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Jake Little and his uncle Ryan are active members in the Illinois National Guard and the US Army. On Armed Forces Night, Jake Little reigned supreme in the Decatur Building Trades Pro Late Model Feature at Macon Speedway. Little missed out on a possible championship in 2018 when he was sent overseas for active duty in August into September and missed many of the final races to take away his points lead. Ryan Little doesn't have much of a chance to race enough for a championship because of his active status which has forced him away from the racecar for the majority of the 2019 season.
Both Little drivers started in the front row and looked prepared to take the race but Jake Little knew he had to get to the high side and run away from the group. He was able to do just that. Dakota Ewing, starting from the 13th position due to a DNF in his heat race due to a near rollover and a flat tire, broke through the pack and challenged for a top five finish. Ewing would finish third in the 20-lap feature and nearly finish in the runner-up spot.
Tommy Sheppard, Jr. won the feature in the BillingsleyRewards.com Modifieds. The race was his for the entire event but a late caution set up a bumper-to-bumper restart with Rodney Standerfer behind Sheppard. Standerfer pulled close-to-even with the leader but couldn't find a way to make the pass and Sheppard took another checkered flag.
Wes O'Dell was sharp in the Sportsman class. After winning his heat by a half lap ahead of the second place finisher, O'Dell started on the front row outside position and blasted off ahead of Scott Landers and the rest of the cars. The former champion looked dominate and made an impact in the Sportsman points standings as points leader Dennis Vandermeersch was not part of the 12-car field.
Terry Reed took another Archer's Alley Street Stocks feature win. Two weeks ago, his brother Gene Reed won the feature and Terry took the Opening Night checkered flag. It was a Reed Win-Place-Show as Gene took second place and Joe Reed finished third in the field.
Tim Hancock was on his A-game once again as he took control of his heat race and then ran off with the Neal Tire & Auto Pro Modified feature. For Hancock, he has taken the checkered flag in three of the first four events during the 2019 season.
Wrapping up the show Saturday night was the Hornets. A new winner took to the winner's circle in Anthony Sunshine, a driver from St. Louis, Missouri. Sunshine's home track has been flooded out due to much of the spring rains so a trip north to Macon gave him plenty of competition and a chance to race. Brady Reed, starting tenth due to winning the last Hornet feature, rushed towards the front and challenged for the top spot. Another Missouri driver, Joshua Hawkins from Imperial, finished in third during his first trip to the track in 2019.
Among the six racing classes was another solid night of cars in the pit area, 90, so Macon Speedway brings forth quality in numbers during all the classes so far during the first four weeks of the season. Macon Speedway takes a rare scheduled Saturday night off to prep for a monster week at the track beginning on Memorial Day Monday. The annual event, Miller Lite Beer Twin 50s, is on tap for the Decatur Building Trade Pro Late Models and the Neal Tire & Auto Pro Modifieds. A full stock car racing show is scheduled. Thursday, May 30th, is the second-ever 95Q Up On The Wheel Modified 100--a 100-lap feature for the BillingsleyRewards.com Modifieds plus the MOWA Sprints. The week is capped off with a fan-favorite, the Five Buck Night. General admission is just $5 plus it will be the kids bicycle giveaway night along with a full program.
