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Richards Kicks Off Firecracker 100 Weekend At Lernerville Speedway With Opening-Night Victory For Second Straight Year 6.23

 

Richards Kicks Off Firecracker 100 Weekend At Lernerville Speedway With Opening-Night Victory For Second Straight Year

 

 

SARVER, PA – June 23, 2011 – Josh Richards began the fifth annual Firecracker 100 presented by GottaRace.com weekend at Lernerville Speedway exactly the same way he did a year ago – with a convincing victory in Thursday night’s first 30-lap World of Outlaws Late Model Series preliminary A-Main.

 

Back in his father Mark’s familiar Rocket Chassis house car No. 1 after scoring his first WoO LMS win of 2011 behind the wheel of the Ernie Davis-owned No. 25 on June 18 at Winchester (Va.) Speedway, the 23-year-old star from Shinnston, W.Va., passed Steve Shaver of Vienna, W.Va., for the lead on lap five and never looked back. He pocketed a $6,000 top prize and assured himself a pole starting spot in a heat race for Saturday night’s $30,000-to-win Firecracker 100.

 

“We’ve been real fast all year,” said Richards, who has three career WoO LMS triumphs at the four-tenths-mile Lernerville oval. “We finally had things go our way the last couple weeks and hopefully we can keep it up and win more races.

 

“It would mean more than anything to me to win (the Firecracker) on Saturday,” he added. “We finally got our first 100-lapper (win) last year (at New York’s Mohawk International Raceway), but we’ve never won a crown-jewel event – and I consider this a crown-jewel event. This track is way better than a lot of tracks we get to go to for big races. This is an awesome place.”

 

Richards, who won from the pole position starting spot for the second consecutive WoO LMS event, beat second-starter Rick Eckert of York, Pa., to the finish line by 0.723 of a second. It was Richards’s 30th career win on the WoO LMS since 2004 – more than any other driver on the tour over that span – and pulled him within eight points of Eckert in the battle for the series points lead through 12 A-Mains.

 

Shaver, who started third but surged into the lead on the race’s opening circuit, settled for a third-place finish in the K&L Rumley Rocket car. Scott Bloomquist of Mooresburg, Tenn., advanced from the seventh starting spot to place fourth in his self-built Team Zero machine, grabbing the position on a lap-26 restart from Jimmy Mars of Menomonie, Wis., who completed the top five in his MB Customs mount.

 

Richards actually got off to a slow start, slipping in turn two moments after the initial green flag and bumping together with Eckert on the backstretch as Shaver snatched the lead. But he quickly gathered himself and charged by Shaver with a powerful outside move off turn four heading to the line on lap five.

 

“I was a little bit harder on the right-front tire and I pushed across the track the first lap,” said Richards. “(Then) I went straight to the (outside) lip and tried to hammer on it. I got some momentum built up and I just slid by (Shaver).”

 

Richards made what was ultimately the race’s deciding move before Shaver could even realize what hit him.

 

“I talked to (Shaver) a minute ago and he said, ‘You must have mufflers on that car,’” Richards quipped during a post-race press conference.

 

“When I got the lead on the bottom that kind of screwed my whole plan up,” said the 46-year-old Shaver, who won the WoO LMS Commonwealth 100 on April 17 at Virginia Motor Speedway. “I thought, Well, I feel so good here, I’ll ride it out for a couple laps. Then all of a sudden I heard Josh ambush me on the outside there. He did a good job keeping it quiet until he was right up beside me.

 

“I’m not too sure we could’ve stayed up ahead of him anyway. My car started to fade there at the end.”

 

Eckert, 45, took up the chase of Richards after finally securing second place from Shaver on lap 22 but wasn’t able to offer a serious challenge. He was certainly satisfied with a $3,000 runner-up finish after surviving a hairy opening-lap racing incident with Richards that bent the steering on his brand-new Team Zero by Bloomquist car.

 

“Down the backstraightaway on the first lap Josh got loose off two and went down, and then Shaver got under him,” said Eckert. “I went to go around them both (on the outside), and then at the last minute Josh darted out there and we hit pretty hard. My steering wheel was like 45-degrees to the left after that, so it took me about 10 laps to figure out how to drive it like that.

 

“During that long green I actually got better and better, but I was a long way from passing (Richards). I dove at him hoping he’d make a mistake on exit, but I knew when the caution came out with four to go that he was really gonna have to make a mistake to lose.”

