GIBSONTON, Fla. (Feb. 9) — Charging past outside polesitter Jared Landers of Batesville, Ark., on lap nine of 25, Josh Richards of Shinnston, W.Va., led the remaining distance to capture a $5,000 victory in the Tuesday night portion of East Bay Raceway Park’s Winternationals.
Edging ahead of polesitter Scott Bloomquist of Mooresburg, Tenn., Landers jumped to an early lead. But the defending Knoxville Nationals champion was unable to fight back challenges from Richards, who held nearly a straightaway lead over the field with five laps remaining in the main event. Richards scored his 10th career Lucas Oil Series victory, the fourth of his Georgia-Florida Speedweeks campaign.
“We’ve gotten on rolls before, but to win Brunswick and here has been really cool,” Richards said. "The guys have been working really hard and we got better yesterday as the night went and we just kind of left our car alone. The track was so drastically different. The speeds were up qualifying, but then the track blew off way quicker in the race and I anticipated it staying slicker way longer.
“Landers got the lead and I pulled down in the black a couple laps and I felt it grip up and already start to take rubber early. We were able to find it before he did and just got in line and road it out. It was a good night."
Bloomquist finished second with Tim McCreadie of Watertown, N.Y., holding on to his third-place starting position. Jonathan Davenport of Blairsville, Ga., charged from the ninth starting spot to finish fourth, with Eddie Carrier Jr. of Salt Rock, W.Va., rounding out the top five. Landers was out on lap 23 when contact with Bloomquist sent him spinning in turn two.
“We were just way too tight from the start of the race,” Bloomquist said. “Normally we don’t have to turn the car that sideways to be sure we finish the corner. We know what to do. We’ll be ready tomorrow.”
McCreadie was pleased with his third-place run and the consistency that he’s found over Georgia-Florida Speedweeks in his new Longhorn car.
“Everyone wants to win, and I want to win bad,” McCreadie said. “But I also want to leave content. A lot of nights you leave uncontent. I haven’t had consistency in probably six years, probably since I got hurt. It’s very draining when it goes that long of a stretch of not just knowing that you can finish near the front. We’ve been consistent every night and competitive every night and that’s all you can ask for."
Notes: The race was slowed by three cautions. ... The first yellow flag waved on lap 16 when Brian Shirley slowed on the racetrack. … Freddie Carpenter drew a caution on lap 17 when he got in the wall in turns three and four and slowed. … The final yellow flag waved on lap 23 for the Landers spin.
Preliminary notes and results:
It’s an all-Sweet-Bloomquist front row for the start of the 25-lap feature with Scott Bloomquist on the inside of Jared Landers, who is in his second season racing under Bloomquist’s tutelage. Bloomquist is bidding for his first East Bay win since 2013 while Landers has never reached victory lane at the track in a Dirt Late Model. … Tim McCreadie, who starts third, hasn’t won at East Bay since the 2011 Winternationals finale. … Devin Moran executed some of the best inside moves of the heats in the first prelim, including a pass of Mike Marlar to reach his final finishing position of second with his Tommy Pope-owned Barry Wright car. Despite his low-side hustling, he feels drivers would have a better chance to use the bottom if officials moved the inside marker tires in the turns. “It’s so fast around the top,” he said. “I think they almost should move in those tires a little bit. Where they are now, you can’t arc it enough to the bottom … you just wash up.” … After a near-spin between turns three and four on lap four of the first heat caused him to slip out of a transfer spot, Marlar’s night became even worse in the first B-Main. He started from the pole but lost control of his car on lap one and struck the turn-one wall head-on; Chad Hollenbeck, Bobby Pierce, Sonny Conley and James McKeown piled up in a chain-reaction scramble. Marlar said he struggled to get ahold of the track with the event’s mandated hard-compound tires. “It feels like you’ve got 50 pounds of air in your tire,” Marlar said while walking through the pit area holding a spring off his Capital Race Car that he called “destroyed.” … Randy Weaver scratched from his B-Main after a poor qualifying run and his involvement in a heat-race tangle with Greg Oakes and Chuck Julien damaged the left-front flapper of his Leon Henderson-owned Billy Moyer Victory Race Car. “You can’t spot these guys (in qualifying) and drive up through there,” he said. “We decided to call it a night. Mr. Henderson will be coming here tomorrow night so we’ll try to get it right and put on a show for him.”