Decatur Building Trades Pro Late Models--1. Jake Little (Springfield), 2. Ryan Little (Springfield), 3. Dakota Ewing (Warrensburg), 4. Logan Moody (Catlin), 5. Donny Koehler (Macon), 6. Colby Sheppard (Williamsville), 7. Kyle Van Dorn (New Berlin), 8. Roy Beal (Springfield), 9. Brianna Sheppard (New Berlin), 10. Blake Damery (Blue Mound)
BillingsleyRewards.com Modifieds--1. Tommy Sheppard, Jr. (New Berlin), 2. Rodney Standerfer (Summerfield), 3. TIm Hancock (Mt. Olive), 4. Steve Meyer, Jr. (Staunton), 5. Michael Rauch (Decatur), 6. Jared Thomas (Edinburg), 7. Guy Taylor (Springfield), 8. Katie Lord (Zionsville, IN), 9. Jordan Warren (Medora), 10. Alan Crowder (Elwin)
Sportsman--1. Wes O'Dell (Springfield), 2. Scott Landers (Taylorville), 3. Mitch Ringler (Taylorville), 4. Tim Bedinger (Taylorville), 5. Connor Klay (Stonington), 6. Rick Roedel (Shelbyville), 7. Joel Irvin (Harristown), 8. Stefan Bedinger (Taylorville), 9. Bill Berghaus (Chapin), 10. Terry Myers (Buffalo)
Archer's Alley Street Stocks--1. Terry Reed (Cerro Gordo), 2. Gene Reed (Hammond), 3. Joe Reed (Decatur), 4. Shawn Ziemer (Boody), 5. Larry Russell, Jr. (Decatur), 6. Joshua Beal (Springfield), 7. Fredie Thomas (Macon), 8. Jonathon Hall (Harristown), 9. Jerit Murphy (Lodge), 10. Brian Dasenbrock (Decatur)
Neal Tire & Auto Pro Modifieds--1. Tim Hancock (Mt. Olive), 2. Nick Justice (Decatur), 3. Rob Timmons (Centralia), 4. Tommy Sheppard, Jr. (New Berlin), 5. Billy Nail (Decatur), 6. Zack Bunning (Decatur), 7. Tim Riech (Petersburg), 8. Nathan Lynch (Hillsboro), 9. Kevin Rench (Hillsboro), 10. Billy Adams (Shelbyville)
Hornets--1. Anthony Sunshine (St. Louis, MO), 2. Brady Reed (Decatur), 3. Joshua Hawkins (Imperial, MO), 4. Dallas Strauch (East Peoria), 5. Carter Dart (Springfield), 6. John Lewis (Cerro Gordo), 7. Cook Crawford (Lincoln), 8. Delane Orr (Springfield), 9. Debbie Seitz (Decatur), 10. Michael Abbott (Taylorville)
Macon Speedway PR
The depth in the NASCAR Whelen All American Series Late Model Stock Car Division at South Boston Speedway has been getting better with each week of the 2019 season.
It took another step in that direction Saturday night when Trey Crews of Halifax, Virginia scored his first career NASCAR Whelen All American Series Late Model Stock Car race win in the Bojangles NASCAR Late Model 100.
Crews, the outside pole starter, held off former NASCAR national champion Lee Pulliam of Alton, Virginia and Nick Sanchez of Miami, Florida in a 37-lap sprint to the finish following the race's final caution period to capture his first win.
His margin of victory was .748-second.
The Halifax, Virginia resident took the lead at the outset, and held a lead of almost a quarter of a lap over Pulliam and Sanchez when a caution flag flew for an incident on lap 63. Pulliam and Sanchez gave Crews a hard run for a handful of laps after the restart, but Crews was able to gradually pull away as Pulliam and Sanchez engaged in a close side-by-side battle for second place, a battle Pulliam won by about two car lengths.
Austin Thaxton of South Boston, Virginia finished fourth and Mike Looney of Catawba, Virginia rounded out the top five finishers in the race that took just over an hour to complete.
Moss, Willis Split Limited Sportsman Division Twinbill
Daniel Moss of Danville, Virginia and Danny Willis Jr. of South Boston, Virginia split wins in Saturday night's twin 25-lap Limited Sportsman Division races. The wins marked the second victory of the season for both drivers.
Moss took the lead from Willis with three laps to go as they battled on the restart following the last of the race's three caution periods and held off Willis to win by .415-second. Drew Dawson of Nathalie, Virginia finished third with Jason Myers of Hurt, Virginia and Brent Younger of South Boston, Virginia rounding out the top five finishers.
Willis started on the outside of the front row in the second race, took the lead from Myers on the second lap and drove to a .685-second win over Moss, who got around Myers to take second place on the next-to-last lap of the race.
Eric Winslow of Pelham, North Carolina and Dawson rounded out the top five finishers in the nightcap.
Crews, Pickrel Pick Up Wins In Pure Stock Division Twins
Nathan Crews of Long Island, Virginia and Jordan Pickrel of Keeling, Virginia split wins in Saturday night's twin 15-lap Budweiser Pure Stock Division races.
Crews fended off Pickrel in a close battle in the first of the pair of 15-lap races, edging Pickrel by a slim margin of .338-second. Scott Phillips of Halifax, Virginia finished third, with Bruce Mayo of Halifax, Virginia and Randy Hupp of Halifax, Virginia.
Crews and PickreL exchanged the lead three times in the opening race, with Crews taking the lead for good with eight laps to go to capture his third win of the season.
Pickrel started on the front row and led the entire way in the second race that was marred by a multi-car incident on the opening lap. Justin Dawson's car was destroyed and Hupp's car was totaled when it overturned on the frontstretch. Neither driver was injured.
