Login |
LIVE VIDEO:  Watch | Events | FAQ | Archives
Sponsor 257
Sponsor 717


All Late Models. All the Time.

Your soruce for dirt late model news, photos and video

  • Join us on Twitter Join us on Facebook
Sponsor 525

Daily Dirt 09/18/2020 15:08:56

Sponsor 743
July 9
Deer Creek Speedway,
Spring Valley, MN
Sanction: World of Outlaws Morton Buildings Late Model Series (NAPA Auto Parts Gopher 50) - $11,000
Information provided by: Series reports (last updated July 10, 4:27 pm)
Deer Creek's Gopher 50 gives Richards $11,000
NAPA Auto Parts Gopher 50
  1. Josh Richards
  2. Shane Clanton
  3. Rick Eckert
  4. Chad Simpson
  5. Jimmy Mars
  6. Tyler Erb
  7. Brandon Overton
  8. Brian Shirley
  9. Billy Moyer Jr.
  10. Steve Casebolt
  11. Frank Heckenast Jr.
  12. Morgan Bagley
  13. Brent Larson
  14. Chase Junghans
  15. Jordan Yaggy
  16. Joey Coulter
  17. Boom Briggs
  18. Eric Wells
  19. Chub Frank
  20. Rodney Sanders
  21. Chris Simpson
  22. Jason Rauen
  23. A.J. Diemel
  24. Austin Smith
presented by
Steve Schnars
Josh Richards takes the checkered flag at Deer Creek.
What won the race: Josh Richards of Shinnston, W.Va., took the lead on lap three from Billy Moyer Jr. of Batesville, Ark., and never looked back en route to a dominating $11,000 triumph in the World of Outlaws Craftsman Late Model Series-sanctioned NAPA Auto Parts Gopher 50 at Deer Creek Speedway. After a lap-44 caution flag tightened the field for a final sprint, Richards crossed the finish line 1.318 seconds ahead of runner-up Shane Clanton of Zebulon, Ga.
Key notes: Lance Matthees captured a $1,000-to-win non-qualifiers race.
On the move: After using a provisional to gain entry to the feature, Brandon Overton of Evans, Ga., advanced from the 23rd starting spot to finish seventh.
Winner's sponsors: Richards' No. 1 Rocket XR1 Chassis is powered by an Andy Durham Racing Engine and is sponsored by Ace Metal Works, Hoosier, Joy Global, Seubert Calf Ranches and Valvoline.
Points chase: Richards pushed his already-commanding lead in the standings to 220 points over Clanton.
Car count: 36
Fast qualifier: Josh Richards
Time: 14.487 seconds
Polesitter: Billy Moyer Jr.
Heat race winners: Josh Richards, Boom Briggs, Eric Wells, Rick Eckert
Consolation race winners: Chase Junghans, Austin Smith
Next series race: July 13, Ogilvie Raceway (Ogilvie, MN) $10,000
Editor's note: Results and race details are unofficial.
From series and staff reports

SPRING VALLEY, Minn. (July 9) — Josh Richards of Shinnston, W.Va., turned a milestone evening for the World of Outlaws Craftsman Late Model Series into another example of his 2016 dominance.

In the national tour’s 500th A-Main since its reincarnation in 2004 under the World Racing Group banner, the third-starting Richards overtook Billy Moyer Jr. of Batesville, Ark., for the lead on lap three and controlled the remainder of the distance to capture Saturday night’s NAPA Auto Parts Gopher 50 at Deer Creek Speedway.

The three-time series champion and current runaway points leader pocketed $11,000 for his ninth WoO triumph of 2016, matching his victory total from all of last season. It was also his second career win in the the prestigious Gopher 50 event at a spic-and-span 3/8-mile oval that Richards could not help raving about after the checkered flag.

“This place does not get enough credit,” said Richards, who previously captured the Gopher 50 in 2011 “This is probably one of the top facilities in the country and I always enjoy coming here. Everyone here works so hard, and it’s just cool to win on this stage and get another Gopher.”

