Moyer Tops Outlaws at I-30 Speedway

Legendary Arkansas Driver Pockets $10,150 Home-State Victory

Legendary Arkansas Driver Pockets $10,150 Home-State Victory

Billy Moyer of Batesville, Ark., blasted from third to first on a lap-18 restart and marched on to capture Saturday night’s 50-lap World of Outlaws Late Model Series A-Main at I-30 Speedway.

The 56-year-old Dirt Late Model Hall of Famer sailed around the outside of WoO LMS regulars Darrell Lanigan of Union, Ky., and Shane Clanton of Zebulon, Ga., rounding turns one and two and was in front for good when lap 19 was scored. He turned back a late challenge from Lanigan while negotiating lapped traffic to earn $10,150 in front of his home-state fans.

“It’s cool that we could pull one off for ’em this close to home,” said Moyer, who registered his 19th WoO LMS triumph since 2004 and the 41st overall of his career, including the national tour’s original 1988-89 seasons. “It’s nice. We’re just an hour-and-a-half away (from the shop). It makes for a short trip home.”

Driving his Moyer Extreme by Longhorn car, Moyer made a move worthy of an aggressive youngster to seize command following a lap-18 red flag for a multi-car accident in turn two involving contenders Rick Eckert of York, Pa., Jared Landers of Batesville, Ark., and Brandon Sheppard of New Berlin, Ill.

“When I was running fourth and Rick was second and took that outside (on a lap-15 restart), it surprised me that he went so good up there,” said Moyer, who started sixth. “It turned out that the outside wasn’t bad on the restart there. If you just were brave enough to get up there and not think that guy was gonna get underneath you, you could run up there in the middle a little bit.”

Moyer’s first WoO LMS win since April 6, 2013, at Farmer City (Ill.) Raceway came by 0.384 of a second over Lanigan, who closed up to Moyer’s rear bumper in the final laps but couldn’t find a way to regain the lead. Lanigan started from the pole position and led laps 1-6 in his Club 29 car.

“The track was a little choppy getting into one and you had to find the right groove – and I just hit the wrong groove and got out of the lead,” Lanigan said of an early-race miscue that allowed Clanton to overtake him for the top spot. “That just put me behind, and then Billy got going on the outside on that resart and kind of killed us.”

Clanton, who last year’s WoO LMS event at I-30, led laps 7-18 but settled for a third-place finish in his Capital Race Car. Though disappointed his shot at the checkered flag was hampered by a tire that sealed over during the red flag, he recorded his first WoO LMS top-five finish of 2014.

Tim McCreadie of Watertown, N.Y., also cracked the top five for the first time on the ’14 tour, placing fourth in the Sweeteners Plus Rocket after starting 11th. He closely tailed Clanton throughout the race’s second half.

Shannon Babb of Moweaqua, Ill., completed the top five in his Rocket mount, finishing in the same spot he started the race.

Rounding out the top 10 was WoO LMS rookie Frankie Heckenast Jr. of Orland Park, Ill.; Chub Frank of Bear Lake, Pa., who started 17th driving one of Rick ‘Boom’ Briggs’s No. 99B machines; Sheppard, who rallied from the lap-18 incident; WoO LMS rookie Chase Junghans of Manhattan, Kans., who bagged a career-best finish on the tour; and 23rd-starter Eric Wells of Hazard, Ky.

Thirty-nine cars entered the event, which brought the WoO LMS to Tracey Clay’s track outside Little Rock for the second consecutive year.

Lanigan turned the fastest overall lap of Ohlins Shocks Time Trials, circling the three-eighths-mile oval in 12.604 seconds during Group ‘A’ of the split qualifying session.

Heat winners were Lanigan, Babb, Moyer and Eckert. Frank and Morgan Bagley of Tyler, Texas, captured the B-Mains.

The WoO LMS will be back in action April 4-5 with the sixth running of the Illini 100 at Farmer City (Ill.) Raceway. Time Trials and heat races will be run on Friday night and the $20,000-to-win finale is set for Saturday evening.

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

Fans can also follow the WoO LMS on Twitter at Twitter.com/WoOLateModels and Facebook at Facebook.com/WorldofOutlaws.

Results of World of Outlaws Late Model Series at I-30 Speedway (Finishing Position/Start/Driver/Laps Completed/Money Won):

1. (6) Billy Moyer/50 $10,150
2. (1) Darrell Lanigan/50 $5,650
3. (3) Shane Clanton/50 $3,550
4. (11) Tim McCreadie/50 $3,150
5. (5) Shannon Babb/50 $2,050
6. (8) Frankie Heckenast Jr./50 $2,350
7. (17) Chub Frank/50 $1,950
8. (7) Brandon Sheppard/50 $1,850
9. (10) Chase Junghans/50 $1,750
10. (23) Eric Wells/50 $1,650
11. (22) Clint Smith/50 $1,600
12. (4) Rick Eckert/50 $1,650
13. (19) Tommy Surrett/50 $1,450
14. (18) Morgan Bagley/50 $1,450
15. (9) Robbie Baker/49 $950
16. (16) Timothy Culp/49 $800
17. (13) Garrett Alberson/49 $770
18. (14) Jack Sullivan/38 $1,300
19. (21) Chandler Petty/27 $730
20. (12) Billy Moyer Jr./21 $700
21. (15) Jared Landers/18 $700
22. (24) Rick ‘Boom’ Briggs/14 $700
23. (20) Raymond Merrill/9 $700
24. (2) Wendell Wallace/9 $725

