by David Smith Jr.
BELLEVILLE, KS -(Aug. 18) During the season Gary Wright has won nine out of ten events on the O'Reilly Auto Parts National Championship Racing Association outlaw tour and one feature on the All Star sprint tour. Tuesday night he added another victory to both organizations as he survived an oil leak to win night two of the fourth annual NCRA Vs All Star Circuit of Champions Thunder Through the Plains tour race at the Belleville High Banks.
ButlerBuilt Hot Seat pole man Jeff Shepard and Brooke Tatnells Kele & Associates sprinter made up the front row of the twenty-five lap feature with Shepard taking control as the green flag waved. Third starting Wright moved passed Tatnell for the runner up spot on lap two with Kenny Jacobs holding onto the fourth position. Shepard had his Maxim/Kriner working the cushion on the big half mile to perfection when he approached lapped traffic on lap five. This allowed Wright to close in on the leader while Tatnell, K. Jacobs and Danny Smith all battled for the third position. On lap thirteen Wright made his move, getting a run down low off of turn two and made his winning pass on the low side entering turn three in lapped traffic. Two laps later Wright developed an oil leak, blowing oil on the headers and causing the Texan to use all but one of his tearoffs. Wright was able to add more tearoffs, however, as a scary accident occurred on lap 22 when K. Jacobs went high to pass Tatnell for position, jumped the cushion in turn one causing the Hughes Wheel & Axle sprinter to hit the turn one guardrail and flip eight times down the highbanks and land on the bottom of turn two. He was uninjured in the crash but his J&J/Kriner engine was done for the night.
On the restart it was all Wright the final three laps and took the checkered flag five lengths ahead of Shepard. "Before that red flag I only had one tearoff left and I don't think I could have made it those final laps" said a happy Wright in victory lane. "This new Salina Chevy engine has a lot of power and thats what you have to have at this place." Tatnell held on for third with eighth starting Kevin Gobrecht and his Zemco sprinter making a strong run for fourth and Danny Smith in the Beaver Tool car rounding out the top five.
Time trials for the thirty-three sprinters on hand was led by K. Jacobs with a time of 14.568, just short of the track record set by Paul McMahan two years ago at a time of 14.545. The three heat races were won by Keith Kauffman, Rocky Hodges and Jason Dukes with the Commercial Truck and Trailer Dash going to Jacobs. Larry Neighbors and his Neighbors Coffee sprinter won the United Expressline ten lap B feature. Dan Oswalt flipped his Sonic sprinter down the backstretch but was uninjured.
TIME TRIALS - 1, Kenny Jacobs, 14.568. 2, Gary Wright, 14.618. 3, Brooke Tatnell, 14.731. 4, Jeff Shepard, 14.744. 5, Frankie Kerr, 14.787. 6, Danny Smith, 14.801. 7, Dean Jacobs, 14.805. 8, Kevin Gobrecht, 14.834. 9, Randy Hannigan, 14.864. 10, Brian Paulus, 14.903. 11, Joey Saldana, 14.908. 12, John Bankston, 14.926. 13, Brad Furr, 14.948. 14, Rocky Hodges, 15.003. 15, Jason Dukes, 15.031. 16, Keith Kauffman, 15.038. 17, Mike Peters, 15.113. 18, Billy Vielhauer, 15.150. 19, Bill Robertson, 15.178. 20, Scott Whitworth, 15.340. 21, Jason Johnson, 15.354. 22, Larry Neighbors, 15.363. 23, Jason Statler, 15.444. 24, Brian Smith, 15.451. 25, Shane Carson, 15.485. 26, Scott Jones, 15.521. 27, Rich Bubak, 15.616. 28, Terry Reilly, 15.735. 29, Dan Oswalt, 15.995. 30, C.J. Johnson, 16.145. 31, Earnest Jennings, 16.226. 32, Joe Hauck, 16.965. 33, Wayne Johnson, no time.
UNITED EXPRESSLINE HEAT 1 (8 laps) - Keith Kauffman, Brian Paulus, Kenny Jacobs, Jeff Shepard, Dean Jacobs, Brad Furr, Larry Neighbors, Shane Carson, Bill Robertson, Terry Reilly, Earnest Jennings.
SOUTHWEST EXPRESSLINE HEAT 2 (8 laps) - Rocky Hodges, Kevin Godrecht, Gary Wright, Mike Peters, Joey Saldana, Frankie Kerr, Scott Whitworth, Scott Jones, Jason Statler, Dan Oswalt, Joe Hauck.
UNITED SPECIALTIES HEAT 3 (8 laps) - Jason Dukes, Billy Vielhauer, Brooke Tatnell, Randy Hannigan, John Bankston, Brian Smith, Jason Johnson, C.J. Johnson, Rich Bubak.
COMMERCIAL TRUCK & TRAILER DASH - 1, Kenny Jacobs. 2, Jeff Shepard. 3, Kevin Gobrecht. 4, Frankie Kerr. 5, Joey Saldana. 6, Danny Smith.
UNITED EXPRESSLINE B FEATURE (10 laps) - 1, Larry Neighbors. 2, Scott Whitworth. 3, Bill Robertson. 4, Billy Vielhauer. 5, Brian Smith. 6, Jason Statler. 7, Scott Jones. 8, Rich Bubak. 9, C.J. Johnson. 10, Joe Hauck. 11, Jason Johnson. 12, Earnest Jennings. 13, Dan Oswalt.
A FEATURE (25 laps) - 1, Gary Wright. 2, Jeff Shepard. 3, Brooke Tatnell. 4, Kevin Gobrecht. 5, Danny Smith. 6, Dean Jacobs. 7, Frankie Kerr. 8, Brian Paulus. 9, Rocky Hodges. 10, Joey Saldana. 11, Keith Kauffman. 12, John Bankston. 13, Brad Furr. 14, Mike Peters. 15, Scott Whitworth. 16, Shane Carson. 17, Bill Robertson. 18, Kenny Jacobs. 19, Jason Dukes. 20, Randy Hannigan. 21, Billy Vielhauer. 22, Jason Statler. 23, Larry Neighbors. 24, Brian Smith.