WKA: Baker Dirt National race report
By Bruce C. Walls BAKER, FL-Rohn Moon and Dee Paschal each posted three wins during the Bordeaux Dyno Cams WKA/Briggs & Stratton Speedway Dirt Series Spring Nationals' April 6-8 that brought 900 racers to Oak Grove Motorsports Park in Baker, FL.
By Bruce C. Walls
BAKER, FL-Rohn Moon and Dee Paschal each posted three wins during the Bordeaux Dyno Cams WKA/Briggs & Stratton Speedway Dirt Series Spring Nationals' April 6-8 that brought 900 racers to Oak Grove Motorsports Park in Baker, FL. Each earned two wins Saturday and backed them up with another one Sunday.
Moon, a Jacksonville, FL based Shadow kart pilot, scored his first win in Saturday's Team Simpson Racing Briggs Controlled Medium. Brett Miller clocked the pole time with a 13.137-seconds trip and took the early led with King Williams, VA racer Stephanie Pitts glued to his tail pipe. Pitts took charge of the 34-racer field the second time around with Gene Nasworthy and Moon close behind in second and third.
In the final laps Pitts held a two-kart lead over Nasworthy and was heading into traffic hoping to expand on her advantage when the race's only caution waved. With just five laps to go Pitts led the restart. Nasworthy and Moon trailed her. Nasworthy got the jump on Pitts when the green flag waved again and he and Moon battled for the lead until Moon got by Nasworthy in time to take the win. Pitts made it back to second, but was disqualified at tech.
"I want to thank all Moon Power Customers for their support," Moon credited after his first win. "I want to say a special thanks to Dan Sox and Shadow Karts, Bully Clutches and Lightning Light Bodies," added Moon who also posted a second, a fourth and a sixth place finish that weekend as well.
Filling out the official top five behind Moon were Chris Douglas, Chris Williamson, Kevin Smith and Miller.
Later that day Moon edged out Columbia, SC competitor Dan Sox for Power Products/Super Seat Briggs Limited Heavy's checkered flag. David Halk earned the pole with a 12.972-seconds lap, but when the 30-racer field got the green it turned into a battle between Moon and Sox that would go down to the wire.
"Dan (Sox) said his motor blew at the end," said Moon. "I want to thank Moon Power customers for their support and thank E.C. Birt, Maxxis/Goldspeed USA, Intercom, RLV, Royal Tee's and Roy Whaley for their support."
Shane Evens finished third, Halk followed in fourth and Jeffery Kummer capped the top five.
Moon scored his third win taking Twister Karts/Davis Mfg. Briggs Heavy's checkered flag just .036-seconds ahead of Salisbury, NC engine builder Tod Miller. James Russell earned the top starting spot with a 13.424-seconds trip and led the 30-racer field until the race's only caution wave. Moon grabbed the lead on the restart and fought off Russell then Miller in the final laps.
"There's so many people that help us do this," said Moon. "I want to thank Johnny Luster, Blaze Martin, Hammer, T.J. Newton, Pop and all of our customers."
Avis Electric sponsored Mechanicsville, VA based Scott Bajer finished third and was followed in the top five by Chris Williamson and Shane Evans.
Unadilla, GA based Buller powered Phantom kart pilot Dee Paschal posted a trio of wins that weekend starting with American Power Sports Yamaha 2-Cycle where he out ran Scott Schrader to the finish. Archdale, NC competitor Scott Bazen blistered the track with a 12.961-seconds lap for the pole and a 12.975-seconds lap put Schrader on the outside pole. Quickly powering his way from a fourth place starting position Paschal took control of the 14-racer field and never let go. "The kart was awesome and the motor was awesome, all I did was turn the steering wheel," Paschal described. "We just got this new chassis Thursday morning and put it together."
Virginia racer James Kirby captured third and was followed in the top five by Chuck Clark and Christopher Meleason.
Later that day Paschal beat Tod Miller to Trick/Olimpic Karts Briggs Lite's checkered flag by just .194-seconds for Saturday's final feature. A burst of fireworks filled the skies above Oak Grove Motorsports Park when national flagman Buddy Burkett gave Paschal the checkered flag.
Chad Haithcock clocked the pole time with a 13.355-seconds lap and grabbed the early lead over the 30-racer field. Rodney Wood brought up the first challenge and grabbed a piece of the lead before Paschal powered his way from sixth to take a never surrendered lead.
