LaSalle: Race summary

Guinn reclaims LaSalle victory and championship points lead. The only thing Chad "Superman" Guinn was missing this Saturday night at LaSalle Speedway was a red cape on his bright blue BFI-Northland Collision-Coastal Coating Services Ford Ranger.

Guinn reclaims LaSalle victory and championship points lead.

The only thing Chad "Superman" Guinn was missing this Saturday night at LaSalle Speedway was a red cape on his bright blue BFI-Northland Collision-Coastal Coating Services Ford Ranger. Guinn flew by the competition, taking back the championship points lead and reasserting his strength behind the wheel with his second consecutive win at the dirt quarter-mile in northern Illinois.

Guinn qualified at fifth position in heat and humidity Saturday and quickly worked his way up to second place behind leader and outside polesitter Tully Esterline of Pettisville, Ohio. Piloting the Rev Up-Rupp Seeds Chevrolet, Esterline held Guinn at bay by nearly four lengths for more than half the race until Guinn overtook him on lap 61 and never looked back.

"I just had to feather the gas, and ease my way around," Guinn said. "At LaSalle, it was just like driving a late model. You had to be careful with the gas. All those years I drove late models, they are always so touchy, and you can break them loose so easily. It's very similar. LaSalle is a really fun track to run. I had a ball tonight."

With this victory, Guinn Racing is coming off of three poor finishes at the last three venues- a 19th at Lorain, 12th at Lake Erie, and 17th at Flat Rock- all engine problems.

"We really have to thank Rick and Paul Hahn for this win," Guinn said. "They let us borrow their motor to put in our truck this past week."

Guinn always attributes his wins to his hard-working crew, including crew chief Chuck Carroll, Bob Towers, Kendra Lake, Keith Thompson, Jenette Smith, and parents Larry and Vicki Guinn.

Second place finisher Brett Oakley, making an amazing comeback in the MAR-FLEX Products-Bales Motorsports Ford. Oakley was involved with no less than two accidents and had several swipes with the wall. The Ed & Company Hard Charger award winner was near the back of the pack at 15th on the starting grid due to a spin during qualifying. He skillfully worked his way through traffic from the rear to the front, twice, to bring home a much deserved second place (and a pretty banged up race truck!).

This year, 1999 series champion Bill Withers of Columbus, Ohio, avenged his 13th place finish at LaSalle in 2001. Withers piloted the Mannings USA-Hall Electronics-Wachholz Engines Ford from an eighth place qualifying position up to fourth, only to make a stellar pass on turn four of the last lap to end up third.

Past dirt sprint car racer Esterline is coming on strong late in the season with an outside pole and a fourth place finish at LaSalle and a pole award at Lorain County last week. Grove City, Ohio Pro-4 veteran Jack Weethee grabbed fifth in the Weethee Builders-Den's Automotive Ford, his best finish since he took second place at Flat Rock in July.

A last lap pass placed Robbin Slaughter of Columbus, Ohio at sixth in the Carmen's Vacuum-NAPA Auto Parts Ford, while second generation ARCA truck driver Kevin Reeb of North Baltimore, Ohio took seventh in the Accurate Logistics Ford. Piqua, Ohio driver Jeff Speakman nabbed eighth in the Pennzoil-National Auto Lube Ford, with John Kasmierski close behind at ninth in the Pat & Dandy's Sports Bar-Top Notch Seamless Gutter Ford Ranger. Rookie spitfire Brandon Knupp rounded out the top-10 in the Sidney, Ohio-based Mark Knupp Muffler & Tire Ford.

Old Milwaukee pole award winner Darren Jones of Fairfield, Ohio in the John Pierce Plumbing Ford ended up at 11th after problems with a wheel sent him to the pits for an extended period.

ARCA Lincoln Welders Truck Series competitors have their second two-race weekend of this season on Sept. 6 and 8, making a second trip to Lake Erie Speedway for a Friday night race and then continuing on east to New York and Adirondack International Speedway for a Sunday afternoon event. For more information about these two venues, log on to www.lakeeriespeedway.com and www.adirondackspeedway.com .

Series Notes:

- Due to unexpected financial difficulty, Ona Speedway, of Ona, West Virginia, has cancelled the ARCA Lincoln Welders Truck event for Aug. 17 of this year. Drivers have more than a month off to prepare for the double-header weekend of Sept. 6 and 8, when they revisit Lake Erie Speedway on Friday, and then head to Adirondack Int'l Speedway Sunday afternoon.

- LaSalle victor Chad Guinn on the recent problems with lapped traffic in the truck series: "This was the best I've ever seen lapped traffic perform. Everybody I pulled up on moved right over, waved me by, and gave me a ton of room. I appreciate it very much, it was the best I've ever seen."

-With 14 total ARCA Lincoln Welders Truck Series wins to his name, four in this season alone, the duo of Chad Guinn and crew chief Chuck Carroll seem unstoppable. Now with just three races left to decide the champion of 2002, just 80 points separate the Guinn Racing team and the rest of the pack. The most wins Guinn has had in one season- four. Will he top that this year? Guinn's victories include: Dixie, Ona, Illiana, LaSalle 2002; Flat Rock, Kentucky, Lorain, LaSalle, 2001; Toledo, Plymouth, Flat Rock, Winchester, 2000; Owosso, Crystal, 1999. Other active drivers included on the all-time series winners listing are Robbin Slaughter, 8 (Chicago, Crystal, Toledo, 2001; Salem, Berlin, Toledo, Illiana, 2000; Toledo, 1999); Paul Hahn, 2 (New Paris, 2001; Flat Rock, 2002); Jeff Speakman, 2 (Lake Erie, 2002; Shady Bowl 1999); Pete Wormcastle, 2 (Lorain County, I-75 Speedway, 2002) and with one each: Phil Bozell (Toledo, 2002), Tully Esterline (LaSalle, 1999), John Kasmierski (Thunderbird, 1999), Jack Weethee (Illiana, 2001), Joe Wormcastle (Kentucky, 2002), Bill Withers (Shady Bowl, 2000).

- Unofficial rookie points standings: 1. Brandon Knupp (2115); 2. Kevin Reeb (1940).

- New Track Records set during qualifying this year by ARCA Lincoln Welders Truck Series drivers include Jeff Speakman, Lake Erie Speedway, 15.948 seconds, Ona Speedway, 17.995; Brett Oakley, Dixie Motor Speedway, 15.512; Brandon Knupp, I-75 Speedway, 15.313; Steve Christman, Kentucky Speedway, 14.996; Darren Jones, LaSalle Speedway, 15.14.

-arca-

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Series ARCA
Drivers Brandon Knupp