A good jump on the start allowed Pickrel to pull away from the field, and with no challenges, he sped to a three-second win over runner-up Jarrett Milam of Keeling, Virginia. Mayo finished third with Kenny Mills Jr. of Alton, Virginia and Crews running out the top five finishers.
Dawson Takes Hornets Division Win
Josh Dawson of Halifax, Virginia scored his first career win Saturday night in the 15-lap Budweiser Hornets Division race. With the victory, Dawson became the third different winner in the four races run in the division thus far this season.
Aaron Cash of South Boston, Virginia finished second with Micah Pacifico of Providence, North Carolina, Steven Layne of Nathalie, Virginia and Kevin Currin of Chase City, Virginia completing the top five finishers.
Next Race At South Boston Speedway
NASCAR racing action returns to South Boston Speedway on Saturday night, June 1 with the 7 p.m. Running of the NASCAR Late Model Twin 75s racing program.
The six race program will be headlined by twin 75-lap races for the NASCAR Whelen All American Series Late Model Stock Car Division competitors. Also on tap are a 50-lap Limited Sportsman Division race, a 30-lap race for the Budweiser Pure Stock Division, a 15-lap race for the Budweiser Hornets Division and a 25-lap race for the regional touring Southern Ground Pounders series.
Registration and pit gates open at 2 p.m. Practice goes from 4 p.m. to 5 p.m. Grandstand gates open at 5:30 p.m. and qualifying starts at 6 p.m. The first race gets the green flag at 7 p.m.
Admission is $10 for adults with children ages 12 and under admitted free with a paying adult.
For additional information about the NASCAR Late Model Twin 75s racing program or any other events at South Boston Speedway please visit the speedway's website at www.southboston speedway.com or telephone the speedway at 434-572-4947 or 1-877-440-1540.
A dominating run for Sam Hafertepe, Jr. to close the two day appearance in Michigan, the three-time and defending champion of the Lucas Oil American Sprint Car Series presented by the MAVTV Motorsports Network was untouchable at I-96 Speedway; laying down performance that saw the Townline Variety No. 15h winning Saturday's A-Feature by 6.105 seconds.
Saturday at Bowman Gray Stadium was a dream night for Tim Brown and his team.
The night started off strongly for Brown after he turned the fastest time in qualifying sessions for the Brad’s Golf Cars Modified Series – his second pole out of two events this season at the Madhouse. Jonathan Brown of Winston-Salem started beside him on the outside front row, and defending champ Burt Myers of Walnut Cove started in third.
Tim Brown led the way the entire time, although Jonathan Brown was delivering some stiff shots to his bumper. “My car wasn’t very good. I was extremely loose, so I couldn’t get in the corner. He could get in the corner so he could give me a shot - but once I got it settled down and got back in the gas I could get a little margin,” said Tim Brown. “I’m a veteran over here. I’ve been doing this a long time.”
The #83 of Brown took the checkered – his 90th career Modified win at the Stadium.
The “Madhouse Scramble” put Danny Propst of Monroe on the pole for the start of the second race. Carson Ware of Greensboro started in second. It was the first time Ware had competed at the Stadium and the first time he had ever raced in a Modified.
When the green fell, Propst lost control and Ware took over the lead. Ware immediately had to fend off Frank Fleming of Mount Airy. A few laps later, Burt Myers was on Ware’s bumper looking to pass. But the first-time driver held off both racing veterans to grab his first victory on his first night at the Stadium.
The win made him the 136th driver to win a featured event at Bowman Gray Stadium and added his name to the legendary list of winners such as Richard Petty, Bobby Allison, Glen Wood, and Junior Johnson.
“Honestly the experience is unbelievable – to be able to run here not only with Tim and some of the greatest over here,” said Ware. “I’m still in shock. I can’t believe it. I threw up on the front stretch I was so nervous.”
Ware had to learn quickly to deal with the aggression on his rear bumper that the Stadium is known for. “It wasn’t something I’m really used to,” said Ware. “It was a lot on my plate, but I handled it well. We took care of it and got the win tonight.”
The victory for Ware capped off an incredible night for Tim Brown and his team – it was Brown who secured the ride for Ware. “Me and Carson’s father go way back,” said Tim Brown. “We put the deal together this week – the kid comes over here and is super talented.”
“This race team – we’ve worked hard. Burt has kicked out butts in the points for the last few years. We’ve regrouped, built new cars, and we’re trying hard to win a championship this year,” said Brown. “Then to bring Carson over here for the first time ever in a Modified and the first time ever at the Stadium – and to pull off a win, it’s a special night.”
