BOONE, Iowa (April 30) —Putting the frustrations of an up-and-down season behind him, Cade Dillard of Robeline, La., overtook race-long leader Brandon Sheppard of New Berlin, Ill., amid traffic on lap 19 in the first of two 25-lap Hawkeye 100 preliminary night features Friday night at Boone Speedway and pulled away to his first World of Outlaws Morton Buildings Late Model Series victory of the season.
Starting from the third spot, Dillard took second from polesitter Billy Moyer of Batesville, Ark., early in the race, then kept pace with second-starting Sheppard as the two leaders pulled away from the field. When Sheppard struggled to pass a slower car using the low groove in turns one and two on lap 19, Dillard used high side momentum to cross over Sheppard down the back straightaway and cleared him for the lead in turn three.
Dillard put two lapped cars between himself and Sheppard on the next lap and never looked back. He took checkers 1.917 seconds ahead of Sheppard to earn the third WoO victory of his career.
“I felt like we got better at the end,” said Dillard, who later finished ninth in Friday’s second 25-lap feature after rolling a 12-car inversion and starting the race from the sixth row. “It would’ve definitely been hard to pass if it wasn’t for lapped traffic. Brandon was really good. I knew he’d run me really clean there. He slipped up over there in lapped traffic and I was able to get a run.”
Still looking for his first points-paying victory of the season, Sheppard settled for second, 1.917 seconds behind Dillard at the finish line. Moyer settled for third with sixth-starting Chris Madden of Gray Court, S.C., and fourth-starting Bobby Pierce of Oakwood, Ill., rounding out the top five.
Friday’s action featured a pair of 25-lap, $3,000-to-win preliminary features; originally the field was to be split for the two races, but with 24 cars signed in WoO officials decided to have all entrants run both events. The first 25-lapper was aligned from time trials and offered full WoO points; the nightcap had a 12-car inversion from the first race's finish and was a non-point WoO A-main. Drivers' accumulated event points from Friday's time trials and twin features to be used to set up the heat races for Saturday's $30,000-to-win Hawkeye 100.
Cade Dillard of Robeline, La., overtook race-long leader Brandon Sheppard of New Berlin, Ill., amid traffic on lap 19 of Friday’s first 25-lap World of Outlaws Morton Buildings Late Model Series feature at Boone Speedway and pulled away through the closing laps to earn his first series victory of the season. He took the checkers 1.917 seconds ahead of Sheppard to win the first of two preliminary night features that set the lineup for heat races for Saturday’s $30,000-to-win Hawkeye 100 at Boone.
First preliminary feature lineup
Row 1: Billy Moyer, Brandon Sheppard
Row 2: Cade Dillard, Bobby Pierce
Row 3: Frank Heckenast Jr., Chris Madden
Row 4: Ryan Gustin, Tyler Bruening
Row 5: Boom Briggs, Shannon Babb
Row 6: Dennis Erb Jr., Spencer Diercks
Row 7: Gordy Gundaker, Chris Simpson
Row 8: Chad Mahder, Daniel Hilsabeck
Row 9: Logan Martin, Richie Gustin Jr.
Row 10: Ricky Weiss, Kyle Strickler
Row 11: Jeremy Grady, Brent Larson
Row 12: Chase Junghans, Brennon Willard
Billy Moyer (21), Batesville, Ark., 14.577
Brandon Sheppard (1), New Berlin, Ill., 14.608
Cade Dillard (97), Robeline, La., 14.629
Bobby Pierce (32), Oakwood, Ill., 14.639
Frank Heckenast Jr. (99jr), Frankfort, Ill., 14.648
Chris Madden (44), Gray Court, S.C., 14.698
Ryan Gustin (19), Marshalltown, Iowa, 14.793
Tyler Bruening (16), Decorah, Iowa, 14.843
Boom Briggs (99B), Bear Lake, Pa., 14.919
Shannon Babb (18), Moweaqua, Ill., 14.982
Dennis Erb Jr. (28), Carpentersville, Ill., 15.033
Spencer Diercks (29D), Davenport, Iowa, 15.035
Gordy Gundaker (11), St. Charles, Mo., 15.095
Chris Simpson (32), Oxford, Iowa, 15.117
Chad Mahder (33C), Eau Claire, Wis., 15.232
Daniel Hilsabeck (22H), Adel, Iowa, 15.390
Logan Martin (36), West Plains, Mo., 15.455
Richie Gustin Jr. (19G), Marshalltown, Iowa, 15.471
Ricky Weiss (7W), Headingley, Manitoba, 15.488
Kyle Strickler (8), Mooresville, N.C., 15.510
Jeremy Grady (43), Story City, Iowa, 15.514
Brent Larson (B1), Lake Elmo, Minn., 15.812
Chase Junghans (18), Manhattan, Kan., 15.915
Brennon Willard (3W), Lebanon, Mo., 15.972