"I'm tickled to death," said Paschal. "I had an awesome kart, but there were a lot of guys out there that could have won this one."
Dahlonega, GA driver Bradley Gerrells grabbed third under the checkered flag and was followed in the top five by Jeremy Kummer and Wayne Poole.
Sunday Paschal took charge of Bordeaux Dyno Cams Controlled Heavy's 30-racer field with three laps to go and beat pole winner Chris Douglas to the finish by .269-seconds. After earning the pole with a .13.228-seconds lap Douglas took the early lead and opened a very comfortable mid-race advantage over Paschal. Then on lap 13 the race's only caution wave and cut Douglas's lead. When the green flag wave again Paschal powered his way to the front and held Douglas off until the end.
"He (Douglas) was a little loose on the restart and our kart was awesome again today," said Paschal. "I want to thank all of our crew for the time they put in this weekend they don't know how much help they've been."
Williamson, Nasworthy and Justin Holt handled the remaining top five positions.
Brandon Dill and Ricky Keisler captured RLV Tuned Exhaust Products Briggs Junior Sportsman-1 Lite and Ultramax Racing Chassis Briggs Junior Sportsman-1 Heavy. Keisler clocked both pole times and Dill started next to him each time. Dill grabbed the initial led in Saturday's Lite class and led the 30-racer field through a lap seven caution restart before beating Shay Chavous to the finish.
"The Nemesis kart was perfect and the Dill Performance motor was super," credited the 10-year-old Mt. Airy, GA based winner.
Completing the top five behind Chavous were Jordan Dill, Anthony Comparetto and Scotty Glover, Jr.
A 15.312-seconds lap earned Keisler Sunday's Junior Sportsman-1 Heavy's pole. From there the 10-year-old Schu-Powered Titan kart pilot took the initial lead with Dill and Comparetto close behind in second and third. Two laps into it the race's only caution flag waved. Dill got a piece of the lead on the restart and then surrendered it to Michael Arnold. Several laps later Keisler recaptured the lead for good finishing .314-seconds ahead of Arnold.
"I had a little help in the draft and got it back," Keisler explained adding, "The Titan kart was good and the motor was awesome."
This time Arnold took third, Brandon Overton finished fourth and Dill capped the top five.
Clarion, PA based Tod Miller Racing Engines powered Phantom kart pilot Kyle Nicholas took Williams Motor Sports Briggs Junior Sportsman-2 Lite's checkered flag .255 seconds ahead of Todd Goble. Jonathan Ross ruled qualifying with a 14.194-seconds lap and Nicholas earned the outside pole with a 14.331-seconds lap. Ross hustled into the initial lead and then surrendered the front to Nicholas who was in charge of the 30-racer field when the race's only caution waved. Nicholas led the restart, but Ross quickly recaptured it. AJ Fulgenzi found a piece of the front several laps later and then Gregory Tallent II took a turn at leading the race. As they approached the mid-race signal Fulgenzi recaptured the lead and held it several laps into the second half before Tallent took over for a second time. In the final laps Nicholas shot by Tallent and held it to the end.
"Tod Miller helped us hook the kart up great and I love his motors. I've have been at the back of the pack if it wasn't for him," credited the 13-year-old winner.
Hunter Peacock posted a third place finish, Fulgenzi followed in fourth and Matt Norton completed the top five.
Sunday's ARC Racing Briggs Junior Sportsman-2 Heavy's finish was a repeat with Nicholas, Goble and Peacock crossing first, second and third. However Nicholas was disqualified for loosing his gas cap and Goble was disqualified at tech leaving Peacock the unofficial winner with the race under protest.
Keith Wyrick clocked Ratech Corp. Briggs Senior Champ's pole time with a 14.483-seconds lap, but when the checkered flag fell it was for Winchester, VA RPM powered Ultramax kart pilot Thomas Beavers II who earned his first national win. Wyrick took the early lead over the 32-racer field as AJ Curreli and Lonnie Hall battled for second close behind him. With five laps left Beavers blasted into the lead and held off Hall by .109-seconds at the finish line.
"What a race!" Beavers beamed, " The kart was awesome, it handled like u dream and the motor was awesome. I want to thank my dad and the crew, Stiffie Clutches and Tommy's Karts-n-Parts."
