Sunday, April 5, 2015

Fwd: Volunteer (TN) Speedway - Press Release: 4/4/15

Ogle leads flag-to-flag for Carolina Clash $4,000 'Border Wars' victory at Volunteer Speedway

By Robert Walden
Volunteer Speedway - Media/Public Relations
BULLS GAP, Tenn. (April 4, 2015) — Volunteer Speedway opened its 42nd year of exciting dirt-track racing by hosting the Carolina Clash Super Late Model Series for the first of five scheduled visits by the series in 2015 to the legendary East Tennessee high-banked oval.
Chad Ogle of Sevierville proved to be class of the field in earning bragging rights for the Volunteer State, with a very impressive flag-to-flag run to the $4,000 "Carolinas vs. Tennessee Border Wars at The Gap" victory.
Ogle set the standard in pole qualifying with a fast-lap at 13.435 seconds among the 20 cars present, with five-time Volunteer Speedway Super Late Model champion Vic Hill second-quickest.
Ogle grabbed the lead over Hill, Chris Madden, Mark Douglas and Mack McCarter at the start. Setting a blistering pace out front in the early going, Ogle pulled out to a full-straightaway advantage over Hill and Madden by lap 10. Bobby Mays spun in the fourth turn on lap 13 to bring out the event's first caution.
With Ogle showing the way out front on the restart, behind him Madden quickly got around Hill to take over second spot in the running order. Just behind the front-running trio, Douglas, McCarter, Riley Hickman, Jensen Ford and Mark Vineyard were battling three-wide at times jockeying for real estate.
Madden closed in behind leader Ogle and appeared to possibly be biding his time, just waiting to make a move at the opportune moment while they negotiated lapped traffic. However, Madden took several looks under Ogle on both ends of the track in the corners but couldn't pull the trigger to complete the pass.
The scenario of the race took a dramatic turn on lap 28, when a good run for Douglas ended as he suddenly began to slow just past the start-finish line entering the first turn, before finally coming to a stop high in the banking at exit of turn two to bring the caution out. While the field slowly circled the track, second-running Madden pulled into the pits off turn four to attention from his crew. They removed the hood and looked underneath and shook their heads, their race prematurely had also come to an end.
Just one lap back under green the caution quickly waved once again, when Donald McIntosh looped his mount in turn four.
On the ensuing restart Hickman got around Hill for second place and set his sights ahead on leader Ogle. But there would be no catching Ogle, driving the GEO Services, Geotechnical & Materials Engineers/Ogle's Neighborhood Service & Towing/Brooks Malone/Hoosier Racing Tire/Matlock Decal Co./Custom Race Engines/Rocket Chassis/No. 10 Chevrolet Corvette, as he won by right at a two-second margin over Hickman, Hill, McCarter and Vineyard.
Completing the top 10 finishers were Ford, Austin Smith, NASCAR Camping World Truck Series competitor Joey Coulter, McIntosh and Kyle Pierce.
"We had a really strong car tonight," said a smiling Ogle in victory lane. "This is really a great win for our team, just a good boost overall for our confidence. Bad luck, it seems like all we had last year was bad luck. We'd be having a good run and either have motor issues or get caught up in a wreck. It was kind of like we just couldn't catch a lucky break or something.
"We switched car (chassis) brands for this year, getting us a Rocket Chassis. And if tonight's any indication, we definitely made the right decision. We haven't won a race since back in 2013 when we won that Southern Regional Racing Series show here. That's what it's all about – winning races. With this new car we've got and how good it's performing, I'm excited about racing and can't wait until the next race. Hopefully we're really going to have us a good season racing."
The Carolina Clash Super Late Model Series will make its next visit to Volunteer Speedway in just two short weeks on Saturday, April 18 for running of the 14th annual Spring Thaw paying $6,000-to-win. With NASCAR race fans in the region attending racing at Bristol Motor Speedway, round two of Border Wars at The Gap promises to be a must-see event.
Tim Byrd of Jonesborough, the 2013 Crate Late Model track champion, led all 25 laps en route to capturing the $700 Sportsman Late Model feature win.
Bryson Dennis of Greeneville, 18 years old and last season's Crate Late Model Rookie-of-the-Year, earned the pole position in time-trials over the stellar 23-car field. Byrd was second-quickest and started outside of the front row.
Byrd powered into the lead over Dennis, Warren McMahan, Josh Henry and Gary Crittenden on the opening lap. The veteran McMahan got around Dennis for second on the third circuit. Caution waved for McMahan on lap 9, which relegated him to rear of the field for the restart.
Back under green, Byrd once again smashed the loud pedal to pull ahead of Henry, Crittenden, Jordon Horton and Dennis. While Byrd was in control out front, behind him back through the field racing action was intense. Crittenden spun late in the race on lap 22, which set up a three-lap sprint to the checkers.
Byrd, driving the Charles Byrd & Son Logging/Unaka Forest Products/RDM Trucking/Grace Salon/Team Afco/AR Bodies/TNT Race Cars/No. 24 Chevrolet Camaro, held the hard-charging Henry off for the victory. Finishing third through fifth respectively were Horton, Tim Maupin and Dennis.
Chris Rickett of Morristown jumped out into the lead at drop of the green flag over Gary Blanken and Kurt Owens in the Modified Street feature, with the trio in a tight battle up front. Blanken and Owens tangled between turns three and four on lap 9 to bring out the caution.
Rickett led Mike Mays and Jamie Whitt on the restart, but Owens and Blanken were hard on the throttle working their way back into contention. Owens got around Mays with five circuits remaining and closed to Rickett's rear bumper coming to the white flag. But Rickett would not be denied a visit to victory lane as he won over Owens, Blanken, Mays and Tyler Smith.
The new Pure Stock division for 2015 had only four cars for their inaugural race, but you couldn't ask for a more exciting finish. Alex Vance of Waynesville, N.C., pulled off the race-winning move on the final lap between turns three and four to pass Jason Long for the victory, with Eddie Adams and Kevin Crane following.
Showing Finish Position, Starting Position In Parentheses, Driver Name, Car Number, Hometown, Laps Completed In Parentheses
1. (1) Chad Ogle #10-Sevierville, TN (40)
2. (7) Riley Hickman #r1-Chattanooga, TN (40)
3. (2) Vic Hill #1-Morristown, TN (40)
4. (6) Mack McCarter #51-Gatlinburg, TN (40)
5. (8) Mark Vineyard #4-Powell, TN (40)
6. (5) Jensen Ford #83-Jonesborough, TN (40)
7. (11) Austin Smith #11-Cedartown, GA (40)
8. (12) Joey Coulter #2-Welcome, NC (40)
9. (10) Donald McIntosh #7-Dawsonville, GA (40)
10. (14) Kyle Pierce #281-Statesville, NC (40)
11. (18) Ben Watkins #16-Rock Hill, SC (40)
12. (16) Forrest Trent #101-Talbott, TN (40)
13. (9) Bobby Mays #25-Jonesborough, TN (40)
14. (15) Doug Sanders #42-Springwood, NC (39)
15. (20) Kevin Wilson #618-Stoneville, NC (37)
16. (3) Chris Madden #44-Gaffney, SC (28)
17. (4) Mark Douglas #52D-Knoxville, TN (28)
18. (13) Roger Best #007-Louisville, TN (19)
19. (19) Travis Greer #11g-Marion, VA (15)
20. (17) Arthur Walker #87-Forest, VA (2)
1. Tim Byrd #24
2. Josh Henry #25
3. Jordon Horton #1G
4. Tim Maupin #2
5. Bryson Dennis #10
6. Chris Chandler #88
7. Gary Blanken #05
8. Jesse Helton #57
9. Andy Ogle #68
10. Aaron Guinn #97
11. Adam Mitchell #50
12. Austin Atkins #14
13. Eric Weber #25
14. Jody Horton #56j
15. Richard Adkins #73
16. Gary Crittenden #18
17. Kip Sawyer #11
18. Forrest Trent #101
19. Warren McMahan #33
20. Cody Brake #58
21. Stephen Martin #46
22. Steve Carr #77
23. Josh Evans #119
1. Chris Rickett #36
2. Kurt Owens #14
3. Gary Blanken #05
4. Mike Mays #30
5. Tyler Smith #32
6. Tony Horton #56
7. Jamie Whitt #1
8. David Bullington #20
Did Not Start: Jon Cook #0z, Kaleb Trent #3
PURE STOCK (10 laps)
1 Alex Vance #95
2. Jason Long #15
3. Eddie Adams #9
4. Kevin Crane #52
Larry Lee - Carolina Clash Super Late Model Series: (910) 263-2285
Mark Huey - Carolina Clash Super Late Model Series Public Relations: (803) 609-5532
Volunteer Speedway (Recording Only): 423-235-5020
Phyllis Loven (Track Owner): 423-676-9081