* Earnings include Winners Circle program and cash contingency award bonuses

Time of Race: 22 Mins., 33.778 Secs.
Margin of Victory: 0.384 Secs.
Yellow Flags: 3 (laps 9, 15, 17)
Red Flag: lap 18
Lap Leaders: Lanigan (1-6); Clanton (7-18); Moyer (19-50)
Provisional Starters: Wells, Briggs
WoO LMS ‘Bonus Bucks’ Winner: Surrett ($500)

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

Group ‘A’

1. 29-Darrell Lanigan/Union, KY12.604
2. 18-Shannon Babb/Moweaqua, IL12.769
3. 43-Garrett Alberson/Las Cruces, NM 12.868
4. 18-Jack Sullivan/Greenbrier, AR 13.018
5. 25-Shane Clanton/Zebulon, GA 13.067
6. 6M-Wendell Wallace/Batesville, AR 13.118
7. 17M-Robert Baker/Bryant, AR 13.157
8. 18c-Chase Junghans/Manhattan, KS 13.157
9. 8c-Keith Craft/Hollywood, AR 13.157
10. 27s-Tommy Surett/Little Rock, AR 13.159
11. 99*-Chub Frank/Bear Lake, PA 13.17
12. 99-Clay Fisher/Dewitt, AR 13.185
13. 86-Kyle Beard/Trumann, AR 13.279
14. 1B-Anthony Burroughs/Minden, LA 13.28
15. 47-Chandler Petty/Austin, AR 13.323
16. 5-Jon Mitchell/Texarkana, TX 13.353
17. 18-Eric Wells/Hazard, KY 13.53
18. 15-Odie Green/Texarkana, AR 13.862
19. 5x-Kody Mea/Southaven, MS 14.707
20. 12-David Dietz/Las Cruces, NM 15.785

Group ‘B’

1. 12M-Raymond Merrill/Salisaw, OK 13.081
2. 1-Brandon Sheppard/New Berlin, IL 13.087
3. 21-Billy Moyer/Batesville, AR 13.151
4. 24-Rick Eckert/York, PA 13.231
5. 99Jr-Frankie Heckenast Jr./Frankfort, IL 13.269
6. 21Jr-Billy Moyer Jr./Batesville, AR 13.282
7. 39-Tim McCreadie/Watertown, NY 13.324
8. 99b-Rick ‘Boom’ Briggs/Bear Lake, PA 13.342
9. 17K-Cody Kierre/Beebe, AR 13.343
10. 14M-Morgan Bagley/Tyler, TX 13.467
11. 40b-Kyle Bronson/Tampa, FL 13.471
12. 777-Jared Landers/Batesville, AR 13.485
13. c8-Timothy Culp/Sheridan, AR 13.519
14. 11c-Jeff Chanler/Minden, LA 13.522
15. 6x-Rob Litton/Alexandria, LA 13.573
16. 96-Tanner English/Benton, KY 13.651
17. 6R-Robbie Stuart/DeRidder, LA 13.72
18. 44-Clint Smith/Senoia, GA 13.769
19. M98-Clint Mashburn/Hermitage, AR N/T

Heat No. 1 (10 laps – Top 4 Transfer): Lanigan, Clanton, Baker, Alberson, Frank, Craft, Petty, Wells, Beard, Mea

Heat No. 2 (10 laps – Top 4 Transfer): Babb, Wallace, Junghans, Sullivan, Mitchell, Surrett, Fisher, Burroughs, Green, Deetz

Heat No. 3 (10 laps – Top 4 Transfer): Moyer, Heckenast, McCreadie, Landers, Bagley, English, Merrill, C. Smith, Chanler, Mashburn

Heat No. 4 (10 laps – Top 4 Transfer): Eckert, Sheppard, Moyer Jr., Culp, Stuart, Litton, Briggs, Kierre, Bronson

B-Main No. 1 (12 laps – Top 3 Transfer): Frank, Surrett, Petty, Craft, Burroughs, Mitchell, Fisher, Wells, Mea, Green, Deetz, Beard

B-Main No. 2 (12 laps – Top 3 Transfer): Bagley, Merrill, C. Smith, Stuart, Briggs, Chanler, Litton, Kierre, Mashburn (DNS) Bronson (DQ) English

World of Outlaws Late Model Series Contingency Award Winners (awards presented to noted finisher/qualifier or next highest displaying decal):