DirtonDirt.com Strawberry Dash results
Finish (winner transfers to feature): Freddie Carpenter, Allen Murray, Billy Moyer Jr., Sonny Conley, Greg Oakes, Colton Flinner, Jake Davis, Bob Gardner
DirtonDirt.com Strawberry Dash lineup
Row 1: Chad Hollenbeck, Sonny Conley
Row 2: Randy Weaver, Chuck Julien
Row 3: Allen Murray, John Gardner
Row 4: Jake Davis, Billy Moyer Jr.
Row 5: Bob Gardner, Greg Oakes
Polesitter Jimmy Owens outdueled Alex Ferree to win the second consolation. Ferry took the runner-up spot, with Austin Kirkpatrick improving one position to run third. Mason Zeigler edged out Kyle Bronson at the checkers to finish fourth and transfer to the feature.
Finish (top four transfer): Jimmy Owens, Alex Ferree, Austin Kirkpatrick, Mason Zeigler, Kyle Bronson, Freddie Carpenter, Billy Moyer Jr., Josh Rice, Chuck Julien, Greg Oakes, John Gardner
Polesitter Mike Marlar hit the turn one wall on the first lap, collecting Chad Hollenbeck, Bobby Pierce and others to draw a red flag. Brian Shirley took the lead on the restart, picking up the win in the second consolation. Pierce edged Nick Davis on the final lap to finish second, with Davis running third. Gregg Satterlee grabbed the fourth and final transfer spot.
Finish (top four transfer): Brian Shirley, Nick Davis, Gregg Satterlee, Bobby Pierce, Allen Murray, Colton Flinner, Jake Davis, Sonny Conley, Bob Gardner, Mike Marlar, Chad Hollenbeck, James McKeown
(10 laps; top four transfer)
Row 1: Mike Marlar, Brian Shirley
Row 2: Nick Davis, Bobby Pierce
Row 3: Chad Hollenbeck, Sonny Conley
Row 4: Gregg Satterlee, Colton Flinner
Row 5: Allen Murray, Bob Gardner
Row 6: Jake Davis, Mark Whitener
Row 7: James McKeown
Row 1: Jimmy Owens, Alex Ferree
Row 2: Mason Zeigler, Austin Kirkpatrick
Row 3: Kyle Bronson, Josh Rice
Row 4: Billy Moyer Jr., Greg Oakes
Row 5: Freddie Carpenter, Chuck Julian
Row 6: John Gardner, Randy Weaver
Polesitter Josh Richards jumped to an early lead, with a yellow flag waving on lap three when Greg Oakes spun in turns one and two. Richards picked up the heat race win, with Dennis Erb Jr. holding on to his second-place starting spot. Don O’Neal ran third, with Steve Francis advancing two spots to take the fourth and final transfer spot.
Finish (top four transfer): Josh Richards, Dennis Erb Jr., Don O’Neal, Steve Francis, Alex Ferree, Austin Kirkpatrick, Josh Rice, Greg Oakes, Chuck Julien, Randy Weaver
Darrell Lanigan, Eddie Carrier Jr., and Jared Landers went three-wide down the backstretch on the opening lap, with Lanigan edging ahead at the line. A yellow flag flew on the first lap when John Gardner spun in turns one and two. Landers slid past Lanigan on lap three, picking up the win in the third heat. Carrier advanced two spots to finish second, with Lanigan dropping back to run third. Ricky Weiss finished fourth to transfer to the feature.
