Dirt Track at Charlotte
Staying power carries Bloomquist to Lowe's win
By Joshua JoinerDirtonDirt.com correspondent
CONCORD, N.C. (Nov. 6) — While contenders fell by the wayside, Scott Bloomquist proved his staying power Friday night. The Hall of Fame driver from Mooresburg, Tenn., survived at the Dirt Track at Lowe's Motor Speedway to win the first night of the World of Outlaws Late Model Series World Finals, his third $10,000 feature victory in the season-ending event in as many years. | Slideshow | Complete Lowe's coverage
Bloomquist jumped out front from his outside-front-row starting position, but relinquished the lead to Earl Pearson Jr. on lap 21 of the 50-lap race. Pearson, of Jacksonville, Fla., looked to be on his way to backing up his $50,000 Colossal victory at Lowe’s earlier this season before mechanical problems knocked him out of the race on lap 28.
Bloomquist went back out front, but he soon had company from Jason Feger of Bloomington, Ill., who worked his way from the 19th starting position to third by the time the caution flew for Pearson. Feger moved by polesitter Shane Clanton of Locust Grove, Ga., to grab second on the restart and then set his sights on Bloomquist.
But Feger, too, dropped from contention when a flat tire ended his chances on lap 40 at the 4/10-mile oval.
Bloomquist led the remaining 10 laps unchallenged to claim the win over Gray Court, S.C., driver Chris Madden. Rick Eckert of York, Pa., finished third to make it a top-three sweep for Bloomquist Race Cars. Darrell Lanigan, of Union, Ky., finished ahead of Josh Richards of Shinnston, W.Va., Richards in fourth while Feger came back from his flat tire to finish sixth.
Bloomquist made sure he was around at the conclusion of the feature event.
“It really is a fine art figuring out if you want to push it and risk tearing something up,” said Bloomquist, the winningest Late Model in track history at Lowe's. “The cushion in one and two was really tricky to mess with, but the car was great and we were able to move all over the track.
“Everything went pretty good for us tonight. Earl got by us there in lapped traffic, but I knew it was too early to worry about it.
“I’m glad that my wife and mother could make it this weekend and (long-time sponsors) Bob and Barb Miller, who I didn’t know were going to make it tonight. It was nice to see them here, and it’s really great to have the people that you love around you when you win races.”
While Bloomquist won the night's biggest purse, attention was also focused on the $100,000 World of Outlaws championship battle raging Steve Francis and Josh Richards. Richards, of Shinnston, W.Va., passed Francis, of Ashland, Ky., for fifth position on lap 28 and looked to be taking control of the point lead until a flat tire sent him to the pits on lap 43.
With a new right-rear tire, Richards restarted from the 12th position and rocketed backed to fifth in the final seven laps while Francis faded to ninth while struggling most of the race without power steering. Francis entered the race with a four-point lead, the same margin Richards will have entering Saturday's season finale.
World Finals: (1) Scott Bloomquist, (2) Chris Madden, (3) Rick Eckert, (4) Darrell Lanigan, (5) Josh Richards, (6) Jason Feger, (7) Jeep Van Wormer, (8) Eric Jacobsen, (9) Steve Francis, (10) Austin Dillon, (11) Shane Clanton, (12) Ricky Weeks, (13) Clint Smith, (14) Greg Satterlee, (15) Brad Neat, (16) Adam Hensel, (18) Russ King, (19) Dan Schlieper, (20) Brady Smith, (21) Earl Pearson Jr., (22) Tim Dohm, (23) Vic Coffee, (24) Dale McDowell, (25) Ken Schrader, (26) John Bare, (27) Tim McCreadie, (28) Eric Wells. Fast qualifier (among 80 cars): Lanigan, 16.185 seconds. Heat race winners: Francis, Bloomquist, Dillon, Weeks, Pearson, Clanton. Consolation winners: Feger, Bare, B. Smith.
First heat: Steve Francis, Josh Richards, Darrell Lanigan, Jeremy Miller, Tim Fuller, Ricky Elliott, Randle Chupp, Donnie Moran, Ken Schrader, Justin Labonte, Boom Briggs, John Winge, Brian Birkhofer. Scratched: Chad Ruhlman.
Second heat: Scott Bloomquist, Gregg Satterlee, Adam Hensel, Jason Feger, Jordan Bland, Mike Knight, Chuck Harper, Johnny Pursley, Ben Faircloth, Cruz Pedregon, Tommy Kerr, Russ King, Dan Stone. Scratched: Dustin Hapka.
Third heat: Austin Dillon, Dan Schlieper, Jeep VanWormer, Randy Korte, John Blankenship, Clint Smith, Jared Landers, Mike Gault, Jeff Rine, Tyler Reddick, Larry Blankenship, Bob Gordon, D.J. Wells.
Fourth heat: Ricky Weeks, Eric Jacobsen, Tim Dohm, Booper Bare, Brad Neat, Eric Wells, Shannon Babb, Bo Feathers, Jeremy Faircloth, Spencer Liggon, Dustin Mitchell, Jimmy Owens, Jerry Rice.
Fifth heat: Earl Pearson Jr., Chris Madden, Tim McCreadie, Dennis Franklin, Steve Shaver, Austin Hubbard, Ray Cook, Matt Lux, Brian Ruhlman, Jim Yoder, Doug Horton, Devin Friese. Scratched: Chad Hollenbeck.
Sixth heat: Shane Clanton, Dale McDowell, Rick Eckert, Brady Smith, Vic Coffey, Eddie Carrier Jr., Chris Ferguson, Brent Robinson, Will Vaught, Walker Arthur, Petey Ivey, Trey Martin, Al Shawver Jr.
First consolation: Jason Feger, Tim Fuller, Jordan Bland, Mike Knight, Ricky Elliott, Chuck Harper, Donnie Moran, Ben Faircloth, Johnny Pursley, Tommy Kerr, Dan Stone, Ken Schrader, Cruz Pedregon, Justin Labonte, Randle Chupp, Russell King, Boom Briggs, John Winge, Jeremy Miller. Scratched: Brian Birkhofer, Chad Ruhlman, Dustin Hapka.
Second consolation: Booper Bare, Brad Neat, Randy Korte, Jared Landers, John Blankenship, Jeff Rine, Bo Feathers, Tyler Reddick, Shannon Babb, Bob Gordon, Spencer Liggon, Eric Wells, Mike Gault, Larry Blankenship, Clint Smith, D.J. Wells. Scxratched: Jeremy Faircloth, Dustin Mitchell, Jimmy Owens, Jerry Rice.
Third consolation: Brady Smith, Vic Coffey, Austin Hubbard, Eddie Carrier Jr., Dennis Franklin, Ray Cook, Matt Lux, Will Vaught, Brian Ruhlman, Doug Horton, Jim Yoder, Al Shawver Jr., Walker Arthur, Steve Shaver, Petey Ivey, Brent Robinson, Trey Martin, Chris Ferguson. Scratched: Devin Friese.