In the McDowell Heating & Air Sportsman Series, Amber Lynn of Walkertown took her first victory ever in a Sportsman car. She held off Justin Taylor of King, who returned to fly through the field in the second race and claim the win then.
Jacob Creed of Dobson won for the Law Offices of John Barrow Street Stock Series. Grayson Keaton of Mocksville and A.J. Sanders of Mocksville each brought home a win in the Q104.1 Stadium Stock Series.
BGS Racing PR
Brett “The Threat” Kressley, behind the wheel of the Kressley family owned No. 19K, scored his second 30-lap TP Trailers NASCAR 358 Modified feature victory on Saturday night at Grandview Speedway in a down-to-the wire battle with Skyler Sheriff, the leader since the beginning of the event. The pair had several laps of paint swapping battles, but with one lap to go the Orefield based lead foot muscled the lead away from Sheriff and went on to chalk up the win.
Brian Hirthler, who’s regular No. 4 Star was waiting for repairs, borrowed his Brother Kevin’s backup No. 117X with a crate engine in it and won his first TP Truck Equipment 25-lap Sportsman NASCAR feature of the season. It was the same car Kevin won the opening race in. Brian received an extra $100 from the track for being the highest finishing driver with a crate engine.
Tim Buckwalter, doing double duty driving Modifieds and Sprints piloted the GEI-owned No. 5G to victory in the 25-lap Rapid Tire USAC East Coast Sprint Cars feature. It was just the second time for Buckwalter in the car.
Providing all feature winners met the necessary requirements, the Modified and Sportsman feature winner got monetary awards from TP Trailers and a certificate from VP Fuels for product awards. Sheriff and Mohr won the Dan’s Deli ½-way hoagie award.
More than 100 cars took part in the three division show.
Modified action saw Sheriff motor ahead of rookie Steve Wilson, Ron Seltmann Jr., Ron Kline and Mike Laise at the start of the race to set the pace for the 31-car starting grid that included provisionals taken by Craig Whitmoyer, Jeff Strunk and Craig Von Dohren.
The yellow was out when Bob Trapper Jr. slowed in the fourth turn with ten laps completed. Sheriff was still the leader on the restart, but now Seltmann Jr. was second and when he put in a bid for the lead he was taken high into the first turn marbles. He stayed out of the wall, but fell back several positions.
By the 13th lap restart needed when Buckwalter slowed in turn two, Kressley, 13th-place starter, advanced to second to pressure Sheriff for the top spot.
Behind Sheriff and Kressley waiting for a slip-up were Duane Howard, Ron Kline and Jared Umbenhauer.
The red was thrown on the 23rd lap after Frank Yankowski hit the third turn wall with heavy impact and had flames coming out from underneath his car which was extinguished quickly. Alex Yankowski was along the third turn inside berm with both out of contention. Sheriff held his line when action resumed, but not he had to contend with Howard, who was in the runner-up spot making his presence known.
Sheriff and Howard exchanged paint on occasions and with five to go Kressley was back in second with Howard, Umbenhauer and now Rick Laubach in pursuit.
The battle for the lead continued between Sheriff and Kressley with neither one giving an inch as the race progressed. Both drivers swapped lanes several times, but the outcome remained the same.
Coming around for the one to go signal Kressley made a bold move and managed to take the lead away after using every inch of the track to find a way around.
Kressley didn’t give Sheriff another chance to regain the lead and pulled into the winner’s circle for his 11th career win. Following him across the line for his best finish was Sheriff trailed by Howard, Umbenhauer and Laubach. Sixth through tenth were Frank Cozze, Mike Laise, Von Dohren, Ryan Grim and Doug Manmiller.
Steve Wilson, Sheriff, Buckwalter and Bobby Gunther Walsh won the heats. Consies went to Kyle Weiss and Louden Reimert.
For the third straight week, ten-time point champion Jeff Strunk failed to finish the race.
Derrick Smith led four laps of the Sportsman feature before Brad Brightbill slowed with a flat tire in the first turn for the yellow. On the restart Nathan Mohr jumped into the lead to take control of the race.
It didn’t take Mohr long to build up a sizeable lead over Smith, Mike Mammana, Kyle Lilick and Nate Brinker.
Lap 13 was certainly an unlucky won for Mohr as his car seized up bringing him to a halt in turn two bringing out the caution. Mammana, who inherited the lead, wasted no time staying in front of the pack when action went green again with Smith, Brinker, Hirthler and Lilick in pursuit.
Hirthler overtook second on the 17th lap and set his sights on Mammana and the lead.