Ohlins Shocks ($50 cash to fast qualifier): Shannon Babb
Comp Cams ($50 certificate to A-Main winner): Billy Moyer
MSD Ignition ($50 cash to A-Main winner): Billy Moyer
Quartermaster ($100 certificate to A-Main winner): Billy Moyer
Wrisco (three sheets of aluminum/certificate to A-Main winner): Billy Moyer
STP ($50 cash to 2nd-place finisher in A-Main): Darrell Lanigan
Penske Racing Shocks ($50 to 3rd-place finisher in A-Main): Robbie Baker
Roush-Yates ($50 cash to 4th-place finisher in A-Main): Tim McCreadie
JE Pistons ($50 cash to 5th-place finisher in A-Main): Frankie Heckenast Jr.
Lincoln Welders ($50 cash to 6th-place finisher in A-Main): Frankie Heckenast Jr.
American Racing Wheels ($50 cash to 7th-place finisher in A-Main): Frankie Heckenast Jr.
VP Racing Fuels ($50 cash to 8th-place finisher in A-Main): Clint Smith
Edelbrock ($50 cash to 9th-place finisher in A-Main): Chase Junghans
Comp Cams ($50 cash to 10th-place finisher in A-Main): Eric Wells
Cometic ($50 cash to 12th-place finisher in A-Main): Rick Eckert
JRI Shocks ($50 cash to 13th-place finisher in A-Main): Robbie Baker
Superflow Dynos ($50 cash to 14th-place finisher in A-Main): Morgan Bagley
Quartermaster ($25 certificate to 15th-place finisher in A-Main): Robbie Baker
JE Pistons (one set of rings certificate to 16th-place finisher in A-Main): Jack Sullivan
Roush-Yates ($50 certificate to 18th-place finisher in A-Main): Jack Sullivan
Quartermaster ($50 certificate to 19th-place finisher in A-Main): Billy Moyer Jr.
Arizona Sports Shirts ($100 certificate to 20th-place finisher in A-Main): Billy Moyer Jr.
JE Pistons (one set of rings certificate to 21st-place finisher in A-Main): Rick ‘Boom’ Briggs
Roush-Yates ($50 certificate to 22nd-place finisher in A-Main): Rick ‘Boom’ Briggs
MSD Ignition ($25 cash to 24th-place finisher in A-Main): Wendell Wallace
Armor All (one case of product to highest-finishing non-WoO driver): Billy Moyer
Reliable Painting Award (one free tire): Morgan Bagley

2014 World of Outlaws Late Model Series Point Standings as of March 29 – 6 A-Mains completed (rank/driver/points/deficit to leader):

1. Darrell Lanigan 860
2. Brandon Sheppard 838 (-22)
3. Rick Eckert 798 (-62)
4. Shane Clanton 780 (-80)
5. Tim McCreadie 766 (-94)
6. Frankie Heckenast Jr. 748 (-112)
7. Morgan Bagley 742 (-118)
8. Eric Wells 734 (-126)
9. Chub Frank 726 (-134)
10. Clint Smith 702 (-158)
11. Brady Smith 692 (-168)
12. Tim Fuller 650 (-210)
13. Chase Junghans 646 (-214)
14. Jack Sullivan 634 (-226)
15. Ivedent Lloyd Jr. 628 (-232)

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Enfinger, full-ahead for Salem; going for third straight win.

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The last time a driver won back-to-back ARCA Racing Series presented by Menards season openers was in 1990; that was until Grant Enfinger stepped to the plate in 2014.

Enfinger, driver of the No. 90 Casite-Motor Honey-Advance Auto Parts Team BCR Ford, has got the attention of his peers with consecutive wins to start the year at Daytona and Mobile.

And, if he can win the Federated Auto Parts 200 presented by Crunch’N Nutter at Salem Speedway on April 27, the next event on tour, he’ll go in the books as one of only two drivers in history that have opened the season with three consecutive wins.

Currently, Ramo Stott is the only driver in 62 consecutive seasons that started the year on the strength of three straight wins, pulling off the feat in 1970 with victories at Daytona, Talladega and the half-mile Tri-County Speedway dirt track outside of Cincinnati.

“To be honest, I haven’t thought much about that,” Enfinger said. “We were not even geared up to run the full season this year solarge the possibility of winning three in a row was not something I was at all focused on.”

Initially, Enfinger’s 2014 plans included the 10 announced TV races and maybe a few more here and there. But, here he sits with two wins and a 50-point lead over 10-time series champ and nine-time Salem winner Frank Kimmel.

“I feel like we’ll be at Salem,” Enfinger said. “It’s really more of a Howard (Bixman/Car Owner) question, but, based on our start this year, I feel pretty safe to say that we’re going to Salem.”

That said, Enfinger’s car owner Howard Bixman was the next call for the same question.

“We’ll for sure go to Salem,” Bixman answered.

“We’re right in the middle of our negotiations for the rest of the year. We should know by May 1st. We’re certainly pressing hard for it. Like most teams, there are a limited amount of funds we have to work with it. Team BCR is certainly capable of running the full year. Our short track program has always been very solid. We’ve been working so hard on our speedway program, and we’re very busy on our intermediate program, so I know we’ve got what it takes to compete for championships.”

Winning season openers at Daytona and Mobile certainly helps the marketing cause.

“We’ve had such an incredible start to the season,” Enfinger said. “I’m just so happy for everyone at Team BCR. We’ve all worked so hard for this success, and it helps a lot toward running a full season, but there are a lot of details to be finalized. And it’s getting later in the game with each passing day. Right now, I’d say we’re race by race until Howard says differently. He handles most of the business side of things. If he says we’re going, then we’re going; if not, then we’re not.”

The plan is to race the very same short track car at Salem that just came out of Victory Lane at Mobile. Despite both tracks being half-mile paved ovals, according to Enfinger, the difference between the two is like the difference between two planets.

large1“There’s really nothing similar about them (Mobile and Salem). They’re two different planets. Salem is an incredibly awesome place to race, but the place eats cars; that sums up Salem. 90% of the cars (at Salem) come back all cracked up and hurt pretty bad. The place is so fast, and you’re already right against the wall, so sooner or later, you’re gunna hit it.

“It’s abrasive, bumpy, rough, but it’s an absolute blast to drive it. It’s a classic, old-school short track. Winning it would be huge, but we all know how challenging that is.

“I’ve been there three times, and we’ve been decent but we’ve never had any great finishes; but I do look forward to it. It’s one awesome, one-of-a-kind track.”

