Hollingsworth's DQ lifts English to Columbus win
By Roby HelmNeSmith Chevrolet Dirt Late Model Series
COLUMBUS, Miss. (April 17) — Teenager Tanner English of Benton, Ky., in the was awarded Friday's NeSmith Chevrolet Dirt Late Model Series win in the 40-lap feature at Columbus Speedway after the disqualification of apparent winner Ronny Lee Hollingsworth of Northport, Ala. During the postrace inspection,Hollingsworth’s crate engine was found to have illegal valve springs, handing the fast qualifier and polesitter English the victory.
English took the lead on lap two from Derrick Rainey of Powder Springs, Ga., but lost the point to Hollingsworth after a lap-26 restart. English looked like he was going to have to settle for second after leading 27 laps of the race, but the technical inspection changed things in English’s favor.
Jim McDuffie of Meridian, Miss., finished second followed by hometown driver Rick Rickman, Shawn Edwards of Louisville, Miss., and Jay Blair of Angie, La. Two-time series champ David Gentry of Lewisburg, Tenn., extended his point lead with a seventh-place finish.
Gentry holds the points lead over Larry Boutwell of Baker, Fla., who started third but cut down a tire early and ended up 13th.
Notes: English, the son of former UMP DIRTcar series weekly champion Terry English, piloted a Rayburn Race Car sponsored by Garner Brothers Line. ... Sixteen cars finished on the lead lap. ... Eric Cooley earned hard charger honors with his 22nd-to-11th run. ... The second race of the Columbus weekend doubleheader across town at Magnolia Motor Speedway was rained out.
NeSmith Chevrolet @ Columbus: (1) Tanner English, (2) Jim McDuffie, (3) Rick Rickman, (4) Shawn Edwards, (5) Jay Blair, (6) Ben McCreary, (7) David Gentry, (8) Brad Hall, (9) Frank Ingram, (10) Chase Washington, (11) Eric Cooley, (12) Cliff Williams, (13) Larry Boutwell, (14) Derrick Rainey, (15) Matthew Turner, (16) Randall Beckwith, (17) Johnny Stokes, (18) Jason Wilson, (19) Charlie Henderson, (20) Greg Allen, (21) Mark Stokes, (22) Lucky Keeton, (23) Jody Knowles. Disqualified: Ronny Lee Hollingsworth. Fast qualifier (among 39 cars): English, 14.625 seconds. Heat race winners: Hollingsworth, Allen, McCreary, Blair. Consolation winners: Turner, Keeton. Provisional starter: Wilson.