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Daily Dirt 10/23/2021 12:51:21

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July 4
Portsmouth Raceway Park,
Portsmouth, OH
Sanction: Lucas Oil Late Model Dirt Series (Independence 50) - $10,000
Information provided by: Alli Collis and series reports (last updated July 5, 11:05 am)
Dominating Bloomquist grabs Portsmouth victory
Independence 50
  1. Scott Bloomquist
  2. Jimmy Owens
  3. Jackie Boggs
  4. Duane Chamberlain
  5. Steve Francis
  6. John Blankenship
  7. Earl Pearson Jr.
  8. Eddie Carrier Jr.
  9. Don O'Neal
  10. Rick Eckert
  11. Jason Papich
  12. Tim Dohm
  13. Rod Conley
  14. Greggie Oliver
  15. R.J. Conley
  16. Delmas Conley
  17. Dennis Erb Jr.
  18. Jared Landers
  19. Jason Hughes
  20. J.T. Conley
  21. Shannon Thornsberry
  22. Tommy Bailey
  23. Craig Vosbergen
  24. Dustin Linville
  25. Ben Adkins
presented by
Roy D. Walker/rdwphotos.smugmug.com
Scott Bloomquist heads to victory at Portsmouth.
What won the race: Leading all 50 laps from outside the front row, Scott Bloomquist of Mooresburg, Tenn., dominated at Portsmouth Raceway Park for his third series victory of the season. Sixth-starting Jimmy Owens of Newport, Tenn., grabbed second late in the race and finished .799 seconds back at the checkers with home-track favorite Jackie Boggs of Grayson, Ky., in third.
On the move: John Blankenship of Williamson, W.Va., started 11th and finished sixth.
Points chase: Don O'Neal's points lead was cut to 30 points over Owens.
Car count: 33
Fast qualifier: Steve Francis
Time: 15.302 seconds
Polesitter: Steve Francis
Heat race winners: Steve Francis, Jackie Boggs, Scott Bloomquist, Duane Chamberlain
Consolation race winners: Delmas Conley, Dennis Erb Jr.
Provisional starters: Jared Landers, Tommy Bailey, Rod Conley
Next series race: July 5, 201 Speedway (Sitka, KY) $10,000
Editor's note: Results and race details are unofficial.
By James Essex
Lucas Oil Late Model Dirt Series

PORTSMOUTH, Ohio (July 4) — After a night struggling at another Ohio track, Scott Bloomquist of Mooresburg, Tenn., got dialed in at Portsmouth Raceway Park on Friday for a $10,000 payday in the Independence 50, his third Lucas Oil Late Model Dirt Series victory of the season.

Bloomquist led all the way at the 3/8-mile oval, keeping the second-running cars of Steve Francis, Duane Chamberlain, Jackie Boggs and then three-time and reigning series champion Jimmy Owens of Newport, Tenn., who finished two lengths back at the finish.

Bloomquist was never seriously challenged in finishing ahead of Owens, Boggs, Chamberlain and Francis, but the winner wasn’t sure all would be well.

"I was worried we had gone too soft on tires for the feature,” Bloomquist said. “There were other cars that went harder on tires for 50 laps. I think if it had been longer than 50 laps we would have still been OK.

“After the night we had last night, my crew worked their tails off the last night and this morning getting this car ready. Our car fired off really well after those early restarts. Traffic wasn't too much of a problem. I didn't know how close those other guys were.

"I have to thank Andy Durham Racing Engines, Penske Shocks, Base Fuels, and Hawkeye Trucking. Last night was one of those nights where I thought I might as well go home. But we aren't quitters, and we changed engines in the car, and the car was just fantastic all night tonight.

“I was kind of locked in on the tire combination before they watered the track. Then I thought maybe we were in a little bit of trouble, but it all worked out for us. We have been snakebitten here lately. It feels good to win one again.”

Owens started sixth and was in the mix of top-five runners virtually all the wall, climbing to third by lap 31 and then overtaking Boggs for second with eighth laps remaining after a spirited battle.

Owens tried to chase down Bloomquist in the closing circuits, but he had to contend with slower cars  running his line. Owens got by a lapped car and closed rapidly on Bloomquist over the final two laps, but his charge came up short.

"We had to work for that finish,” said Owens, who cut into the points lead of Don O’Neal of Martinsville, Ind., who ended up ninth. “There was a heck of battle between about four or five of us there for a while. When I caught Jackie, he and I went back and forth for a long time.

When I got by (Boggs), I didn't think I had enough laps to catch Scott. He was well out in front. But to come from sixth like we did was a good point's night and we will head to 201 (Speedway in Sitka, Ky.) tomorrow. We have never raced there, and we are looking forward to it.”

Boggs slipped by Chamberlain to hold the second spot through the middle stages but ended up third behind a pair of Lucas Oil champions.

"To run third with these guys, that's a good thing,” Boggs said. “Our car was pushing a little bit more than I would have liked near the end. We had a good car, but just not good enough. To beat these guys everything has to go right for you. If you are off by a little bit it makes a big difference.”

Notes: Bloomquist’s 49th career series victory broke a tie with Jimmy Owens for the most all-time wins in series history, a back-and-forth battle likely to continue throughout the season. … Three early cautions slowed the action for R.J. Conley's lap-seven spin; Ben Adkins slowed on the ensuing restart. ... A lap-nine caution appeared for Shannon Thornsberry's flat tire. ... Seventeen drivers completed 50 laps. ... Steve Francis set fast time and earned the pole for the second time in three nights. ... Greggie Oliver, a $5,000 winner Thursday at Atomic Speedway, tagged the wall in time trials; he was 14th in the feature.

Lucas Oil points

(Through July 4)
1. Don O'Neal - 4,145
2. Jimmy Owens - 4,115
3. Scott Bloomquist - 3,805
4. Earl Pearson Jr. - 3,735
5. Steve Francis - 3,655
6. Eddie Carrier Jr. - 3,655
7. John Blankenship - 3,335
8. Jared Landers - 3,260
9. Dennis Erb Jr. - 3,090
10. Jason Hughes - 2,905
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