Beyond Salem, Enfinger knows the team is also going to Talladega Superspeedway for the Int’l Motorsports Hall of Fame 200 in early May and the event at Toledo Speedway in mid-May, both events televised. The next question then becomes the non-televised event on the New Jersey Motorsports Park road course in early June, which was not part of their initial plans.

“It’d be a dream come true to be able to run the full ARCA season and compete for a championship, but always easier said than done. We’ve got some great sponsors and marketing partners and no matter what happens, I’m grateful for any opportunity I get to climb into our ARCA car and race, no matter where it is.

“I’ve got some great support, and I’d like to thank Casite, Motor Honey, Advance Auto Parts, Stanley Industries and Wurth for believing in our program.”

Team BCR will also field Fords for third-generation driver Justin Allison in at least 10 ARCA races in 2014.

The Federated Auto Parts 200 presented by Crunch’N Nutter, the 95th ARCA race at Salem since 1955, is scheduled to get the green flag Sunday afternoon, April 27 just after 2:00 p.m. local time. Two practice sessions precede Sunday’s race activity on Saturday, April 26 at 12 noon and at 1:15. Menards Pole Qualifying presented by Ansell rolls off at 3:30 Saturday. An on-track autograph session accompanies pre-race festivities Sunday from 11:30 – 12:30. Driver introductions follow at 2.

Ladies rule NHRA in Vegas: Alexis DeJoria (Funny Car), Erica Enders-Stevens (Pro Stock) win

summit-vegas-nationalsSunday was Ladies Day in final eliminations of the SummitRacing.com NHRA Nationals, as Alexis DeJoria (Funny Car) and Erica Enders-Stevens (Pro Stock) flexed their girl power all the way to victory lane.

It was the second time that two female drivers have earned wins in the same NHRA event, the other time coming when Courtney Force and Enders-Stevens made history in 2012 at Pacific Raceways near Seattle.

Also winning in the fourth race of the 24-race season was Tony Schumacher in Top Fuel.

In conquering The Strip at Las Vegas Motor Speedway, DeJoria won her second career national event – and second race of the last three this season – while Enders-Stevens followed up Saturday’s win in the K&N Horsepower Challenge with Sunday’s triumph.

DeJoria recorded a final-round pass of 4.026 seconds at 309.98 mph to defeat Robert Hight (4.083, 315.42), who she also beat to earn her first national event win last month at Phoenix.

“This was definitely a grudge match [with Hight] coming off our win in Phoenix,” DeJoria said. “I was just in shock when we won there. It was gratifying and intense.

“Today my team gave me a good car and got me down the track first. I really appreciate them so much and all they give up to help this team go racing.”

Even with the defeat, Hight took over the Funny Car points lead, having reached the final round in three of this season’s first four races.

DeJoria, meanwhile, leads all Funny Car drivers with two wins and moved up to third in the standings.

As for Enders-Stevens, she was unbeatable in the Horsepower Challenge and then in Sunday’s four rounds of eliminations, her seventh career national event win.

She is now third on the all-time wins list of female drivers in the NHRA behind Pro Stock Motorcycle’s Angelle Sampey and Top Fuel legend Shirley Muldowney.

In addition, Enders-Stevens, who earned $100,000 in winnings and bonuses this weekend, becomes the first female to ever lead the Pro Stock points standings.

“This is storybook,” she said. “We’ve gone a few years without sponsorship; there were definitely more lows than highs. It would have been easy to quit. This is definitely a highlight. Next to winning a championship, this is probably the coolest thing in the world.”

Enders-Stevens covered the track in 6.612 seconds at 208.78 mph, preventing Jason Line (6.633, 208.23) from earning his second win of the season.

In Top Fuel, Schumacher earned his first win after 15 winless events dating back to last season, defeating points leader Doug Kalitta.

“I’m not angry that we hadn’t won in a long time,” Schumacher said. “I was disappointed, but I understand that you have to make leaps and bounds. Kalitta is running great, Antron (Brown) is running good, the Alan Johnson [Al-Anabi] cars are going to be bad to the bone pretty soon. We have to keep forcing the issue.”

Schumacher earned his eighth career win at Las Vegas and his 73rd overall career win (in his 126th final round appearance) with a run of 3.797 seconds at 326.16 mph. Even though he came up short at 3.814s seconds and 321.12 mph, it still was Kalitta’s third final round appearance in the first four events.

“It was important for us to get this win,” Schumacher said. “There’s a lot of pressure early in the season to get a win and get into the Shootout for a chance to race for $100,000. I love the pressure. We’re a high-pressure, adversity kind of team.”

The next national event takes place in two weeks, from April 11-13, at the NHRA Four-Wide Nationals at zMAX Dragway near Charlotte, N.C.

Final finishing order (1-16):

TOP FUEL:

1. Tony Schumacher; 2. Doug Kalitta; 3. Antron Brown; 4. Steve Torrence; 5. J.R. Todd; 6. Bob Vandergriff; 7. Shawn Langdon; 8. Spencer Massey; 9. Khalid alBalooshi; 10. Terry McMillen; 11. Richie Crampton; 12. Troy Buff; 13. Mike Strasburg; 14. Steve Faria; 15. Clay Millican; 16. Brittany Force.

FUNNY CAR:

1. Alexis DeJoria; 2. Robert Hight; 3. Ron Capps; 4. Cruz Pedregon; 5. Jack Beckman; 6. Courtney Force; 7. Paul Lee; 8. Tony Pedregon; 9. Tim Wilkerson; 10. John Force; 11. Del Worsham; 12. Jeff Arend; 13. Matt Hagan; 14. Chad Head; 15. Jon Capps; 16. Tommy Johnson Jr..