 

Brady Smith of Solon Springs, Wis., finished sixth, picking up two positions after the race’s final restart on lap 26. Vic Coffey of Caledonia, N.Y., advanced from the 11th starting spot to place seventh, followed by 15th-starter Clint Smith of Senoia, Ga., seventh-starter Tim McCreadie of Watertown, N.Y., and 21st-starter Jonathan Davenport of Blairsville, Ga., who was relegated to the B-Main after spinning out of a transfer spot early in his heat race.

 

Three caution flags slowed the A-Main. WoO LMS rookie Pat Doar of New Richmond, Wis., slowed on lap one after scraping the homestretch wall; teenager Tyler Reddick of Corning, Calif., fell off the pace on lap six; and 2010 WoO LMS Rookie of the Year Austin Hubbard of Seaford, Del., who nearly rolled his car early in the event when he rode the homestretch wall, slid off the track in turn one on lap 26.

 

Darrell Lanigan of Union, Ky., who entered the event with four wins and eight top-three finishes in his 10 WoO LMS starts this season, was not a factor. He started 12th but pitted during the lap-six caution period to bolt on softer tires and only managed to climb back to 16 th at the finish.

 

Eckert made history on two counts in Ohlins Shocks Time Trials. His blistering lap of 15.000 seconds set a new track record and was his 25th career fast-time honor on the WoO LMS – more than any other driver on the tour since 2004. He had been tied atop the career fast-timer list with Richards.

 

Heat winners were Eckert, Richards, Mars, Shaver, Dale McDowell of Chickamauga, Ga., and Tim Fuller of Watertown, N.Y. The B-Mains were captured by Chub Frank of Bear Lake, Pa., Dan Stone of Thompson, Pa., and Davenport.

 

The Firecracker 100 presented by GottaRace.com continues on Fri., June 24, with another WoO LMS program topped by a 30-lap A-Main paying $6,000 to win. Drivers will use their best finish from the Thursday and Friday competition to align themselves in Saturday night’s Firecracker 100 heat races.

 

Details and ticket information on the Firecracker 100 can be obtained by logging on to www.lernerville.com.

 

For more information on the WoO LMS, visit www.worldofoutlaws.com.

 

Results of WoO Late Model Series Firecracker 100 Presented by GottaRace.com Preliminary A-Main No. 1 at Lernerville Speedway (Finishing Position/Start/Driver/Laps Completed/Money Won):

1. (1) Josh Richards/30 $6,000

2. (2) Rick Eckert/30 $3,000

3. (3) Steve Shaver/30 $2,000

4. (9) Scott Bloomquist/30 $1,750

5. (4) Jimmy Mars/30 $1,500

6. (10) Brady Smith/30 $1,250

7. (11) Vic Coffey/30 $1,150

8. (15) Clint Smith/30 $1,100

9. (7) Tim McCreadie/30 $1,050

10. (21) Jonathan Davenport/30 $1,000

11. (6) Tim Fuller/30 $900

12. (22) Shane Clanton/30 $825

13. (17) Eric Wells/30 $1,250

14. (24) Bub McCool/30 $725

15. (8) Steve Francis/30 $700

16. (12) Darrell Lanigan/30 $680

17. (23) Ron Davies/30 $920

18. (19) Chub Frank/30 $660

19. (18) Tyler Reddick/30 $640

20. (25) John Lobb/29 $620

21. (14) Austin Hubbard/25 $600

22. (26) Jill George/24 $600

23. (13) Mike Marlar/18 $600

24. (20) Dan Stone/12 $600

25. (5) Dale McDowell/3 $600

26. (16) Pat Doar/1 $600

* Earnings include Winners Circle program and cash contingency award bonuses

Time of Race: 17 Mins., 50.234 Secs.

Margin of Victory: 0.723 Secs.