The lead changed hands for the fourth and final time on the 22nd lap when Hirthler overtook first.
Hirthler, whose contact in his right eye shifted earlier in the race and he had to rely on his left eye until it moved to a comfortable spot, never looked back once he was in front and proceeded into victory lane for his fourth career win. Mammana, Smith, Lilick and Brinker chased him across. Ryan Beltz, Brad Grim, Jack Butler, Brad Arnold and Brightbill rounded out the top ten.
Heats were won by Mohr, Mammana and Josh Adams. The consi went to Butler.
Joey Biasi led the USAC Sprint feature for four laps before Buckwalter charged to the front of the pack.
Chasing Buckwalter for numerous laps were Biasi, Carmen Perigo, Ryan Quackenbush and Steve Drevicki.
Quackenbush’s strong run ended when he slowed on the homestretch to bring out the seventh lap caution. It was still Buckwalter ahead with Chandler Leiby joining the mix.
Drevicki was on the move as he went from fourth to second in one lap to take chase after Buckwalter.
No one was able to reel Buckwalter in to challenge and he went on to take the checkered followed by Drevicki, Perigo, Biasi and Leiby.
Perigo, Biasi and Buckwalter won the heat winners. Zach Burd picked up the consi win.
Next Saturday, May 25, a doubleheader show of NASCAR T.P.Trailers Modifieds and T.P.Truck Equipment Sportsman closes out the month of May as the battle for the NASCAR titles goes on. Racing starts at 7:30 p.m. Adult admission is $15 with youngsters 11 and under admitted free. Spectator gates open at 5:30 p.m.
Coming up on June 1st is the first of two visits for the Central PA Legends as part of a tripleheader show that will also feature the NASCAR Modifieds and Sportsman stock cars. There is no increase in the admission price for this tripleheader.
T.P. Trailers Modified Feature (30-laps): 1. Brett Kressley, 2. Skyler Sheriff, 3. Duane Howard, 4. Jared Umbenhauer, 5. Rick Laubach, 6. Frank Cozze, 7. Mike Laise, 8. Craig Von Dohren, 9. Rayan Grim, 10. Doug Manmiller, 11. Kyle Weiss, 12. Clay Butler, 13. Dylan Swinehart, 14. Ron Seltmann Jr., 15. Bobby Gunther Walsh, 16. Craig Whitmoyer, 17. Justin Grim, 18. Tim Buckwalter, 19. Ron Kline, 20. Alex Yankowski, 21. Frank Yankowski, 22. Louden Reimert, 23. Danny Erb, 24. Steve Wilson, 25. Jordan Henn, 26. Meme DeSantis, 27. Kevin Hirthler, 28. Bobby Trapper, 29. Jeff Strunk, 30. Steve Swinehart, DNQ: Mike Lisowski, Brett Gilmore, Briggs Danner, Joe Funk, Richie Hitzler, Ron Myers, Ray Swinehart, Mark Levy, Brian Houseknecht, John Willman, Kyle Kania, Eric Behm, Kory Fleming, Steve Young, Ryan Lilick, Glenn Owens.
T.P. Truck Equipment Sportsman Feature (25-laps): 1. Brian Hirthler, 2. Mike Mammana, 3. Derrick Smith, 4. Kyle Lilick, 5. Nate Brinker, 6. Ryan Beltz, 7. Brad Grim, 8. Jack Butler, 9. Brad Arnold, 10. Brag Brightbill, 11. Mark Kemmerer, 12. Kyle Smith, 13. Dean Bachman, 14. Andrew Kreis, 15. Brandon Edgar, 15. Jesse Landis, 17. Scott Kohler, 18. Joey Vaccaro, 19. Andy Clemmer, 20. Josh Adams, 21. Sean Weiss, 22. Nathan Mohr, 23. Steve Desmelyk, 24. Tom Miller. DNQ: Lex Shive, Parker Guldin, Ray Cost, Chris Esposito, Warren Floyd Jr.
USAC Sprint Feature (25-laps): 1. Tim Buckwalter, 2. Steve Drevicki, 3. Carmen Perigo, 4. Joey Biasi, 5. Chandler Leiby, 6. Tyler Brehm, 7. Mike Thompson, 8. Jonathan Swanson, 9. Steve Surniak, 10. John Stehman, 11. David Swanson, 12. Jason Cherry, 13. Zach Burd, 14. Bryan Quackenbush, 15. Chris Allen, 16. Eddie Strada, 17. Eric Jennings, 18. Connor Loeffler, 19. Bill Unglert, 20. Jake Winters. DNQ: Kyle Lick.