PRO STOCK:

1. Erica Enders-Stevens; 2. Jason Line; 3. Chris McGaha; 4. Jimmy Alund; 5. Shane Gray; 6. Jeg Coughlin; 7. Dave Connolly; 8. Steve Kent; 9. Larry Morgan; 10. Rodger Brogdon; 11. Deric Kramer; 12. Allen Johnson; 13. V. Gaines; 14. Vincent Nobile; 15. Mark Wolfe; 16. Matt Hartford.

FINAL ROUND RESULTS:

Top Fuel — Tony Schumacher, 3.797 seconds, 326.16 mph def. Doug Kalitta, 3.814 seconds, 321.12 mph.

Funny Car – Alexis DeJoria, Toyota Camry, 4.026, 309.98 def. Robert Hight, Ford Mustang, 4.083, 315.42.

Pro Stock – Erica Enders-Stevens, Chevy Camaro, 6.612, 208.78 def. Jason Line, Camaro, 6.633, 208.23.

FINAL ROUND-BY-ROUND RESULTS:

TOP FUEL:

ROUND ONE — J.R. Todd, 3.822, 323.74 def. Richie Crampton, 3.837, 312.57; Tony Schumacher, 3.808, 320.13 def. Troy Buff, 3.857, 310.27; Doug Kalitta, 3.844, 320.58 def. Steve Faria, 4.070, 249.26; Antron Brown, 3.758, 322.19 def. Mike Strasburg, 3.996, 305.01; Steve Torrence, 3.785, 326.63 def. Terry McMillen, 3.826, 301.33; Spencer Massey, 3.805, 320.43 def. Clay Millican, 4.212, 207.91; Bob Vandergriff, 3.824, 313.00 def. Brittany Force, 7.525, 68.56; Shawn Langdon, 3.796, 321.88 def. Khalid alBalooshi, 3.810, 319.45;

QUARTERFINALS — Kalitta, 3.837, 322.42 def. Vandergriff, 3.842, 316.97; Schumacher, 4.869, 220.69 def. Massey, 12.908, 68.25; Brown, 3.774, 326.48 def. Langdon, 3.873, 300.80; Torrence, 3.804, 324.83 def. Todd, 3.800, 321.96;

SEMIFINALS — Kalitta, 3.785, 325.37 def. Torrence, 4.941, 178.66; Schumacher, 3.812, 327.43 def. Brown, 3.875, 300.46;

FINAL — Schumacher, 3.797, 326.16 def. Kalitta, 3.814, 321.12.

FUNNY CAR:

ROUND ONE — Robert Hight, Ford Mustang, 4.082, 314.02 def. Jeff Arend, Dodge Charger, 4.768, 170.97; Ron Capps, Charger, 7.856, 82.57 def. Tim Wilkerson, Mustang, foul; Jack Beckman, Charger, 4.125, 308.78 def. Tommy Johnson Jr., Charger, 8.354, 80.00; Courtney Force, Mustang, 4.106, 310.05 def. Jon Capps, Chevy Impala, foul; Paul Lee, Charger, 4.132, 300.60 def. John Force, Mustang, 4.137, 302.96; Tony Pedregon, Toyota Camry, 4.171, 291.32 def. Del Worsham, Camry, 4.545, 211.39; Alexis DeJoria, Camry, 4.071, 305.08 def. Matt Hagan, Charger, 4.998, 185.36; Cruz Pedregon, Camry, 4.757, 207.91 def. Chad Head, Camry, 5.050, 232.79;

QUARTERFINALS — R. Capps, 4.133, 311.63 def. Beckman, 4.135, 311.27; C. Pedregon, 4.104, 297.94 def. C. Force, 4.144, 308.43; Hight, 4.086, 316.82 def. Lee, 4.312, 269.40; DeJoria, 4.125, 307.37 def. T. Pedregon, 4.604, 190.59;

SEMIFINALS — DeJoria, 4.090, 309.34 def. C. Pedregon, 9.007, 82.23; Hight, 4.073, 315.86 def. R. Capps, 4.133, 310.84;

FINAL — DeJoria, 4.026, 309.98 def. Hight, 4.083, 315.42.

PRO STOCK:

ROUND ONE — Jimmy Alund, Chevy Camaro, 7.821, 194.18 def. Vincent Nobile, Camaro, 8.110, 178.10; Shane Gray, Camaro, 6.647, 207.91 def. V. Gaines, Dodge Avenger, 7.498, 148.59; Steve Kent, Camaro, 6.673, 206.54 def. Allen Johnson, Dodge Dart, 6.782, 207.43; Jason Line, Camaro, 6.645, 207.37 def. Deric Kramer, Avenger, 6.705, 206.29; Dave Connolly, Camaro, 6.657, 207.59 def. Matt Hartford, Avenger, 22.863, 24.93; Chris McGaha, Camaro, 6.621, 207.69 def. Rodger Brogdon, Camaro, 6.702, 206.67; Jeg Coughlin, Dart, 6.697, 207.88 def. Mark Wolfe, Ford Mustang, 12.622, 68.35; Erica Enders-Stevens, Camaro, 6.645, 207.66 def. Larry Morgan, Mustang, 6.693, 206.80;

QUARTERFINALS — Alund, 6.689, 206.92 def. Coughlin, 6.653, 207.82; Line, 6.652, 207.72 def. Connolly, 6.654, 207.91; Enders-Stevens, 6.626, 208.39 def. Kent, 6.674, 206.86; McGaha, 6.644, 207.69 def. Gray, 6.649, 208.46;

SEMIFINALS — Line, 6.645, 207.98 def. Alund, 6.647, 208.10; Enders-Stevens, 6.618, 208.65 def. McGaha, foul;

FINAL — Enders-Stevens, 6.612, 208.78 def. Line, 6.633, 208.23.

