuart forced him into the uke tires lining the inside of turns three and four and then into a spin.
Clanton couldn’t believe his eyes when McCreadie went spinning from contention just ahead of him.
“He had a good run on the lapped car, and I felt like the lapped car should’ve given him room and he didn’t,” said Clanton, whose victory moved him within six points of Richards in the WoO LMS standings. “When you’re the last car on the lead lap (and) somebody’s under you, you know it’s the leader so you just move out of the way.
“I feel sorry for McCreadie a little bit, but hey, a win’s a win. You gotta put yourself in them positions to take advantage of it. We had the second-best race car, and we won the race.”
Clanton didn’t cruise to victory after McCreadie’s misfortune. He was dogged every step of the way by Lanigan, who came within inches of leading lap 47 and stayed glued to Clanton’s rear bumper until the final lap when he bobbled slightly attempting a high-side pass rounding turns one and two.
“I was just trying to fend him off the best I could,” Clanton said of Lanigan. “I knew I was leaving the bottom open leaving the corner, but I just had a flat left-rear tire so I was doing all I could. The left-rear tire going flat was killing me down the straightaways.”
Lanigan, 42, settled for his second consecutive runner-up finish on the WoO LMS.
“It was hard to pass,” said Lanigan, who started third in his Rocket mount. “On the last lap I went in (turn one) a little higher to try go through the middle to pass (Clanton), but there was no traction.”
When Clanton parked his No. 25 on the homestretch for the post-race ceremonies, he emerged from the cockpit to see his left-rear tire almost completely devoid of air. He was amazed that he was able to hold on with the handicap.
“When (McCreadie) passed me there on the bottom (for the lead on lap 43) we got together and I guess it cut the left-rear tire down,” said Clanton, who earned $10,550 for a victory that tied him with Lanigan atop the tour’s 2013 win list. “He was running way lower down the straightaway than what I realized. I thought I got by him down the straightaway, but he had a good run and we hit, and it cut the left rear tire down. Luckily we could finish the race.”
McCreadie, meanwhile, was running at the conclusion of the A-Main, but he crossed the finish line in 19th place. After passing Eckert, Lanigan and Clanton en route to the front from his fourth starting spot, the defeat was a bitter pill for him to swallow.
“It’s frustrating,” said a dejected McCreadie, who was bidding for his second WoO LMS victory of 2013. “I had a run on that lapped car (into turn three) and was completely up underneath him, and he just kept coming down into me. I couldn’t even gas it up to slide up and push him out of the way, so I ended up going around.”
Four caution flags slowed the event. Prior to McCreadie’s incident, Stuart spun in turn four on lap three; Robbie Baker of Bryant, Ark., spun in turn two on lap 12; and Chub Frank of Bear Lake, Pa., slowed on lap 25.
Bub McCool of Vicksburg, Miss., finished sixth, matching his best WoO LMS run of the season. Clint Smith of Senoia, Ga., recorded a season-best finish of seventh; Wendell Wallace of Batesville, Ark., placed eighth; Kyle Beard of Truman, Ark., was a WoO LMS career-best ninth; and Jack Sullivan of Greenbrier, Ark., advanced from the 20th starting spot to complete the top 10.
Twenty-seven cars were signed in for the event, which was originally scheduled for Friday night but was postponed 24 hours due to saturated grounds. The WoO LMS was originally scheduled to race Saturday night at Whynot Motorsports Park in Meridian, Miss., but that event was canceled on Friday morning due to heavy rain and a dismal Saturday forecast, opening the door for I-30’s move to Saturday.
Lanigan was quickest in Ohlins Shocks Time Trials, earning his second fast-time honor of 2013 with a lap of 14.172 seconds.
Heat winners were Lanigan, McCreadie and Richards, and Frank captured the B-Main.
The WoO LMS is idle until the Memorial Day holiday weekend when it visits NAPA Auto Parts Wayne County Speedway in Orrville, Ohio, on Fri., May 24, and Tyler County Speedway in Middlebourne, W.Va., for the ‘Jackpot 100’ on Sat., May 25 and Sun., May 27.
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 at I-30 Speedway (Finishing Position/Start/Driver/Laps Completed/Money Won):
1. (1) Shane Clanton/50 $10,550
2. (3) Darrell Lanigan/50 $5,650
3. (6) Josh Richards/50 $3,650
4. (2) Rick Eckert/50 $3,200
5. (5) Billy Moyer/50 $2,150
6. (8) Bub McCool/50 $2,300
7. (7) Clint Smith/50 $1,950
8. (9) Wendell Wallace/50 $1,850
9. (16) Kyle Beard/50 $1,300
10. (20) Jack Sullivan/50 $1,150
11. (10) Tim Fuller/50 $1,600
12. (18) Scott James/50 $1,550
13. (21) Robbie Baker/50 $1,050
14. (12) Eric Wells/50 $1,700
15. (13) Morgan Bagley/50 $1,400
16. (17) Chandler Petty/50 $800
17. (22) Tommy Surrett/50 $770
18. (15) Zach McMillan/50 $750
19. (4) Tim McCreadie/50 $1,380
20. (11) Dillon Wood/50 $700
21. (19) Chub Frank/50 $1,250
22. (24) Robbie Stuart/50 $700
23. (23) Odie Green/22 $700
24. (14) Timothy Culp/0 $700
* Earnings include Winners Circle program and cash contingency award bonuses
Time of Race: 24 Mins., 22.901 Secs.
Margin of Victory: 0.259 Secs.
Yellow Flags: 4 (Laps 3, 12, 25, 45)
Lap Leaders: Clanton (1-42); McCreadie (43-45); Clanton (46-50)
2013 World of Outlaws Late Model Series Point Standings as of May 11 – 13 A-Mains completed (rank/driver/points/deficit to leader):
1. Josh Richards 1842
2. Shane Clanton 1836 (-6)
3. Darrell Lanigan 1772 (-70)
4. Rick Eckert 1752 (-90)
5. Tim McCreadie 1704 (-138)
6. Tim Fuller 1656 (-186)
7. (tie) Eric Wells 1654 (-188)
7. (tie) Scott James 1654 (-188)
9. Morgan Bagley 1614 (-228)
10. (tie) Chub Frank 1606 (-236)
10. (tie) Bub McCool 1606 (-236)
12. Clint Smith 1528 (-314)
13. Dillon Wood 1426 (-416)
14. Billy Moyer 960 (-882)
15. Brandon Sheppard 942 (-900)
Wet Weather Prompts Reshuffling Of This Weekend’s World of Outlaws Late Model Series Schedule
Tonight’s Event At I-30 Speedway Moved To Saturday, Saturday’s Program At Whynot Motorsports Park Canceled
CONCORD, NC – May 10, 2013 – Wet weather has prompted a reshuffling of this weekend’s scheduled World of Outlaws Late Model Series events.
Tonight’s WoO LMS show set for I-30 Speedway in Little Rock, Ark., has been postponed one day to Saturday night (May 11) while Saturday’s originally scheduled program at Whynot Motorsports Park in Meridian, Miss., has been canceled, track and series officials announced on Friday morning.
The scheduling change comes after I-30 Speedway’s grounds were left saturated by heavy overnight rain and all indications pointed to the Whynot facility becoming even more water-logged by intense precipitation predicted for Friday and extending into Saturday. With clear skies forecast for Saturday in the Little Rock area and Whynot’s weather remaining unstable, the decision was made to shift I-30 Speedway’s inaugural WoO LMS event to Saturday and cancel Whynot’s card.
“After consulting with promoters Tracey Clay (at I-30 Speedway) and Rodney Wing (at Whynot Motorsports Park) this morning we all agreed that moving tonight’s event at I-30 to Saturday would be the best option to salvage the weekend for the race teams and the region’s World of Outlaws fans,” said WoO LMS director Tim Christman. “Tracey and her staff indicated that getting the facility dried for racing tonight would be extremely difficult due to the rain that’s already fallen and the continued possibility of more showers today, and Rodney is facing a similar task preparing Whynot’s grounds for a major event with showers and thunderstorms expected to stretch into the afternoon on Saturday.
“Considering that Little Rock’s Saturday forecast calls for sun and temperatures in the mid-70s, moving I-30 Speedway’s event to tomorrow night gives World of Outlaws teams the best opportunity to race under optimal conditions.”
I-30 Speedway’s pit gates are scheduled to open at 1 p.m. CT on Saturday (May 11) and racing is set to begin at 7:30 p.m. CT.
Christman said that the WoO LMS will now look to 2014 for its first-ever visit to Whynot Motorsports Park.
Full Speed Ahead For World of Outlaws Late Model Series ‘Jackpot 100’ May 25-26 At Tyler County Speedway
Hometown Racing Association Takes Control Of Holiday-Weekend Racing & Concert After Cancelation Of ‘Bullring Bonanza’ Raffle
MIDDLEBOURNE, WV – May 10, 2013 – Thanks to John Watson and the Hometown Racing Association, the huge World of Outlaws Late Model Series ‘Jackpot 100’ doubleheader on May 25-26 at Tyler County Speedway is steaming full speed ahead.
Any uncertainty about the status of the national tour’s Memorial Day weekend visit to the quarter-mile oval in the hills of West Virginia following last week’s cancelation of the ‘Bullring Bonanza’ mega-raffle by the Tyler County Fireman’s Association due to lack of ticket sales was erased by a quick response from Watson and Co.
“The Jackpot 100 is our big Memorial Day weekend event,” said Watson, who heads the Hometown Racing Association group that was formed to operate Tyler County Speedway this season. “We want to have this weekend feature World of Outlaws racing for a long time to come, so canceling this whole race because the Fireman’s Association’s plans for the ‘Bonanza’ raffle did not work out would not have been good for the future.
“Our goal is to make sure this World of Outlaws Late Model Series event at Tyler County Speedway continues to build in the coming years, so, after sitting down with everyone on the Hometown Racing Association, we decided to step up and take over the promotion and running of the racing and concert portions of the weekend.”
Even with the cancelation of the ‘Bonanza’ mega-raffle, there is still a spectacular lineup of entertainment that the Hometown Racing Association will administer over the Memorial Day weekend. In addition to the $100,000-plus WoO LMS doubleheader – a 30-lap, $6,000-to-win A-Main on Sat., May 25, and a 70-lap finale paying $15,000 to win on Sun., May 26 – the group will also oversee a preliminary night of racing on Thurs., May 23, that includes support-division qualifying and the much-anticipated country concert on Fri., May 24, featuring Colt Ford, Justin Moore and Zack Paxson.
Admission to all four nights of the Tyler County holiday spectacular is included in a single super ticket being sold for $80. The tickets, which also include pit admission, can be purchased in advance by calling the ticket hotline at 304-771-5661 or 304-771-4883. Single-day tickets for admission to the races and concert are also being sold.
Fans who purchased $100 ‘Bullring Bonanza’ raffle tickets can use them as all-access pass tickets to the three nights of racing and the country concert (they will also receive a $20 refund), or they will be refunded their entire $100 purchase price if they can’t attend the weekend’s events.
“Where else can you go for $80 and get the caliber of entertainment that we’ll have at Tyler County Speedway on Memorial Day weekend?” concluded Watson.
Watson and the Hometown Racing Association are working hard within a short time frame to present the weekend, which also includes the $7,555-to-win ‘Let It Ride 55’ for the Renegades of Dirt Modifieds Tour and a $2,000-to-win Fastrak Crate Late Model event. Both the Dirt Modified and Crate Late Model races will be contested in conjunction with the WoO LMS doubleheader on May 25-26.
“We’re thrilled to have two nights of World of Outlaws racing as well as the Renegade Dirt Modified show and the Fastrak race,” said Watson. “It means a lot to us, the fans and everyone in Tyler County to have a huge national-level racing event like this
“We know that a lot of people have vacation plans to come to Tyler County Speedway over the Memorial Day weekend,” he continued. “We didn’t want to ruin people’s plans by canceling the weekend and have them get a bad outlook on Tyler County Speedway because of it. We realized that, for the good of the fans, the racers, the track and all the businesses in the county that benefit from the race, we had to push on with the event and that’s exactly what we’re doing.”
For more information on the WoO LMS Jackpot 100 and its supporting events, visit www.tylercountyspeedwayonline.com or call 304-771-5661 or 304-771-4883.
Anticipation High For National Tour’s Doubleheader In Arkansas & Mississippi
CONCORD, NC – May 8, 2013 – After nearly two extra months of buildup, the time has finally come for the inaugural World of Outlaws Late Model Series events at I-30 Speedway in Little Rock, Ark. (Fri., May 10) and Whynot Motorsports Park in Meridian, Miss. (Sat., May 11).
And make no mistake – the anticipation for this weekend’s pair of races, which were postponed by bad weather in late March, is running sky high.