Yellow Flags: 3 (Laps 1, 6, 26)

Lap Leaders: Shaver (1-4); Richards (5-30)

Provisional Starters: Lobb, George

Rookie of the Race: Davies ($250)

WoO LMS ‘Bonus Bucks’ Winner: Wells ($500)

 

Ohlins Shocks Time Trial Results (Position/No./Driver/Hometown/Best Lap):

1. 24-Rick Eckert/York, PA 15.000 (NTR)

2. 19-Austin Hubbard/Seaford, DE 15.169

3. 28-Jimmy Mars/Menomonie, WI 15.171

4. 6-Steve Shaver/Vienna, WV 15.202

5. 17M-Dale McDowell/Chickamauga, GA 15.304

6. 19-Tim Fuller/Watertown, NY 15.304

7. 39-Tim McCreadie/Watertown, NY 15.322

8. 1-Josh Richards/Shinnston, WV 15.326

9. 44-Clint Smith/Senoia, GA 15.340

10. 11d-Pat Doar/New Richmond, WI 15.348

11. 57J-Bub McCool/Vicksburg, MS 15.372

12. 29-Darrell Lanigan/Union, KY 15.377

13. 1G-Mike Marlar/Winfield, TN 15.405

14. 21B-Chip Brindle/Chatsworth, GA 15.417

15. 0-Scott Bloomquist/Mooresburg, TN 15.448

16. 2-Brady Smith/Solon Springs, WI 15.467

17. 32c-Vic Coffey/Caledonia, NY 15.499

18. 49-Jonathan Davenport/Blairsville, GA 15.503

19. 22s-Gregg Satterlee/Rochester Mills, PA 15.515

20. 99-Steve Francis/Ashland, KY 15.538

21. 71d-Ron Davies/Warren, PA 15.597

22. 1J-Davey Johnson/Latrobe, PA 15.606

23. 18W-Eric Wells/Hazard, KY 15.616

24. 11R-Tyler Reddick/Corning, CA 15.646

25. 99B-Rick ‘Boom’ Briggs/Bear Lake, PA 15.648

26. 37H-Jared Hawkins/Fairmont, WV 15.648

27. 2J-Mike Johnson/Imperial, PA 15.652

28. 2s-Dan Stone/Thompson, PA 15.658

29. 72M-John Mason/Millersburg, OH 15.658

30. 4J-John Mollick/Toronto, OH 15.661

31. 1*-Chub Frank/Bear Lake, PA 15.688

32. 72-Michael Norris/Sarver, PA 15.689

33. 56-Russell King/Bristolville, OH 15.694

34. J4-Mike Garvin/Sarver, PA 15.737

35. 31-Bryan Force/Indiana, PA 15.780

36. F1-Coleby Frye/Dover, PA 15.788

37. 1C-Lynn Geisler/Cranberry Twp., PA 15.796

38. 25-Shane Clanton/Fayetteville, GA 15.799

39. 20H-Jacob Hawkins/Fairmont, WV 15.828

40. 1L-John Lobb/Frewsburg, NY 15.833

41. 44H-Dave Hess Jr./Waterford, PA 15.836

42. 21L-Matt Lux/Franklin, PA 15.887

43. H1-Jared Miley/South Park, PA 15.965

44. 22-Jill George/Cedar Falls, IA 16.006

45. 10-Gary Lyle/Hyde Park, PA 16.046

46. 29s-Ken Schaltenbrand/Sarver, PA 16.055

47. 23T-Tony Burke/Sarver, PA 16.115

48. 93-Donald Bradsher/Burlington, NC 16.173

49. 29K-Garrett Krummert/New Castle, PA 16.180

50. 27J-Jeff Jones/Zelionople, PA 16.281

51. 22G-Greg Oakes/Franklinville, NY 16.362

52. 111-Brian Swartzlander/Leechburg, PA 16.481

53. 37-Brian Tavenner/Winchester, VA 16.511

54. 0s-Ryan Scott/Garland, PA 16.691

55. c33-Chris Casner/Mifflintown, PA 16.991

56. 7x-Herman Bertolini/Creighton, PA 17.577

57. 55-Chris Schneider/Tarentum, PA 17.765

58. 22x-Scott Smith/Utica, OH 18.021

59. 15K-Ray Kroll Sr./Renfrew, PA 19.006

60. 41-Derrick Casner/Mifflintown, PA 19.924

61. 38R-Nick Reges/Butler, PA N/T

 

Heat No. 1 (10 laps – Top 3 Transfer): Eckert, McCreadie, Marlar, Satterlee, Frank, Briggs, Geisler, Miley, Krummert, C. Casner, Reges

 

Heat No. 2 (10 laps – Top 3 Transfer): Richards, Francis, Hubbard, Jared Hawkins, Clanton, Brindle, George, Jones, Bertolini, Norris

 

