Rattliff edges Linville, wins Pete Abell Memorial
By Michael DespainPonderosa Speedway
JUNCTION CITY, Ky. (June 25) — Fast qualifier Justin Rattliff of Campbellsville, Ky., wrestled the lead from Dustin Linville of Bryantsville, Ky., on the 28th lap and led the rest of the way in Ponderosa Speedway's 15th annual Pete Abell Memorial. The victory on the first-year Volunteer Racing Series paid $3,000.
Linville, who led the first 27 laps, couldn’t regain the point from Rattliff and settled for second while Eddie Carrier Jr. of Salt Rock, W.Va., finished third. Mike Marlar of Winfield, Tenn., and 14th-starting David Webb of Nicholasville, Ky., rounded out the top five.
Rattliff settled into the fourth spot at the outset, taking third from Greg Johnson of Bedford, Ind., after a lap-six restart and finally battling past Marlar for the second spot on lap 19.
Rattliff began to reel in Linville in the second half of the race, catching him amid traffic on lap 25. They battled door-to-door on lap 27 before Rattliff edged ahead out of turn two on the 28th lap for a lead he’d never give up.
Notes: Rattliff’s Bloomquist Race Car has a Pro Power Race Engine and sponsorship from MGL Auto Sales, On-Time Courier, JRR Auto Sales and Budda Bert Transmission Sales and Service. ... The 23-year-old Rattliff is the 13th different winner of the Abell Memorial. ... Mark Walters spun on the second lap, collecting Dustin Neat and Kenny Cobble; Walters also drew a lap-16 caution with a flat tire. ... The 20th-starting Neat recovered to finish seventh. ... Mike Strunk spun on lap six, collecting Ray Jarnigan. ... Jeremy Hines won the Crate Late Model feature. ... The Volunteer Racing Series heads to Lake Cumberland Speedway in Burnside, Ky., for a $3,000-to-win event on Saturday night.
Pete Abell Memorial: (1) Justin Rattliff, (2) Dustin Linville, (3) Eddie Carrier Jr., (4) Mike Marlar, (5) David Webb, (6) Michael Chilton, (7) Dustin Neat, (8) Greg Johnson, (9) Jeff Watson, (10) Todd Coffman, (11) Tim Tungate, (12) Aaron Ridley, (13) Mike Weeks, (14) Ross White, (15) Wesley Brummett, (16) Mike Strunk, (17) Ray Jarnigan, (18) Brandon Hardgrove, (19) D.J. Wells, (20) Mark Walters, (21) Skylar Marlar, (22) Kenny Cobble. Fast qualifier (among 22 cars): Rattliff, 14.116 seconds. Heat race winners: M. Marlar, Linville, Johnson.