“These are total must-see events,” DirtonDirt.com CEO and videographer Michael Rigsby bluntly stated in a ‘Fast Talk’ feature posted Monday on the noted dirt Late Model web site. “Two bullrings, two great racetracks and two places that the (World of Outlaws) Series has never been to. All of that adds up to that (Arkansas/Mississippi) area being treated to what will be really racy shows. Not overstating it, it’ll be wildly racy.”
What’s so special about I-30 Speedway and Whynot Motorsports Park, both of which will host 50-lap WoO LMS A-Mains paying $10,000 to win? Consider these scouting reports:
A World of Outlaws Battle On ‘Hammer Hill’
For years, I-30 Speedway has been known as ‘Hammer Hill’ to fans and racers. It’s a label that fits the place perfectly.
“I remember when that nickname started coming around, (I-30 promoter) Tracey Clay wasn’t real wild about it,” said Ben Shelton, a veteran motorsports announcer, publicist and DirtonDirt.com reporter from Memphis, Tenn., who has frequented I-30 for most of his 33 years. “But I told her, ‘Embrace it,’ and she has. I mean, that’s what the track is – a fast, quarter-mile, banked bullring, a real up-on-the-wheel kind of place.”
Indeed, there never seems to be a dull moment during races at the popular facility located in Arkansas’s capital city. Drivers who know the place well make it clear that this is no spread-‘em-out, follow-the-leader oval.
“It kind of reminds me more of a (DIRTcar UMP) Summer Nationals-type racetrack you find up there in the Midwest,” said Jack Sullivan of Greenbrier, Ark., who started his racing career as an open-wheel Modified regular at I-30 and owns both Modified and dirt Late Model victories at the track. “It’s just a little, banked quarter-mile that you can really race on. If your car’s any good at all and you run hard, you can pass there.”
With a dirt Late Model triumph at I-30 coming as recently as last September (Comp Cams Super Dirt Series event) and one start there this season already under his belt (seventh-place finish in a CCSDS show on April 20), Sullivan has good reason to be looking forward to Friday’s WoO LMS invasion. The 37-year-old’s history of success at I-30 puts him on the short list of home-state racers viewed as favorites in the World of Outlaws event, joining Batesville residents Wendell Wallace and Billy Moyer.
Wallace, of course, stood in Victory Lane the last time a national dirt Late Model tour (the old Hav-A-Tampa/UDTRA Series) visited I-30, way back on Aug. 1, 1997. He’s also won five times in his last seven starts over the past five years at the track, which, since dropping the dirt Late Model division as a weekly attraction nearly two decades ago, hosts a handful of regional touring dirt Late Model series events each season.
“We’ve had pretty good success there over the years,” Wallace, 47, said of I-30 Speedway, which has come to be known as a hotbed for Sprint Car racing. “It’s just a little, tight bullring that can be pretty racy, and I guess it kind of fits the way my driving style is. Some people don’t like it because it is short and tight, but we’ve always been able to get around it pretty good and run good down there.”
Moyer, 55, has also won at I-30, but the bulk of his victories there came in the early to mid ‘90s; when he captured a CCSDS event in March 2012, it marked his first appearance at the track in about a decade. Nevertheless, he’s very fond of the speedway and supportive of Clay’s decision to host a marquee race for the full-fender fraternity.
“I’m glad to see them having a big Late Model show again,” said Moyer, a former WoO LMS champion. “It’s a darn good racetrack so I’m sure it’ll be a good race. I think they’ll have a real big crowd and (the WoO LMS event) will turn into an every-year thing.”
Shelton has a similar feeling about the WoO LMS’s first trip to I-30.
“This is one of the races I’m most excited about this year,” said Shelton, whose voice will be heard on the I-30 public address system on Friday night. “I-30 is a track that’s just due to have something big for the Late Model division like a World of Outlaws show – and I think it’ll live up to the hype.
“The track will most likely have moisture on the bottom, a cushion on the top and be slick in the middle. It’s one of those places where you can run in there, drive straight through the slick and bounce off the cushion. It just makes for really good racing.”
Notable is the fact that virtually all of the WoO LMS travelers will get their first modern-day taste of the intense action at I-30. The lone circuit regular with recent experience at the track is 2013 Rookie of the Year contender Morgan Bagley of Longview, Texas, who has one runner-up and three third-place finishes in five SUPR series starts there over the 2011-12 seasons. The only other Outlaws to ever compete at the speedway are Clint Smith of Senoia, Ga., and Bub McCool of Vicksburg, Miss., both of whom were entrants in Hav-A-Tampa/UDTRA events at the track in the ‘90s.
Big Show For A Reborn Racetrack
When Rodney Wing and his family purchased Whynot Motorsports Park in January 2006, the facility had been closed since 1998 and barely resembled a racetrack anymore.
“It had sat vacant for seven years so it was all grown up,” said Wing, a dirt Late Model racer from Meridian, Miss., who began his racing career in 1996 at Whynot. “I’m talking pine trees growing up through the bleachers, all that stuff.”
But thanks to plenty of assistance from friends and local racing supporters, Wing quickly cleaned up and rebuilt the facility. It reopened in May 2006 and since then has steadily grown to become known as arguably the nicest, raciest track in the state of Mississippi – a progression that will reach its zenith with the running of Saturday night’s WoO LMS event, the biggest national-tour show in the track’s long history.
“It’s really a feel-good story,” Wing said of Whynot’s return to prominence. “Everybody around here was really anxious to get Whynot back, so when people heard – by word-of-mouth over the span of about a week – that we were going to have a little ‘work day’ to start cleaning the place up after we bought it, they came out in droves to help. During that first work day we had, somebody looked up about lunch time and counted 70 people and 14 chainsaws running at one time. There were people using their personal equipment and vehicles to haul off trash and debris to help get the track back going.
“We had a lot of volunteers help in a lot of different ways, from the grounds to the buildings, and before we knew it the place was back together and ready to go. When we got it back open, it was like everybody got to come home.”
Wing, 33, feels fortunate to be the figure at the helm of a successful speedway that means so much to the local community. He’s also quite honored to be the promoter of a World of Outlaws event that will expose Whynot to an even wider audience.
“It’s definitely a kind of living-the-dream type of deal to own the racetrack and live right there on the 50 acres of land,” said Wing, whose family also operates a furniture store in Meridian that opened last October. “We’re proud about what we’ve done with Whynot over the past eight years, and we’re real excited about having a World of Outlaws race for the first time. The track’s been here since 1965 and it’s never had a race of this caliber before, so bringing the World of Outlaws in here is something I hope will really get everybody’s blood pumping and fired up to come to Whynot.”
The competitive racing that Whynot’s three-eighths-mile layout is known to produce will provide plenty of thrills for Saturday night’s attendees as well. Wing isn’t exaggerating when he describes Whynot’s racing as “phenomenal.”
“We’re fortunate enough to have some great dirt,” Wing said of Whynot’s surface. “Whether it’s tacky, slick or somewhere in between, it usually produces real good, multiple-groove racing.
“It’s really a round oval where you’re turning all the time, and it’s got progressive banking. It really produces some great because there’s infinite different lines you can run around the racetrack to make speed. You can work the banking and the cushion and the moisture ring around the inside. It’s got a lot of options, so it’s the kind of place that a driver that’s versatile and has a lot of tools in their toolbox will love.
“I’ve been to a lot of racetracks,” added Wing, “and I’m not being biased when I say that (Whynot) produces some of the best racing I’ve ever seen, anywhere. I don’t look at Whynot as being second to anyone.”
Star-Studded Field Expected
The group of World of Outlaws regulars headed to I-30 and Whynot this weekend will be headed by Josh Richards of Shinnston, W.Va., who enters the doubleheader leading the points standings. Shane Clanton of Zebulon, Ga., trails Richards by just 12 points, with defending champion Darrell Lanigan of Union, Ky., Rick Eckert of York, Pa., and Tim McCreadie of Watertown, N.Y., rounding out the top five in the standings.
The list of WoO LMS regulars also includes Smith, McCool, Scott James of Bright, Ind., Tim Fuller of Watertown, N.Y., Chub Frank of Bear Lake, Pa., and Rookie of the Year contenders Bagley, Eric Wells of Hazard, Ky., and Dillon Wood of New Smyrna Beach, Fla.
I-30 Speedway on Fri., May 10: Gates are scheduled to open at 5 p.m. CT. Hot laps are set for 6:30 p.m., with WoO LMS Ohlins Shocks Time Trials to follow and racing earmarked to start at 7:30 p.m.
General admission to the program, which also includes racing for IMCA Modifieds and Street Stocks, is $25 with children ages 6-12 admitted for $5 when accompanied by an adult.
More information is available by logging on to www.i-30speedway.com or calling the track at 501-455-4567.
I-30 Speedway is located in the Arkansas capital city of Little Rock, on Alexander Rd. just off Exit 126 of Interstate 30.
Whynot Motorsports Park on Sat., May 11: Gates are scheduled to open at 3 p.m. CT with hot laps set to get the green flag at 6:30 p.m.
General admission to Saturday’s program, which also includes racing for the NeSmith Crate Late Models, open-wheel Modifieds, Street Stocks and Pure Stocks, is $30 for adults, $15 for children ages 6-12 and free for kids 5-and-under. Pit passes will be $40.
More information is available by logging on to www.whynotmotorsportspark.com or calling 601-527-0084.
Wet Weather Wipes Out Peach State Doubleheader For World of Outlaws Late Model Series
Persistent Showers Postpone Tonight’s Action At Lavonia, Heavy Rain & Dire Forecast Dash Hopes For Racing Saturday At Swainsboro
LAVONIA, GA – May 3, 2013 – The wet weather plaguing the 2013 World of Outlaws Late Model Series has continued, wiping out the scheduled Peach State doubleheader at Lavonia Speedway and Swainsboro Raceway.
More than two dozen WoO LMS, regional and local teams were assembled for tonight’s action at Lavonia, but persistent light showers ultimately forced track co-owners Max King and Stan Lester to pull the plug on the national tour’s first-ever visit to the three-eighths-mile oval. The 50-lap, $10,000-to-win event has been rescheduled for Tues., Nov. 5 – two nights before the start of the World of Outlaws World Finals on Nov. 7-9 at The Dirt Track at Charlotte in Concord, N.C.
In conjunction with the announcement of Lavonia’s postponement, WoO LMS officials also announced that the circuit’s scheduled event tomorrow night (Sat., May 4) at Swainsboro (Ga.) Raceway has been called off following consultation with promoter Paul Purvis. With heavy rain today saturating Swainsboro’s grounds and more rain forecast for tomorrow, Purvis decided an early decision was in the best interests of fans and race teams. No makeup date for Swainsboro has been announced.
With the rainouts, the WoO LMS has already had eight events called off due to weather this season.
The WoO LMS will return to action next weekend, visiting I-30 Speedway in Little Rock, Ark., on Fri., May 10, and Whynot Motorsports Park in Meridian, Miss., on Sat., May 11.
Georgia’s Casey Roberts Looks For Another Signature Victory At Swainsboro Raceway This Saturday Night (May 4)
Top-Notch Regional Racer A Hot Pick To Join Exclusive List Of World of Outlaws Late Model Series Winners This Weekend
SWAINSBORO, GA – May 2, 2013 – With several head-turning performances in recent years, Casey Roberts has put himself in a select group of regional drivers ready to break into Victory Lane on the World of Outlaws Late Model Series.
And this weekend the 35-year-old standout from Toccoa, Ga., just might have his best shot yet at earning his coveted first-ever triumph on the nation’s premier full-fender tour.
The WoO LMS is invading Roberts’s home state for a doubleheader, not only visiting a reborn facility 15 minutes from his home (Lavonia Speedway on Fri., May 3) but also Swainsboro Raceway on Saturday night (May 4).
It’s Swainsboro, of course, where Roberts has registered two of the biggest victories of his career and enjoyed one of his best WoO LMS outings.
“We’ve had some pretty good luck down there over the years,” Roberts said of the three-eighths-mile Swainsboro oval. “It’s about a three-hour drive for us so we don’t race there a whole bunch, but whenever we go there we’re usually pretty good.”
Roberts has won Lucas Oil Late Model Dirt Series and Ray Cook’s Southern Nationals Series events at Swainsboro, both coming in 2009. He also finished fifth in the track’s inaugural WoO LMS show, in 2010, after starting 10th, proving he can move forward when competing against some of the country’s top drivers.
While Roberts hasn’t started the last two WoO LMS A-Mains contested at Swainsboro – he failed to qualify in 2011 due to heat-race mechanical trouble and did not enter last year’s event because of a schedule conflict – his last appearance there showed why he’ll be a favorite this Saturday night in the 50-lap, $10,000-to-win WoO LMS feature that headlines Swainsboro’s annual Pine Tree 100.
“We set fast time there last year for Ray Cook’s Southern Nationals deal (in mid-July) and we led a good bit of (the feature),” said Roberts, who finished third in the 53-lap event. “Me, (Chris) Madden and Mikey Marlar had a real good race. We swapped the lead in lapped traffic a few times, but Madden ended up winning it.”
