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Daily Dirt 04/15/2024 19:45:38

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February 12
Volusia Speedway Park,
Barberville, FL
Sanction: DIRTcar Supers (Federated DIRTcar Nationals) - $7,000
Information provided by: Kevin Kovac and track reports (last updated February 15, 3:28 pm)
Persistent Pierce adds $7,000 rain-delayed win
Federated DIRTcar Nationals
  1. Bobby Pierce
  2. Tim McCreadie
  3. Cade Dillard
  4. Devin Moran
  5. Hudson O'Neal
  6. Chase Junghans
  7. Daulton Wilson
  8. Brandon Sheppard
  9. Max Blair
  10. Chris Madden
  11. Dylan Thompson
  12. Nick Hoffman
  13. Tyler Bruening
  14. Mark Whitener
  15. Cody Overton
  16. Todd Cooney
  17. Max McLaughlin
  18. Kyle Bronson
  19. Jordan Koehler
  20. Ricky Thornton Jr.
  21. Mike Marlar
  22. Drake Troutman
  23. Dennis Erb Jr.
  24. Ashton Winger
presented by
Josh James/joshjamesartwork.com
Bobby Pierce led the final 13 laps to win Monday's $7,000 rain-delayed feature.
What won the race: Taking advantage of a lap-13 restart and overtaking Mike Marlar, fourth-starting Bobby Pierce led the final 13 laps to win Monday's $7,000 rain-delayed 53rd annual Federated Auto Parts DIRTcar Nationals feature at Volusia Speedway Park. Pierce earned his second victory of the night and his third career DIRTcar Nationals gator trophy at Volusia; it's his fifth career Georgia-Florida Speedweeks triumph.
Quotable: “It was super treacherous (up by the cushion),” Pierce said. “I mean, it was to the point where even when I knew I had a pretty decent lead there at the end, I still had to tell myself every corner ‘don’t mess up, don’t get comfortable.’ It’s like an alligator up there, it’ll bite you and once you’re in it, you can’t get out. We survived, that was the big thing and then made the right moves, I think we made the right calls, too. (It was an) awesome night, this feels incredible."
Key notes: Ricky Thornton Jr. led the first 12 laps from the pole before making contact with the lapped car of Tyler Bruening, allowing Pierce and Mike Marlar to reduce his advantage; Marlar threw a turn-three slider on the 13th lap, causing Thornton to slow in the cushion and draw the race's first caution. Thornton restarted seventh, but pulled off on lap 18 after fading to 10th. ... The second-starting Marlar, of Winfield, Tenn., slowed on the ensuing restart to cause the second and final stoppage; he opted not to continue after his right-rear wheel was packed with mud. ... Sixth-starting Tim McCreadie moved into the runner-up spot on the lap-13 restart and trailed Pierce the rest of the way, finishing 0.826 of a second back. ... Cade Dillard started and finished third. ... Devin Moran finished fourth after taking the spot from Hudson O'Neal on lap 15; O'Neal rounded-out the top-five finishers. ... Brandon Sheppard improved six positions and finished eighth. ... Sheppard, Pierce and Marlar each topped Wednesday's $5,000 Triple 20s semifeatures earlier in the evening. ... Max Blair gained 14 spots and finished ninth. ... Originally scheduled as the DIRTcar Nationals opener, Monday's 25-lapper lasted 15 minutes, with 16 drivers completing the entire distance.
On the move: Devin Moran of Dresden, Ohio, started 21st and finished fourth.
Winner's sponsors: Pierce’s Longhorn Chassis is powered by a Vic Hill Racing Engine and carries sponsorship from Low Voltage Solutions, Inc., Rio Grande Waste Services, Inc., Hoker Trucking LLC, Mesilla Valley Transportation, Oakwood Tire Center, Bloomington Normal Truck Performance, Carnaghi Towing & Repair, Toyota of Danville, Floyd’s Waste Systems, PureMax Racing Oil, A Plus Vacuum, Leka Tree Service, Velocita, Bert Transmissions by Budda, Ted Brown’s Quality Paint & Body Shop, VP Race Fuels, Swift Springs, Bilstein Shocks, Dirt Car Lift and Performance Bodies.
Points chase: After Volusia Wednesday: 1. Cade Dillard (205); 2. Bobby Pierce (202); T-3. Devin Moran (186); T-3. Brandon Sheppard (186); 5. Max Blair (179); 6. Tim McCreadie (176); 7. Daulton Wilson (168); T-8. Hudson O’Neal (160); T-8. Ricky Thornton Jr. (160); 10. Mike Marlar (156).
Current weather: Clear, 54°F
Car count: 47
Fast qualifier: Ricky Thornton Jr.
Time: 15.666 seconds
Polesitter: Ricky Thornton Jr.
Heat race winners: Ricky Thornton Jr., Mike Marlar, Cade Dillard, Bobby Pierce
Consolation race winners: Devin Moran, Max McLaughlin
Next series race: March 8, Clarksville Speedway (Clarksville, TN) $10,000
Editor's note: Results and race details are unofficial.
From staff reports