*** Chad Ogle images courtesy of official Volunteer Speedway photographer Randall Perry.

Saturday, August 23, 2014

McDowell pockets $10,000 for Volunteer Speedway Lucas Oil Late Model Dirt Series ‘Scorcher’ victory

 McDowell pockets $10,000 for Volunteer Speedway Lucas Oil Late Model Dirt Series 'Scorcher' victory


 Dale McDowell - Lucas Oil Late Model Dirt Series (11th Annual Scorcher - Winner)

By Robert Walden
Volunteer Speedway Media/Public Relations

BULLS GAP, Tenn. (Aug. 21, 2014) — Dale McDowell of Chickamauga, Georgia, has won a national touring dirt series championship and crown jewel races during his illustrious racing career. And over the years he's captured special event victories at Volunteer Speedway.

Thursday night before a huge crowd at "The Gap" for the Lucas Oil Late Model Dirt Series $10,000-to-win 11th annual Scorcher, presented by Reece Monument Co. and O'Reilly Auto Parts, the 48-year-old McDowell wrote his name in the track's record books with his first-ever Scorcher victory.

In preliminary action, Scott Bloomquist set fast-time during qualifying amongst the 27 entries with a quick lap at 12.242 seconds. Bloomquist, McDowell, and Eddie Carrier Jr. won their respective heat races, with three-time defending series champion Jimmy Owens winning the B-main.

 Scott Bloomquist No. 0 - Eric Jacobsen No. 5 - Jimmy Owens No. 20

Bloomquist jumped out to the lead at the start over McDowell and Blankenship, but the event's first caution waved just two laps in when defending Scorcher winner Chris Madden's car broke a driveshaft.

Immediately back under green and racing down the backstretch into the third turn, leader Bloomquist ran over debris remaining from Madden's broken driveshaft with the right-rear tire exploding on his car. Behind him a major pileup collected Eddie Carrier Jr., Earl Pearson Jr., Eric Jacobsen, Brad Neat, Steve Francis, Chad Ogle, Jason Papich, and Jason Welshan between turns three and four to bring out the caution and then red flag to allow for cleanup.

With Bloomquist pulling into the pits for attention from his crew, along with other drivers stopping on the front straightaway to let series officials pull away bent sheet-metal, Neat was the only driver to retire from the race.

McDowell inherited the lead for the ensuing restart, and with a clear track ahead he flexed the muscle under his ECR Engines/Klotz Synthetic Lubricants/Cometic Gasket/Ferris Commercial Mowers/Bad Boy Buggies/National Boiler Service/Big Dog Motorsports/FK Rod Ends/Integra Racing Shocks/Allstar Performance/Schoenfeld/Hoosier Racing Tires/Warrior Race Cars/Team Dillon Racing/No. 17m Chevrolet Impala SS, to quickly start putting some distance between himself and his closest challengers Blankenship and Mike Marlar.

Bloomquist, who was battling his way back up through the field following his early race incident, was involved in the race's final caution on lap 22 after tangling with Jason Welshan, Ellery Leake and Pearson between turns one and two.

Once again on the restart McDowell moved back out ahead over Blankenship and Marlar, while behind the front-running trio racing action all around the track was two- and three-wide at times as drivers battled for real estate around the high banks. After having to run the B-main, the night got even tougher for current points leader Owens as he dropped out with transmission issues at the midpoint of the race.

With McDowell setting a blistering pace out front during the final 28 consecutive laps under green, eyes were focused on the battle for second place between Blankenship and Marlar. But you could definitely hear a buzz from the crowd as they were noticing the hard-charging Bloomquist making his way back up through the field after being involved in two cautions.

After Bloomquist got around Billy Ogle Jr., Don O'Neal and Jared Landers to settle in the fourth position with just eight laps remaining, he managed to close to Marlar and Blankenship to make it a tight three-car battle behind leader McDowell.

But there would be no denying McDowell a trip to victory lane, his first in Lucas Oil Late Model Dirt Series competition since back in the fall of 2010 at Portsmouth (Ohio) Raceway Park. He also became the 15th driver to win with the series this season.

McDowell was chased to the checkered flag by Marlar, Blankenship, Bloomquist and Landers.

Completing the top 10 finishers were O'Neal, Billy Ogle Jr., Jacobsen, Dennis Erb Jr. and Papich.

"It's been a while since we last won a Lucas Oil race," said a smiling McDowell after climbing from his car on the front straightaway in victory lane. "I want to thank all you fans that came out tonight, man, what an awesome crowd. We didn't really start off so well early in the night during hotlaps, but we made some changes on the car and timed-in fifth fastest in qualifying and then won the second heat. But there on the start, Scott (Bloomquist) really jumped out quickly to a pretty good lead in just two laps. I don't think any of us had anything for him had he stayed out front.

"Once you get out into the lead you just never want to get feeling too comfortable, because when Bloomquist and those other cars got together and wrecked between turns one and two, somehow I just barely made it through there. I'm thinking maybe it was the 29-car (Jason Welshan) I got into a little bit, and it tore the door up pretty good on my car. I want to thank everyone at Team Dillon Racing and my brother, Shane McDowell, and all the other guys on the crew. Also, we had a really good Warrior Race Car tonight and I want to thank Sanford Goddard and those guys down there. Being they're just down the road in Knoxville, this is like a home-track Lucas Oil Late Model Dirt Series national touring win for them." 

Greg Estes of Jonesville, Virginia, was class of the field as he cruised to victory in the Modified Hobby feature over Chris Rickett, Jamie Whitt, Ronnie "Fireball" Roberts and Willie Bussler.