Richards, 28, steered his Andy Durham-powered Rocket XR1 machine under the checkered flag 1.318 seconds before defending WoO champion Shane Clanton of Zebulon, Ga., who won the previous night’s Wild West Tour feature at Mason City (Iowa) Motor Speedway.

Rick Eckert of York, Pa., battled Clanton relentlessly throughout the race’s second half but settled for a third-place finish, with eighth-starter Chad Simpson of Mount Vernon, Iowa, placing fourth — his second consecutive top-five finish with the WoO — and 10th-starter Jimmy Mars of Menomonie, Wis., completed the top five.

Richards was never seriously challenged during the 50-lap affair, but his mind certainly didn’t wander from the task at hand.

“That race was a little bit of a handful because the track changed so much,” Richards said. “It had so much grip, and then it blew off and you just felt like you were dying so you had to search around a little bit.

“You had to search. I looked up and if I got a decent lead at all I’d move around and just kind of see where (his closest pursuer) was at because I just know that these guys are so good, if you get stuck in one spot too long, they’ll drive right by you.”

Richards weathered five restarts to emerge victorious for the 67th time in his WoO career, leaving him just five wins behind Darrell Lanigan of Union, Ky., who had won the last three Gopher 50s but wasn’t on hand because he’s no longer a WoO regular, for the top spot on the circuit’s all-time win list. He also continued to expand his commanding points lead, pushing his edge to 220 points over Clanton with 19 events remaining on the 2016 schedule.

“It’s been a dream season,” Richards said, “but we still got a long way to go.”

Clanton, 40, slid his Capital Race Car past Moyer for second on lap 14 after starting sixth, but he only briefly was able to nose underneath Richards through turns one and two on a lap-33 restart. His focus late in the race was on turning back the challenges of Eckert, who drew alongside Clanton numerous times down the stretch.

In the end, Clanton felt fortunate to preserve his third second-place WoO finish of 2016.

“We got in front of Eckert,” said Clanton, the 2012 Gopher 50 winner. “He was a little bit better than us at the end.”

The 50-year-old Eckert, who won the Gopher 50 in 2006, slid backwards slightly from his fourth starting spot at the initial green flag. He rallied to reach third behind Clanton just after the halfway mark but was unable to find a route into the bridesmaid position.

“We made some real progress the last couple nights with our car,” said Eckert, who piloted his Paul Crowl-owned Longhorn car to his seventh WoO top-five of the season. “I just couldn’t get Shane cleared there. We were inches away from each other for half the race.

“I just got such a terrible start and couldn’t get going, and I had to rebound from that.”

The WoO's 500th feature since 2004 was especially noteworthy for Eckert, who is the only driver to attempt to qualify for all 500 of those events. He has only failed to start two of the 500 WoO features, both of which offered only show-up points.

Five caution flags slowed the event. Austin Smith of Cedartown, Ga., and Brent Larson of Lake Elmo, Minn., tangled in turn two on lap five; Jason Rauen of Farley, Iowa, sat disabled in turn two with a cut left-rear tire on lap 13; Chris Simpson of Oxford, Iowa, slowed on lap 24; Chub Frank of Bear Lake, Pa., fell off the pace on lap 33 after hitting the wall and sustaining right-rear damage to his car; and Eric Wells of Hazard, Ky., slowed with with a flat left-rear tire on lap 44 after running as high as fourth.

Moyer, who started from the pole position and led laps 1-2, ran in the top five throughout the race’s first half but faded to ninth in the final rundown. Outside polesitter Boom Briggs of Bear Lake, Pa., also fell from contention as the feature wore on, finishing 17th.

Feature lineup

Row 1: Moyer Jr., Briggs
Row 2: Richards, Eckert
Row 3: Wells, Clanton
Row 4: Coulter, Chad Simpson
Row 5: Chris Simpson, Mars
Row 6: Sanders, Diemel
Row 7: Heckenast, Frank
Row 8: Erb, Rauen
Row 9: Junghans, Smith
Row 10: Shirley, Bagley
Row 11: Yaggy, Larson
Row 12: Overton, Casebolt

Sponsor 774
Sponsor 615
Sponsor 728