UPDATED POINTS STANDINGS:

TOP FUEL

1. Doug Kalitta, 412; 2. Antron Brown, 339; 3. Steve Torrence, 314; 4. Tony Schumacher, 262; 5. Spencer Massey, 236; 6. Khalid alBalooshi, 229; 7. Shawn Langdon, 223; 8. Brittany Force, 191; 9. Richie Crampton, 157; 10. Bob Vandergriff, 150.

FUNNY CAR

1. Robert Hight, 367; 2. John Force, 358; 3. Alexis DeJoria, 299; 4. Ron Capps, 241; 5. Del Worsham, 224; 6. Courtney Force, 207; 7. Tommy Johnson Jr., 205; 8. Matt Hagan, 204; 9. Jack Beckman, 202; 10. Bob Tasca III, 194.

PRO STOCK

1. Erica Enders-Stevens, 344; 2. Jason Line, 329; 3. Allen Johnson, 317; 4. V. Gaines, 276; 5. (tie) Dave Connolly, 267; Vincent Nobile, 267; 7. Shane Gray, 237; 8. Jeg Coughlin, 214; 9. Chris McGaha, 191; 10. Jimmy Alund, 169.

Crafton holds off Wallace Jr., wins Kroger 250

Matt Crafton celebrates in victory lane after winning Sunday's NASCAR Camping World Truck Series race at Martinsville Speedway.

Matt Crafton celebrates in victory lane after winning Sunday’s NASCAR Camping World Truck Series race at Martinsville Speedway.

Defending NASCAR Camping World Truck Series champion Matt Crafton won Sunday’s Kroger 250 race at Martinsville Speedway on the second attempt at a green-white-checkered finish, ending a thrilling doubleheader day at the 0.526-mile track.

Crafton held off Darrell Wallace Jr., who won at Martinsville last fall, to take the checkered flag in an event that went six laps past the advertised distance of 250.

Ben Kennedy placed third, while Johnny Sauter and Ryan Blaney rounded out the top five.

Sauter took over the points lead from Timothy Peters, who placed eighth after finishing second to Kyle Busch in the season opening Nextera Energy Resources 250 at Daytona International Speedway last month. Crafton was 10th at Daytona.

While Timothy Peters was the class of the field for much of the day, the handling of his No. 17 Red Horse Racing Toyota went away in the closing laps. With Peters slipping, Crafton was able to capitalize with 38 laps to go and take the top spot with Wallace Jr. in hot pursuit.

As the laps clicked away and the tension heated up, tempers ran short and sheet metal was bent. In typical short-track fashion, beating and banging led to tempers on the track.

A caution for debris stacked the field up for a restart on Lap 232. While Crafton and Peters looked to battle it out for the lead, the No. 77 of German Quiroga got into the back of Ron Hornaday’s No. 30 Chevrolet. The incident ruined a promising run for Hornaday, but also brought about another late-race restart.

Taking the green flag on Lap 237, the action picked back up with plenty of action throughout the field. With only seven laps left until the scheduled end of the race, Gray Gaulding was spun off Turn 2 by fellow youngster Cole Custer. The pair have a feud brewing from the NASCAR K&N Series, and neither driver gave an inch.

While Gaulding’s strong run was ruined, he would go on to finish 19th, the incident set up the first attempt at a green-white-checkered restart.

Taking the green flag, Crafton was able to pull ahead of Peters for the lead. Behind them, Erik Jones’ No. 51 Toyota was turned by the No. 98 Toyota of Johnny Sauter to bring out yet another caution. Since Crafton had yet to take the white flag, NASCAR lined the field up again for the second attempt at a green-white-checkered restart.

On the final restart of the day, Crafton was once again able to jump out to the lead as Wallace Jr. took the second spot from Peters. Pushed to the high side, Peters’ No. 17 was shoved into the outside wall by his teammate Quiroga. The No. 77 of Quiroga came down the track and got into John Wes Townley’s No. 5 Toyota, sending it hard into the inside wall.

Missing out on a win in front of his hometown crowd, Peters was not happy with his Red Horse Racing teammate and showed his displeasure after the race.

The Camping World Truck Series is off until the May 9 running of the SFP 250 at Kansas Speedway.

Will Power’s win at the Grand Prix of St. Petersburg today is his third consecutive win.

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Will Power clearly had the car to beat in today’s Firestone Grand Prix of St. Petersburg, and the Team Penske pilot made it count en route to taking the checkered flag in the season-opening race for the 2014 Verizon IndyCar Series championship.

Power took the lead from pole sitter Takuma Sato with an outside pass in Turn 1 on Lap 31, and basically never looked back on the way to not only his second career win in St. Pete but also the fourth win in his last six races dating back to last season.

The Australian ended the 2013 season on a tear with wins last fall at Sonoma, Race 2 of the Houston doubleheader, and the season finale at Fontana. That late-season surge made him a title pick of many observers going into 2014, and he’s living up to the billing so far.

However, Power’s win didn’t come without controversy. After an extended caution, Power was set to lead the field to a restart with 28 laps remaining. But instead of accelerating, Power appeared to slow down.