Showing Finish Position, Starting Position In Parentheses, Driver Name, Car Number, Hometown, Money Earned

1. (2) Dale McDowell #17m-Chickamauga, GA $10,000
2. (12) Mike Marlar #157-Winfield, TN $5,500
3. (4) John Blankenship #23-Williamson, WV $3,500
4. (1) Scott Bloomquist #0-Mooresburg, TN $2,750
5. (16) Jared Landers #777-Batesville, AR $2,250
6. (9) Don O'Neal #5-Martinsville, IN $1,800
7. (11) Billy Ogle Jr. #201-Knoxville, TN $1,500
8. (7) Eric Jacobsen #5-Watsonville, CA $1,300
9. (15) Dennis Erb Jr. #28e-Carpentersville, IL $1,200
10. (21) Jason Papich #91-Nipomo, CA $1,100
11. (13) Chad Ogle #10-Sevierville, TN $1,075
12. (14) Vic Hill #1-Mosheim, TN $1,050
13. (17) Jason Hughes #12-Watts, OK $1,025
14. (3) Eddie Carrier Jr. #28-Salt Rock, WV $1,000
15. (19) Jimmy Owens #20-Newport, TN $950
16. (18) Jason Welshan #29-Maryville, TN $925
17. (23) Ellery Leake #34-Knoxville, TN $900
18. (10) Steve Francis #15-Ashland, KY $875
19. (6) Earl Pearson Jr. #44-Jacksonville, FL $850
20. (20) Mark Vineyard #4-Powell, TN $825
21. (22) Brian Smith #7-Gray, KY $800
22. (8) Brad Neat #41-Dunnville, KY $800
23. (5) Chris Madden #44-Gaffney, SC $800
24. (24) Jeff Wolfenbarger #28w-Clinton, TN $800

Miller Welders Fast Time: Scott Bloomquist - 12.242 seconds

Fast Shafts Heat Race #1 Finish (10 Laps - Top 6 Transfer): 1. Scott Bloomquist #0, 2. John Blankenship #23, 3. Eric Jacobsen #5, 4. Steve Francis #15, 5. Chad Ogle #10, 6. Jared Landers #777, 7. Jimmy Owens #20, 8. Jason Papich #12, 9. Ryan King #30

Eibach Springs Heat Race #2 Finish (10 Laps - Top 6 Transfer): 1. Dale McDowell #17m, 2. Chris Madden #44, 3. Brad Neat #41, 4.Billy Ogle Jr. #201, 5. Vic Hill #1, 6. Jason Hughes #12, 7. Mark Vineyard #4, 8. Ellery Leake #34, 9. Travis Greer #11g

Simpson Performance Products Heat Race #3 Finish (10 Laps - Top 6 Transfer): 1. Eddie Carrier Jr. #28, 2. Earl Pearson Jr. #44, 3. Don O'Neal #5, 4. Mike Marlar #157, 5. Dennis Erb Jr. #28e, 6. Jason Welshan #29, 7. Jeff Wolfenbarger #28w, 8. Brian Smith #7 - Bryan Hendrix #5 (DNS)

JRi Shocks B-Main (12 Laps - Top 4 Transfer): 1. Jimmy Owens #20, 2. Mark Vineyard #4, 3. Jason Papich #91, 4. Brian Smith #7, 5. Ryan King #30, 6. Ellery Leake #34, 7. Jeff Wolfenbarger #28w - Travis Greer #11g (DNS), Bryan Hendrix #5 (DNS)


Entrants: 27
Lap Leaders: Scott Bloomquist (Laps 1-2); Dale McDowell (Laps 3-50)
Cautions: Debris (Lap 2); Eddie Carrier Jr., Eric Jacobsen, Brad Neat, Steve Francis, Jason Papich, Chad Ogle, Jason Welshan, Earl Pearson Jr. (Lap 2); Jason Welshan, Eddie Carrier Jr., Scott Bloomquist, Ellery Leake (Lap 22)
Time of Race: 29 minutes, 9 seconds
Lucas Oil Late Model Dirt Series Provisionals: N/A
Lucas Oil Late Model Dirt Series Emergency Provisionals: N/A
Miller Welders Fast Time Provisionals: Ellery Leake, Jeff Wolfenbarger
Wrisco Feature Winner: Dale McDowell
Optima Batteries Hard Charger of the Race: Jared Landers (Started: 16th - Finished: 5th; Advanced 11 Positions)
Keyser Mfg. Spoiler Challenge Point Leader: Jimmy Owens
Allstar Performer of the Race: Jared Landers
Sunoco Race for Gas Highest Finisher: Jared Landers
Dunn Benson Ford Rookie of the Race: Jason Papich
Midwest Sheet Metal Highest Finishing Rookie: Jason Papich
COMP Cams Engine Builder of the Race: ECR Engines
Ohlins Shocks Chassis Builder of the Race: Rocket Chassis
Outerwears Crew Chief of the Race: Shane McDowell (Dale McDowell)
HAWK Performance Fastest Lap of the Race: Dale McDowell (Lap # 3 - 12.774 seconds)


1. Greg Estes #31
2. Chris Rickett #36
3. Jamie Whitt #1
4. Ronnie Roberts #21
5. Willie Bussler #31B
6. Austin Atkins #14
7. Dave Smith #10
8. Bret Banks #3
9. Clynis Phillips #1w
10. David Bullington #20
11. Dale Reed #52
12. Jon Cook #0z
13. Terry Dean #4
14. Landon Steele #18

Did Not Start: Jeff Ferguson #24


Volunteer Speedway special events co-promoter Vic Hill: 423-312-4206.

Volunteer Speedway: 423 235-5020
Phyllis Loven - Track Owner: 423-676-9081

Sunday, July 6, 2014

Fwd: Kingsport (TN) Speedway - Press Release: 7/4/14


VanDyke explodes for $2,000 Kingsport Speedway NASCAR Fourth of July ‘Independence Clash’ victory


By Robert Walden
Kingsport Speedway – Media/Public Relations


KINGSPORT, Tenn. (July 4) — The Fourth of July is known for fireworks, and Kres VanDyke of Claypool Hill, Va., lit up the nighttime skies in impressive fashion over Kingsport Speedway Friday to record a convincing $2,000 NASCAR Whelen All-American Series Wallace Kia Late Model Stock victory in the Independence Clash 125.


The event, the first night of a holiday weekend doubleheader between Kingsport Speedway and Lonesome Pine Raceway, was presented by Freedom Ford of Wise, Va., WQUT FM 101.5 in the Tri-Cities, and Century 21 Pro Service broker/realtor Teresa Isaac of Johnson City.


Defending track and state NASCAR Whelen All-American Series champion Chad Finchum set fast-time at 15.081 seconds to earn the pole position for the Independence Clash 125, with VanDyke second quickest at 15.095 to nail down the outside front row starting berth.


VanDyke jumped into the lead over Finchum, Ronnie McCarty, Ryan Stiltner and Zeke Shell at the start. With a clear track ahead, VanDyke quickly pulled out to a 10 car length advantage and set the cruise control in the early going.


“I knew right from the start that we had a very good car,” said VanDyke about his No. 15 Ford Fusion. “I quickly moved out ahead of Finchum and the rest of the cars and I wasn’t even running the car hard. We’ve just got our car to where it’s handling very well through the corners. I can really pick the throttle up and the car’s got great forward bite coming up off the turns, and that right there will really give you momentum to launch you down the straightaway.”


Caution waved on lap 11 when Greg Bohanon Jr. spun between turns one and two, and only four laps back racing the yellow waved once again when sixth-running Lee Tissot slowed with a shower of sparks under his car between turns three and four after breaking a right-front wheel.

Back under green following the double-file restart, VanDyke once again began to flex his muscle and put some distance between himself, Finchum and McCarty. Stiltner and Shell were battling for fourth in the running order, while behind them Kyle Barnes, Nate Monteith, Zack Walton, Thomas Beane, Tyler Goodwin, Lance Gatlin and Wayne Hale were in a mad scramble for positions.


Monteith, the 2011 and 2012 Kingsport Speedway and state NASCAR Whelen All-American Series champion was making his first start of the season, and he passed Barnes for sixth on lap 14 racing off the fourth turn. Three circuits later Monteith got around Shell to move into fifth.

Out front VanDyke was in command, holding a comfortable lead over Finchum and McCarty. A strong run for Finchum ended on lap 38, when he suddenly slowed racing off the fourth turn and coasted around the track into the pits for attention from his crew. While slowly making his way back around to the pull into the pits, Finchum told his crew over the radio the gas pedal had broken off.