Finish (top four transfer): Jared Landers, Eddie Carrier Jr., Darrell Lanigan, Ricky Weiss, Jimmy Owens, Mason Zeigler, Kyle Bronson, Billy Moyer Jr., Freddie Carpenter, John Gardner
Charging around the outside, second-starting Tim McCreadie shot to the lead at the start, leading all eight laps to win the second heat race. Polesitter Tim Dohm took the runner-up spot, with Brandon Sheppard improving one spot to finish third. Justin Rattliff grabbed the fourth and final transfer spot.
Finish (top four transfer): Tim McCreadie, Tim Dohm, Brandon Sheppard, Justin Rattliff, Brian Shirley, Bobby Pierce, Sonny Conley, Colton Flinner, Bob Gardner, Mark Whitener
Outside polesitter Scott Bloomquist edged ahead of polesitter Mike Marlar to take an early lead. Devin Moran slipped past Marlar for the second-place spot, with Marlar getting sideways in turn four to drop back to fifth. Bloomquist grabbed the heat race win, with Moran holding on to second. Jonathan Davenport ran third, with Earl Pearson Jr. finishing fourth to transfer to the feature.
Finish (top four transfer): Scott Bloomquist, Devin Moran, Jonathan Davenport, Earl Pearson Jr., Mike Marlar, Nick Davis, Chad Hollenbeck, Gregg Satterlee, Allen Murray, Jake Davis, James McKeown
Heat race lineups
(eight laps; top four transfer)
Row 1: Mike Marlar, Scott Bloomquist
Row 2: Jonathan Davenport, Devin Moran
Row 3: Earl Pearson Jr., Nick Davis
Row 4: Chad Hollenbeck, Gregg Satterlee
Row 5: Allen Murray, Jake Davis
Row 6: James McKeown
Row 1: Tim Dohm, Tim McCreadie
Row 2: Mark Whitener, Brandon Sheppard
Row 3: Justin Rattliff, Bobby Pierce
Row 4: Brian Shirley, Sonny Conley
Row 5: Bob Gardner, Colton Flinner
Row 1: Darrell Lanigan, Jared Landers
Row 2: Ricky Weiss, Eddie Carrier Jr.
Row 3: Mason Zeigler, Billy Moyer Jr.
Row 4: Jimmy Owens, John Gardner
Row 5: Kyle Bronson, Freddie Carpenter
Row 1: Josh Richards, Dennis Erb Jr.
Row 2: Don O’Neal, Austin Kirkpatrick
Row 3: Greg Oakes, Steve Francis
Row 4: Randy Weaver, Josh Rice
Row 5: Alex Ferree, Chuck Julien
Weather conditions for Tuesday night’s program are cool and overcast with a stiff breeze. … The field has increased to 41 cars with the addition of six new entrants, including Clint Bowyer Racing teammates Don O’Neal of Martinsville, Ind., and Darrell Lanigan of Union, Ky.; Scott Bloomquist of Mooresburg, Tenn., who arrived at the track today; Mason Zeigler of Chalk Hill, Pa., who sat out Monday night’s action to let Jonathan Davenport of Blairsville, Ga., drive his car; and Florida racers Austin Kirkpatrick and Mark Whitener. … Davenport, meanwhile, returns to his familar K&L Rumley No. 6 for Tuesday evening’s competition. He will be behind the wheel of a brand-new Longhorn Race Car. … Steve Francis of Ashland, Ky., made a planned engine change in his Tim Logan Racing machine this afternoon. … Parked next to Francis in the pit area is Devin Moran of Dresden, Ohio, who spun in Monday night’s feature after turn-two contact with Francis. Moran survived the encounter with only minor suspension and bodywork damage. … Monday’s winner Josh Richards of Shinnston, W.Va., has a bright orange spoiler indicating his status as the current Lucas Oil Series points leader on his car. The World of Outlaws Late Model Series regular’s father and car owner, Mark Richards, had the spoiler shipped from the Rocket Chassis shop and it arrived this afternoon. … Kyle Bronson of Brandon, Fla., is behind the wheel of his uncle Wayne Hammond’s Longhorn Race Car, a machine that saw its first feature action on Monday night. He said the Troy Baird-owned machine that he drove in two events at Golden Isles Speedway near Brunswick, Ga., remains in his shop nearby and he might return to its seat for some action during next week’s DIRTcar Nationals at Volusia Speedway Park in Barberville, Fla. … On hand this week to provide extra manpower to Brandon Sheppard’s Best Performance Motorsports team is UMP DIRTcar Late Model racer Jason Riggs of Harrisburg, Ill., who ran his family-owned equipment on the 2014 UMP DIRTcar Summernationals with Sheppard’s current crew chief Randall Edwards overseeing his effort. “I just listen to dad and do the dirty work,” said Riggs, using his affectionate name for Edwards.