Grandview Speedway PR
The field for Saturday night’s Monster Energy NASCAR All-Star Race at Charlotte Motor Speedway grew by four following an exhilarating 50-lap Monster Energy Open.
Charlotte, North Carolina, native William Byron edged Bubba Wallace in a thrilling last-lap battle to end Stage 1. Byron – making his second appearance in the Open – became the third Hendrick Motorsports driver to advance to the big show.
“I’m really excited,” Byron said. “It feels awesome. I’ve been coming to this race since I was about five or six years old. It’s really exciting to be a part of it. It was huge, we needed this. We've had some really good qualifying efforts this year; we just needed to finish it off with something positive and this was definitely positive for us. I'm excited for it."
Despite losing Stage 1 by a nose, Wallace didn’t waste time in joining Byron in the All-Star Race.
The Richard Petty Motorsports driver who, like Byron, grew up racing Legend Cars at the speedway, enjoyed a special trip to the winner’s circle after he edged Daniel Suarez – who spun coming to the line to finish Stage 2.
“I gave up the first stage win and I didn’t say anything on the radio,” Wallace said. “My parents always said and everybody who’s always helped me said I drive better when I’m pissed off. … My mental game is shot right now, but it feels good to win something. We’ll see what we can get tonight.”
A last-gasp, 10-lap Stage 3 saw Kyle Larson emerge victorious after he passed Ty Dillon and sped away from Matt DiBenedetto and Alex Bowman to collect the 18th spot in the All-Star Race field.
“It was stressful,” Larson said. “I thought I was in a good spot at the end of that first segment, but Bubba did a really good job of side-drafting me and then William did a good job of getting the win. I felt like I did a good job of going through the gears in the final 10 laps. … I knew I probably had the best car in that race. We didn’t do as good a job as we needed as a team in the early parts of the race.”
By winning the fan vote, Bowman earned the final position in the field and made it four Hendrick cars in the show for the 35th running of the biggest all-star event in sports.
"It was just a really bad restart on me,” Bowman said of a frustrating finish to Stage 2 that prevented him from advancing earlier. “We'll keep digging. Obviously, our race car is really fast, and we'll have a good shot at it in the All-Star. You want to race your way in, and we did that last year and had a car very capable of doing that this year. Restarts didn't go our way, and it is what it is.”
Clint Bowyer will start the Monster Energy NASCAR All-Star Race from the pole.
Longtime Carolina Panther Jonathan Stewart Sets the Pace for the Monster Energy NASCAR All-Star Race18 May 2019 Written by Steven B. Wilson
Jonathan Stewart spent the better part of a decade following his lead blocker as a Pro Bowl running back for the Carolina Panthers. On Saturday night at Charlotte Motor Speedway, Stewart will lead the charge for the Monster Energy NASCAR All-Star Race aboard the Toyota Camry pace car.
Stewart’s first foray into honorary pace car driving comes on the heels of the popular runner signing a one-day contract to retire with the Panthers in April. After rushing for more than 7,000 yards and scoring 51 touchdowns with Carolina, the art of pace car driving offered a new challenge for Stewart.
“I’m so excited to be back home in Charlotte and to be here today,” Stewart said. “To be part of the Charlotte community and the speedway is very nice. I had to get certified (to drive the pace car) and I was like, ‘This is gonna be a long process. I’m gonna have to answer a lot of questions. This is gonna be like driver’s ed,’ but it was pretty easy. You have to pay attention to the lines on the track and follow the speed limit.
“I’m pretty sure I’ll be nervous when I have a rear-view mirror of cars growling at me, ready to go fast. Once I got comfortable, I was ready to take it to another level. I definitely felt like I could get it up to 130 miles per hour pretty quick. That Toyota is loaded up with some horsepower.”
Clint Bowyer starts Saturday night’s showdown of superstars from the pole with Kyle Busch on the outside front row.
As for Stewart’s pick? He couldn’t decide between Denny Hamlin and Austin Dillon.
“It’d be cool just to see them there battling it out at the end,” he added.
For the eighth time, Kyle Busch had the winning lottery ticket on Friday at Charlotte Motor Speedway. Busch turned in a dominating performance in his first Charlotte race of the year, capturing a dominant victory in the North Carolina Education Lottery 200.
