DirtNews Digest Your Online News Source for Late Model Dirt Track Racing "Get Some Dirt On Your Computer!" Todd Turner, editor Email address: DirtNews@aol.com Web site: ...
DirtNews Digest Your Online News Source for Late Model Dirt Track Racing "Get Some Dirt On Your Computer!" Todd Turner, editor
Email address: DirtNews@aol.com Web site: http://members.aol.com/dirtnews/digest =================================== CONTENTS: UMP Summernationals (published July 3) I-55 RACEWAY: Dixon sixth different winner after Pevely victory SCHEDULE/RESULTS: Update of upcoming races, winners POINTS: Top 10 in series points through July 1 =================================== UNITED MIDWESTERN PROMOTERS UMP Summernationals
PEVELY, Mo. (Wednesday) Ed Dixon didn't exactly keep his car's nose clean, but that didn't stop him from becoming the sixth winner in six races on the UMP Summernationals 20-race tour.
Dixon, often rubbing the front of his car against the four-foot concrete barrier on the inside of the track, rode his ultralow groove to a 40-lap victory worth $5,000 at I-55 Raceway, his sixth win of the year at the quarter-mile oval 30 miles south of St. Louis.
Dixon grabbed the lead from Rick Aukland on the 29th lap and managed lapped traffic smartly to keep runner-up Bill Frye a safe distance in the closing laps. Shannon Babb, hounding Frye as the race wound down, finished third ahead of Aukland, while Billy Moyer ran second much of the way before settling for fifth. Bob Pierce, Kevin Weaver, Tony Izzo Jr., John Gill and Wendell Wallace finished sixth through 10th as all the local drivers except the winner were locked out of the top positions.
"I was rubbing that wall ... that was the only place where there was some good dirt right there," said Dixon, the 1994 UMP national champion who drove full time on the ARCA circuit last year. "It helps to run here on a lot of weekly shows, and tire selection is a big deal."
When the race began, Aukland blitzed into the lead from his outside pole position while polesitter Tom Rients began a fade that wouldn't end until he finished a lap down in 14th. Moyer grabbed second from Rients on the second lap and pulled away from the field along with Aukland.
Babb claimed third early while Frye -- driving a low groove similar to Dixon's -- moved up quickly from his eighth starting spot to grab fourth on the fifth lap, then moved under Babb for third on the seventh lap.
Dixon worked the low side past Babb for fourth on the next lap, and when racing resumed after the only caution on lap 9, Dixon supplanted Frye on the 11th circuit and set sail for Moyer and Aukland, both of whom were driving in the middle of the racetrack in the corners. Although he was fast overall, Dixon's car traveled so slowly in the corners it almost appeared as if he were dropping off the pace.
"When I got up to about third, I said 'Boy, we got a good car,' " Dixon said. "I could see Rick Aukland was slipping a little bit in the middle. I thought well, if I could get out of the turn good, I got a good patch of dirt down the straightaway and I can get a lot of straightaway speed, and that's where I was gaining on him ... as a matter of fact, I think he might have been beating me through the turns, but I was set up to get the straightaway speed."
Dixon stayed on the move, grabbing second from Moyer on the 12th lap. Aukland led Dixon by a dozen car lengths on the 18th lap, but Aukland began moving into slower traffic and Dixon made up ground. Aukland found it particularly difficult getting past the low-running Mark Oller and high-running Jim Rarick, and by the 24th lap Dixon had moved right up on Aukland's rear deck.
Aukland finally cleared the lapped traffic on the 26th circuit, but Dixon stayed right with Aukland as the leader experimented with a low line. Entering Turn 1 on the 29th lap, Dixon beat Aukland into the corner to take a lead he would never give up.
While Moyer began to fade, Frye and Babb moved forward to challenge Aukland in a lively battle for the runner-up position, and Dixon still appeared vulnerable with widespread slower traffic ahead. Although Rients, Randy Korte, Billy Drake and Brian Wolfmeier blocked Dixon's path with seven laps remaining, the leader roared down the frontstretch to get past three of the four cars in one swift stroke. "That was a big move because it put a little distance between me and second," Dixon said.