Roberts is looking forward to a return trip to Swainsboro, a track he rates highly for his competitive nature.
“It’s pretty flat, not much banking at all, but you can still get around there pretty good,” said Roberts. “They put some new dirt on it a while back and it’s really helped out. It used to be one lane in the rubber, but (owner) Paul (Purvis) done a great job putting clay on it and getting it racier. I’m sure he’ll have it in good shape on Saturday and we’ll be able to put on a good show.”
Roberts will enter this weekend’s WoO LMS double-dip in the Peach State with as much confidence – and as much fanfare – as he’s ever had. Much of it derives from the ambitious 2013 racing schedule he’s undertaken, highlighted by appearances in nine of the 12 WoO LMS events completed to date. He signed in for all eight of the tour’s February events in Georgia and Florida (a fifth-place finish in the season opener on Feb. 8 at Screven Motor Speedway in Sylvania, Ga., was his best during that stretch), and two weeks ago, on April 20, he recorded a World of Outlaws career-best finish of fourth at 311 Motor Speedway in Pine Hall, N.C.
With nearly half of Roberts’s 20 career WoO LMS appearances coming this season, he’s clearly serious about gaining the experience necessary to challenge the circuit’s superstars like Josh Richards of Shinnston, W.Va., Darrell Lanigan of Union, Ky., Shane Clanton of Zebulon, Ga., Rick Eckert of York, Pa., and Tim McCreadie of Watertown, N.Y.
“If you’re ever gonna hope to beat ‘em, you just gotta keep running with ‘em and learning from ‘em,” Roberts said of racing with the Outlaws. “You realize that to race at their level, you just gotta be almost like you’re qualifying every lap. You gotta be up on the wheel and have your car set up right.
“The key is always gonna be qualifying good and getting a good heat race (finish) to put yourself in line to draw a (prime starting spot) pill for the feature. If you can have good luck on the draw, you’ll be in position to do something. Then you have to make the right decisions and run hard for 50 laps and hopefully be there at the end.”
With quality equipment (Capital Race Cars, Custom Race Engines) supplied by Billy and Ann Cushman of Augusta, Ga., at his disposal, Roberts knows he has the ingredients to battle toe-to-toe with the Outlaws.
“Mr. and Mrs. Cushman just give me good stuff,” said Roberts, who is in his 10th season driving for Cushman Motorsports. “The money they spend goes a long way. They kind of got us with Marshall Green and (Shane) Clanton with the Capital Race Cars deal and that’s really helped our program a lot. It’s picked us up, and hopefully we can show it this weekend.
“Gosh, the Lord’s blessed me with such good car owners,” he continued. “It seems like a bunch of guys go here and there and split up with owners all the time, but we just get along real well and they just treat us like we’re part of their family. They’re truly good to me, my wife (Cathy) and my kids (daughter Brynn, 14, and son Mason, 9). It’s just an all-around good deal.”
An auto-repair shop owner by trade, Roberts possesses one of the better resumes of drivers hailing from the Southeast. His 13-year dirt Late Model career includes four Southern All-Stars East Series championships (2007-10), the 2012 Ultimate Super Late Model Series title and seven Southern Nationals triumphs since 2006.
There’s no doubt Roberts would love to ratify his prodigious talent with a WoO LMS victory – and achieving that goal this weekend would be a dream come true.
“It’s definitely exciting to have the World of Outlaws come so close to home for us for two nights of racing,” said Roberts, whose lone win this season came in a Ray Cook’s Spring Nationals Series event on April 12 at Tri-County Racetrack in Brasstown, N.C. “We don’t travel like the World of Outlaws guys, but we do most of our racing two, three and more hours away from home, so we don’t really race close to home that often. I’m sure we’ll have a lot of friends and family there (at Lavonia and Swainsboro) this weekend because we’ll be closer to home, so it would be pretty neat to pull off a win.”
Swainsboro Raceway’s WoO LMS event on Saturday night (May 4) will serve as the grand finale for three full days of activities that comprise the town of Swainsboro’s annual Pine Tree Festival, which includes a Saturday-morning parade through the downtown streets.
The speedway’s pit gates are scheduled to open at 12 noon and the grandstands will be unlocked at 3 p.m. Practice is set to start at 6 p.m., followed by qualifying at 7 p.m. and racing at 8 p.m.
Feature racing for Swainsboro’s crate Late Model, Super Street, Pure Stock, Mini-Stock, Road Warrior and 440 class will also be part of Saturday’s show. Qualifying for the weekly classes will take place during a special Pine Tree 100 preliminary night on Friday (May 3) starting at 8 o’clock.
Swainsboro’s Mud Bog will also be in operation on Saturday starting at 5 p.m.
General admission for the racing program (including the Mud Bog) is $25 and $15 for children 6-11. Pit passes are $35 and $20 for children 6-11.
More info on Swainsboro Raceway’s fourth annual WoO LMS event is available by logging on to www.swainsbororaceway.com or calling 478-252-1300.
FORMAL MEDIA STATEMENT FROM WORLD RACING GROUP APPEAL COMMISSION
WORLD RACING GROUP APPEAL COMMISSION HEARING RESULTS:
On May 1, 2013, the World Racing Group Appeal Commission Appeals Board heard and deliberated the appeal of World of Outlaws Late Model Series participant Jason Feger in regard to penalties received in regard to the World of Outlaws Late Model Series event on April 5-6 at Farmer City Raceway in Farmer City, Illinois, the Illini 100.
The penalties resulted from a standard tire analysis and inspection:
Per Section 15.11 “Tires” per the 2013 World of Outlaws Late Model Series Rule Book:
G.) The altering of any tire compound, by any means will not be permitted. Chemical alteration of the tread carcass and/or tread compound, such as tire ‘soaking’ and/or the introduction of tread ‘softener’ and/or physical defacement (removal, altering and/ or covering) of tire sidewall markings in any manner will not be permitted.
I.) Chemical alterations, vulcanizing, tire softening, defacing and/or altering the face of the tire lettering and/or tire stamping will not be permitted. Chemicals or tire softening is not permitted at any time. Tires may be inspected at any time.
The resulting penalties were issued by World of Outlaws Late Model Series Officials:
Disqualification from the event, including loss of all purse money and championship points earned in the event(s). (Purse money total $20,050 in addition to $400 tire analysis fee plus event trophy. All prize money and winnings must be returned within 5-business days from May 1, 2013.)
A fine of $3,000.
A loss of 1,000 championship points for the 2013 season.
A suspension from all World of Outlaws Late Model Series and DIRTcar UMP Late Model events for three (3) consecutive months (May 1, 2013, until August 1, 2013). Additionally, be placed on probation following the conclusion of the suspension for the remainder of the 2013 racing season (technical in nature). Any subsequent violations may result in a higher fine schedule and/or additional loss of points and/or suspension (including indefinite) and/or parking of the team.
The Appellant appealed the justification of the issued penalties.
The conclusion of the testimony and in review of the assembled facts the World Racing Group Appeal Commission Appeals Board unanimously determined to uphold the originating penalties issued by World of Outlaws Late Model Series Officials.
Feger reserves the right to appeal to the Chairman Potestas, Rolling Helmling, as stated in section 12 of the World of Outlaws Late Model Series rule book.
The appeal was administrated and heard by:
Joe Skotnicki – World Racing Group Appeal Board Chairman and non-voting member
For more information on the WoO LMS, visit www.worldofoutlaws.com.
World of Outlaws Late Model Series Show This Friday (May 3) Puts Lavonia Speedway Back On National Scene
Reopened Georgia Track Ready For Biggest Dirt Late Model Event In Its History
LAVONIA, GA – May 1, 2013 – Lavonia Speedway is ready for its return to the national dirt Late Model scene.
Less than two months into its comeback season following two years of inactivity and nearly a full decade since a major touring series last visited, the three-eighths-mile Peach State oval will host the World of Outlaws Late Model Series on Friday night (May 3). A 50-lap A-Main paying $10,000 to win tops the much anticipated program.
“I’d say this race is the biggest thing to ever hit here,” said Stan Lester, a veteran racer and dirt-track series organizer who is in his first season as a co-owner of Lavonia Speedway. “There’s tons of buzz around here about this show. People started coming by here (on Monday) to put their chairs up in the stands to save a seat.”
The first-ever WoO LMS event will continue the exciting new era at Lavonia, a venerable Northeast Georgia track that sat idle and decaying for the 2011 and ’12 seasons. The speedway was reborn after Lester, who oversees the 10-year-old FASTRAK Pro Late Model Series and three-year-old Ultimate Super Late Model Series, struck a partnership with track owner Max King last fall and began formulating plans to rebuild the facility and ink an aggressive schedule of weekly racing and special shows.
Crews started work on Lavonia Speedway last November and have barely stopped since. All that has been done to the place – including new fencing, expanded hauler parking, rebuilt restrooms, redone driveways and access roads, a cleaned-up spectator drive-in area, a reconfigured track and the application of much fresh paint – will be on display Friday in front of a crowd Lester expects to rank as the biggest of the season.
“I want people to walk in and go, ‘Wow!’” said Lester, 54. “Basically, it’s a completely different facility from when it was last open.”
The massive 4,000-plus-seat concrete grandstand (“We put about a thousand gallons of paint on it,” reported Lester) will provide spectators unmatched views of a track that definitely isn’t the old Lavonia Speedway.
“The racetrack has been reshaped completely with higher banks,” said Lester. “The banking is a little higher going into (turn) one and lower coming off two, and the banking going into (turn) three is high and levels off into four. It makes it pretty interesting to drive. Both corners, although shaped almost exactly alike, are completely different with the banking.”
In an effort to ensure the best possible track conditions for Friday’s WoO LMS spectacular, Lester and Co. have brought in noted Wythe (Va.) Raceway track-prep man Peery Brown to handle Lavonia’s surface.
“He does a great job and he’s a personal friend as well,” Lester said of Brown. “He helped us during the winter when we reconfigured the track, and he’s spending the (WoO LMS) week here to work the track and teach one of our guys how to do it.
“He can prep a track as good as anyone in the Southeast, so I’m expecting him to give everyone an awesome track to race on this Friday.”
The last time a national touring series competed at Lavonia was in September 2003 when the old Hav-A-Tampa/Xtreme circuit stopped in for a race won by Dennis ‘Rambo’ Franklin of Gaffney, S.C. From 2004-2010 the most lucrative annual dirt Late Model events at Lavonia was sanctioned by the regional Southern All-Stars Series.
Lester hopes that Friday’s return of a high-profile national tour will bring Lavonia the type of attention that springboards it to a long run as an influential track. He believes all the ingredients are in place.
“We’ve got a pretty good combination,” Lester said of Lavonia’s management team. “My partner Max King has been with the racetrack for the previous five years and has the local experience. Brad York is our general manager and knows the place well from working there in the past. And I’m kind of more the marketing guy, someone who brings the experience of traveling all over the country and seeing different tracks and things that work and don’t work.
“We’re just getting started here (the track reopened in early March with a special ‘Late Model Mania’ event headlined by the Ultimate Super Late Model Series and has hosted two weekly shows), but there’s plenty of potential. We’re hoping everybody who comes out on Friday is impressed.”
The traveling WoO LMS contingent will be led to Lavonia by a pair of well-known Georgians: Shane Clanton of Zebulon, who enters Friday’s action sitting second in the tour points standings, and Clint Smith of Senoia, who finished fourth in March’s Ultimate Series event at Lavonia.
The all-star group of World of Outlaws regulars also features two-time champion Josh Richards of Shinnston, W.Va., who enters the weekend leading the points standings; defending champ Darrell Lanigan of Union, Ky.; 2011 titlist Rick Eckert of York, Pa.; ’06 champion Tim McCreadie of Watertown, N.Y.; veteran Chub Frank of Bear Lake, Pa.; Warrior Chassis house car driver Scott James of Bright, Ind.; 2012 Rookie of the Year Bub McCool of Vicksburg, Miss.; Tim Fuller of Watertown, N.Y.; and ’13 Rookie of the Year contenders Eric Wells of Hazard, Ky., who is coming off his first-ever WoO LMS A-Main triumph on Sunday night at Duck River Raceway Park in Wheel, Tenn., Morgan Bagley of Longview, Texas, and Dillon Wood of New Smyrna Beach, Fla.
Among the Southeast standouts expected to challenge the Outlaws are Riley Hickman of Ooltewah, Tenn., who won March’s Ultimate Series event at Lavonia; Casey Roberts of Toccoa, Ga., a winner of Southern All-Stars races at Lavonia in 2004 and ’10; Mike Marlar of Winfield, Tenn.; Ray Cook of Brasstown, N.C.; Jeff Smith of Dallas, N.C.; and Tony Knowles of Tyrone, Ga.