The field proceeded to stack up behind him, and in the process, Jack Hawksworth tagged another car from behind before skidding into the inside wall of the frontstretch, collecting Marco Andretti.

In the immediate aftermath of the crash, Marco’s team owner and father, Michael Andretti, put the blame on Power, while Team Penske’s Tim Cindric said that Power told him the green flag had been thrown earlier than he expected.

Additionally, TV replays showed that Power had not yet reached the restart cone when the field began to stack up.

After the cleanup, Power held the lead on the next restart with 23 laps to go. Ryan Hunter-Reay managed to get past Helio Castroneves for second in Turn 1, but the American was unable to reel in Power during the closing laps and finished 1.9 seconds back. Castroneves settled for third and the last spot on the podium.

In Victory Lane, Power re-iterated his claim that the green had been thrown early on him.

“I thought we were meant to go in that [restart zone],” he explained to ESPN’s Jamie Little. “So, I was surprised. I don’t even know what happened behind me! What happened?”

When Little explained the accident that occurred between Hawksworth and Andretti, Power responded: “I lifted a little. I didn’t touch the break at all. You can take a look at my data – I did not touch the brake.”

As for what his peers thought about Power’s role in the matter, opinions were mixed. Notably, his teammate Castroneves thought that things were “a little strange” on the first restart.

“[Power] was being very tricky for sure, and I understand,” said Castroneves. “It was too slow on the first one and on the second one, obviously, he played a little bit. I got hung out to dry and Hunter-Reay took advantage of it [for second].”

However, defending series champion Scott Dixon, who finished fourth, believed the ill-fated restart wasn’t Power’s fault.

“I don’t think Will did anything wrong – they moved the restart zone late this morning in warmup, so I think he was probably a little slow, if anything,” Dixon said.

“But I think sometimes, it’s just people being too greedy, man. They’ve got to come down hard on that so nobody tries to take advantage by jumping a few spots early on.”

Simon Pagenaud, also a trendy choice for the 2014 championship, came home fifth ahead of Tony Kanaan, who finished sixth in his first race for Target Chip Ganassi Racing.

Sato converted his pole into a Top-10 finish with a seventh, and was followed by Justin Wilson in eighth, Josef Newgarden in ninth (after starting last on the grid), and Ryan Briscoe in 10th.

As for former Indianapolis 500 and CART champion Juan Pablo Montoya‘s return to open-wheel racing, it was not an altogether pleasant one.

Montoya, who is coming off a seven-year run in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series, was not a factor during the 110-lap race and finished 15th in a day he’ll likely chalk up as a learning experience.

The Verizon IndyCar Series returns to action on Sunday, April 13 at the Toyota Grand Prix of Long Beach. You can watch it live on NBCSN and NBC Sports Live Extra starting at 4 p.m. ET.

FIRESTONE GRAND PRIX OF ST. PETERSBURG
Unofficial Results

1. 12-Will Power
2. 2-Ryan Hunter-Reay
3. 3-Helio Castroneves

4. 9-Scott Dixon
5. 77-Simon Pagenaud
6. 10-Tony Kanaan
7. 14-Takuma Sato
8. 19-Justin Wilson
9. 67-Josef Newgarden
10. 8-Ryan Briscoe
11. 17-Sebastian Saavedra
12. 7-Mikhail Aleshin (R)
13. 11-Sebastien Bourdais
14. 15-Graham Rahal
15. 2-Juan Pablo Montoya
16. 20-Mike Conway
17. 34-Carlos Munoz (R)
18. 18-Carlos Huertas (R)
19. 27-James Hinchcliffe, one lap down
20. 83-Charlie Kimball, two laps down
21. 98-Jack Hawksworth (R), Lap 83, Contact
22. 25-Marco Andretti, Lap 82, Contact

Kurt Busch wins the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series STP 500 at Martinsville Speedway.

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Kurt Busch overcame an early-race tangle with Brad Keselowski, and then held off Jimmie Johnson in the final 11 laps to win Sunday’s STP 500 at Martinsville Speedway.

The elder Busch brother follows up younger brother Kyle’s win last week at Auto Club Speedway to become the sixth different winner in as many races this season.

Busch passed Johnson on Lap 473 and appeared headed to the win, but Johnson regained the lead 10 laps later.

Johnson was seeking his ninth triumph at Martinsville, but Busch rallied back to regain the lead on Lap 489, successfully navigated thick lapped traffic while still being able to keep Johnson at bay to take his first Sprint Cup win since Oct. 2, 2011 at Dover.

Busch led just 23 laps in breaking an 83-race winless streak.

Busch tangled with Keselowski on pit road on Lap 44, causing extensive damage to Keselowski’s car that kept him off the track for more than 30 laps.

Busch was able to continue on and quickly worked his way up through the pack to run consistently in the top-10 for much of the day.

Johnson, who led a race-high 296 of the event’s 500 laps, finished second, while Hendrick Motorsports teammate Dale Earnhardt Jr. finished third.

Joey Logano, who led 39 laps, finished fourth, followed by a strong effort by Richard Petty Motorsports driver Marcos Ambrose, who led 22 laps and finished fifth, while fellow RPM driver Aric Almirola finished eighth.

Sixth through 10th were Matt Kenseth, Kevin Harvick, Almirola, Clint Bowyer and Paul Menard.

Earnhardt also regaining the lead in the Sprint Cup points standings. Earnhardt, who led the points after the first three races, knocked Carl Edwards off the top spot after Edwards’ brief one-week reign.