Heat No. 3 (10 laps – Top 3 Transfer): Mars, Bloomquist, C. Smith, Davies, M. Johnson, King, Jacob Hawkins, Lyle, Oakes, Schneider

 

Heat No. 4 (10 laps – Top 3 Transfer): Shaver, B. Smith, Doar, Stone, Garvin, D. Johnson, Lobb, Schaltenbrand, Swartzlander, S. Smith

 

Heat No. 5 (10 laps – Top 3 Transfer): McDowell, Coffey, Wells, McCool, Mason, Force, Hess, Tavenner, Burke, Kroll

 

Heat No. 6 (10 laps – Top 3 Transfer): Fuller, Lanigan, Reddick, Mollick, Davenport, Lux, Bradsher, Scott, Frye (DNS) D. Casner

 

B-Main No. 1 (12 laps – Top 2 Transfer): Frank, Clanton, Satterlee, Jared Hawkins, Briggs, Brindle, Geisler, George, C. Casner, Jones, Reges, Krummert, Bertolini (DNS) Miley, Norris

 

B-Main No. 2 (12 laps – Top 2 Transfer): Stone, Davies, D. Johnson, M. Johnson, King, Jacob Hawkins, Lyle, Lobb, Schaltenbrand, Schneider, Swartzlander, S. Smith, Garvin, Oakes

 

B-Main No. 3 (12 laps – Top 2 Transfer): Davenport, McCool, Mollick, Hess, Mason, Lux, Force, Bradsher, Tavenner, D. Casner, Burke, Scott (DNS) Frye, Kroll

 

2011 World of Outlaws Late Model Series Point Standings as of June 23 – 12 A-Mains completed (rank/driver/points/deficit to leader):

1. Rick Eckert 1782

2. Josh Richards 1774 (-8)

3. Darrell Lanigan 1704 (-78)

4. Tim McCreadie 1674 (-108)

5. Austin Hubbard 1670 (-112)

6. Clint Smith 1634 (-148)

7. Chub Frank 1630 (-152)

8. Shane Clanton 1628 (-154)

9. Tim Fuller 1544 (-238)

10. Vic Coffey 1534 (-248)

11. Pat Doar 1448 (-334)

12. Ron Davies 1396 (-386)

13. John Lobb 1316 (-466)

14. Jill George 1266 (-516)

15. Jason Feger 1010 (-772)

 

FOLLOW THE ACTION ON TWITTER: Fans can keep up-to-date with the World of Outlaws Late Model Series online and through text messages on cell phones via Twitter, the internet’s fast-growing social-networking and micro-blogging website. Updates are provided to Twitter ‘followers’ of the WoO LMS throughout each race night, and fans also receive breaking news and interesting notes from the tour.

 

Over 4,100 fans are now WoO LMS ‘followers’ on Twitter. To sign-up and receive updates anywhere at anytime, visit http://twitter.com/WoOLateModels.

 

LISTEN ONLINE: If fans can’t get to a track to see the World of Outlaws Late Model Series, they can experience the excitement of the nation’s premier tour live on DIRTvision.com through the DIRT Radio Network.

 

To listen to the free audio broadcasts, log on to http://www.dirtvision.com/welcome.php and click on the DIRT Radio Network logo.

 

BLOGGING: WoO LMS fans can now read interesting stories from the road by checking out two blogs –‘Life As An Outlaw’ by series announcer Rick Eshelman and ‘The Scoop With Scoop’ by tour P.R. director Kevin Kovac. Both blogs can be accessed by clicking on the preceding links or the specific ‘Blog’ buttons on the right-hand side of http://www.woolms.com/.

 

The World of Outlaws Late Model Series is brought to fans across the country by many important sponsors and partners, including Arizona Sport Shirts (Official Apparel Company), Armor All (Official Car Care Products), Hoosier Racing Tires (Official Racing Tires), STP (Official Fuel Treatment), Vicci (Official Uniform), VP Racing (Official Racing Fuel), DirtonDirt.com (Hard Charger Award), McCarthy’s One Hour Heating & Air Conditioning (Raye Vest Memorial Pill Draw Award), Chizmark Larson Insurance, Factory Value Parts and RacingJunk.com; in addition to contingency sponsors Comp Cams, Eibach Springs, JE Pistons, MSD Ignition, Ohlins Shocks, Pro Power Engines, Quartermaster, Rocket Chassis, R2C Performance, Superflow Dynos, Wix Filters and Wrisco Aluminum.

 

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