The leader then had to deal with the low-running Mark Gansmann, and Dixon eventually gave the soon-to-be-lapped Gansmann a few bumps to let him know the leader was coming through. "I didn't know how close the guys were coming, and with this caliber of cars, you just keep on going," Dixon said.
Dixon cleared Gansmann (who moved to a higher groove) on the 37th lap, and went on to win by more than 10 car lengths over Frye, who recorded his best Summernationals finish of 1997.
CAR COUNT: 45 late models.
FAST QUALIFIER: Randy Korte, 14.055 seconds (1/4-mile oval).
FAST DASH (nine laps; sets first three rows of feature): Tom Rients, Rick Aukland, Billy Moyer, Randy Sellars, Bob Pierce, Billy Drake, Corey Turner, Brian Wolfmeier, Randy Korte (disqualified for being light at scales).
FIRST HEAT (10 laps; top three advance): Shannon Babb, Mark Gansmann, Kevin Weaver, Mark Oller, Matt Taylor, Terry Muskrat, Rick Bayer, Steve Ryan, Mike Bechelli, Corey Turner (Skip Arp scratched).
SECOND HEAT: Wendell Wallace, Brian Wolfmeier, Doug Ault, Gary May, Mark McLintock, Donnie Barnhart, Ken Rumble, Kris Patterson, Charlie Barys (Mark Miner scratched).
THIRD HEAT: Bill Frye, Randy Korte, John Gill, Jim Durbin, Dennis Erb Jr., Mark Anderson, Ken Schrader, Jon Tindall, Steve Shive, Ken Estes.
FOURTH HEAT: Ed Dixon, Tony Izzo Jr., Jim Rarick, Dan Schlieper, Bert Cheatham, Alan Rettig, John Hobson, Dick Taylor (Mark Blanke scratched).
FIRST CONSOLATION (12 laps; winner advances): Jim Durbin, Mark Oller, Dennis Erb Jr., Terry Muskrat, Steve Ryan, Rick Bayer, Jon Tindall, Mark Anderson, Steve Shive, Matt Taylor, Mike Bechelli (Ken Schrader, Skip Arp and Corey Turner scratched).
SECOND CONSOLATION: Gary May, Mark McLintock, Kris Patterson, Alan Rettig, Dan Schlieper, John Hobson, Mark Miner, Ken Rumble, Bert Cheatham, Charlie Barys, Dick Taylor.
FEATURE (Pos., driver, car no., hometown, chassis, winnings) 1. Ed Dixon (50), Washington, Mo., Rayburn, $5,000 2. Bill Frye (66), Greenbrier, Ark., GRT, $2,000 3. Shannon Babb (18), Decatur, Ill., GRT, $1,200 4. Rick Aukland (12), Fargo, N.D., Rayburn, $1,100 5. Billy Moyer (21), Batesville, Ark., MasterSbilt, $1,000 6. Bob Pierce (32), Danville, Ill., MasterSbilt, $700 7. Kevin Weaver (B12), Gibson City, Ill., Rayburn, $600 8. Tony Izzo Jr. (16), Bridgeview, Ill., GRT, $500 9. John Gill (75), Mitchell, Ind., MasterSbilt, $450 10. Wendell Wallace (7n), Batesville, Ark., GRT, $400 11. Mark Gansmann (20), St. Jacob, Ill., MasterSbilt, $230 12. Brian Wolfmeier (441), St. Charles, Mo., Bullitt, $230 13. Randy Korte (00), Pierrone, Ill., GRT, $230 14. Tom Rients (49), Ottawa, Ill., Bullitt, $230 15. Billy Drake (9), Bloomington, Ill., Shaw, $230 16. x-Mark Oller (67), Highland, Ill., Warrior, $230 17. Doug Ault (1a), Brownstown, Ind., MasterSbilt, $230 18. Gary May (45), Minonk, Ill., Bullitt, $230 19. Jim Rarick (32), Moweaqua, Ill., MasterSbilt, $230 20. Jim Durbin (3D), Lapadie, Mo., MasterSbilt, $230 x-alternate starter after Randy Sellars scratched.
