Delaware International Speedway
Elliott's Delaware title pays off with $7,325
By Charlie BrownDelaware International Speedway
DELMAR, Del. (Oct. 23) — Ricky Elliott’s previous best finish in the Delaware State Dirt Track Late Model Championships was a second back in 1991. It's been a long time but, the former big-block modified driver from Seaford, Del., finally broke through on in the full-fendered division, earned $7,325 at Delaware International Speedway.
Elliott outran Darryl Hills of Great Mills, Md., on the half-mile oval in a 50-lap event held earlier in the fall — and under the lights — for the first time.
“Man the track was fantastic,” Elliott said. “You could run up high or run down low. We didn’t hurt any tires. I’m glad (promoter) Charlie (Cathell) brought this to a night show and I hope the fans liked it better.”
Mark Byram of Georgetown, Del., finished third in the 30-car field followed by Donald Lingo Jr. of Millsboro, Del., and David Hill of Trappe, Md.
Seaford's Austin Hubbard started on the pole and set such a torrid pace he reached traffic after just five laps. Elliott gave chase along with Hills, David Pettyjohn and Kerry King.
Hubbard had a close call with a lapped car exiting turn two, and Elliott tracked him down amid traffic to lead the ninth laps. After 11 laps, only 18 cars remaining on the lead lap when a yellow came out for Hal Browning, who got together with Elliott and then tangled with Hubbard, spinning in turn four. Hubbard had to restart on the tail.
Hills moved up to second behind Elliott for the restart, but Pettyjohn grabbed the spot on a restart as cautions kept the pack tightly bunched.
At halfway, Elliott led Hills, Pettyjohn, Byram and Hill, but Byram dropped Pettyjohn to fourth while Hubbard worked his way back into the top five.
Pettyjohn retired on the 32nd lap, and Hubbard rolled to a stop in turn four to end his night as Lingo moved into the top five.
Three yellow flags in the final 10 laps kept the field bunched. The final yellow came out with two laps to go when Kenny Pettyjohn, who was running sixth came to a stop. Hills made one final attempt to overtake Elliott in the first turn, but he couldn't make the pass.
Notes: Elliott drove a Rocket Chassis sponsored by Hall’s Construction and J&M Roofing. ... In the 25-lap Crate Late Model feature, Bobby Watkins earned $1,670 for a victory over Clay Tatman. Watkins took the lead from Ross Robinson midway through the feature.
Delaware State Dirt Track Championship: (1) Ricky Elliott, (2) Darryl Hills, (3) Mark Byram, (4) Donald Lingo Jr., (5) David Hill, (6) Dale Lingo, (7) Herb Tunis, (8) Staci Warrington, (9) Jere Wierman, (10) Lou Johnson, (11) Kelly Putz, (12) Rick Hulson, (13) Kevin Scott Jr., (14) Rob Schirmer, (15) Bob Geiger, (16) Kenny Pettyjohn, (17) Dave Hertz, (18) Hal Browning, (19) Derrike Hill, (20) Bryan Driver, (21) Jonathan Favinger, (22) Austin Hubbard, (23) David Pettyjohn, (24) Andy Haus, (25) Kerry King, (26) Ray Davis Jr., (27) D.J. Troutman, (28) Randy Stoudt, (29) Scott Haus. Scratched: Andrew Mullins.