All Lavonia Speedway gates are scheduled to open at 12 noon on Fri., May 3. The drivers’ meeting is set for 6:45 p.m., followed by a 7 p.m. autograph session with WoO LMS drivers at the souvenir trailers behind the grandstand and hot laps at 7:30 p.m.
Friday’s program, which also includes racing for the FASTRAK Pro Late Models ($1,000 to win), Modified Streets and the Front Wheel Drive division, carries a general admission price of $25 for ages 13-and-up. Kids 7-12 are $10 and children 6-and-under will be admitted free of charge. Pit passes are $35 for ages 13-and-up, $15 for kids 7-12 and free for children 6-and-under.
More information is available by checking the Lavonia Speedway Facebook page at www.facebook.com/LavoniaSpeedway2013 or calling 706-436-8444 or 706-491-4493.
Lavonia Speedway is located at 5941 Lavonia Highway in Lavonia, Ga., just a short distance off of Interstate 85.
Friday’s program kicks off a weekend doubleheader in Georgia for the WoO LMS, which will visit Swainsboro Raceway on Saturday night (May 4).
Widespread Rain Stops Saturday Night’s World of Outlaws Late Model Series Event At Tazewell Speedway
TAZEWELL, TN – April 27, 2013 – Widespread rain across the state of Tennessee has forced Tazewell Speedway owner Gary Hall to call off tonight’s scheduled World of Outlaws Late Model Series event at the famed high-banked, one-third-mile oval.
Hall made the decision on Saturday morning as showers began moving over the Tazewell area. The approach of heavier precipitation and possible thunderstorms and little chance of immediate clearing combined to leave Hall no other suitable option.
The rainout marks Tazewell’s first since the WoO LMS began making an annual appearance at the track in 2010. It’s also the sixth time this season that a World of Outlaws event has been called off due to weather.
No raindate for Tazewell’s event has been announced, but Hall said he will discuss rescheduling the program with WoO LMS officials. Fans should check www.worldofoutlaws.com and www.tazewellspeedway.com in the coming days for an update.
The WoO LMS event scheduled for Sunday (April 28) at Duck River Raceway Park in Wheel, Tenn., remains on. On-track action is set to start at 4 p.m. CT.
Clanton Shows The Way In World of Outlaws Late Model Series Return To Smoky Mountain Speedway
Georgian Holds Off Casebolt For Second Victory Of 2013 On National Tour
MARYVILLE, TN – April 26, 2013 – Everything fell Shane Clanton’s way on Friday night at Smoky Mountain Speedway.
Taking advantage of an outside pole starting spot and some well-placed caution flags, Fayetteville, Ga.’s Clanton had just enough speed to hold off a late challenge from Steve Casebolt Jr. of Richmond, Ind., and capture the ‘Mountain Outlaw 50.’
Clanton, 37, registered his second victory of the season on the World of Outlaws Late Model Series, which made its first visit to Smoky Mountain since 2004. He steered his Kennedy Motorsports Capital Race Car under the checkered flag a scant 0.164 of a second ahead of Casebolt, who overtook Jimmy Owens of Newport, Tenn., for second on a lap-38 restart and kept his Dishman Motorsports MasterSbilt car there to earn a career-best WoO LMS finish.
Owens settled for third in a Team Zero by Bloomquist mount after running in the second spot for laps 10-38. Josh Richards of Shinnston, W.Va., maintained the WoO LMS points lead with a solid fourth-place finish in his father Mark’s Rocket Chassis house car and Billy Ogle Jr. of Knoxville, Tenn., made a late charge to complete the top five in a Blount Motorsports Rocket fielded by Smoky Mountain co-owner Larry Garner.
Clanton was succinct after the race when asked for the key to his $10,550 triumph.
“The laps run out,” he said with a smile.
The WoO LMS veteran’s assessment was actually somewhat serious. Before a caution flag on lap 38 ended a 20-lap stretch of green-flag action, Clanton appeared to be in trouble with Owens, Casebolt and Richards all bearing down on him. He put some space on Casebolt following the restart but saw that gap shrink to virtually nothing a few laps later because his car’s right-rear tire simply wasn’t able to handle an extended run of uninterrupted racing.
“They said he was coming there at the end,” Clanton said of the signals his crew provided him concerning Casebolt’s last-ditch bid. “Luckily we had a caution there at the end (on lap 38) to cool the tires off. We went a little softer on right-rear tire, just trying to get the lead (at the start) and hopefully dictate the pace. I liked every caution, especially since they seemed to fall right my way. I didn’t even have to lap a car. We got in lapped traffic twice and luckily a caution came out.”
Casebolt stuck the nose of his machine inside Clanton’s off turn two on lap 44 and stayed close the remainder of the distance, but Clanton held strong to score his 18th career win on the WoO LMS and close to within four points of Richards in the tour standings.
“I was just using most of the racetrack,” said Clanton, whose previous victory this season came in the tour opener on Feb. 8 at Screven Motor Speedway in Sylvania, Ga. “We got tight there in the middle and I was just floating in the bottom, letting it float across and then using the brown to leave the corner. I was trying not to spin the tires because I knew we had a softer right-rear.
“It feels good that we were able to hold on. We’ve had a lot of good runs so far this year but we wanted another win.”
Casebolt, 34, was left wondering if he could have done anything differently to change the outcome.
“I felt like we had the fastest car, but I think I missed my mark a couple of times with a few laps to go,” said Casebolt, who started fourth. “Once my tires cooled off after those cautions it was so hard for me to hit my mark coming off (turn) two. I needed to be low, but I had to get so crooked entering one with those cold tires that I didn’t feel like I had enough drive. So I just carried momentum in one and two, and that was probably a mistake. I maybe could’ve drove a little bit different and had a better shot at winning.
“In my opinion, I felt like I would’ve had a much better shot at winning the race had that last caution not come out,” he continued. “I think I was passing Owens (for second) at the time and we were really coming on, but the caution killed me.”
Casebolt tried to put on a happy face, but it wasn’t easy after threatening to bag his first-ever WoO LMS victory.
“A second is great – it’s another great run for us this year – but we’re here to win,” said Casebolt. “And we were so close to winning. It’s not like we were a half-straightaway away. We were half a car-length away, and that’s just a little bit hard to handle.”
Four caution flags slowed the event. The most serious incident occurred on lap 19 when Vic Hill of Morristown, Tenn., slapped the turn-three wall after apparent contact with another while racing just outside the top 10. Other cautions flew on lap 14 for Tommy Kerr of Maryville, Tenn., who slowed with a flat tire; lap 18 for Eric Wells of Hazard, Ky., who slowed with his car’s rearend sparking after catching the wall; and lap 38 for Rick Eckert of York, Pa., who relinquished sixth place to a broken rear axle.
Other casualties of the race were Mike Marlar of Winfield, Tenn., and Scott Bloomquist of Mooresburg, Tenn. Moments after Kerr brought out the lap-14 caution, Marlar slowed between turns one and two with mechanical trouble that caused flames to appear under his car. He collected Bloomquist and both drivers retired from further action.
Dillon Wood of New Smyrna Beach, Fla., who started from the pole position, slipped to sixth at the finish but earned the $250 WoO LMS top-rookie bonus and matched his career-best run on the circuit. Jonathan Davenport of Blairsville, Ga., fell one spot from where he started to finish seventh; Bub McCool of Vicksburg, Miss., placed eighth after starting 15th; Tim McCreadie of Watertown, N.Y., finished ninth after using a provisional to start 24 th because he was involved in a heat-race tangle that busted his car’s radiator; and Riley Hickman of Cleveland, Tenn.
Defending WoO LMS champion Darrell Lanigan of Union, Ky., finished a quiet 14th after using a provisional to start 23rd. His night went downhill when he blew a right-rear tire while leading the second heat with two laps remaining.
Thirty-five cars signed in for the event, which was run before a near-capacity crowd despite the threat of rain that forced track and series officials to push the program.
Marlar was the overall fastest qualifier in Ohlins Shocks Time Trials, which were split into ‘A’ and ‘B’ groups. His lap of 14.990 seconds gave him his second WoO LMS fast-time honor of 2013.
Heat winners were Casebolt, Davenport, Marlar and Clanton. The B-Mains were captured by Chad Ogle of Sevierville, Tenn., and Hill.
The WoO LMS’s weekend tripleheader in the Volunteer State is scheduled to continue on Saturday night (April 27) at Tazewell Speedway and Sunday evening (April 28) at Duck River Raceway Park in Wheel.
Results of World of Outlaws Late Model Series ‘Mountain Outlaw 50’ at Smoky Mountain Speedway (Finishing Position/Start/Driver/Laps Completed/MoneyWon):
1. (2) Shane Clanton/50 $10,550
2. (4) Steve Casebolt Jr./50 $5,550
3. (3) Jimmy Owens/50 $3,050
4. (5) Josh Richards/50 $3,200
5. (7) Billy Ogle Jr./50 $2,000
6. (1) Dillon Wood/50 $1,950
7. (6) Jonathan Davenport/50 $1,450
8. (15) Bub McCool/50 $2,000
9. (24) Tim McCreadie/50 $1,850
10. (16) Riley Hickman/50 $1,150
11. (10) Scott James/50 $1,600
12. (14) Mark Vineyard/50 $1,000
13. (19) Chub Frank/50 $1,550
14. (23) Darrell Lanigan/50 $1,550
15. (20) Tim Fuller/50 $1,400
16. (21) Tommy Kerr/50 $850
17. (25) Morgan Bagley/50 $620
18. (12) Rick Eckert/37 $1,400
19. (13) Michael Asberry/28 $730
20. (22) Clint Smith/25 $1,250
21. (18) Vic Hill/18 $700
22. (17) Chad Ogle/18 $700
23. (11) Eric Wells/17 $1,250
24. (8) Mike Marlar/13 $700
25. (9) Scott Bloomquist/13 $700
* Earnings include Winners Circle program and cash contingency award bonuses
Time of Race: 26 Mins., 32.342 Secs.
Margin of Victory: 0.164 Secs.
Yellow Flags: 4 (laps 14, 18, 19, 38)
Lap Leaders: Clanton (1-50)
Provisional Starters: Lanigan, McCreadie (WoO); Bagley (WoO emergency)
Heat No. 1 (10 laps – Top 4 Transfer): Casebolt, B. Ogle, Bloomquist, Asberry, C. Ogle, Frank, Bagley, Kerr, Giffin
Heat No. 2 (Top 4 Transfer): Davenport, Owens, James, Vineyard, Miller, S. Marlar, Lanigan, Laney, McCreadie
Heat No. 3 (Top 4 Transfer): M. Marlar, Wood, Wells, McCool, Hill, C. Smith, Douglas, King, Franklin
Heat No. 4 (Top 4 Transfer): Clanton, Richards, Eckert, Hickman, Fuller, Collins, McDowell, Weaver
B-Main No. 1 (12 laps – Top 3 Transfer): C. Ogle, Frank, Kerr, Miller, Bagley, S. Marlar, Laney (DNS) Lanigan, Giffen, McCreadie
B-Main No. 2 (12 laps – Top 3 Transfer): Hill, Fuller, C. Smith, Douglas, Collins, Franklin (DNS) McDowell, King, Weaver
2013 World of Outlaws Late Model Series Point Standings as of April 26 – 11 A-Mains completed (rank/driver/points/deficit to leader):
1. Josh Richards 1566
2. Shane Clanton 1562 (-4)
3. Rick Eckert 1484 (-82)
4. Darrell Lanigan 1480 (-86)
5. Tim McCreadie 1448 (-118)
6. Scott James 1400 (-166)
7. Tim Fuller 1388 (-178)
8. Eric Wells 1382 (-184)
9. Chub Frank 1360 (-206)
10. Morgan Bagley 1358 (-208)
11. Bub McCool 1350 (-216)
12. Clint Smith 1258 (-308)
13. Dillon Wood 1196 (-370)
14. Brandon Sheppard 942 (-624)
15. Casey Roberts 912 (-654)
Welcome To Tennessee: Three Distinct Volunteer State Tracks Comprise This Weekend’s World of Outlaws Late Model Series Tripleheader
National Tour Set To Visit Smoky Mountain Speedway (April 26), Tazewell Speedway (April 27) & Duck River Raceway Park (April 28)
CONCORD, NC – April 24, 2013 – A big, reconfigured four-tenths-mile oval. A steeply-banked, blazing-fast one-third-mile paper-clip. A sweeping quarter-mile bullring.
Three distinct tracks located in Tennessee – that’s this weekend’s hit list for the World of Outlaws Late Model Series, which invades the Volunteer State for one of the most anticipated and interesting tripleheaders of the 2013 season.