NOTES: NASCAR Winston Cup driver and track co-promoter Ken Schrader was lackluster in his heat race and scratched for the rest of the night .... last year's sixth race of the Summernationals was also at I-55, and also produced a sixth different winner (John Gill) .... fans all around the track found it plenty dusty .... hot, muggy weather didn't make the dust any more bearable .... the feature ended about 11:20 p.m., and started about 11 after the modified feature was cut short because of endless cautions .... the modified cars pitted in the infield while the late models pitted on the backstretch and behind Turn 2 .... Georgia driver Mark Miner, who moved to the Atlanta area from the St. Louis area 17 years ago, drove brother-in-law Dave Jumper's car, but didn't have much success .... Miner hit the wall in qualifying, missed his heat race then spun in the consolation before managing a seventh-place finish .... Miner plans to drive his usual No. 7 in the Hav-A-Tampa race Thursday in Granite City, Ill. .... Wendell Wallace was back in the Rolan Nix-owned No. 7n .... Bill Frye, driving his own car after a stint in the Ed Petroff-owned No. 21, and Randy Korte dueled furiously in the entertaining third heat before Frye came out on top..
CREDIT: Todd Turner <DirtNews@aol.com> of DirtNews Digest. ------------------------------------------------------------- UMP SUMMERNATIONALS SCHEDULE
June 25, Missouri International Racepark, Benton, Mo., $5,000 to win (RANDY SELLARS) June 26, Tennessee Motor Speedway, Baxter, Tenn., $5,000 to win (RAY COOK) June 27, Kentucky Lake Speedway, Calvert City, Ky., $5,000 to win (CANCELED BECAUSE TRACK CONSTRUCTION INCOMPLETE) June 28, Brownstown (Ind.) Speedway, "Jackson 100," $10,000 to win (RICK AUKLAND) June 29, LaSalle (Ill.) Speedway, $5,000 to win (RAINED OUT; rescheduled for July 13) June 30, Vermilion County Speedway, Danville, Ill., $5,000 to win (KEVIN WEAVER) July 1, K&L Raceway, Mount Vernon, Ill., $5,000 to win (RANDY KORTE) July 2, I-55 Speedway, Pevely, Mo., $5,000 to win (ED DIXON) July 3, Paducah (Ky.) International Speedway, $5,000 to win July 4, Central Park Raceway, McHenry, Ky., $5,000 to win July 5, Barren County Speedway, Glasgow, Ky., $5,000 to win July 6, Tri-State Speedway, Haubstadt, Ind., $5,000 to win July 7, Kankakee (Ill.) Speedway, $5,000 to win July 8, 67 Raceway Park, Godfrey, Ill., $5,000 to win July 9, Spoon River Speedway, Banner, Ill., $5,000 to win July 10, Macon (Ill.) Speedway, "Herald & Review 100," $5,000 to win July 11, Farmer City (Ill.) Speedway, $5,000 to win July 12, Fairbury (Ill.) American Legion Speedway, $5,000 to win July 13, LaSalle (Ill.) Speedway, $5,000 to win July 14, Davenport (Iowa) Speedway, $10,000 to win July 15, Cresco (Iowa) Speedway, $10,000 to win July 16, Steele County Fairgrounds, Owatonna, Minn., "Gopher State 50," $10,000 to win ------------------------------------------------------------- UMP SUMMERNATIONALS POINT STANDINGS (Pos., driver, car no., hometown, chassis, series points and wins in parentheses; through July 1) 1. Rick Aukland (12), Fargo, N.D., Rayburn, 244 (1) 2. Bob Pierce (32), Danville, Ill., MasterSbilt, 228 3. Billy Drake (9), Bloomington, Ill., Shaw, 210 4. Tony Izzo Jr. (16), Bridgeview, Ill., GRT, 206 5. Randy Korte (00), Pierrone, Ill., GRT, 205 (1) 6. Billy Moyer (21), Batesville, Ark., various, 166 7. John Gill (75), Mitchell, Ind., MasterSbilt, 137 8. Dan Schlieper (s9), Pewaukee, Wis., Outhouse, 136 9. Dennis Erb Jr. (28), Carpentersville, Ill., Rayburn, 123 9. James Huff (5), Milton, Ky., Rayburn, 123 9. Kevin Weaver (B12) Gibson City, Ill., Rayburn, 123 (1) -------------------------------------------------------------