Madison, NC competitor Karmon Knight led Tommy's Karts-n-Parts Briggs Junior Champ's 30-racer field wire-to-wire. "The kart was a little loose in the beginning and then it settled down," said the 13-year-old Barber Chevy sponsored winner. "We had all kinds of power thanks to Beef Performance. I'd also like to thank my mom and dad for all of their support."
Joe McIntyre crossed second, but was penalized and moved to the rear of the lead lap. Joshua Nash moved up to second and was followed in the official top five by J. J. Nye, Blake O'Neal and Anthony Johnson.
Knight also clocked Shadow Racing Chassis Briggs Junior's pole time with a 13.499-seconds lap. Knight took the early lead and opened a small lead over Delta, PA pilot Bradley Mattlin that he held until the race's only caution restart that happened on lap nine. Knight led the restart with Mattlin still threatening from behind, but as they headed for the mid-race signal A.J. Miller's Phantom kart captured the lead and finished just .493-seconds ahead of Knight. Mattlin finished third, Nye followed in fourth and Jonathan Floyd took fifth out of 30.
"This is really great getting my first national win," said the 15-year-old Moncks Corner, GA based winner. "I want to thank Tod Miller and David Clowning for a perfect setup."
Rock Hill, SC Shadow kart pilot Stevie Stephenson ruled Phantom Racing Chassis Briggs Senior's finish taking that final flag .412-seconds ahead of Thomas Pritchard. Chester Wright clocked the pole time with a 13.797-second lap and led the early going with Lonnie Hall threatening from behind. In the final laps Stephenson rocketed into the lead and held it to the end.
"First of all I want to thank my wife Barbara, she makes it all happen," said Stephenson, who builds his own motors. "It was a great race this is a brand new out of the box Shadow ZX-1 and I want to thank Dan Sox for that and I also want to thank my brother David."
Finishing third through fifth were Albert Austrino, David Hicken and Robert Hammond.
The only thing that slowed Wayne Poole in Bandit Racing Chassis Briggs Medium was an early race caution. The 15-year-old Archdale, NC Tod Miller Racing Engines powered Phantom Nemesis kart pilot clocked the pole with a 13.469-seconds lap and then led the 30-racer field wire-to-wire with Moon chasing him across the finish line 1.878-seconds later. Behind Moon in the top five were Tod Miller, Paschal and Chris Williamson.
"Tod Miller set the kart up real good and gave us a really great motor," Poole credited. "I want to thank Harrill Wiggins for the kart, my mom and dad and Jody and Haines Squirrelly for their support."
Lenior City, TN racer Barrett Terry bagged Bully Clutches Unlimited 2-Cycle's win with Kirby trailing by just .598-seconds. Chuck Clark earned the pole position with a blistering 12.483-seconds lap, but didn't complete the feature's first lap leaving Kirby in command of the 17-racer field during the early laps. Terry, who started on the outside of front row, captured the lead from Kirby on lap four and never let go.
"The Buller kart ran good and Donnie Wheeler's motor ran good, it got a little quirky at the end, but it came around for the checkered," Terry said. "We took off a couple of seasons and then Donnie Wheeler wanted me to come back," added the former national champion.
Rounding out the top five behind Kirby were Chris Harrell, Tim Hicks and Michael Gordon.
Beef Powered Phantom kart pilot Greg James was first across Robinson Speed Shop Super Heavy's finish line. The Winston-Salem, NC based winner earned the pole with a 13.773-seconds lap time surrendered the lead briefly to Shane Evans and then beat Evans to the stripe by .619-seconds.
"It was a good race. We bounced back-and-forth and then hit lapped traffic, but he (Evans) drove a good clean race. I just wish my wife could have been here to see this," said James who added thanks to Harrill Wiggins for the kart and Beef Performance for the motor.
Jeff Rathfon ran third, Bryan Wheeler finished fourth and Phantom Racing Chassis factory pilot Jimmy Griffin, Jr. rounded out the top five of 30.
David "Boomer" Halk dominated Sunday's third feature Prototype Engine Sales 4-Cycle Modified from start to finish where he was a comfortable 3.378-seconds ahead of Dan Sox. Halk handled the pole position with a 12.628-seconds lap and Sox turned a 12.647-seconds lap for the outside pole.