Busch’s 56th career NASCAR Gander Outdoors Truck Series win, his fifth in as many tries this season and his sixth in a row, came at the expense of runner-up Brennan Poole and third-place finisher Stewart Friesen. Ben Rhodes was fourth with polesitter Matt Crafton fifth.
Friday marked Busch’s final start of the year in NASCAR’s third-highest division – but the veteran driver made it count.
Busch, the defending Coca-Cola 600 winner who will go for his second Monster Energy NASCAR All-Star Race triumph in three years on Saturday, led a race-high 102 laps and overcame a late restart to win after qualifying eighth – the furthest back Busch has started and won in a Charlotte Truck Series race since 2006.
KYLE BUSCH, NO. 51 CESSNA TOYOTA TUNDRA (Race winner): “We had a really fast Tundra tonight. (Crew chief) Rudy (Fugle) and the boys really tuned it up. With some long runs, a lot of guys were falling off but our truck kept going and had speed all night long. Overall, we had decent pit stops to keep ourselves in contention. It’s good to be here where we should be and good to go 5-for-5 this year.”
Monster Energy NASCAR All-Star Race tickets and upgrades are available by visiting charlottemotorspeedway.com/
Fans can connect with Charlotte Motor Speedway by following on Twitter and Instagram or becoming a Facebook fan. Keep up with all the latest news and information with the Charlotte Motor Speedway mobile app.
A talented field of Midwest Big Ten Super Late Model drivers gathered at Lincoln Speedway, in Lincoln, IL this past Friday, May 17 for their opening race of the 2019 season. For Lincoln Speedway, it was the fourth race of the season and the first of two this year which will feature the high powered racecars.
2018 Summer Nationals champion, Brian Shirley, of Chatham, IL, was the favorite coming into the night. He didn’t disappoint in qualifying, setting quick time over local favorite Myles Moos, former Big Ten champion Brian Diveley, Ryan Unzicker, and Mike Chasteen, Jr. Heat race action saw Shirley and Unzicker claim the wins.
When it came time for the feature, Shirley and Unzicker led the field to green. Shirley raced out, while Unzicker tried to make a go of it in the outside lane. The car to watch, though, was one that pulled in on an open trailer earlier in the night. It was also one running pump gas for his steel headed engine. It was the #2 car of Mike Chasteen, Jr. The Peoria, IL driver was hooked up on the bottom lane of the dry-slick track and raced past Unzicker before putting Shirley behind him as well. The race went green until lap 19 before the first yellow waved, bunching the field. Back to racing for the final six laps, Chasteen again made easy work of the field to claim the impressive victory. Unzicker, Shirley, Jose Parga, and Diveley completed the top five.
In the DIRTcar Modified class, Mike Brooks and Steven Brooks brought the field to green. As always, the field was full of talented drivers and a win would be tough to come by. Steven Brooks took the early lead, while track regular, Austin Lynn, was working hard behind him. Lynn pulled alongside and took the top spot as drivers raced side-by-side on the low lanes of the track, looking for grip. The major challenge for Austin Lynn came from Donovan Lodge. The Andover, IL driver pulled into second from his fourth starting spot and gave it a valiant effort. In fact, Lodge made a pass relatively late in the race. Lynn would not be denied, however, as he pulled back alongside in the next turn and took the top spot back. From that point on it was Lynn holding the advantage. Coming to the checkered, Lodge got a great run off of turn four and pulled almost even with Lynn at the line. For Lynn, the key word was almost, as he hung on for the strong victory. Following the Mason City, IL driver were Lodge, Tommy Sheppard, Jr. who picked up six spots to take third, Steven Brooks, and Kenny Wallace
The DIRTcar Street Stocks were the first feature of the night and they didn’t disappoint with some really good racing. Rudy Zaragoza led for a good while at the front of the pack as Terry Reed and Robert Cottom were right behind. Unfortunately for Reed, on one of his pass attempts, some very slight contact ensued, which cut down his right front tire. Reed was forced to pit for a tire change and restart from the tail. Meanwhile, Cottom was able to take the lead in the middle portion of the race, making a run to the inside of Zaragoza. As the laps wound down, Cottom stayed out front but everyone watched as the #5 of Reed worked from the back to take second. Following Cottom and Reed were Zaragoza, Braden Bilger, and Nolan Kaufman.
Lincoln, IL driver Bret Tripplett led the early laps of the Nutech Seed DII Midget feature before Mason City, IL’s Andy Baugh drove to the inside. Baugh got traction on the exit of turn two and rocketed past going down the backstretch. For Baugh, it was pretty easy sailing from that point on, for his third feature win in four tries this year. Tripplett, Tyler Roth, Jeff Sparks, and Karter Sarff rounded out the top five. No one took the Nutech Seed Front Row Challenge so the bonus goes to $400 at the next race.
