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DirtonDirt.com exclusive

Poll Position: Bloomquist jumps to fifth after VMS

April 17, 2012, 11:31 am

Welcome to one of the newest DirtonDirt.com features, Poll Position, as DirtonDirt.com staffers Michael Rigsby, Todd Turner and Joshua Joiner rank the nation's top 25 Dirt Late Model racers by consensus. Future rankings will appear every Tuesday at DirtonDirt.com.

1. Don O’Neal, Martinsville, Ind.

Comment: Recovers to finish third in the $25,000 feature after a slow start to Virginia Motor Speedway’s Commonwealth 100 weekend. Series points: Second (Lucas Oil). Last week's ranking: 1st (nc)

2. Darrell Lanigan, Union, Ky.

Comment: Rain washes out plans to enter Eldora’s season opener. Series points: First (World of Outlaws). Last week's ranking: 2nd (nc)

3. Billy Moyer, Batesville, Ark.

Comment: Scores two more victories over the weekend to reach nine on the season; and it’s only April. Series points: None. Last week's ranking: 4th (+1)

4. Jimmy Owens, Newport, Tenn.

Comment: Another top-five run on the Lucas Oil tour gets spoiled by a last-lap flat tire at VMS. Series points: First (Lucas Oil). Last week's ranking: 3rd (-1)

5. Scott Bloomquist, Mooresburg, Tenn.

Comment: Out-tires Commonwealth 100 field for a turnaround victory worth $25,000. Series points: Eighth (Lucas Oil). Last week's ranking: 10th (+5)

6. Steve Francis, Ashland, Ky.

Comment: Never a factor at VMS in finishing 15th. Series points: Fourth (Lucas Oil). Last week's ranking: 5th (-1)

7. Dale McDowell, Chickamauga, Ga.

Comment: Former Lucas Oil Series regular plans to enter his first series events of the season at this weekends Roaring Knob-Hagerstown doubleheader. Series points: None. Last week's ranking: 7th (nc)

8. Dennis Erb Jr., Carpentersville, Ill.

Comment: Late-race flat spurs Commonwealth 100 heartbreak for the race’s dominant driver. Series points: Sixth (Lucas Oil). Last week's ranking: 8th (nc)

9. Jonathan Davenport, Blairsville, Ga.

Comment: Salvages a fifth-place effort at VMS, keeping alive his season-long top-10 streak in Lucas Oil points-paying events. Series points: Third (Lucas Oil). Last week's ranking: 6th (-3)

10. Josh Richards, Shinnston, W.Va.

Comment: Another WoO off weekend will allow Richards to enter Lucas Oil events at Roaring Knob and Hagerstown. Series points: Second (World of Outlaws). Last week's ranking: 9th (-1)

11. Jimmy Mars, Menomonie, Wis.

Comment: Another Cedar Lake weekly event produces a runner-up to new teammate A.J. Diemel. Series points: None. Last week's ranking: 12th (+1)

12. Rick Eckert, York, Pa.

Comment: After a heat race victory in Friday’s prelims, mechanical issues sideline Eckert early in Saturday’s Commonwealth feature. Series points: Third (World of Outlaws). Last week's ranking: 11th (-1)

13. Jared Landers, Batesville, Ark.

Comment: Commonwealth 100 polesitter fails to capitalize on his prime starting spot with a seventh-place finish. Series points: Seventh (Lucas Oil). Last week's ranking: 13th (nc)

14. Shannon Babb, Moweaqua, Ill.

Comment: Plans to enter a pair of home-state events at Tri-City and Peoria washed out by rain. Series points: None. Last week's ranking: 14th (nc)

15. John Blankenship, Williamson, W.Va.

Comment: Becomes one of the many victims of an abrasive VMS surface after advancing from 16th to second. Series points: 10th (Lucas Oil). Last week's ranking: 18th (+3)

16. Tim McCreadie, Watertown, N.Y.

Comment: After earning the pole of a Commonwealth 100 heat race, McCreadie’s weekend at VMS went mostly downhill from there. Series points: Seventh (World of Outlaws). Last week's ranking: 17th (+1)

17. Chris Madden, Gray Court, S.C.

Comment: Advances from 24th to fourth at VMS after sneaking into the main event with a last-lap pass for the final transfer spot in a consolation race. Series points: First (Ultimate). Last week's ranking: 24th (+7)

18. Shane Clanton, Fayetteville, Ga.

Comment: A quiet weekend at VMS produces a 10th-place Commonwealth 100 finish. Series points: Fourth (World of Outlaws). Last week's ranking: 15th (-3)

19. Ray Cook, Brasstown, N.C.

Comment: After skipping the Commonwealth 100, Cook plans to return to the Lucas Oil tour for events at Roaring Knob and Hagerstown. Series points: 13th (Lucas Oil). Last week's ranking: 16th (-3)

20. Jesse Stovall, Galena, Mo.

Comment: Rebounds from early flat to finish second in Lucas Oil Speedway’s MLRA event. Series points: First (MARS), third (MLRA). Last week's ranking: 21st (+1)

21. Eddie Carrier Jr., Salt Rock, W.Va.

Comment: Dominates Southern Ohio Speedway’s season opener for a $2,000 payday at the 4/10-mile oval. Series points: None. Last week's ranking: 22nd (+1)

22. Austin Hubbard, Seaford, Del.

Comment: Home-track struggles continue with a 14th-place Commonwealth 100 finish for the former Virginia Motor Speedway Late Model champion. Series points: 12th (Lucas Oil). Last week's ranking: 19th (-3)

23. Will Vaught, Crane, Mo.

Comment: Rallies to finish fourth at Wheatland. Series points: First (MLRA). Last week's ranking: Not ranked

24. John Anderson, Omaha, Neb.

Comment: Survives Wheatland’s rough surface for first 2012 victory. Series points: Second (MLRA). Last week's ranking: Not ranked

25. Casey Roberts, Toccoa, Ga.

Comment: Commonwealth 100 fast-timer runs into trouble in the main event. Series points: Second (Ultimate). Last week’s ranking: 25th (nc)

DROPPED OUT: Chub Frank, Mike Marlar.
OUTSIDE LOOKING IN: Chub Frank, Mike Marlar, Greg Johnson, Dennis Franklin, Bub McCool.

DirtonDirt Top 25

1. Don O'Neal (nc)
2. Darrell Lanigan (nc)
3. Billy Moyer (+1)
4. Jimmy Owens (-1)
5. Scott Bloomquist (+5)
6. Steve Francis (-1)
7. Dale McDowell (nc)
8. Dennis Erb Jr. (nc)
9. Jonathan Davenport (-3)
10. Josh Richards (-1)
11. Jimmy Mars (+1)
12. Rick Eckert (-1)
13. Jared Landers (nc)
14. Shannon Babb (nc)
15. John Blankenship (+3)
16. Tim McCreadie (+1)
17. Chris Madden (+7)
18. Shane Clanton (-3)
19. Ray Cook (-3)
20. Jesse Stovall (+1)
21. Eddie Carrier Jr. (+1)
22. Austin Hubbard (-3)
23. Will Vaught (new)
24. John Anderson (new)
25. Casey Roberts (nc)

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