Meanwhile, both Stiltner and Shell had gotten around McCarty to hold down second and third in the running order. Lap 45 racing off the fourth turn, Shell passed Stiltner to take over second. Right at the lap 60 mark, with the leader VanDyke beginning to work lapped traffic, Shell closed to his rear bumper to hopefully mount a challenge for the lead.


A strong fifth place run for Monteith ended on lap 74, when the rearend broke in his car and he slowly entered the pits. Barnes, Walton, Gatlin and Austin Peters had a good race going on between them as they ran fifth through eighth.


With VanDyke and Shell leading the way up front, as they worked lapped traffic Shell was hoping to trap VanDyke behind a slower car and make a move to pass for the lead. But VanDyke continually made his way past the slower cars without opening the door for Shell to make a pass.


At end of the front straightaway entering the first turn, caution waved on lap 101 when the right-front tire exploded on Peters’ car.


VanDyke and Shell were on the front row for the double-file restart, but when the green flag waved Shell’s car failed to come up to speed due to the alternator having gone bad and drained the battery.


“Yeah, the car had kind of got to where it was missing before the caution flag there on lap 101 waved,” said Shell regarding his troubles. “This is not the first time this year we’ve had issues with the alternator draining the battery. We’ve definitely got to figure out what’s causing the problem.”

Barnes got turned racing off the fourth turn just one lap back under green and spun down the front straightaway, which spelled disaster for Justin Fontaine and Phil Harris as they tangled to bring out the caution as both their cars sustained significant damage.


VanDyke and McCarty were beside one another on the front row for the double-file restart on lap 102, but like he had done the entire race following caution periods, VanDyke once again pulled back out into the lead. But McCarty was up-on-the-wheel and stayed right with VanDyke.


Making a move back behind the front-running duo was Gatlin, who passed Goodwin on lap 110 racing off the fourth turn to take the fifth position. Two laps later he got around Barnes for fourth, and then on lap 115 Gatlin passed Stiltner to move into third. Gatlin caught up to VanDyke and McCarty.

As VanDyke, McCarty and Gatlin raced off the fourth turn to take the white flag, they were running nose-to-tail. But VanDyke, driving the Service Fuel Inc., Pizza Plus, Catch 22, Wheel Chill, RW Race Engines, Townsend Race Cars, WD Performance, AR Bodies, Pro Image Graphics, 84EXPO, No. 15 Ford Fusion, would not be denied the Independence Clash 125 victory, his fifth win of the season at “The Concrete Jungle.”


“Man, this is awesome,” said a smiling VanDyke after getting out of his car in victory lane to cheers from the crowd. “I guess the key to our strong run tonight was our good qualifying effort that locked us in to start on the front row. With a competitive field of cars like we had tonight, it’s just so much easier on your equipment when you can jump out into the lead and not have to abuse your tires and brakes when you’re racing hard for position. We were just riding out front.


“We’ve got $2,000 in our pockets from winning tonight, and we’ll give it our best effort tomorrow night over at Lonesome Pine Raceway as we try to go for the weekend sweep. Now that would be cool if we could pull that off and get another $2,000 for winning, plus we’d get the $1,000 bonus for winning both nights for $5,000.”


VanDyke was chased to the checkers by McCarty, Gatlin, Stiltner and Barnes.

Completing the top 10 finishers were Goodwin, Beane, Walton, Sam Steffey and Rick Pannell.


Rob Austin of Castlewood, Va., had recorded four runner-up finishes this season in the Street Stock division, and had to be wondering if he was ever going to break through for his first victory. Austin grabbed the lead at the start and never looked back en route to earning his first visit to victory lane in 2014, winning over Royce Peters, Jared Broadbent, Nick Cole and Chris Tunnell.


If you like racing action at its best, then you enjoyed the three-car battle between Kingsport’s John Ketron, his son Jason Ketron and Keith Helton in the Pure 4 feature. Lap after lap, they jockeyed back and forth up front for the lead and at times running three-wide around the .375-mile banked concrete oval and yet never touching. But at the finish it was the elder Ketron prevailing for his fifth win on the season, winning over Jason and Helton. Finishing fourth and fifth, respectively, were Kenny Absher and Jon Pittman.

Kirby Gobble of Abingdon, Va., has been a dominant force in Mod 4 racing for many years, winning championships at both Kingsport Speedway and Lonesome Pine Raceway. While Gobble captured his fifth straight Mod 4 victory this season at Kingsport, things got interesting behind him with just a couple of laps remaining when Rocky Yates and Billy Duty, who were running second and third, tangled and wrecked between turns three and four.

But the wrecking wasn’t over, as on the ensuing restart the caution quickly waved for action between turns one and two, which left more bent sheet-metal on the Yates and Duty equipment, along with Chris Amburgey and Lynn Shaffer suffering damage. Gobble claimed the win over Duke Bare, Mike Brooks, Duty and Luke Fox.


Rusty Clendenin of Church Hill battled several laps with Brandon Crumbley for the lead in the Rookie Pure 4 feature. But once Clendenin moved into the lead he went on to record his third victory, with Crumbley, Andrew Hill, Michael “Mook” Jeter and William Hale rounding out the top-five finishers.




Showing Finish Position, Starting Position In Parentheses, Driver Name, Car Number, Hometown, Laps Completed In Parentheses
1. (2) Kres VanDyke #15-Claypool Hill, VA (125)

2. (4) Ronnie McCarty #5-Kingsport, TN (125)

3. (14) Lance Gatlin #52-Morristown, TN (125)

4. (3) Ryan Stiltner #22-Grundy, VA (125)

5. (5) Kyle Barnes #15-Draper, VA (125)

6. (13) Tyler Goodwin #64-Kingsport, TN (125)

7. (10) Thomas Beane #31-Hudson, NC (125)

8. (8) Zack Walton #38-Blountville, TN (125)
9. (20) Sam Steffey #35-Abingdon, VA (120)

10. (19) Rick Pannell #33-Kingsport, TN (120)

11. (16) Joey Trent #26-Gray, TN (120)

12. (24) Luke Fox #94-Weaverville, NC (117)
13. (6) Zeke Shell #97-Johnson City, TN (102)
14. (11) Justin Fontaine #60-Fletcher, NC (101)

15. (15) Austin Peters #66-Kingsport, TN (101)

16. (18) Phil Harris #55-Johnson City, TN (99)

17. (23) Mardy Roberts #55-Kingsport, TN (81)

18. (9) Nate Monteith #50-Bristol, TN (74)
19. (12) Wayne Hale #19-Bluff City, TN (68)
20. (25) Jamie Harrison #76-Church Hill, TN (53)

21. (17) Royce Peters #48-Kingsport, TN (51)
22. (1) Chad Finchum #19-Knoxville, TN (42)
23. (21) Allen Hawkins #77-Kingsport, TN (31)

24. (22) Greg Bohanon Jr. #17-Leicester, NC (31)
25. (7) Lee Tissot #7-Asheville, NC (15)

STREET STOCK (25 laps)


1. Rob Austin #25

2. Royce Peters #48

3. Jared Broadbent #74

4. Nick Cole #63

5. Chris Tunnell #6

6. Mark Christian #43

7. Sam P. Hurd #11

8. Jared Bruner #8

9. Dennis Deese #24

10. Danny Casteel #41

11. Bruce Crumbley #33

12. Todd Duff #16


PURE 4 (20 laps)