BARBERVILLE, Fla. (Feb. 12) — Updates and results from Monday’s opening round of the 53rd annual Federated DIRTcar Nationals, featuring a 25-lap, $7,000-to-win feature for DIRTcar-sanctioned Super Late Models (results unofficial):

Feature

Taking advantage of a lap-13 restart and overtaking Mike Marlar, fourth-starting Bobby Pierce led the final 13 laps to win Monday's $7,000 rain-delayed 53rd annual Federated Auto Parts DIRTcar Nationals feature at Volusia Speedway Park. Pierce earned his second victory of the night and his third career DIRTcar Nationals gator trophy at Volusia; it's his fifth career Georgia-Florida Speedweeks triumph. Sixth-starting Tim McCreadie moved into the runner-up spot on the lap-13 restart and trailed Pierce the rest of the way, finishing 0.826 of a second back.

Wednesday's pre-race notes

Wednesday’s final night of DIRTcar-sanctioned Super Late Model action — featuring three $5,000-to-win, 20-lap semifeatures plus Monday’s postponed $7,000-to-win, 25-lap A-main — comes on a sunny day that saw the high temperature reach the upper 60s. … A week-high 48 cars are signed in; there are also 48 DIRTcar big-block modifieds entered for the Northeast-based division’s first of four programs. … Hudson O’Neal of Martinsville, Ind., is planning to compete in Wednesday’s show despite injuring his right hand in Tuesday’s multi-car feature wreck. He visited a hospital for evaluation of his hand and bo broken bones or fractures were found but his hand is tender around the webbing near his thumb. The Rocket1 car that the 23-year-old crashed is sidelined for the remainder of the week due to a bent lower frame rail so he’s running the machine he drove to a victory in last month’s Sunshine Nationals at Volusia. … Jimmy Owens of Newport, Tenn., is making his first start of the week after sticking to his plan to skip the first two programs. … Ryan Gustin of Marshalltown, Iowa, is also a first-time entrant this week, joining his car owner and teammate Todd Cooney of Des Moines, Iowa, in the field. Gustin spent the past two days in Daytona Beach with his wife and kids. … Bobby Pierce of Oakwood, Ill., has two cars unloaded: he’ll run the makeup feature with the machine he raced in Tuesday’s feature (he’s replaced the distributor that caught fire on the lap-17 restart) and pilot his other Longhorn in the 20-lap semifeature. … Nick Hoffman of Mooresville, N.C., is also planning to run two cars, reserving the vehicle he repaired after Tuesday’s major crash for the held-over feature and his primary World of Outlaws Longhorn for his 20-lapper. … Mike Marlar’s Skyline Motorsports crew was up until 3 a.m. replacing the rearend and other suspension parts that were damaged in Tuesday’s feature melee. … Ashton Winger of Hampton, Ga., has opted to switch to his second Jeff Mathews-owned Rocket Chassis after the car he drove on Tuesday sustained light frame damage in the feature tangle. … Teenager Tristan Chamberlain of Richmond, Ind., was knocked from contention while contending for a transfer spot in a Tuesday B-main due to a broken rearend. … Tyler Erb of New Waverly, Texas, posted a photo on social at 5:34 a.m. showing his car repaired from the damage it sustained in Tuesday's big wreck. ... Matt Cosner of Ridgeley, W.Va., is still sore from the bruised ribs he suffered last Thursday at East Bay Raceway Park in Gibsonton, Fla., so he’s calling in a replacement to drive his No. 66c: Mason Zeigler of Chalk Hill, Pa., who had previously discussed racing some Speedweeks events in Cosner’s second car. Cosner’s father said Zeigler wasn’t able to make it down for Wednesday’s action but is scheduled to fly to Florida on Thursday morning to finish out the week.

