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Daily Dirt 02/05/2023 20:19:21

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April 5
411 Motor Speedway,
Seymour, TN
Sanction: Lucas Oil Late Model Dirt Series (Tennessee’s Action Track 50) - $12,000
Information provided by: Robert Holman (last updated April 13, 12:34 am)
Bailes leads flag-to-flag at 411 for first Lucas win
Tennessee’s Action Track 50
  1. Ross Bailes
  2. Donald McIntosh
  3. Jimmy Owens
  4. Jonathan Davenport
  5. Dale McDowell
  6. Kyle Bronson
  7. Ryan King
  8. Josh Richards
  9. Tyler Erb
  10. Earl Pearson Jr.
  11. Tim McCreadie
  12. Robby Moses
  13. Michael Chilton
  14. Jason Jameson
  15. Vic Hill
  16. Billy Moyer Jr.
  17. Stormy Scott
  18. Devin Moran
  19. Shanon Buckingham
  20. Don O'Neal
  21. Cory Hedgecock
  22. Hudson O'Neal
  23. Pierce McCarter
  24. David Crabtree
presented by
Heath Lawson/heathlawsonphotos.com
Ross Bailes waves to the crowd after winning his first career Lucas Oil Series feature.
What won the race: Making his first-ever start at 411 Motor Speedway, polesitter Ross Bailes of Clover, S.C., led all 50 laps to earn $12,000 for his first career Lucas Oil Dirt Late Model Series triumph. Bailes survived a caution with three laps remaining and pulled away from Donald McIntosh and Jimmy Owens over the final circuits to win.
Key notes: The Lucas Oil Late Model Dirt Series made its first-ever visit to 411 Motor Speedway as the tour kicked off a Tennessee-Georgia doubleheader weekend. … It begins a busy stretch for the Lucas Oil Series, with six races planned over a 10-day span.
On the move: Kyle Bronson of Brandon, Fla., started 15th and finished sixth.
Winner's sponsors: Bailes drives a Barry Wright Race Car powered by a Clements Racing Engine with sponsorship from C&H Paving, Felony Farms, Nichols Plumbing, Bailes Construction, Hoosier Tire and Penske Shocks.
Points chase: After 411: 1. Jonathan Davenport (1,390); 2. Tyler Erb (1,310); 3. Earl Pearson Jr. (1,265); 4. Devin Moran (1,150); 5. Josh Richards (1,120); 6. Tim McCreadie (1,045); 7. Don O’Neal (1,000); 8. Jimmy Owens (985); 9. Hudson O’Neal (970); T10. Jason Jameson (950); T10. Kyle Bronson (950); 12. Billy Moyer Jr. (885); 13. Shanon Buckingham (870); 14. Ryan King (865); 15. Scott Bloomquist (810).
Current weather: Cloudy, 61°F
Car count: 29
Fast qualifier: Ryan King
Time: 13.348 seconds
Polesitter: Ross Bailes
Heat race winners: Ross Bailes, Josh Richards, Dale McDowell, Jimmy Owens
Consolation race winners: Cory Hedgecock
Provisional starters: David Crabtree, Pierce McCarter
Next series race: April 13, Hagerstown Speedway (Hagerstown, MD) $12,000
Editor's note: Results and race details are unofficial.
By Robert Holman
DirtonDirt.com weekend editor

SEYMOUR, Tenn. — Ross Bailes of Clover, S.C., led all 50 laps at 411 Motor Speedway to win Friday’s Tennessee’s Action Track 50. Finishing comfortably ahead of Donald McIntosh of Dawsonville, Ga., Bailes, the polesitter, earned $12,000 for his first career Lucas Oil Dirt Late Model Series triumph.

Bailes pulled away after a lap-47 caution, the seventh of the race, that set up a three-lap dash to the finish. Sixth-starting McIntosh held off Jimmy Owens of Newport, Tenn., for the runner-up spot. Owens, who started fourth and quickly advanced to second early in the distance, battled McIntosh for second for more than 30 laps before settling for third.

Lucas Oil Series points leader Jonathan Davenport of Blairsville, Ga., rallied from ninth to finish fourth, while second-starting Dale McDowell of Chickamauga, Ga., slipped back three positions to complete the top five.

“I’ve led a few of these and … had a flat tire, you know … so, I’m very happy. It’s been a long time coming,” said Bailes, who was making his first-ever start at 411 Motor Speedway. “I’m excited to get the win. I feel like the first one is definitely the hardest one to get so hopefully we can start knocking them off now.”

Bailes beat fellow front-row starter McDowell into turn on on the opening lap and set sail in his Barry Wright Race Cars house car. He already had a 2.238-second lead by the time the second caution waved on lap seven and he repeatedly pulled away after each restart.

“I knew I had to get the holeshot,” said Bailes, who registered his first victory of 2019 in the BWRC house car. “The first 25 (laps) I felt like (the groove) was right around the bottom. I felt like I was gripped up really good right around the bottom. I knew it was gonna be hard for somebody to get by me around the outside. Once we got in lapped traffic, I was slowing way down to try and get by ‘em. They were actually pulling away from me a little bit, so I knew I had to change my lines a little bit. I went up top and got by one of the cars and once I got by him they were side-by-side in front of me. I just felt like the bottom was better for me, so I moved back down there.”