1. John Ketron #27

2. Jason Ketron #28

3. Keith Helton #74

4. Kenny Absher #11

5. Jon Pittman #00

6. David Trent #57

7. Billy Byington #01

8. Dylan Bates #6

9. Matthew Ford #97

10. Todd Cross #41

11. Richard Quillen #14

12. Billy Ketron #26

13. Kenneth Street #47

14. Tim Abelseth #66

15. Chris Neeley #94

Did Not Start: B.C. Penley #34; Nick Jennings #16


MOD 4 (20 laps)


1. Kirby Gobble #88

2. Duke Bare #2

3. Mike Brooks #77

4. Billy Duty #45

5. Luke Fox #94

6. Jessie Amburgey #17

7. Rocky Yates #3

8. Lynn Shaffer #6

9. Chris Amburgey #7


ROOKIE PURE 4 (15 laps)


1. Rusty Clendenin #11

2. Brandon Crumbley #7

3. Andrew Hill #97

4. Michael Jeter #53

5. William Hale #47

6. James Deese #25

7. Craig Phelps #00

8. Derrick Gilliam #34

9. Larry Stapleton #14

10. Tammy Cross #41

11. Dennis Stanley #19

12. Larry Bowens #18

13. Dennis Cross #7

14. Dalton Lady #15

Did Not Start: Chris Wilhelm #99; Tim Jennings #16


Kingsport Speedway
2961 North John B. Dennis Highway
Office: (423) 288-5992
General Manager/Promoter - Karen Tunnell: (276) 393-9594
Twitter @KPSpeedway

Sunday, June 1, 2014

Finchum takes ‘Model City’ cruise for second Kingsport Speedway NASCAR victory

 Finchum takes 'Model City' cruise for second Kingsport Speedway NASCAR victory
By Robert Walden
Kingsport Speedway – Media/Public Relations
KINGSPORT, Tenn. (May 30) — The place to be on Friday nights in the Model City and surrounding Tri-Cities and Southwest Virginia region is Kingsport Speedway for exciting NASCAR Whelen All-American Series racing at "The Concrete Jungle."
Chad Finchum of Knoxville, defending Kingsport Speedway Late Model Stock and Tennessee State NASCAR Whelen All-American Series champion, powered into the lead on the seventh lap and once out front never looked back en route to capturing his second win of the season.
Kres VanDyke, winner of three features this season and currently sitting atop the divisional point leaderboard, set fast-time at 15.346 over Zeke Shell who stopped the clock second quickest at 15.348.
With an invert of just the top-two qualifiers following the roll of the dice, VanDyke and Shell remained on the front row for start of the 60-lap feature. VanDyke pulled ahead of Shell on the opening lap racing off turn two to take the lead, with Finchum, Ryan Stiltner and 16-year-old rookie Justin Fontaine the top five in the running order.
At end of the backstretch working the second circuit, Finchum got around Shell for second and set his sights ahead on leader VanDyke. Lee Tissot, the most recent winner, was quickly on the move from his eighth-place starting spot as he passed Fontaine for the fifth position on lap 5.
The event's only caution flag waved on the sixth lap for a three-car wreck in the fourth turn which involved Brian Blevins, Wayne Hale and Austin Peters. Following a red flag for track cleanup, off the double-file restart Finchum took the lead over VanDyke, Shell, Stiltner and Tissot.
Stiltner had a rearview mirror full of the hard-charging Tissot, and on lap 10 racing off the fourth turn Tissot got around Stiltner to move into fourth, right on Shell's back bumper.
Meanwhile out front, Finchum was beginning to put some real estate between his mount and those in pursuit. By lap 20, Finchum had stretched his lead to a half-straightaway over VanDyke, Shell, Tissot and Stiltner.
Racing off the fourth corner on lap 25, Tissot got inside of Shell and at end of the front straightaway racing into the first turn he moved into the third spot. With the 19-year-old Finchum setting a blistering pace out front, all attention was focused behind him on the quartet of VanDyke, Tissot, Shell and Stiltner as they ran nose-to-tail around the .375-mile banked concrete oval.
On several occasions racing up off the corners, Tissot would try to get past VanDyke but each time VanDyke would slam the door shut and maintain his position. Tissot managed to get alongside VanDyke on lap 40, and over the next six circuits they raced side-by-side before Tissot finally moved into the runner-up position.
But there would be no catching Finchum out front, as he cruised to a full-straightaway margin of victory over Tissot, VanDyke, Shell and Stiltner.
Completing the top 10 finishers were Fontaine, Tyler Goodwin, Hale, Sam Steffey and Phil Harris.
Nick Cole paced Street Stock qualifying with a fast-lap at 15.847 seconds. But in all reality, the race was won at the drop of the green flag. Fellow front-row starter John Harrell of Surgoinsville grabbed the lead on the opening lap over Cole and remained out front to the finish to capture his third feature win of the season.
Cole mounted several challenges during the 30-lap event, sticking his nose underneath Harrell racing off the corners to try and take the lead. Racing off the fourth turn coming to the white flag, Cole got to the inside of Harrell and they touched, with both almost spinning. But each reeled their mount in and Harrell went on to victory over Cole, Rob Austin, Royce Peters and Chris Tunnell.
Keith Helton of Kingsport jumped into the lead at start of the 25-lap Pure 4 feature and with the race running caution-free, led flag-to-flag to record his second victory. Helton was chased to the checkered flag by Kenny Absher, John Ketron, Jason Ketron and Tim Abelseth.
Once Kirby Gobble of Abingdon, Va., moved into the lead in the 25-lap Mod 4 feature, the race was for second on back. Gobble rolled to his division-leading third victory over Billy Duty, Rocky Yates, Dennis Arnold and Hershell Robinette.
James Deese of Elizabethton captured his second Rookie Pure 4 feature win of the season over Michael "Mook" Jeter, Chris Wilhelm, Brandon Crumbley and William Hale.
Showing Finish Position, Starting Position In Parentheses, Driver Name, Car Number, Hometown, Laps Completed In Parentheses
1. (4) Chad Finchum #19-Knoxville, TN (60)
2. (8) Lee Tissot #7-Asheville, NC (60)
3. (2) Kres VanDyke #15-Claypool Hill, VA (60)
4. (1) Zeke Shell #97-Johnson City, TN (60)
5. (3) Ryan Stiltner #22-Grundy, VA (60)
6. (6) Justin Fontaine #60-Fletcher, NC (60)
7. (10) Tyler Goodwin #64-Kingsport, TN (60)
8. (11) Wayne Hale #19-Bluff City, TN (59)
9. (12) Sam Steffey #35-Abingdon, VA (59)
10. (14) Phil Harris #55-Johnson City, TN (59)
11. (15) Greg Bohanon Jr. #17-Leicester, NC (59)
12. (9) Joey Trent #26-Gray, TN (58)
13. (18) Luke Fox #94-Weaverville, NC (56)
14. (16) Rick Pannell #33-Kingsport, TN (49)
15. (7) Kyle Barnes #15-Draper, VA (44)
16. (5) Zack Walton #1-Blountville, TN (33)
17. (13) Brian Blevins #40-Clintwood, VA (6)
18. (17) Austin Peters #48-Kingsport, TN (6)
STREET STOCK (30 laps)
1) John Harrell #19; 2) Nick Cole #63; 3) Royce Peters #48; 4) Rob Austin #25; 5) Chris Tunnell #6; 6) Steve Sims #10; 7) Sam P. Hurd #11
PURE 4 (25 laps)
1) Keith Helton #74; 2) Kenny Absher #74; 3) John Ketron #26; 4) Jason Ketron #28; 5) Tim Abelseth #66; 6) Jon Pittman #00; 7) David Trent #57; 8) Nick Jennings #16; 9) Billy Byington #01; 10) B.C. Penley #44; 11) Matthew Ford #97; 12) Bruce Crumbley #7; 13) Gary Crumbley #59; 14) Todd Cross #41; 15) Kenneth Street #2; 16) Darrell Whitehead #04; 17) Richard Quillen #14; 18) Brandon Sutherland #22
MOD 4 (25 laps)
1) Kirby Gobble #88; 2) Billy Duty #45; 3) Rocky Yates #7; 4) Dennis Arnold #7; 5) Hershell Robinette #9; 6) Luke Fox #94; 7) Chris Amburgey #7; 8) Duke Bare #2
ROOKIE PURE 4 (20 laps)
1) James Deese #25; 2) Michael Jeter #53; 3) Chris Wilhelm #33; 4) Brandon Crumbley #7; 5) William Hale #47; 6) Andrew Hill #97; 7) Tim Jennings #16; 8) Derrick Gilliam #34; 9) Craig Phelps #00; 10) Tammy Cross #41; 11) Larry Bowens #18; 12) Dennis Stanley #19; 13) Seth Clements #02
Kingsport Speedway
2961 North John B. Dennis Highway
Office: (423) 288-5992
General Manager/Promoter - Karen Tunnell: (276) 393-9594
Twitter @KPSpeedway