Rain postponement

Thanks to rain showers after all qualifying was completed, Monday's 25-lap, $7,000-to-win DIRTcar Nationals opener was postponed to Wednesday night following the originally scheduled Triple 20s racing program. The supporting USAC sprint car feature will be run on Tuesday night.

Feature lineup

(25 laps)
Row 1: Ricky Thornton Jr., Mike Marlar
Row 2: Cade Dillard, Bobby Pierce
Row 3: Hudson O'Neal, Tim McCreadie
Row 4: Chase Junghans, Kyle Bronson
Row 5: Daulton Wilson, Chris Madden
Row 6: Mark Whitener, Todd Cooney
Row 7: Dennis Erb Jr., Brandon Sheppard
Row 8: Nick Hoffman, Dylan Thompson
Row 9: Jordan Koehler, Tyler Bruening
Row 10: Drake Troutman, Cody Overton
Row 11: Devin Moran, Max McLaughlin
Row 12: Max Blair, Ashton Winger

Consolation results

(10 laps; top two transfer)

First consolation finish: Devin Moran, Max Blair, Daniel Hilsabeck, David Breazeale, Garrett Smith, Brent Larson, Brian Shirley, Stacy Boles, Tristan Chamberlain, Logan Zarin, Jason Fitzgerald, Codee Schneider. Scratched: Dale McDowell, Austin Smith

Second consolation finish: Max McLaughlin, Ashton Winger, Tyler Erb, Dustin Sorensen, Blair Nothdurft, Mike Spatola, Mike Benedum, Brian Booze, Amanda Robinson, Tim Lance, Dustin Walker, Seth Zacharias. Scratched: Ethan Dotson

Heat race recap

Ricky Thornton Jr. led all eight laps to win the first heat race by 0.790 of a second over Hudson O’Neal, earning the pole starting position for Monday’s $7,000-to-win DIRTcar Nationals opener. Daulton Wilson, Dennis Erb Jr. and Jordan Koehler completed the top five and will join Thornton and O’Neal in securing a starting spot in Monday’s main event. The first caution flew on the opening lap when Austin Smith and Tristan Chamberlain tangled coming to take the green, spinning on the frontstretch; Smith was unable to continue, while Chamberlain finished ninth. The second yellow was displayed on lap three when Codee Schneider slowed to a stop in turn three; he continued and placed 10th. … Mike Marlar dominated heat two, leading all the way to win by 2.138 seconds over third-starting Tim McCreadie. Chris Madden, Brandon Sheppard and Tyler Bruening round-out the top-five finishers and will compete in Monday’s 30-lapper. … Second-starting Cade Dillard led green-to-checkered to win heat three by 0.669 of a second over pole-starting Chase Junghans. Mark Whitener, Nick Hoffman and Drake Troutman finished 3-5 and will prepare for Monday’s feature. … Bobby Pierce ran away with the fourth and final heat race, leading the entire distance to win by 4.865 seconds over seventh-starting Kyle Bronson. Todd Cooney, Dylan Thompson and 10th-starting Cody Overton completed the top-five finishers.