The final race of the night was the DIRTcar Hornet feature and it was another good one. The division has been very competitive this year with a number of driver threatening for a victory. This time it was Pekin, IL’s Danny Oates laying claim to the feature trophy. Oates held off a charging David Lauritson, Brady Reed, Dallas Strauch, and Eric Vanapeldoorn. The Hornets will be racing for $1,000 to win in the Ed Cain Trucking Hornet Challenge at the June 7 event. It’s part of a weekend doubleheader which will also see $1,000 on the line Saturday, June 8 at Macon Speedway.
Also on track Friday night were the Abe Lincoln Quarter Midget Association kids. Nearly 20 different youngsters brought their quarter midgets out to the track to show off their rides and take some laps at intermission.
For Lincoln Speedway, it will be a few weeks before the next race on Friday, June 7. In addition to the $1,000 to win Hornet race, the Pro Late Models will be back with Modifieds, Nutech Seed DII Midgets, and KidModz. It will be a busy month of June for the track as the POWRi Midgets invade for Speedweek on Sunday, June 16 followed by the Graue Chevrolet Showdown for the Summer Nationals on Sunday, June 30.
For more information and a full schedule, visit www.lincolnspeedwayil.com.
Lincoln Speedway PR
Clint Bowyer will have the best view when Saturday night’s Monster Energy NASCAR All-Star Race goes green at Charlotte Motor Speedway.
Bowyer’s No. 14 Stewart-Haas Racing Ford edged Kyle Busch’s Toyota by completing three laps and a pit stop in one minute, 58.794 seconds, averaging 136.371 miles per hour in securing his first All-Star Race pole on Friday. Bowyer, making his 10th attempt at claiming the $1 million winner’s prize on Saturday, said the pole was a credit to his team.
"Tonight was all about going fast and getting the most out of three laps," Bowyer said. "I do love the aspect of adding that pit crew (to the equation). It gives them a time to shine. My pit crew does a jam-up job all season long, and they were a big part of that (pole win).
"That is a victory. That's not just a qualifying lap, that's a total team effort. Everybody's got to do their job. You've got to have a fast car, and we checked that box off. You've got to do a great job coming on pit road and getting into the box, and we checked that box. Those guys laid down a good pit stop, and we checked that box. We rolled over here and checked another one off with a trophy. There's only one more, and that's to take a million bucks and go to the house and have a good time with it."
Defending race winner Kevin Harvick qualified third with Austin Dillon fourth, Martin Truex Jr. fifth and Ryan Newman sixth.
Daniel Hemric’s first pole in a Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series car came at the track located just minutes from his hometown.
Hemric – a Kannapolis, North Carolina, native – was the fastest car in Monster Energy Open qualifying on Friday at Charlotte Motor Speedway. Hemric’s No. 8 Richard Childress Racing Chevrolet posted a 29.643-second, 182.168-mph lap to eclipse Michael McDowell and Charlotte, North Carolina, native William Byron.
"We came here with the mindset, as a company, to have really fast race cars," Hemric said. "The guys did a great job of bringing us that. It’s good to get a pole even if it’s for the Open. ... We checked that box and anytime you do something like that at home, it’s special. I have been coming to these events since I was a kid sitting on the other side of the fence in the grandstand. We know we are leading the green flag for the Open and hopefully we can get ourselves into the All-Star Race.
"It’s good to have speed in our hip pocket and it’s good to see come it back out. Now, it’s up to us to get the other side of it tomorrow night. ... Over the past 20 years, I know that sounds crazy, I ran here at Charlotte Motor Speedway on tracks that are not even here anymore, like a quarter-mile dirt track out back that is no longer in existence. The point being, I grew up here. And to come here the first time in a Cup car (and win the pole), that’s my idea of what dreams are made of. ”
Matt Crafton Claims N.C. Education Lottery 200 Pole
Matt Crafton, returning to the site of his first NASCAR Gander Outdoors Truck Series win in 2008, kicked off his drive for a third North Carolina Education Lottery 200 victory in style on Friday.
Crafton took the pole with a 179.134-mph lap to keep Stewart Friesen off the top spot.
Todd Gilliland, Harrison Burton and Ben Rhodes completed the top five. Defending Coca-Cola 600 winner Kyle Busch will start eighth.
The North Carolina Education Lottery 200 will go green at 8:45 p.m.