The swing kicks off on Friday night (April 26) at Smoky Mountain Speedway in Maryville, which will host the WoO LMS for the first time since 2004. The famed Tazewell Speedway will present a World of Outlaws program for the fourth consecutive season on Saturday evening (April 27) while the smallest of the three tracks, Duck River Raceway Park in Wheel, will close the weekend on Sunday night (April 28) with its inaugural WoO LMS extravaganza.
To set the stage for a weekend comprised of three 50-lap A-Mains paying $10,000 to win, here are snapshots of the three tracks courtesy of some Tennesseans who know them well...
Smoky Mountain Speedway: The Home Track Of Warrior Race Cars
If you’re looking for a scouting report on Smoky Mountain Speedway from a WoO LMS traveler, Warrior Race Cars owner Sanford Goddard is your man. The venerable facility is, after all, effectively his home track.
The owner of the Warrior house car driven on the WoO LMS by Scott James of Bright, Ind., and builder of the Sweeteners Plus Racing machines campaigned by former World of Outlaws champion Tim McCreadie of Watertown, N.Y., Goddard has fielded dirt Late Models and worked with customers at Smoky Mountain for years. With his Goddard Performance/Warrior Race Cars shop in Knoxville, Tenn., less than a half-hour drive from the track, he clearly possesses some deep-seeded knowledge of the place.
But despite his many evenings spent competing and testing at Smoky Mountain, Goddard doesn’t want anyone thinking he has some secret formula for success that he’ll deliver to James and McCreadie during the running of this Friday night’s ‘Mountain Outlaw 50.’ He’s the first one to point out that today’s Smoky Mountain Speedway isn’t the same one he’s attended for decades or the WoO LMS last raced at in 2004.
“One thing about Smoky Mountain – it’s been there since the ‘60s and it’s had several updates on it,” said Goddard. “It was a half-mile, they cut it down to four-tenths, and now this year they have new owners who put new walls around it and new dirt on it and changed the banking. The track’s a little bit different than it’s been in the past. It seems like the dirt’s better, it’s faster and it’s a little racier than it used to be.
“I’ve won a lot of races there with different people, but now it’s kind of a new experience for everybody,” he added. “Even though you’ve raced there all your life, everybody is going through a learning curve on it.”
The track is now under the ownership of a group that includes Stanley Best, Larry Garner, Roger Sellers and Kevin Coffey. They purchased the speedway last year and have aggressively upgraded the facility and created a standout special-event schedule, highlighted by Friday night’s WoO LMS event that ranks as the biggest show at Smoky Mountain since Rick Eckert of York, Pa., won the circuit’s only previous visit in April ’04.
“The new owners operating the place are racers besides just owners,” said Goddard. “They understand what they need to do to make it better. They’re race-oriented people and I think they’re taking the track to the next level.”
Both James and McCreadie competed in the 2004 WoO LMS event at Smoky Mountain, which came early in the tour’s inaugural season under the World Racing Group banner. Neither fared well – James finished 23rd and McCreadie did not start the A-Main.
McCreadie hasn’t been back to Smoky Mountain over the past eight years, but James has gotten a taste of the new configuration, making two appearances there in the past month behind the wheel of Goddard’s familiar green-and-white No. 1G. James finished 20th in a Southern All-Stars Series event on March 16 and failed to qualify for the Spring Nationals feature on April 13.
“We weren’t very good both times we were there, but it wasn’t the track’s fault. It was our fault,” said Goddard. “They were productive trips, though. I think we found a few things wrong with our car. Hopefully we can make the right changes and get Scott and McCreadie running good (on Friday).”
Goddard is geared up for a wildly competitive event on Friday night.
“We went (to Smoky Mountain) this year with Scott to learn some stuff so we’d be ready for this World of Outlaws deal,” said Goddard. “The local guys – like Billy Ogle Jr., Vic Hill and Randy Weaver – run good there, so it’ll be a big test for the World of Outlaws guys. I’m hoping we’re ready.”
Tazewell Speedway: A Dirt Track Like No Other
Tazewell Speedway owner Gary Hall doesn’t have to be a detective to spot someone who happens to be eyeballing his racetrack for the first time.
“Oh, I can tell immediately,” said Hall, who is in his ninth season at the helm of the famed track in the hills of Northeast Tennessee. “You can see they’re pretty much in awe.”
Indeed, viewing video or pictures of Tazewell’s monstrous banks doesn’t do it justice. A dirt-track fan or racer has to witness the scene in person – looking down from the concrete hillside grandstand or while standing at the tippy-top of the track in turn two – to fully appreciate the massiveness of those iconic hills.
And once dirt Late Models start circling the bullring at seemingly supersonic speeds – like the country’s best drivers will do this Saturday night in Tazewell’s fourth annual ‘Outlaw Sizzler 50’ presented by Tri-State Tire and Auto of Middlesboro – it’s one of the sport’s take-your-breath-away moments.
“The first thing I always say to a fan who’s never been to Tazewell is, ‘You’ve never seen anything like it,’” said the 60-year-old Hall, a former dirt Late Model racer who competed at ‘The Taz’ during his career but never raced on its current configuration (the banking was increased in the early ‘90s after he retired). “There’s nothing like it around here – heck, probably just about anywhere. The corners here are banked about 31 degrees, and I think the straightaways are banked like 20 degrees. It’s definitely a unique place.
“It reminds me a lot of Bristol (Motor Speedway) – a dirt Bristol. It’s a lot of the same deal – high-banked, fast, cars just whipping around there. It’s really amazing to see a race here in person.”
Or just see the menacing track, period.
“We’ll be here working during the week and we’ll have people just stop by to look at it because they’ve never seen it,” said Hall. “It happens quite regularly.”
The fans’ love for Tazewell is demonstrated not only by the track’s strong weekly crowds but by the enormous turnouts for WoO LMS events. Last year’s World of Outlaws show, which saw Bub McCool of Vicksburg, Miss., register his first-ever win on the circuit, drew a standing-room-only crowd that Hall called the biggest in the history of the speedway.
Not surprisingly, of course, for a speedway dubbed ‘The World’s Fastest One-Third-Mile Dirt Track,’ drivers aren’t as overwhelmingly enamored with Tazewell as the fans.
“Some drivers love it and some drivers hate it,” said Hall. “It’s a fast place and you gotta be on your toes all the time. Everything happens so fast – the fans seem to like that, but not all drivers like that kind of racing.”
Two-time WoO LMS champion Josh Richards of Shinnston, W.Va., provides an almost perfect summation of the love/hate relationship drivers have with Tazewell.
“I like driving on it, but I don’t like racing on it,” said Richards, whose two career WoO LMS starts at Tazewell resulted in finishes of third (2010) and 16th (’11). “It’s fun to go out there by yourself and run laps like that, just flying around there. It’s pretty intense, pretty awesome. But because it’s so small and so fast, it’s hard to race on. There are a lot of things happening there at once, and I think that’s why a lot of racers don’t prefer it. You’re running such a fine line every second you’re out there, which definitely makes it difficult.”
That hyper-speed, on-the-edge action, though, is what makes every lap at Tazewell spectacular.
“Tazewell is what I call a ‘spectator’ track,” said Warrior Race Cars owner Sanford Goddard, who admitted that Tazewell is his favorite track. “Fans just love to see cars go around that place.”
Duck River Raceway Park: Praise From One Of Tennessee’s Best
Vic Hill has only competed at Duck River Raceway Park once in over a quarter-century as a driver, but his lone visit was more than enough to form a strong opinion of the track that sits just over an hour south of Nashville.
“It’s a great track,” said Hill, a 49-year-old dirt Late Model veteran and noted engine builder from Morristown, Tenn. “We’re sort of anxious to go back.”
Hill plans to make Sunday evening’s historic first-ever WoO LMS event at Duck River his second career appearance at the speedway. His first was just five months ago when he pocketed a $10,000 paycheck for winning the ‘Deep Fried 75,’ which closed the track’s 2012 season in mid-November.
“I’d always heard it was real slick and you needed a big spoiler and all that or you’d get beat down,” Hill said of Duck River. “Well, I decided to go there (in November), but I was complaining because it was gonna be cold and I just thought it was gonna be a crappy weekend. Then I got down there, and I’ll tell ‘ya, I was impressed.”
Though the track was just four months into its new era under the ownership of Bob and Cathy Harris, who purchased the facility in July 2012, Hill experienced a speedway that was already well on its way to big things. Hill praises the job done by Bob Harris, who has overseen a flurry of construction and upgrades, including new bathrooms, concession stands and guardrails and a fresh clay racing surface.
“He’s put together a heck of a racetrack,” said Hill, who set Duck River’s dirt Late Model track record last November but expects it to be broken on Sunday. “It’s just a real racy little place. It’s about the same size as Tazewell, except a little wider and not banked as much, and you can pretty much race all over it.
“The biggest obstacle we had to deal with down there (in November) was lapped traffic. It’s a small track and you get into it real quick. Being a small, fast racetrack, you really have to be on your toes.
“It’s got to be fun for the fans to watch, though,” he added. “With the caliber of drivers who are gonna be there on Sunday, I think it’s gonna be a helluva show.”
Duck River’s WoO LMS program will cap a huge three-day stretch of racing for Hill, who calls this weekend’s World of Outlaws tripleheader “one of our biggest weekends of the year.” The driver known as ‘The Thrill’ and his team have put special emphasis on being primed and ready to take on the Outlaws and a host of other top drivers on relative home turf.
“Last week we didn’t race just so we can get prepared for these three races in a row,” said Hill. “I like all three racetracks we’re running at. We’ve had success at all of ‘em, so I’m anxious to see what we can do.
“Our plan is to run one car at Smoky Mountain (Speedway on Friday), another car at Tazewell (Speedway on Saturday), and then we’ll see what we got left and go to Duck River.”
Winning a WoO LMS A-Main this weekend – and perhaps becoming the first Tennessee driver not named Scott Bloomquist or Jimmy Owens to capture a WoO LMS event in their home state – would be a career highlight for Hill.
“When these guys roll into town and you’re dealing with all the talent that will be there, a top five (finish) would be great,” said Hill. “But to win would be just super. It would be something I’d never forget.
“It would mean so much to me to win one of these shows. With the guys who will be at these races, it’s about gonna be like a World 100 weekend for the fans in Tennessee.”
Hill has started 10 WoO LMS A-Mains since 2004, with an eighth-place finish on Aug. 20, 2008, at Volunteer Speedway in Bulls Gap, Tenn., representing his career-best run. (He also registered the only World of Outlaws fast-time honor of his career that night.) His most memorable WoO LMS performance came in the 2010 event at Tazewell, where he was running a strong second behind eventual winner Shane Clanton of Fayetteville, Ga., on lap 15 when a lapped car bounced off the fourth-turn wall and flipped onto Hill’s hood, knocked Hill from further action.
Star-Studded Field Expected
Nearly two-dozen drivers are expected to enter all three WoO LMS events this weekend, including the 13 World of Outlaws travelers who have perfect attendance on this year’s tour.
The group of Outlaws is headed by Richards, who enters the weekend leading the points standings, Clanton, Eckert, McCreadie and defending champion Darrell Lanigan of Union, Ky. Rounding out the list of regulars is James, McCool, Tim Fuller of Watertown, N.Y., Chub Frank of Bear Lake, Pa., Clint Smith of Senoia, Ga., and Rookie of the Year contenders Eric Wells of Hazard, Ky., Morgan Bagley of Longview, Texas, and Dillon Wood of New Smyrna Beach, Fla.
Drivers who have announced plans to challenge the Outlaws in all three events include Hill; Jonathan Davenport of Blairsville, Ga.; Blount Motorsports teammates Tommy Kerr of Maryville, Tenn., and Billy Ogle Jr. of Knoxville, Tenn.; Ray Cook of Brasstown, N.C.; Team Dillon mates Dale McDowell of Chickamauga, Ga., and Ty Dillon of Welcome, N.C., who competes on the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series; Steve Casebolt of Richmond, Ind.; Brad Neat of Dunnville, Ky.; and Eric Jacobsen of Rio Del Mar, Calif.
Scott Bloomquist of Mooresburg, Tenn., and Jimmy Owens of Newport, Tenn., are expected to enter at least the Smoky Mountain and Tazewell events, while drivers listing single events on their schedules include Randy Weaver of Crossville, Tenn. (Smoky Mountain), Mike Marlar of Winfield, Tenn. (Duck River) and Ronny Lee Hollingsworth of Northport, Ala. (Duck River).
Fri., April 26, at Smoky Mountain Speedway: Pit gates are scheduled to open at 12 noon with the grandstands and tier-parking areas set to be unlocked at 4 p.m. (sooner if traffic backup becomes an issue). The drivers’ meeting is scheduled for 7 p.m. with hot laps following at 7:30 p.m.
Ticket prices and other information is available by logging on to www.smokymountainspeedway.com or calling 865-856-8989.
Smoky Mountain Speedway is located at 809 Brickmill Road in Maryville, Tenn.