East Bay Raceway Park’s 40th annual Winternationals continues Tuesday evening with another round of Lucas Oil Late Model Dirt Series action. The 25-lap non-points event is $5,000-to-win.
Josh Richards of Shinnston, W.Va., picked up where he left off at Golden Isles Speedway, scoring a $5,000 victory in Monday’s East Bay opener. Jimmy Owens of Newport, Tenn., finished runner-up, with Jared Landers of Batesville, Ark., running third.
Tuesday’s program will include hot laps, time trials, heat races, consolations, the DirtonDirt.com Strawberry Dash and the 25-lap main event.
Time trial results
Driver (car no.), hometown, time
Mike Marlar (157), Winfield, Tenn., 14.773
Tim Dohm (6T), Cross Lanes, W.Va., 14.777
Scott Bloomquist (0), Mooresburg, Tenn., 14.835
Tim McCreadie (39), Watertown, N.Y., 14.869
Jonathan Davenport (6), Blairsville, Ga., 14.986
Mark Whitener (5W), Middleburg, Fla., 14.996
Devin Moran (99m), Dresden, Ohio, 14.999
Brandon Sheppard (B5), New Berlin, Ill., 15.033
Earl Pearson Jr. (1), Jacksonville, Fla., 15.144
Justin Rattliff (16), Campbellsville, Ky., 15.253
Nick Davis (92), Delmar, Del., 15.264
Bobby Pierce (32), Oakwood, Ill., 15.294
Chad Hollenbeck (4Ds), Kingsley, Pa., 15.308
Brian Shirley (3s), Chatham, Ill., 15.315
Gregg Satterlee (22), Indiana, Pa., 15.457
Sonny Conley (1x1), New Martinsville, W.Va., 15.467
Bob Gardner (4G), Washington, Ill., 15.593
Allen Murray (2M), San Antonio, Texas, 15.805
Jake Davis (7D), Hackett, Ark., 16.037
Colton Flinner (75), Allison Park, Pa., 16.105
James McKeown (60), Stanton, Mich., 17.439
Darrell Lanigan (15L), Union, Ky., 14.763
Mason Zeigler (25Z), Chalk Hill, Pa., 14.817
Josh Richards (1), Shinnston, W.Va., 14.823
Jared Landers (777), Batesville, Ark., 14.835
Dennis Erb Jr. (28e), Carpentersville, Ill., 14.987
Ricky Weiss (7w), Headingly, MB, 15.071
Don O’Neal (5), Martinsville, Ind., 15.088
Eddie Carrier Jr. (28), Salt Rock, W.Va., 15.151
Austin Kirkpatrick (11), Ocala, Fla., 15.259
Greg Oakes (22G), Franklinville, N.Y., 15.277
Billy Moyer Jr. (21jr), Batesville, Ark., 15.329
Steve Francis (15), Ashland, Ky., 15.403
Jimmy Owens (20), Newport, Tenn., 15.455
Randy Weaver (116), Crossville, Tenn., 15.498
John Gardner (38C), Germantown Hills, Ill., 15.533
Josh Rice (11), Verona, Ky., 15.588
Kyle Bronson (40B), Brandon, Fla., 15.652
Alex Ferree (47), Saxonburg, Pa., 15.806
Freddie Carpenter (K), Parkersburg, W.Va., 16.072
Chuck Julien (57), Apopka, Fla., 16.284