When the green flag dropped Halk and Sox battled for the early lead with Halk coming out ahead for a never surrendered lead to the finish for his first national win.
"It's an honor to race with Dan Sox. I've been trying to win a national for a couple of years and winning your first national is nothing like winning a state race, it's a great feeling," said the Gastonia, NC based Bud Wilson Racing Engines powered Olimpic kart pilot.
Following Sox across the stripe in the top five of 17 were Adam Bedenbaugh, Shane Evans and Lee Jones.
Larry Bryant III was another first time national winner. The Vero Beach, FL based VP Motorsports powered Shadow kart pilot posted Seigler Motorsports Star Champ's pole time with a 13.639-seconds lap and led the 19-racer field wire-to-wire with veterans Roger Padget, Jeremy Seigler and Chuck Broadway behind him. At the end Bryant III was 1.097-seconds ahead of Padget. Seigler and Broadway finished third and fourth with Jason Moates capping the top five.
"First off I want to thank the Lord for this one. This is just awesome winning my first national. The Shadow kart was great and Victor Peters motor ran like a beast," said Bryant. "I also want to thank my mom and dad for their support and Shadow karts and VP Motorsports."
Fort Piers, FL racer Chase Luster grabbed E-Z Bore Briggs Restricted Junior's lead in time to take the final flag .141-seconds ahead of Jonathan Floyd. Dustin McGraw clocked the pole time with a 13.760-seconds trip and led the first two laps with Floyd threatening and eventually taking over the lead that he surrendered to Luster at the end.
"It was all setup and motor," credited the Natalies Orchard Island sponsored winner. "I want to thank Blaze Martin for the setup and Rohn Moon for an awesome motor and thank Natalies Orchard Island for their support."
Mattlin, Michael Driskell and Nick Kennedy rounded out the top five of 30-racers behind Floyd.
Horstman Stock 2-Cycle's checkered flag waved for Carbon, IN competitor Scott Schrader who beat Christopher Meleason to the finish by 5.319-seconds. "I just stayed out of trouble and waited for a break," explained the Comet Kart Sales powered Shadow kart pilot. "The Shadow Kart ran great and Mark Harrison's motor ran good."
Former national champion Chris Seay took third, pole winner Chuck Clark came in fourth and Olin Baldwin rounded out the top five of 16.
Jeffery Kummer captured his first national win taking CKI limited Lite's checkered flag 1.928-seconds ahead of Ultramax factory pilot Brad Sellers. Pole winner Wayne Poole led the early going and then surrendered the lead to Kummer who showed the 28-racer field home from there.
"It was consistency, a great kart and a great motor," credited the 16-year-old Conyers, GA based first time national winner. "I want to thank Shadow kart and Southern Express Karting for helping me win my first national, man this feels great."
Florida racer Neal Lewis crossed third and was followed in the top five by Poole and Jason Scruggs.
Powhaton, VA racer Thomas Barden bagged Jammer Clutches Junior Sportsman Champ's checkered flag just .085-seconds ahead of Jake "the Snake" Crum. Stephen Daniels earned the pole with a 16.006-seconds lap and finished third with Lucas Ransome and Trevor Bayne trailing in the top five of 28.
"There were just four laps left and I drafted up to the leader, passed him and kept on going," said the 13-year-old MT Barden & Sons sponsored winner. "The R13 Racing Chassis and Bowlin Ogles motor ran great. I want to thank Jimmy Ogles, Raymond Dolan and my mom and dad."
Sunday's final feature Dixie Karting/Southern Karting Briggs Super Stock was captured by Hartwell, GA Millennium kart pilot Brett Miller who beat Trick/Olimpic Karts factory pilot Chris Cochran to the finish by .570-seconds for his first national win.
"I just stayed smooth and drove hard. The kart was a little loose but our motor ran great," said the Hi-Tech powered winner who added, "This is unbelievable winning my first national."
Donnie Seller finished third and was followed in the top five of 24 by Moon and David Collins.
WKA/Briggs & Stratton National Speedway Dirt racers head to Low Country Kartway in Aynor, SC for Summer Nationals June 15-17. Grand Nationals will be hosted by Margarettsville Speedway in Margarettsville, NC July 20-22 and Fall Nationals will be raced at Southern Pitt Raceway in Greenville, NC September 7-9.
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