Sat., April 27, at Tazewell Speedway: The racing program, which also includes action for the Modified Streets, Classic Cars and Four-Cylinders, is scheduled to begin at 7:30 p.m. Pit gates are set to open at 3 p.m. and grandstand gates will be unlocked at 4 p.m.
Additional information can be obtained by logging on to www.TazewellSpeedway.net or calling 423-626-2222.
Tazewell Speedway is located just two miles northwest of Tazewell, Tenn. Going north on US 25-E, turn right and then left onto Bacchus Rd., travel 1.8 miles north and .8 miles west and the racetrack is located on the left.
Sun., April 28, at Duck River Raceway Park: Duck River’s gates will open at 12 noon. Hot laps are scheduled to begin at 4 p.m. with qualifying to follow. The two-barrel Late Model, Modified Street and Pure Pony divisions are also on the agenda.
More information is available by logging on to www.duckriverracewaypark.com or calling 931-684-8200 or 931-685-1009.
Duck River Raceway Park is located at 1100 Haskins Chapel Rd. in Wheel (Lewisburg), Tenn.
World of Outlaws Late Model Series News & Notes: Tour Heads To Tennessee For Rare Single-State, Three-Track Tripleheader
CONCORD, NC – April 22, 2013 –
HEADED TO TENNESSEE: Next up on the 2013 World of Outlaws Late Model Series schedule is a trip to Tennessee that represents a rare occurrence for the national tour: a same-state tripleheader comprised of three different tracks.
When the WoO LMS rolls through the Volunteer State this weekend for events on Friday (April 26) at Smoky Mountain Speedway in Maryville, Saturday (April 27) at Tazewell Speedway and Sunday (April 28) at Duck River Raceway Park in Wheel, it will mark just the third time in the circuit’s history that it contests races on consecutive days at three tracks in a single state.
The only other instances that match this Tennessee Triple-Play in the WoO LMS record book both came in Ohio. In 2008 the series ran at Muskingum County Speedway, Eldora Speedway and Sharon Speedway from July 24-26 and in ’10 visited Sharon, Attica Raceway Park and Muskingum County from July 29-31.
This weekend’s WoO LMS action was originally scheduled as a doubleheader at Smoky Mountain and Tazewell, but it grew to a full three-race swing after Duck River’s event was postponed from March 24 due to wet and cold weather. All three events will be topped by a 50-lap A-Main paying $10,000 to win.
A high-banked, quarter-mile oval just over an hour’s drive south of Nashville, Duck River will host the WoO LMS for the first time on Sunday. Smoky Mountain’s World of Outlaws show will be its first since 2004, while the famed banks of Tazewell will see WoO LMS competition for the fourth season in a row.
A total of 16 WoO LMS events at eight different tracks have been run in Tennessee since 2004, when the tour was restarted under the World Racing Group banner after a 15-year layoff. Eight of those races came during the 2004 and ’05 seasons, including six in ’04.
Eleven drivers have won a WoO LMS A-Main in Tennessee. Five drivers own a pair of victories (Scott Bloomquist, Steve Francis, Shane Clanton, Tim McCreadie and Chris Madden) and six have single triumphs (Rick Eckert, Brian Birkhofer, Billy Moyer, Jimmy Owens and Bub McCool). Bloomquist and Owens are the only Tennessee drivers to win a World of Outlaws event in their home state.
Tazewell’s past WoO LMS winners include Clanton, Madden and McCool, who scored his first-ever World of Outlaws triumph in last year’s event. The lone WoO LMS stop at Smoky Mountain in ’04 was captured by Eckert.
For more information on this weekend’s events, visit www.smokymountainspeedway.com, www.tazewellspeedway.com and www.duckriverracewaypark.com.
TIRES: In conjunction with the three host tracks, WoO LMS officials have announced a tire rule for this weekend’s three events. All entrants must use Hoosier 1300-compound or higher tires or American Racer 44-compound or higher rubber, and the ‘punch 40’ durometer reading will be in effect.
T-MAC HEATING UP: If the 2012 season is any indication, Tim McCreadie is ready to go on a WoO LMS hot streak.
Last year the 39-year-old star from Watertown, N.Y., won his first WoO LMS A-Main of the season at 311 Motor Speedway in Pine Hall, N.C. – and on Saturday night he put his first ’13 checkered flag on the board at the same half-mile oval. He followed his ’12 triumph at 311 Motor Speedway with 16 straight top-10 finishes – including one stretch of nine consecutive top-five runs that bested even record-setting champion Darrell Lanigan’s longest top-five streak of the season – so he’s hopeful that success at the Tar Heel State track is once again a harbinger of good things.
Of course, McCreadie slumped badly in ’12 after his strong May-July, absorbing eight DNFs and scoring just a single top-five finish (second place in the finale at The Dirt Track at Charlotte) over the final 15 WoO LMS events. But he’s off to a much stronger start this season, raising the confidence for sustained success he has in his Sweeteners Plus Warrior Chassis cars. His victory in last year’s event at 311 Motor marked his first top-five run (and just his fourth top 10) in 10 A-Mains; this year through an identical 10 races he already has four top-five and seven top-10 finishes.
This weekend McCreadie will look to improve upon his previous WoO LMS finishes at Tazewell, which include a best of fifth in 2011 (he was 12th in ’10 and 23rd in ’12). He entered the 2004 WoO LMS event at Smoky Mountain but did not start the A-Main and has never visited Duck River.
GOOD JOB, ROOKS: WoO LMS Rookie of the Year contenders Morgan Bagley of Longview, Texas, and Dillon Wood of New Smyrna Beach, Fla., enjoyed much-needed uplifting performances on Saturday night at 311 Motor Speedway. Bagley’s sixth-place finish was his career-best on the WoO LMS, while Wood rallied from the 23 rd starting spot for a ninth-place finish that represented his first top-10 outing of 2013 (though not a career high).
Wood’s run was especially noteworthy considering the trials and tribulations he encountered leading up to the A-Main. First, he was penalized for arriving late to his spot in the time-trial qualifying order, knocking his ninth-fastest time down to 16th. (Late arrivals can time no better than half the night’s field – 29 cars, in this case – plus one.) He then dropped out on the opening lap of his heat race after the ball spline on his transmission broke, forcing him to pull out his backup car. A points provisional got him into the A-Main lineup.
Saturday’s program marked Wood’s first WoO LMS appearance with Georgian Derek Gahring serving as his chief mechanic. The 22-year-old added Gahring, who spent recent seasons working with WoO LMS regulars Chub Frank and Clint Smith, after running the first nine events of the season with his father Todd as his lone crewman.
TOUGH LUCK: WoO LMS travelers Clint Smith and Bub McCool will look to rebound this weekend after seeing potentially solid finishes slip through their fingers on Saturday night at 311 Motor Speedway.
Smith, who was happy to see last Friday night’s WoO LMS show at Fayetteville (N.C.) Motor Speedway called off early due to approaching storms because he did not yet have an engine ready to go, qualified strong at 311 with the fresh powerplant to earn the fourth starting spot in the A-Main. He was running fifth at a lap-nine caution flag when the ball spline on his car’s transmission broke, forcing him to limp into the pit area and suffered a disappointing 24th-place finish.
McCool, meanwhile, was running sixth and appeared ready to challenge for a top-five spot when he slowed on a lap-22 restart and retired due to an overheating engine.
ILLINI 100 PENALTY: Jason Feger of Bloomington, Ill., has been stripped of his emotional victory in the recent Illini 100 at Farmer City (Ill.) Raceway and assessed several other penalties because a tire he used during the April 5-6 weekend failed a laboratory test for chemical softening agents, WoO LMS officials announced on Monday.
Two samples of the right-front tire that was on Feger’s car when he won the third 15-lap heat race for the Illini 100 on April 5 were taken by WoO LMS tech inspector Jim Harrah and sent to a lab for chemical analysis. After both the ‘A’ and ‘B’ samples failed to satisfy the benchmark standards for a Hoosier DIRTcar UMP LM-20 tire, WoO LMS officials were forced to take action against Feger for violating the circuit’s rules prohibiting the altering of tire compounds.
Feger, who started from the outside pole and led every lap of the Illini 100, has been notified by WoO LMS officials of his penalties, which include disqualification from the Illini 100, including loss of all purse money ($20,050) and WoO LMS championship points earned; a fine of $3,000; loss of 1,000 WoO LMS championship points for the 2013 season; and a suspension from all WoO LMS and DIRTcar UMP Late Model-sanctioned events for three consecutive months (effective April 19-July 19). In addition, following the conclusion of the suspension Feger will be placed on probation for the remainder of the 2013 racing season.
As a DIRTcar UMP member in good standing, Feger has the opportunity to appeal the decision to the World Racing Group Appeals Commission. His penalties would not go into effect until they were upheld, adjusted or overturned by the Appeals Commission following a hearing of his case.
Feger, 34, said he plans to submit a formal appeal in hopes of reducing his penalties by shedding light on his tire’s failed laboratory tests, which he attributes to the fact that the tire in question was one he cleaned during the winter with a degreaser-type product and then wrapped in plastic for off-season storing. He concedes that the cleaning product he used is likely what caused the tire to miss the established benchmarks but strongly asserts that he did not use it to illegally soften the rubber in search of a competitive advantage.
“The test isn’t lying,” said Feger. “There’s definitely stuff in that tire, but I didn’t knowingly put that stuff in there to soften the tire. You just take for granted when (a cleaning product) says biogradeable, non-toxic or whatever – you don’t think it can soften rubber or even soak into the rubber. We’ve since learned that the chemical that we use to wash our tires contains bad stuff. I got online and there’s a material safety sheet for the product, and it definitely has the chemicals that people use to soften tires. And from what I can tell, the (plastic) wrapping we used on the tires to keep the dust and stuff off them over the winter time must have held the stuff in and not let it gas out or whatever it does compared to normal.
“I guess you really need to know exactly what you’re washing your tires with. The best thing would be to just not use it – use dish soap or laundry detergent to clean the tires I guess.”
If Feger’s disqualification from the Illini 100 is among the penalties that are upheld, apparent race runner-up Billy Moyer of Batesville, Ark., would become a three-time winner of the event and all competitors would move up one spot in the finishing order. Feger would be placed last in the rundown.
McCreadie Controls World of Outlaws Late Model Series Action At 311 Motor Speedway For First Win Of 2013
New Yorker Captures National Tour’s Visit To North Carolina Track For Second Straight Season
PINE HALL, NC – April 20, 2013 – Something about 311 Motor Speedway agrees with Tim McCreadie.
The 39-year-old star from Watertown, N.Y., drove to a convincing victory in Saturday night’s 50-lap World of Outlaws Late Model Series at the half-mile oval – the second consecutive year that his first win of the season on the national tour came at the Tar Heel State track.
McCreadie ran a virtually flawless race after surging off the outside pole to grab the lead from front-row partner Josh Richards of Shinnston, W.Va., at the initial green flag. He paced the entire distance in his Sweeteners Plus Warrior car, turning back just a brief late-race challenge from Rick Eckert of York, Pa., en route to a $10,650 payday.
Eckert settled for his third runner-up finish of the 2013 season, steering his Team Zero by Bloomquist machine under the checkered flag 1.046 seconds behind McCreadie. The 2001 WoO LMS champion advanced from the ninth starting spot.
Richards slipped to third at the finish in his father Mark’s Rocket Chassis house car but maintained the WoO LMS points lead. Casey Roberts of Toccoa, Ga., moved up one spot to register a career-best World of Outlaws finish of fourth in his Capital Race Car and Jonathan Davenport of Blairsville, Ga., placed fifth in the AES Racing Barry Wright car after starting third and running as high as second.
McCreadie ended a 31-race winless streak on the WoO LMS, dating back to June 22, 2012, at Quebec’s Autodrome Granby. That victory north of the border was his third in a nine-race span – a stretch of success that he hopes to extend to a greater degree this season.
“It’s fun to be up front,” said McCreadie, who recorded his 21st career win on the WoO LMS. “This is where I believe this Sweeteners team should be. We’re starting to show through. We’ve been way better this year than we were last year already and our goal is to keep everything rolling.”
McCreadie, who celebrated his 39th birthday on April 12, credited his prime starting spot for propelling him to a breakout triumph.
“That kid who drew the (No. 2) pill probably helped me out the most tonight,” said McCreadie, whose outside pole start was picked for him in the A-Main redraw by nine-year-old Nate Hooker of Danbury, N.C. “It just gets so dirty when you’re behind cars here it’s hard to maneuver, so being up front was definitely where I needed to be.”
McCreadie controlled the action following each of the race’s five restarts and maintained a steady edge ranging from a half to a full second throughout the distance. But he had to contend with Eckert, who reached second with a pass of Richards on a lap-26 restart, before securing the checkered flag.
“You’re never confident with the caliber of guys that are racing with us,” said McCreadie, the 2006 WoO LMS titlist. “I know one thing, and that’s (with) one mistake they’re gonna make you look silly, so we just tried to hold our own. The cushion was good and I just lived on it.