Heat race results

(Eight laps; top five transfer)

First heat finish: Ricky Thornton Jr., Hudson O'Neal, Daulton Wilson, Dennis Erb Jr., Jordan Koehler, Dale McDowell, Brian Shirley, Jason Fitzgerald, Tristan Chamberlain, Codee Schneider, Daniel Hilsabeck, Austin Smith.

Second heat finish: Mike Marlar, Tim McCreadie, Chris Madden, Brandon Sheppard, Tyler Bruening, Devin Moran, Max Blair, Stacy Boles, David Breazeale, Brent Larson, Garrett Smith, Logan Zarin.

Third heat finish: Cade Dillard, Chase Junghans, Mark Whitener, Nick Hoffman, Drake Troutman, Ashton Winger, Tyler Erb, Blair Nothdurft, Amanda Robinson, Mike Spatola, Tim Lance, Dustin Walker.

Fourth heat finish: Bobby Pierce, Kyle Bronson, Todd Cooney, Dylan Thompson, Cody Overton, Max McLaughlin, Dustin Sorensen, Mike Benedum, Brian Booze, Seth Zacharias. Scratched: Ethan Dotson

Pre-race notes

The Dirt Late Model portion of the DIRTcar Nationals kicks off Monday with a 30-lap, $7,000-to-win DIRTcar-sanctioned event. The afternoon high temperature soared into the low 80s and the sun was shining for a spell, but around 4 p.m. clouds started moving in to signal a growing threat of rain and thunderstorms that peaks around 9 p.m. … The car count for the week’s opener sits at 47, one better than last year’s Monday night show. … Drivers who have haulers in the pits but aren’t racing Monday include Jimmy Owens of Newport, Tenn., David McCoy of Franklin, N.C., Ryan Gustin of Marshalltown, Iowa, Matt Cosner of Ridgeley, W.Va. (still nursing bruised ribs suffered Thursday at East Bay Raceway Park in Gibsonton, Fla.) and Jeff Mathews of Brandon, Fla. (not planning to race until Thursday). … Hudson O’Neal of Martinsville, Ind., who won last year’s DCN opener and finale, will chase another victory in the same Rocket Chassis house car that was sidelined Saturday by a heat-race accident at East Bay. The team spent seven hours repairing the machine on Sunday. … Defending World of Outlaws Case Late Model Series champion Bobby Pierce of Oakwood, Ill., is back in Speedweeks action for the first time since last month’s Sunshine Nationals at Volusia. His racing in between came in a couple super saloon starts during his trip to New Zealand. … Brandon Sheppard of New Berlin, Ill., Tim McCreadie of Watertown, N.Y., and Tyler Erb of New Waverly, Texas, are among about a dozen Late Model teams parked in Volusia’s lower Gator Pond pit area, where a gator was spotted floating in the water throughout the day. … Jason Fitzgerald of Middleburg, Fla., is behind the wheel of Florida teenager Trey Mills’s car. … WoO technical director Kenny Kenneda is sporting a red, sore right eye after something got into it while he was helping conduct a safety seminar on Sunday.