Saturday, May 24, 2014

Fwd: Kingsport (TN) Speedway - Press Release: 5/23/14

Tissot leads flag-to-flag for first 2014 Kingsport Speedway NASCAR victory


  Photo courtesy of Kingsport Speedway official photographer Randall Perry.
By Robert Walden
Kingsport Speedway – Media/Public Relations
KINGSPORT, Tenn. (May 23) — Kingsport Speedway kicked off the Memorial Day weekend Friday “Celebrating The Stars That Protect Our Stripes,” with NASCAR Salutes: United States Armed Forces Night at the Races.
In a special pre-race ceremony, the track honored active military expressing reverence, respect, and gratitude to all who proudly wear the uniform while defending our freedom and the sacrifices they have made in defending our nation, along with pausing to remember those who paid the ultimate price and died while protecting our country. All military, current and veterans who served, were admitted free for the night’s racing action at “The Concrete Jungle.”
Lee Tissot of Asheville, N.C., jumped into the lead at start of the 60-lap NASCAR Whelen All-American Series Late Model Stock feature and proceeded to lead flag-to-flag for his first victory of the season, in an event that ran caution-free.
In qualifying, defending track champion Chad Finchum set fast-time at 15.240 seconds, while Ryan Stiltner was second quickest at 15.279. With the top-five from qualifying inverted, Kyle Barnes inherited the pole position with Tissot on the outside of the front row.
Tissot powered into the lead over Barnes at the start, while behind them Stiltner and Zeke Shell battled for the third spot, and Finchum and surprise visitor Nate Monteith were racing side-by-side for fifth place. Monteith, who won the 2011 and ’12 Kingsport Speedway and Tennessee State NASCAR Whelen All-American Series championships on the strength of 10 wins each season, was making his first start at the track since his last title campaign, chauffeuring a Zeke Shell Racing team-car.
Racing off (turn) two on lap 6, Finchum cleared Monteith for position, while directly ahead of them Shell moved into third over Stiltner. Shell passed Barnes to move into the runner-up position on lap 10 racing off the second corner.
Monteith got around Finchum on lap 11 racing off the fourth turn, but Finchum fought back to reclaim the spot just two circuits later.
Meanwhile, out front Tissot and Shell had put about 10 car lengths between themselves and their closest challengers at the 20-lap mark. Barnes drifted a little high exiting turn two on lap 24, with both Stiltner and Finchum taking advantage to drop him back two positions in the running order to fifth. With Barnes experiencing a deflating right-rear tire, Monteith passed him to move into the fifth spot on lap 27 racing off turn two.
With the race running clean-and-green and just 10 laps remaining, the front-running trio of Tissot, Shell and Stiltner caught the cars of Wayne Hale, Tyler Goodwin and Zack Walton, who were battling for position to stay inside the top 10.
Shell looked to possibly make a move to take the lead, if he could trap Tissot behind one of the cars about to be lapped. But Tissot, driving the Ken Daffron’s Dalton Direct Carpets of Kingsport/First Kingsport Credit Union/Jeff’s Auto Sales (Leicester, N.C)/Northeast State Community College Motorsports Program/Hunley Built Shocks/Five Star Race Car Bodies/Hess Racing Products Inc./Ford Racing/Signs by Roach Graphics/No 7 Ford Fusion, easily cleared all three cars and put some distance between himself and Shell. Tissot captured the Late Model Stock victory over Shell, Stiltner, Finchum and Monteith.
Completing the top 10 finishers were Barnes, current divisional points leader Kres VanDyke, Paul Nogradi Jr., Hale and Goodwin.
Rob Austin grabbed the lead at start of the 30-lap Street Stock feature over Jared Broadbent. Broadent got loose racing off (turn) two on the fourth lap, allowing both John Harrell of Surgoinsville and Nick Cole to get around and move into second and third in the running order. Harrell closed to rear bumper of Austin on lap 7 and began applying pressure for the lead, before finally moving ahead on lap 11 racing off the second corner. Once out front, Harrell went on to capture his second win of the season over Austin, Cole, Royce Peters and Broadbent.
Jon Pittman grabbed the early lead over Tim Abelseth in the 25-lap Pure 4 feature. But two-time divisional track champion John Ketron of Kingsport was on the move quickly, passing Pittman for the lead on lap 5 racing off turn two. With the elder Ketron making the pass, the door was open for his son, Jason Ketron, who graduated last Friday from Sullivan North High School, to get around Pittman for the second spot.
Caution waved on lap 17, when Bruce Crumbley and Abelseth were battling for fifth place and Crumbley got into Abelseth’s left-rear quarter panel to send him spinning in turn two, thus erasing a half-straightaway lead John Ketron held over Jason.
Off the double-file restart, both Ketron’s slid high up the track between turns one and two. And Kenny Absher capitalized to drop inside and challenge John for the lead. They raced side-by-side for four circuits before Absher moved into the lead. But John battled back to get alongside Absher coming to take the white flag.
Racing off turn two down the backstretch, Absher and John were door-to-door, and directly on their rear bumper was Pittman. Pittman dove to the bottom entering the third turn and the action was three-wide racing off the fourth turn for the win. John Ketron barely edged Absher and Pittman for his third victory of the season, with Bruce Crumbley and Jason Ketron rounding out the top five in the finishing order.
Rusty Clendenin of Church Hill joined his father, Roger Clendenin, current owner of RCR Race Cars, Parts and Repairs, as a feature race winner at Kingsport Speedway. The elder Clendenin won races and also track championships in the past on both asphalt and dirt in the Model City. With Rusty’s victory Friday on the concrete surface, the Clendenins now own victories on all three racing surfaces in the track’s history. Rusty won over James Deese, Michael Jeter, Jackson Austin and Brandon Crumbley.
The “Virginia Bandit” Duke Bare, from Meadowview, Va., outran Roby Orr, Brad Ball, Iggy Greer and Jeremy Draughn to record his first Pure Street win this season.
Trey Lane of Kingsport led a Lane family sweep in Legends action, beating his dad, Jerry Lane, and brother, Derek Lane, for his first win of the season. Finishing fourth and fifth were Hayden Ottinger and Hannah Ottinger.
Showing Finish Position, Starting Position In Parentheses, Driver Name, Car Number, Hometown, Laps Completed In Parentheses
1. (2) Lee Tissot #7-Asheville, NC (60)
2. (3) Zeke Shell #97-Johnson City, TN (60)
3. (4) Ryan Stiltner #22-Grundy, VA (60)
4. (5) Chad Finchum #19-Knoxville, TN (60)
5. (6) Nate Monteith #6-Bristol, TN (60)
6. (1) Kyle Barnes #15-Draper, VA (60)
7. (9) Kres VanDyke #15-Claypool Hill, VA (60)
8. (8) Paul Nogradi Jr. #02-Clinton, TN (60)
9. (13) Wayne Hale #19-Bluff City, TN (59)
10. (10) Tyler Goodwin #64-Kingsport, TN (59)
11. (7) Zack Walton #1-Blountville, TN (59)
12. (16) Austin Peters #48-Kingsport, TN (59)
13. (18) Phil Harris #55-Johnson City, TN (58)
14. (15) Sam Steffey #35-Abingdon, VA (58)
15. (19) Luke Fox #94-Weaverville, NC (54)
16. (11) Justin Fontaine #60-Fletcher, NC (52)
17. (17) Rick Pannell #33-Kingsport, TN (51)
18. (14) Greg Bohanon Jr. #17-Leicester, NC (5)
19. (12) Joey Trent #26-Gray, TN (1)
STREET STOCK (30 laps)
1) John Harrell #19; 2) Rob Austin #25; 3) Nick Cole #63; 4) Royce Peters #48; 5) Jared Broadbent #74; 6) Chris Tunnell #6; 7) Steve Sims #10; 8) Sam P. Hurd #11; 9) Mark Christian #43; 10) Brian Russell #22
PURE 4 (25 laps)
1) John Ketron #26; 2) Kenny Absher #11; 3) Jon Pittman #00; 4) Bruce Crumbley #33; 5) Jason Ketron #28; 6) Tim Abelseth #66; 7) Kenneth Street #01; 8) David Trent #57; 9) Nick Jennings #16; 10) Todd Cross #41; 11) Kenneth Street #2; 12) Richard Quillen #14; 13) Billy Ketron #59; 14) Brandon Sutherland #22 – Did Not Start: Keith Helton #74
ROOKIE PURE 4 (20 laps)
1) Rusty Clendenin #11; 2) James Deese #25; 3) Michael Jeter #53; 4) Jackson Austin #11; 5) Brandon Crumbley #7; 6) William Hale #47; 7) Craig Phelps #00; 8) Dwayne Banks #51; 9) Gary Crumbley #33; 10) Tim Jennings #16; 11) Chris Wilhelm #99; 12) Tammy Cross #41; 13) Larry Stapleton #14; 14) Larry Bowens #18; 15) Andrew Hill #97; 16) Seth Clement #02
PURE STREET (15 laps)
1) Duke Bare #52; 2) Roby Orr #81; 3) Brad Ball #17; 4) Iggy Greer #33; 5) Jeremy Draughn #7; 6) Rusty Ratliff #9; 7) Dean Deskins #13; 8) Nasty Jones #13
LEGEND (10 laps)
1) Trey Lane #28; 2) Jerry Lane #9; 3) Derek Lane #19; 4) Hayden Ottinger #94; 5) Hannah Ottinger #97
Kingsport Speedway
2961 North John B. Dennis Highway
Office: (423) 288-5992
General Manager/Promoter - Karen Tunnell: (276) 393-9594
Twitter @KPSpeedway