“I got some signals (from crewmen) that somebody was closing (using the bottom groove), but you just don’t know what to do. I ran 35-plus laps up there on the lip so it’s hard to just all of a sudden hang a left and run the bottom. But after I heard somebody under me I moved down and just tried to stay as straight as I could and hold on.”
The driver who made McCreadie alter his line was Eckert, who reached second place with a pass of Richards on a lap-26 restart and then slowly reeled in McCreadie. On lap 38, with lapped traffic looming ahead, Eckert pulled to the inside of McCreadie rounding turns three and four, but McCreadie fought off the 47-year-old’s bid and never felt serious pressure again.
“He was running that top and he left me a lot of room there getting into (turn) three,” said Eckert. “I changed my line, opened up my corner (entry) and got to where I was really making time on him. Then he slipped one time (on lap 38) – he pushed and got bent hard, and I got beside him (on the inside of turns three and four).
“Well, he saw me down there, and after that he moved down. After I showed my nose one time he made sure he was on the bottom coming off of four, and he even moved down into three. That got me down there in the dust to where I could barely keep up.”
Five caution flags slowed the event, including three involving WoO LMS regulars. Scott James of Bright, Ind., slowed on lap nine with a broken left-rear wheel bearing that ultimately caused him to retire his Warrior Chassis house car; rookie Eric Wells of Hazard, Ky., spun into the inside wall on the homestretch on lap 15 after Chub Frank of Bear Lake, Pa., slowed and was hit from behind by Ricky Weeks of Rutherfordton, N.C.; and Darrell Lanigan of Union, Ky., relinquished seventh place on lap 22 when he slowed with a broken left-front upper A-frame (he returned five laps down).
Other cautions were caused by Chris Ferguson of Mt. Airy, N.C., who slowed on a lap-26 restart, and Dennis Franklin of Gaffney, S.C., who rolled to a stop in turn four on lap 40.
WoO LMS rookie Morgan Bagley enjoyed a solid night, advancing from the 14th starting spot to score a career-best tour finish of sixth. Kennedy Motorsports teammates Tim Fuller of Watertown, N.Y., and Shane Clanton of Fayetteville, Ga., were seventh and eighth, respectively, after recovering from flat tires during qualifying (Fuller in time trials, Clanton on the last lap of his heat); WoO LMS rookie Dillon Wood of New Smyrna Beach, Fla., was a season-best ninth after starting 23rd with a provisional because mechanical trouble during heat action (ball spline broke off the transmission) forced him into his backup car; and Scott Autry of Autryville, N.C., rounded out the top 10.
Roberts topped the 29-car field in Ohlins Shocks Time Trials, earning his first-ever WoO LMS fast-time honor with a lap of 16.254 seconds.
Heat winners were Davenport, Lanigan and Richards, and Clanton captured the B-Main.
The WoO LMS heads to Tennessee next weekend for a massive tripleheader. The swing kicks off on Fri., April 26, at Smoky Mountain Speedway in Maryville and then continues to Tazewell Speedway on Sat., April 27, and Duck River Raceway Park in Wheel on Sun., April 28.
Results of World of Outlaws Late Model Series at 311 Motor Speedway (Finishing Position/Start/Driver/Laps Completed/Money Won):
1. (2) Tim McCreadie/50 $10,650
2. (9) Rick Eckert/50 $5,650
3. (1) Josh Richards/50 $3,650
4. (5) Casey Roberts/50 $3,000
5. (3) Jonathan Davenport/50 $2,050
6. (14) Morgan Bagley/50 $2,600
7. (17) Tim Fuller/50 $1,950
8. (19) Shane Clanton/50 $1,850
9. (23) Dillon Wood/50 $1,250
10. (11) Scott Autry/50 $1,150
11. (20) Eric Wells/50 $1,650
12. (16) Chub Frank/50 $1,550
13. (10) Justin Labonte/50 $950
14. (18) Jeff Smith/50 $950
15. (6) Darrell Lanigan/45 $1,500
16. (15) Dennis Franklin/38 $800
17. (8) Tim Allen/25 $770
18. (13) Scott James/22 $1,300
19. (7) Bub McCool/22 $1,280
20. (12) Chris Ferguson/22 $700
21. (22) Ricky Weeks/17 $700
22. (21) Dustin Mitchell/16 $700
23. (24) Billy Hicks/13 $750
24. (4) Clint Smith/8 $1,250
* Earnings include Winners Circle program and cash contingency award bonuses
Time of Race: 31 Mins., 44.895 Secs.
Margin of Victory: 1.046 Secs.
Yellow Flags: 5 (Laps 9, 15, 22, 22, 40)
2013 World of Outlaws Late Model Series Point Standings as of April 20 – 10 A-Mains completed (rank/driver/points/deficit to leader):
1. Josh Richards 1424
2. Shane Clanton 1412 (-12)
3. Rick Eckert 1370 (-54)
4. Darrell Lanigan 1358 (-66)
5. Tim McCreadie 1316 (-108)
6. Eric Wells 1278 (-146)
7. Scott James 1272 (-152)
8. Tim Fuller 1268 (-156)
9. Morgan Bagley 1242 (-182)
10. Chub Frank 1236 (-188)
11. Bub McCool 1216 (-208)
12. Clint Smith 1148 (-276)
13. Dillon Wood 1058 (-366)
14. Brandon Sheppard 942 (-482)
15. Casey Roberts 912 (-512)
Approaching Storms Prompt Fayetteville Motor Speedway To Call Off Friday Night’s World of Outlaws Late Model Series Event
FAYETTEVILLE, NC – April 19, 2013 – The likelihood of heavy rain and severe storms arriving late in the afternoon has prompted Fayetteville Motor Speedway officials to call off tonight’s scheduled World of Outlaws Late Model Series event.
FMS promoter Larry Lee made the decision late this morning after a final review of extremely unfavorable weather forecasts for the entire region surrounding the four-tenths-mile oval, which was set to host the WoO LMS for the first time since 2010.
“We’re really excited about having the World of Outlaws Late Model Series come to Fayetteville Motor Speedway but all indications are that the weather is just coming in at the worst possible time for us to race tonight,” said Lee. “All forecasts are consistent in calling for a 10- to 12-hour period of heavy rain and severe storms and unfortunately it’s expected to begin moving through around the time we’d be opening the gates or starting the racing program. We don’t want to bring everyone to the track to face those conditions so we concluded that making an early decision was in the best interest of the track, the fans and the racers.”
Lee will discuss the possibility of rescheduling Fayetteville’s WoO LMS event later in the 2013 season, but no immediate decision on a new date has been made.
The second half of the WoO LMS’s scheduled weekend doubleheader in the Tar Heel State will go as planned on Saturday night (April 20) at 311 Motor Speedway in Pine Hall, N.C.
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 .
Davenport Primed For World of Outlaws Late Model Series Visit To 311 Motor Speedway On Saturday Night (April 20)
Southeast’s Hottest Driver Will Bid For Victory At North Carolina Track In His Race Team’s Backyard
PINE HALL, NC – April 18, 2013 – Jonathan Davenport is arguably the hottest dirt Late Model driver in the Southeast over the past month, but is he hot enough to deal with some of the country’s best touring stars? He’s about to find out.
This Saturday night (April 20) Davenport will enter the 50-lap, $10,000-to-win World of Outlaws Late Model Series event at 311 Motor Speedway, kicking off three consecutive weekends in which the 29-year-old native of Blairsville, Ga., plans to compete with the national tour throughout his home region. For Davenport, it’s the most important stretch of action in his fledgling tenure as a driver for the AES Racing team.
“We’re definitely focusing on the next three weeks,” said Davenport, who owns two career WoO LMS A-Main victories, both at The Dirt Track at Charlotte in Concord, N.C. (2010 and ’11 World Finals). “Even though we’ve been running good we haven’t really run too much on the national level yet, so we’re ready to test ourselves. I feel like we’re hitting our stride so hopefully this is a really good time for the Outlaws to come into our area.”
Former racer Mike Fulp’s half-mile 311 Motor Speedway would seem a perfect place for Davenport to start his challenge of the World of Outlaws stars. The venerable track sits about 45 minutes northeast of his current residence in Clemmons, N.C., and just over an hour’s drive southeast of the AES Racing shop in Mt. Airy, N.C., so he’ll basically be racing in his backyard. He’s also coming off a victory in an April 6 Carolina Clash Series event at 311, demonstrating his ability to negotiate the oval after a long absence from competition there.
“That was the first time I’d run there in about three years,” Davenport said of his visit to 311 Motor Speedway two weeks ago. “But it was pretty much just like I remembered it. It’s just a regular ‘ol Carolina racetrack, pretty good sized and fast.
“We unloaded good that night and everything basically went well for us. It ended up being a pretty big night for us because it was my first Clash win in years (since 2008) and it was the first win for Hoosier (Tire) in the Clash deal in a while.”
Whether Davenport’s 311 tuneup provides him an edge versus the Outlaws on Saturday night remains to be seen, but he did learn some valuable lessons.
“As far as what I have to do to my car (at 311), running there a couple weeks ago will definitely help us out,” said Davenport, who drives machines constructed by veteran chassis builder Barry Wright. “But tire wise, it’s put a big question mark in my head. Now I’m kind of confused about what to do on tires when I go back up there. The spec (Hoosier) tire that we had to run (in the Clash event) was actually a little better than I thought it would be versus our open-competition stuff, so we’re gonna have to decide which way to go.”
Davenport will go to the post at 311 seeking his fifth win in the last six weeks. After starting slow as he got acquainted with the AES Racing operation (including a trip to February’s WoO LMS tripleheader at Bubba Raceway Park in Ocala, Fla., that saw him follow finishes of 19th and 13 th with a DNQ in the finale), the driver known as ‘Superman’ caught fire come spring. He was triumphant four straight weekends, preceding his 311 score with wins in Southern All-Star events on March 16 at East Alabama Motor Speedway and March 23 at Smoky Mountain Speedway in Maryville, Tenn., and a $30,000 checkered flag in the Carolina Crown special on March 30 at Lancaster (S.C.) Motor Speedway.
It appears that Davenport is reclaiming the rhythm he enjoyed while driving the Barry Wright house car from mid-2009 through the end of the 2011 season. After struggling last year on the Lucas Oil Late Model Dirt Series in his first – and ultimately only – season driving for NASCAR star Clint Bowyer’s dirt Late Model team, Davenport’s move to AES Racing has returned him to the independent, pick-and-choose schedule that treated him and Wright so well.
“We’ve really come together good,” said Davenport, who has been competing in the dirt Late Model division for a decade. “We did a lot of testing at the start of the year with different cars and different ideas, but we kind of narrowed it down to a few things that we like better than others and we’re going forward with our program now.
“We’ve really hit on a few things here lately that have worked good for us and we’re going to the races that make the most sense for us,” he continued. “We’re kind of picking our battles and going where we’re good. Once we get rolling good and get confidence in our stuff, we’ll venture out and go run some places I haven’t been at too many times.”
Davenport could certainly give his team’s confidence a tremendous boost with a WoO LMS victory at 311 Motor Speedway, which is hosting the renowned circuit for the second consecutive season. He will have to outduel a star-studded roster of drivers, including defending WoO LMS champion Darrell Lanigan of Union, Ky.; two-time titlist and current points leader Josh Richards of Shinnston, W.Va.; 2006 champ Tim McCreadie of Watertown, N.Y., who won last year’s tour event at 311; Shane Clanton of Fayetteville, Ga.; and 2011 champion Rick Eckert of York, Pa.
The traveling WoO LMS entourage headed to 311 – as well as the first half of this weekend’s North Carolina doubleheader on Fri., April 19, at Fayetteville Motor Speedway – also includes Scott James of Bright, Ind., Chub Frank of Bear Lake, Pa., Tim Fuller of Watertown, N.Y., Bub McCool of Vicksburg, Miss., Clint Smith of Senoia, Ga., and Rookie of the Year contenders Eric Wells of Hazard, Ky., Morgan Bagley of Longview, Texas, and Dillon Wood of New Smyrna Beach, Fla.
Other entrants expected at 311 include NASCAR Nationwide Series star Austin Dillon of Welcome, N.C., Dale McDowell of Chickmauga, Ga., Chris Ferguson of Mt. Holly, N.C., and Dennis ‘Rambo’ Franklin of Gaffney, S.C.
The 311 Motor Speedway gates are scheduled to open on Sat., April 20, at 3 p.m. Hot laps are set to begin at 6:20 p.m. with qualifying to follow.
General Admission is $30, with seniors (ages 65-and-over) $28, kids (9-12) $10 and children 8-and-under admitted free of charge. Pit admission is $40 and $20 for kids 12-and-under.
More information is available by visiting www.311motorspeedway.com or calling 336-413-0744.