Bailes stayed well enough ahead of the battle for second between McIntosh and Owens. Owens took second on lap eight. while McIntosh was up to fourth by lap 10. McIntosh took the second spot from Owens on a lap-20 restart, but two laps later Owens reclaimed the position. The two fought for the bridesmaid role the rest of the feature.

“We went harder on tire than I feel like most everybody did and I was a little worried to start with, but I just kept gassing it up on the outside, hoping the outside edges would finally start digging on that thing (tire),” said McIntosh.”I feel like Jimmy didn’t realize the top was there quite as good as it was until I was able to slide him there. He raced me clean and boy it was fun. This place always races fun.

“There’s always concern you’re not gonna be able to get back past him, but that’s the fun of it, you know? That’s the game. What you’re trying to do is make good laps. And sometimes … the holes in (turns) one and two could really help you or hurt you. So yeah, to get past him, that was pretty cool.”

McIntosh finally wrestled second away on a lap-25 restart.

“Donald’s run here a lot and I’ve ran here quite a bit. He gets around this place good and it was fun,” said Owens. “We had a ball racing. I felt like I might have had him there, but that one takeoff I hit that hole and man I thought I knocked the rearend out of it. I don’t think we hurt nothing, but we’ll have to check it all.

“I let him get by me and we was able to fall back into third there and, you know, he was just running good up there on the high side. I moved around, went to the middle, I went to the high side for a lap when I was running second, but it didn’t really feel like there was anything up there without having to hustle the car. It was a little bit earlier, so I didn’t want to abuse my tires. I just tried to stay middle toward the bottom there and hoped it worked out.”

The race was slowed by seven cautions, including five in the first 25 circuits. Jason Jameson of Lawrenceburg, Ind., spun on lap two. Shanon Buckingham of Morristown, Tenn., slowed on lap seven. Vic Hill of Moshiem, Tenn., spun on lap 17 and Hudson O’Neal of Martinsville, Ind., slowed to a stop on lap 20. A second caution for Buckingham, this time on lap 25, was the final yellow during the first half of the main event.

The longest green-flag run — 19 laps — came from laps 26-46. Bailes reached lapped traffic for the first time on lap 39, but was confident enough in his BWRC machine to move to the outside as he worked around backmarkers. He maintained a 1-second lead over the final 12 laps, while McIntosh and Owens battled behind him. A spin by Stormy Scott of Las Cruces, N.M., on lap 46 and a spin by Seymour, Tenn.’s Cory Hedgecock on lap 47 set up the dash to the finish erasing Bailes’ lead.

“I’ve never been here, so I didn’t really know exactly were I needed to be,” Bailes admitted. “Being the leader, you don’t really know where you need to be anyways, plus it was a new place for me. So I was kinda happy to see that caution come out. That way I wasn’t running behind somebody, but at the same time, I felt really good when I moved up top. I knew my car was really maneuverable. I didn’t want to throw it off in there the first try. I was kind easing my way to see how far I could go … seeing how far I could push the limits.

“I think if I’d stayed up there probably two or three more laps, I probably would have gotten the hang of it because I definitely got the hang of it in (turns) one and two. (Turns) three and four I didn’t really figure out all the way so that’s why as soon as I cleared that lapped car I went back to the bottom. But then when that caution come out, Lance (Wright) was signaling for me and the way he was signaling, I wasn’t really pulling away. So I had to try something different in three and four and I went right through the middle and I felt like I gripped up a lot better right through there.”

Notes: Bailes is the sixth different winner in 10 Lucas Oil Late Model Dirt Series races this season. … Competing for the first time since breaking his thumb during a World of Outlaws Morton Buildings Late Model Series race at Smoky Mountain Speedway in Maryville, Tenn., on March 23, Josh Richards of Shinnston, W.Va., finished eighth. Richards, who had a splint on the injured digit, seemed no worse for the wear after winning the second heat and running inside the top five early in the feature. … Hall of Famer Scott Bloomquist of Mooresburg, Tenn., the tour’s winningest driver, is still sidelined while recovering from a mid-March motorcycle accident. … Jesse Lowe of Crossville, Tenn., was declared the winner of the Crate Late Model feature following the disqualificatons of apparent winner Jason Welshan and runner up Trevor Sise. … Jake Whitehead of Maryville, Tenn., won his third straight Sportsman Late Model feature.

Feature lineup

Row 1: Bailes, McDowell
Row 2: Richards, Owens
Row 3: King, McIntosh
Row 4: Moyer Jr., Moses
Row 5: Davenport, Pearson Jr.
Row 6: McCreadie, Erb
Row 7: Chilton, Scott
Row 8: Bronson, Moran
Row 9: Hedgecock, Buckingham
Row 10: Hill, Jameson
Row 11: H. O’Neal, D. O’Neal
Row 12: McCarter, Crabtree

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