Saturday, April 26, 2014

Shell leads wire-to-wire for Kingsport Speedway NASCAR victory

Shell leads wire-to-wire for Kingsport Speedway NASCAR victory

By Robert Walden
Kingsport Speedway – Media/Public Relations

KINGSPORT, Tenn. (April 25) — Mother Nature threatened to wash out Mountain Empire Fence Co. Night at the Races Friday at Kingsport Speedway. But the weather system finally moved out of Northeast Tennessee and skies cleared for a great night of NASCAR Whelen All-American Series racing in the Model City.

Kres VanDyke, who had visited victory lane the first two Late Model Stock races to begin the season, set fast-time in qualifying at 15.331 seconds. VanDyke rolled the dice on the front straightaway in victory lane which landed on six, thus meaning the top six from time trials would be inverted.

Zeke Shell of Johnson City and 16-year-old rookie Justin Fontaine brought the 18-car field to green from the front row. The veteran Shell quickly moved into the lead over Ronnie McCarty and Paul Nogradi Jr., with Lee Tissot and Chad Finchum battling for fourth in the running order. The race ran clean-and-green the opening 15 laps, before Luke Fox spun between turns three and four to bring out the event’s first caution.

Back under green, Shell led McCarty while Nogradi and Tissot raced side-by-side for the third spot before the North Carolina campaigner Tissot took the spot. Up in the high groove, Nogradi wound up losing track position to VanDyke, Finchum and Ryan Stiltner to slide back to seventh place.

Just past the halfway point on lap 31, Shell held a six car length advantage over McCarty and Tissot when the yellow flag waved for Fox spinning between turns three and four.

Shell and McCarty were alongside one another on the front row for the restart, and once back under green McCarty was up on the wheel battling Shell for the lead. They raced side-by-side for four laps before Shell moved back out into the lead. But what would be the final caution waved on lap 36, when Fontaine spun in turn three.

On this restart, Shell shot back out ahead of McCarty, while behind them Tissot and Finchum were battling door-to-door around the .375-mile banked concrete oval. Over the final 20 laps, behind leader Shell the racing action was intense between McCarty, Tissot, Finchum, VanDyke, Stiltner and Nogradi as they battled back and forth swapping positions.

But out front the race clearly belonged to the 26-year-old Shell, driving the Capone’s of Johnson City/Vape On/Carter’s Powder Coating in Elizabethton/Gardner Paint Services Inc. of Johnson City/O.J. Gardner’s Polished Concrete of Johnson City/Thanks to the Regulators/Shell Media (Printing, Design, Graphics, Wraps, Promotions, Marketing, Advertising) of Johnson City/Marlowe Racing Chassis/Zeke Shell Racing/No. 97 Ford Fusion, as he captured his first NASCAR Whelen All-American Series Late Model Stock victory of the season over a hard-charging VanDyke (who was looking to make it three straight wins), Tissot, Finchum and McCarty.

Completing the top 10 finishers were Stiltner, Nogradi, Zack Walton, Fontaine and Phil Harris.

“Man, following our deal last week in wrecking while battling with Lee (Tissot) for position and having to work on the car back at the shop this week, to bounce back strong tonight and get an impressive win, this is totally awesome,” said a smiling Shell in the pits following the victory lane ceremonies. “We had a really good car tonight and I believe we showed that during the race, but I admit the luck of the invert really helped by putting us starting from the pole position. Hey, the deal with the invert is it can hurt you or help you. I’ve been quickest in qualifying before and with the invert I’ve had to start from the third row. It’s just one of those deals you hope will work out well for you.

“We opened the season with a solid second-place finish, then last week the DNF (Did Not Finish) was pretty disappointing because I know we had at least a top-three finishing car. I just want to thank everybody who helps me live out my dream of racing, my father (Pat Shell), and Danny Rollins for all his advice and unreal racing knowledge on setting the car (chassis) up, along with BRM, Joey Buckles, Scott Clark, and my fiancée Amber Abram. Nights like tonight, when after a week of working on your equipment and you get to the track and things go your way, this is what it’s all about. You get the win, then you’ve got bragging rights as being the winner until the next race.”

Following an invert of the top six from qualifying, Sam Hurd and Mark Christian brought the Street Stock field to the start from row one. Christian appeared to have missed a shift at waving of the green flag, while Hurd didn’t seem to come up to speed, which in turn sent cars behind the front row duo going three wide down the front straightaway into the first turn.