Saturated Grounds Force Postponement Of Saturday’s World of Outlaws Late Model Series ‘Buckeye 50’ At NAPA Wayne County Speedway
With Heavy Mid-Week Rain Dooming Saturday’s Show, National Tour’s Visit To Ohio Track Reset For Fri., May 24
ORRVILLE, OH – April 11, 2013 – Heavy mid-week rain has saturated the grounds of NAPA Auto Parts Wayne County Speedway, forcing the postponement of the World of Outlaws Late Model Series ‘Buckeye 50’ scheduled for Saturday night (April 13).
Track and series officials made the announcement on Thursday morning, two days after jointly deciding to condense this weekend’s scheduled multi-day Buckeye 100 into a single evening of competition on Saturday due to forecasts of unfavorable weather conditions.
The Buckeye 50 has been rescheduled for Fri., May 24, preserving the only scheduled WoO LMS event in the state of Ohio in 2013.
WCS’s hopes of running a $10,000-to-win WoO LMS event on Saturday night were effectively doomed after severe storms rolled over the three-eighths-mile track on Wednesday, dumping two inches of rain on grounds that still hadn’t completely dried out following a long winter and wet early spring. With more thunderstorms on Thursday expected to add an inch or more of rain and cool, damp weather forecast for Friday, WCS co-promoters Jason and Kristin Flory determined that the facility simply wouldn’t be ready to host a racing program on Saturday night.
“We were hoping to salvage a single night of World of Outlaws Late Model Series racing this weekend,” said Jason Flory, who is starting his second full season of promoting the venerable track with his wife. “But we knew that if we had at least an inch of rain this week we’d be in trouble – and we got more than an inch on Wednesday and have even more coming today.
“We think the track and pit area would probably be O.K. on Saturday, but the rest of the grounds are just too wet and soft from all the rain. There’s just no way the parking areas will dry sufficiently by Saturday to allow us to get all the fans and race teams in-and-out in a reasonable manner, so we decided that we had no choice but to postpone Saturday’s Buckeye 50.”
Flory was able to arrange a new date for the Buckeye 50, however, inking a WoO LMS program for Fri., May 24. The 50-lap, $10,000-to-win show will combine with the wingless Buckeye Outlaw Sprint Series event previously scheduled for that date at WCS to create a blockbuster holiday-weekend doubleheader.
The May 24 event will mark the second straight season that the WoO LMS kicks off the Memorial Day weekend at WCS. The tour will move on to Tyler County Speedway in Middlebourne, W.Va., on May 25-26 for the Bullring Bonanza doubleheader.
Track and series officials also said that plans are in the works to run a Buckeye 100 weekend in 2014. Dates for the inaugural event will be released later this year.
Fans who bought two-day passes for the Buckeye 100 weekend in advance will be refunded the difference between their purchase price and the cost of a General Admission ticket on May 24. For additional information visit www.waynecountyspeedwy.com; call Jason or Kristin Flory at 330-465-2365; or email email@example.com.
The next action for the WoO LMS will be a doubleheader weekend in North Carolina, on April 19 at Fayetteville Motor Speedway and April 20 at 311 Motor Speedway in Pine Hall.
Feger Thrills Home State Fans With March To Victory In Saturday’s Illini 100 At Farmer City Raceway
Becomes First Home-Grown Driver To Capture $20,000 World of Outlaws Late Model Series Event
FARMER CITY, IL – April 6, 2013 – Jason Feger’s dreams met reality on Saturday night at Farmer City Raceway.
The 34-year-old star from Bloomington, Ill., marched to victory in the fifth running of the Illini 100, becoming the first home-grown driver to win the blockbuster World of Outlaws Late Model Series event and setting off a raucous party among his legion of ‘Feger Nation’ supporters in the process.
“This is just awesome,” said Feger, who earned $20,050 for the biggest victory of his racing career. “I almost feel better for my fans than myself because I finally was able to put it together for them here at Farmer City. I’ve always said the hardest thing to do is win a big race at your hometrack because of all the added pressure, and man, we did it.”
Even the extremely windy conditions that whipped across the quarter-mile oval throughout the day and continued after the checkered flag could not dampen Feger’s excitement.
“I wish it was about 80 degrees out but we’re definitely gonna make do,” Feger said while celebrating at his trailer in the pit area with dozens of family members, friends and fans. “This is the party we’ve been wanting to have here for a long time, so we’re definitely gonna drink the cooler dry. We only live 25 minutes away but we might not get home till Tuesday.”
Feger roared off the outside pole position starting spot to lead the race’s entire distance in his Rhyne-powered Pierce car, but he survived several anxious moments and repeated challenges from two-time Illini 100 winner Billy Moyer of Batesville, Ark., to secure his second career WoO LMS triumph. He pulled away following a final restart on lap 96 to defeat Moyer’s Victory Circle machine by 1.098 seconds.
Brian Birkhofer of Muscatine, Iowa, finished third after starting from the pole position in his MB Customs car. He fell back to third at the initial green flag and raced there for most of the distance, only briefly overtaking Moyer for second one-third of the way through the event.
Shane Clanton of Fayetteville, Ga., advanced from the eighth starting spot to place fourth in the Kennedy Motorsports Capital Race Car and Scott James of Bright, Ind., steadily moved forward from the 12th starting position to complete the top five in the Warrior Chassis house car.
Feger, whose career-best finish in three previous Illini 100 A-Main starts was sixth in 2010, candidly admitted that he had never worked harder to win a race. His 100 laps racing at the front of the pack were filled with stress.
“Honestly, I am just exhausted,” said Feger, who maintained command through five caution flags. “That was just a long, tough race. This is a very unique place, very demanding. You can’t rest for a second here, so I was running the ragged edge the whole way.”
The lead nearly slipped from Feger’s grasp on several occasions, including lap 58 when he pushed high in turn two and saw Moyer momentarily nose ahead down the backstretch. But Feger maintained his composure and powered around the outside of turns three and four to stay in the top spot.
Feger went on to build nearly a straightaway edge over Moyer before two late caution flags, on laps 95 and 96, shrunk his final victory margin. Moyer, 55, was effectively resigned to a runner-up finish even after the late restarts gave him a final shot at a record third Illini 100 triumph.
“I kind of knew with 20 (laps) to go that it was over with,” said Moyer, who started fourth. “(Feger) did a good job. He didn’t make any mistakes.
“I got up there beside him a couple times on the inside, but I knew I couldn’t leave the door open behind me too many times for Brian (Birkhofer) to get a run on the outside of me (to take second). You had to be out there on the (outside) ledge off the corner on both ends. You could kind of make some different grooves getting in, but on exit you better be on that one spot.”
Feger never wavered from the prime route around the venerable fairgrounds bullring.
“When we were running through the lapped traffic I just really tried to race smart and not make any mistakes,” said Feger, who previous WoO LMS victory came on May 24, 2009, at Beaver Dam (Wis.) Raceway. “I didn’t want to just give it away to somebody. I wanted to make them beat me without me doing something that would cost me the race, and it worked out tonight.
“It was real tough, though, because this was really only my second race of the season,” he continued. “I’m still not driving that good. My timing could be way better, so honestly the car is way better than the driver right now – that’s a good thing, though, because I can fix me faster than I can fix the car. I knew the car was good, so it was just a matter of whether I could do it. I just tried to stay focused and get up on that wheel.”
When Feger took the checkered flag, the track’s packed grandstand let out a huge roar for the local boy who made good. He then took his customary backward victory lap to get close to his ‘Feger Nation’ fans in the drive-in section outside turns one and two and was greeted in the winner’s circle by his overjoyed team and another loud ovation.
“It hasn’t even really set in yet,” an awed Feger said more than a half-hour after the race ended. “I don’t even think I’ve caught my breath.
“It’s crazy. When the race ended, I felt like I was in a trance. I’m still just trying to remember what even happened out there. I mean, man – to win $20,000 at my hometrack and be the first guy from Illinois to win the Illini, it’s just an amazing feeling.”
While Feger exulted in victory, two other pre-race favorites from Illinois sat dejectedly in the pit area following rough nights. Defending DIRTcar UMP Summer Nationals and national weekly series champion Brian Shirley of Chatham, Ill., brought out the race’s first caution flag on lap 25 when he slowed on the homestretch, and Shannon Babb of Moweaqua, Ill., failed to finish among the top five for the first time in five Illini 100 starts after a backstretch scrape sent him spinning out of 11th place on lap 32.
The race’s most significant incident occurred on lap 41 when Tim Fuller of Watertown, N.Y., and defending Illini 100 champ Jimmy Mars of Menomonie, Wis., tangled in turn two while running fifth and sixth, respectively. The accident came after Fuller slid sideways to avoid his Kennedy Motorsports teammate Clanton, who momentarily got out of shape ahead of him.
WoO LMS regular Tim McCreadie of Watertown, N.Y., triggered the lap-95 caution period when he slid off the backstretch due to a broken fifth-coil shock. He had just been passed for fifth place by James one lap earlier.
Brandon Sheppard of New Berlin, Ill., registered a career-best Illini 100 finish of sixth. Defending WoO LMS champion Darrell Lanigan of Union, Ky., placed a quiet seventh; Chub Frank of Bear Lake, Pa., survived an opening-lap scramble that damaged his car’s right-rear corner to finish eighth; Rick Eckert of York, Pa., was ninth; and Kent Robinson of Bloomington, Ind., completed the top five.
WoO LMS points leader Josh Richards of Shinnston, W.Va., finished one lap down in 12th after running the majority of the distance without power steering. He was in seventh place shortly after a lap-25 restart when his car began to show smoke.
Richards, who pitted on lap 32, remained atop the WoO LMS standings by two points over Clanton.
Saturday night’s program began with a pair of 20-lap B-Mains won by Eric Wells of Hazard, Ky., and Bub McCool of Vicksburg, Miss.
The next action for the WoO LMS is the inaugural Buckeye 100 on April 12-13 at NAPA Auto Parts Wayne County Speedway in Orrville, Ohio. Ohlins Shocks Time Trials and heat races will be contested on Fri., April 12, and B-Mains and the $20,000-to-win 100-lapper are set for Sat., April 13.
For more information on the WoO LMS, visit www.worldofoutlaws.com.
Results of WoO Late Model Series Illini 100 at Farmer City Raceway (Finishing Position/Start/Driver/Laps Completed/Money Won):
1. (2) Jason Feger/100 $20,050
2. (4) Billy Moyer/100 $10,150
3. (1) Brian Birkhofer/100 $6,000
4. (8) Shane Clanton/100 $5,550
5. (12) Scott James/100 $4,600
6. (10) Brandon Sheppard/100 $3,050
7. (9) Darrell Lanigan/100 $3,400
8. (11) Chub Frank/100 $3,100
9. (15) Rick Eckert/100 $3,000
10. (16) Kent Robinson/100 $2,650
11. (17) Eric Wells/100 $2,450
12. (7) Josh Richards/99 $2,450
13. (23) Morgan Bagley/99 $2,250
14. (24) Dillon Wood/99 $1,70
15. (6) Tim Fuller/98 $2,150
16. (21) Derek Chandler/96 $1,580
17. (3) Tim McCreadie/94 $2,210
18. (18) Bub McCool/69 $2,090
19. (19) Clint Smith/69 $2,070
20. (20) Ryan Unzicker/68 $1,500
21. (5) Jimmy Mars/52 $1,500
22. (13) Shannon Babb/31 $1,550
23. (22) Brian Shirley/23 $1,500
24. (14) Billy Drake/15 $1,525
Time of Race: 40 Mins., 29.062 Secs.
Margin of Victory: 1.098 Secs.
Yellow Flags: 5 (laps 25, 32, 41, 95, 96)
Lap Leaders: Feger (1-100)
2013 World of Outlaws Late Model Series Point Standings as of April 6 – 9 A-Mains completed (rank/driver/points/deficit to leader):
1. Josh Richards 1280
2. Shane Clanton 1278 (-2)
3. Darrell Lanigan 1238 (-42)
4. Rick Eckert 1224 (-56)
5. Tim McCreadie 1166 (-114)
6. Scott James 1158 (-122)
7. Eric Wells 1150 (-130)
8. Tim Fuller 1132 (-148)
9. Chub Frank 1110 (-170)
10. Bub McCool 1104 (-176)
10. Morgan Bagley 1104 (-176)
12. Clint Smith 1046 (-234)
13. Brandon Sheppard 942 (-338)
14. Dillon Wood 926 (-354)
15. Pat Doar 906 (-374)
1. Josh Richards 1842
2. Shane Clanton 1836
3. Darrell Lanigan 1772
4. Rick Eckert 1752
5. Tim McCreadie 1704
6. Tim Fuller 1656
7. Eric Wells 1654
7. Scott James 1654
9. Morgan Bagley 1614
10. Chub Frank 1606
10. Bub McCool 1606