Time trials

Group A
Driver (car no.), hometown, time (unofficial)
1. Ricky Thornton Jr. (20rt), Chandler, Ariz., 15.666
2. Hudson O’Neal (1), Martinsville, Ind., 15.810
3. Dennis Erb Jr. (28), Carpentersville, Ill., 15.876
4. Daulton Wilson (18D), Fayetteville, N.C., 16.006
5. Jordan Koehler (114), Mount Airy, N.C., 16.018
6. Dale McDowell (17m), Chickamauga, Ga., 16.074
7. Austin Smith (11), Rome, Ga., 16.096
8. Daniel Hilsabeck (22), Earlham, Iowa, 16.115
9. Brian Shirley (3s), Chatham, Ill., 16.212
10. Tristan Chamberlain (20tc), Richmond, Ind., 16.265
11. Jason Fitzgerald (14jr), Middleburg, Fla., 16.406
12. Codee Schneider (14c), New London, Ohio, 18.492
Group B
1. Mike Marlar (157), Winfield, Tenn., 15.725
2. Chris Madden (44), Gray Court, S.C., 15.776
3. Tim McCreadie (39), Watertown, N.Y., 15.789
4. Tyler Bruening, (16), Decorah, Iowa, 15.871
5. Brandon Sheppard (B5), New Berlin, Ill., 15.875
6. Max Blair (111), Centerville, Pa., 15.913
7. Devin Moran (99), Dresden, Ohio, 15.931
8. Garrett Smith (10), Eatonton, Ga., 16.115
9. Stacy Boles (11B), Clinton, Tenn., 16.171
10. Logan Zarin (1z), Moon Township, Pa., 16.206
11. David Breazeale (54), Four Corners, Miss., 16.547
12. Brent Larson (B1), Lake Elmo, Minn., 16.613
Group C
1. Chase Junghans (18), Manhattan, Kan., 16.085
2. Cade Dillard (97), Robeline, La., 16.097
3. Mark Whitener (5), Middleburg, Fla., 16.155
4. Drake Troutman (7T), Hyndman, Pa., 16.218
5. Ashton Winger (12), Hampton, Ga., 16.271
6. Nick Hoffman (9), Mooresville, N.C., 16.384
7. Blair Nothdurft (76), Renner, S.D., 16.428
8. Amanda Robinson (4), Georgetown, Del., 16.428
9. Tyler Erb (1T), New Waverly, Texas, 16.553
10. Mike Spatola (89), Manhattan, Ill., 16.818
11. Tim Lance (48), Brimfield, Ill., 16.845
12. Dustin Walker (14w), Polk, Mo., 17.795
Group D
1. Bobby Pierce (32), Oakwood, Ill., 15.953
2. Todd Cooney (30), Des Moines, Iowa, 16.290
3. Dylan Thompson (99T), Paducah, Ky., 16.360
4. Mike Benedum (25), Salem, W.Va., 16.373
5. Max McLaughlin (22*), Mooresville, N.C., 16.377
6. Dustin Sorensen (19), Rochester, Minn., 16.396
7. Kyle Bronson (40B), Brandon, Fla., 16.402
8. Ethan Dotson (174), Bakersfield, Calif., 16.420
9. Seth Zacharias (17z), Vestal, N.Y., 16.667
10. Cody Overton (97c), Evans, Ga., 16.735
11. Brian Booze (B2), Greencastle, Pa., 17.079

Monday’s schedule

(All times local)
Noon - Ticket sales, will call, pit pass sales begin
1 p.m. - Pits open
3 p.m. - Pits cleared and re-open
4 p.m. - Grandstands open
4:45 p.m. - Drivers’ meeting
5:30 p.m. - On-track activity begins
- Sprint car hot laps
- Sprint car group qualifying (2 laps)
- Late Model hot laps
- Late Model group qualifying (2 laps)
Opening ceremonies
- Sprint car heats (8 laps)
- Late Model heats (8 laps)
- Sprint car consolation (12 laps)
- Late Model consolations (10 laps)
Feature events
- Sprint cars (25 laps)
- Late Models (25 laps)

Feature lineup

Row 1: Thornton, Marlar
Row 2: Dillard, Pierce
Row 3: O'Neal, McCreadie
Row 4: Junghans, Bronson
Row 5: Wilson, Madden
Row 6: Whitener, Cooney
Row 7: D. Erb Jr., Sheppard
Row 8: Hoffman, Thompson
Row 9: Koehler, Bruening
Row 10: Troutman, C. Overton
Row 11: Moran, McLaughlin
Row 12: Blair, Winger
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