Royce Peters of Kingsport capitalized on the chaotic start to quickly grab the lead over Rob Austin and Chris Tunnell. On lap 5, both Nick Cole and John Harrell got around Tunnell to move into third and fourth respectively in the running order, dropping Tunnell back to fifth. Five circuits later on lap 10, Cole moved under Austin for second and with the door open, Harrell also waltzed right by into the third spot and relegated Austin back to fourth in the running order.

With the leader Peters, along with Cole, Harrell and Austin beginning to overtake Hurd to place him a lap down on lap 19, the front trio got by unscathed. However, Hurd got together with Austin exiting the fourth turn and both wound up making heavy contact with the front straightaway concrete wall to end their nights on the hook of the wrecker being towed back into the pits.

Anticipating the restart, Peters jumped back out ahead of Cole, Harrell and Tunnell. But somehow Cole, Harrell and Tunnell tangled on the front straightaway near the flag stand, with each spinning wildly to once again bring out the caution. On the next attempt at green, Peters once again smashed the loud pedal to accelerate ahead of Cole. Even though Cole was on his rear bumper, Peters never missed a beat en route to capturing his first-ever victory at Kingsport Speedway over Cole, Tunnell, Christian and Harrell.

Lloyd Baker jumped out into the lead at the start of the Pure 4 feature over David Trent and Dylan Bates. But quickly on the move were two-time defending divisional champion John Ketron and Kenny Absher. Ketron, from Kingsport with already one win to his credit this season, worked his way around both Bates and Trent and then disposed of Baker between turns one and two on lap 5 to move into the lead. A good run for Baker ended on lap 7 when smoke erupted from under his hood and he coasted to a stop high between turns one and two to bring out the caution.

Ketron and Absher restarted alongside each other and battled for a couple of laps before Ketron moved ahead, while on back behind them Bates, Trent, Jason Ketron, Keith Helton, Tim Abelseth, Billy Byington and Jon Pittman were jockeying for real estate. But out front it was all John Ketron as he captured his second Pure 4 victory in the first three races to begin the season over Absher, Jason Ketron, Bates and Pittman. Helton crossed the finish line in third, but failed post-race inspection when his car came up light at the scales, thus moving Jason Ketron into the third spot.

Billy Duty grabbed the lead at start of the 25-lap Mod 4 feature over Rocky Yates and Kirby Gobble. Gobble, from Abingdon, Va., and a former track champion at Kingsport Speedway, moved around Yates for second on lap 3 and just two circuits later passed Duty for the lead. While both Duty and Yates would challenge Gobble on a couple of restarts during the event, each time Gobble managed to power back ahead. Gobble recorded the victory over Yates, Duty, Duke Bare and Chris Amburgey.

James Deese of Elizabethton was involved in an exciting three-car battle for the win coming off the fourth turn to the checkered flag last week, finishing in third. Determined to come back this week and finally earn that elusive first-ever trip to victory lane, Deese got around Michael Jeter just two laps from the finish and went on to capture the Rookie Pure 4 feature win over Jeter, Brandon Crumbley, Rusty Clendenin and Tim Jennings.



Showing Finish Position, Starting Position In Parentheses, Driver Name, Car Number, Hometown, Laps Completed In Parentheses

1. (1) Zeke Shell #97-Johnson City, TN (60)
2. (6) Kres VanDyke #15-Claypool Hill, VA (60)
3. (7) Lee Tissot #7-Asheville, NC (60)
4. (4) Chad Finchum #19-Knoxville, TN (60)
5. (3) Ronnie McCarty #5-Kingsport, TN (60)
6. (8) Ryan Stiltner #22-Grundy, VA (60)
7. (5) Paul Nogradi Jr. #02-Clinton, TN (60)
8. (16) Zack Walton #38-Blountville, TN (60)
9. (2) Justin Fontaine #60-Fletcher, NC (60)
10. (14) Phil Harris #55-Johnson City, TN (60)
11. (10) Joey Trent #26-Gray, TN (59)
12. (12) Rick Pannell #33-Kingsport, TN (57)
13. (15) Luke Fox #94-Weaverville, NC (38)
14. (13) Austin Peters #48-Kingsport, TN (22)
15. (9) Tyler Goodwin #64-Kingsport, TN (15)
16. (11) Wayne Hale #19-Bluff City, TN (11)
17. (18) Keith Stiltner #2-Grundy, VA (7)
18. (17) Bruce Blessing #55-Gate City, VA (5)

STREET STOCK (30 laps)

1) Royce Peters #48; 2) Nick Cole #63; 3) Chris Tunnell #6; 4) Mark Christian #43; 5) John Harrell #19; 6) Rob Austin #25; 7) Sam P. Hurd #11; 8) David Schmidt #20 – Did Not Start: Brian Russell #22

PURE 4 (25 laps)

1) John Ketron #26; 2) Kenny Absher #11; 3) Jason Ketron #28; 4) Dylan Bates #6; 5) Jon Pittman #00; 6) Tim Abelseth #66; 7) Billy Byington #01; 8) Bruce Crumbley #33; 9) David Trent #57; 10) Tim Jennings #16; 11) B.C. Penley #7; 12) Darrell Whitehead #44; 13) Todd Cross #41; 14) Richard Quillen #14; 15) Kenneth Street #2; 16) Lloyd Baker #7; 17) Brandon Sutherland #22; 18) Matthew Ford #19 – Failed Post Race Weight (Keith Helton #74)

MOD 4 (25 laps)

1) Kirby Gobble #88; 2) Rocky Yates #3; 3) Billy Duty #45; 4) Duke Bare #2; 5) Chris Amburgey #7; 6) Mike Williams #5; 7) Luke Fox #94; 8) Jessie Amburgey #17; 9) Dennis Arnold #33

ROOKIE PURE 4 (20 laps)

1) James Deese #25; 2) Michael Jeter #53; 3) Brandon Crumbley #7; 4) Rusty Clendenin #11; 5) Tim Jennings #16; 6) Dwayne Banks #51; 7) Craig Phelps #00; 8) William Hale #47; 9) Chris Wilhelm #99; 10) Seth Clement #02; 11) Larry Stapleton #14; 12) Tammy Cross #41; 13) Larry Bowens #18 – Did Not Start: Andrew Hill #97

Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Mason Mingus fastest at Snowball Preview Practice

Mason Mingus fastest at Snowball Preview Practice

Mason Mingus gave notice during the Snowball Derby Preview Practice that he intends on continuing to add to the success of his 2013-racing season by capturing the fastest practice lap in the Super Late Model Division.

Mingus waited until late in the practice session to grab the quickest time among the Super Lates.

With 30 minutes left in the open practice session, Mingus tripped the clock with a lap of 16.644 seconds in his #98, 811 Call Before You Dig and Diamond Equipment sponsored Super Late Model.

The Preview Practice quick lap earned Mingus $500.00 and establishes the 18-year-old racer from Brentwood, TN as a driver to watch in this year's qualifying for the 46th annual Snowball Derby at Five Flags Speedway in Pensacola, FL.  The event takes place December 4th through the 8th.

"We are excited about having the fast time in the open practice," Mingus, who finished second in the ARCA Series point standings this year, said. "While it gives our team a base to try and hopefully make the car even better, we fully understand that we still have a lot of work to do. The Snowball is a tough race to make and a tough race to finish, so we'll take it one step at a time."

Mingus is driving the car that he finished third in at Winchester this year and said he really likes the way it races.

"The car was really fast at Winchester but we had a mechanical issue during the race," he said. "But once we solved the problem, we fought our way back through the field to finish third. So we know we have a strong car."

Mingus, who also ventured into the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series for three races this season, said a good finish in the Snowball would top off a successful 2013 season.

"A good finish in the Snowball would be great but a win would be a fantastic way to end the 2013 season and begin 2014," he said.