Pole sitter Kyle Busch led 22 laps but fought handling problems throughout most of the race, eventually finishing 14th.

There were a record 33 lead changes among 12 drivers, breaking the old track record of 31.

 

RACE NOTES:

  • Average Speed: 72.176 MPH
  • Time of Race: 3 Hrs, 38 Mins, 38 Secs.
  • Margin of Victory: 0.263 Seconds
  • Lead Changes: 33 among 12 drivers
  • Cautions: 14 for 92 laps
  • Next Up: The Duck Commander 500 at Texas Motor Speedway on Sunday, April 6th, with an approximate starting time of 3:20 p.m. (ET) and television coverage provided by FOX beginning with their 2:30 p.m. (ET) pre-race show.

2014 NSCS STP 500 Race Results

  1. 41 Kurt Busch Haas
  2. 48 Jimmie Johnson
  3. 88 Dale Earnhardt Jr.
  4. 22 Joey Logano
  5. 9 Marcos Ambrose
  6. 20 Matt Kenseth
  7. 4 Kevin Harvick
  8. 43 Aric Almirola
  9. 15 Clint Bowyer
  10. 27 Paul Menard
  11. 47 AJ Allmendinger
  12. 24 Jeff Gordon
  13. 99 Carl Edwards
  14. 18 Kyle Busch
  15. 3 Austin Dillon #
  16. 55 Brian Vickers
  17. 14 Tony Stewart
  18. 16 Greg Biffle
  19. 11 Denny Hamlin
  20. 31 Ryan Newman
  21. 78 Martin Truex Jr.
  22. 5 Kasey Kahne
  23. 51 Justin Allgaier #
  24. 13 Casey Mears
  25. 40 Landon Cassill(i)
  26. 38 David Gilliland -1
  27. 42 Kyle Larson # -2
  28. 34 David Ragan -3
  29. 26 Cole Whitt # -3
  30. 83 Ryan Truex # -4
  31. 7 Michael Annett # -5
  32. 10 Danica Patrick -6
  33. 32 Travis Kvapil -7
  34. 36 Reed Sorenson -8
  35. 98 Josh Wise -8
  36. 23 Alex Bowman # -12
  37. 95 Michael McDowell -26
  38. 2 Brad Keselowski -31
  39. 33 David Stremme -60
  40. 17 Ricky Stenhouse Jr. -91
  41. 30 Parker Kligerman # -92
  42. 1 Jamie McMurray -104
  43. 66 Joe Nemechek(i) -190

#-Rookies, (i)- Not Able To Get Points

2014 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Unofficial Point Standings After Martinsville (Race #6)

  1. Dale Earnhardt Jr.  227
  2. Matt Kenseth 218 -9
  3. Carl Edwards 217 -10
  4. Jeff Gordon 216 -11
  5. Jimmie Johnson 209 -18
  6. Kyle Busch 189 -38
  7. Brad Keselowski 188 -39
  8. Joey Logano 187 -40
  9. Austin Dillon # 179 -48
  10. Ryan Newman 174 -53
  11. Paul Menard 168 -59
  12. Denny Hamlin 165 -62
  13. Brian Vickers 165 -62
  14. Marcos Ambrose 162 -65
  15. Tony Stewart 154 -73
  16. A.J. Allmendinger 152 -75

Drivers With A Win Outside the Top 16: 20 Kurt Busch 146 -81, 25 Kevin Harvick 135 -92

SX: Stewart Earns 50th Career Supercross Victory In St. Louis

James Stewart takes home his fifth win of the season

James Stewart takes home his fifth win of the season

James Stewart earned his third straight Monster Energy Supercross victory Saturday night in front of a record-breaking 60,213 fans at the Edward Jones Dome in St. Louis, Mo.

The Yoshimura Suzuki star passed three-time series champion Ryan Villopoto with 10 laps to go and pulled away to score his fifth win of the season and 50th overall. Stewart joins Jeremy McGrath – the all-time wins leader at 72 – as the only competitors in history to achieve at least 50 career victories.

“This is a special night for me,” said Stewart. “This year I have been having a lot of fun winning races. Tonight was a great race for me; I was able to make the pass and ride to my 50th win. That is huge for me. I never thought I would win 50 of these races.”

Villopoto picked up his eighth podium of the season in second, stretching his points lead to 35 over Ryan Dungey and 36 over third-place Stewart.

“It’s all about the big picture and the championship for me,” said Villopoto. “I can’t afford to make any big mistakes. I was able to get a good start and put in some good laps early on.”

Justin Barcia was third ahead of rival Ken Roczen. Trey Canard finished fifth in his first race back after suffering a broken arm in preseason testing.

Dungey appeared to be on his way to another top-five result when a crash on the final lap dropped him back to ninth.

The series travels to Houston, Texas next weekend (April 5) for round 14 of the championship. Coverage begins at 8:30 p.m. ET on FOX Sports 1.

450SX Class Results: St. Louis
1. James Stewart, Haines City, Fla., Suzuki
2. Ryan Villopoto, Poulsbo, Wash., Kawasaki
3. Justin Barcia, Pinetta, Fla., Honda
4. Ken Roczen, Murrieta, Calif., KTM
5. Trey Canard, Edmond, Okla., Honda
6. Eli Tomac, Cortex, Colo., Honda
7. Josh Hill, Yoncalla, Ore., Suzuki
8. Andrew Short, Smithville, Texas, KTM
9. Ryan Dungey, Belle Plaine, Minn., KTM
10. Nick Wey, Dewitt, Mich., Kawasaki