NCRA: Belleville report 2001-07-22

BELLEVILLE, Kan. (July 22, 2001) - When the O'Reilly NCRA Late Model Series last visited the Belleville High Banks earlier this month, Terry Phillips put on a driving clinic by coming from the back of the field to win the 25-lap main event. On...

BELLEVILLE, Kan. (July 22, 2001) - When the O'Reilly NCRA Late Model Series last visited the Belleville High Banks earlier this month, Terry Phillips put on a driving clinic by coming from the back of the field to win the 25-lap main event.

On Sunday night his starting spot was reversed, but the outcome was the same.

Phillips decimated the 20-car field as he led every lap from the pole position en route to a $3,000 pay day at "The World's Fastest Half-Mile Dirt Track." A late-race caution flag erased Phillips' quarter-mile advantage over second-place Kyle Berck, but the Springfield, Mo., ace pulled away on the restart and marched to his second series victory of the weekend.

Back on July 1, both Phillips and Berck had to qualify for the main event through the B Feature. Berck, of Marquette, Neb., followed Phillips through the A Feature field to finish second that night, and again Sunday he was second to Phillips at the checkered flag.

Ted Martin of Bennington, Kan., finished third, while defending series champion Tony Gregg of Hastings, Neb., grabbed fourth. Steve Rushin of Poplar Bluff, Mo., rounded out the top-5 finishers.

Phillips, whose father, Larry, was the 1982 and '86 NCRA Late Model champion, won the first heat with the other two heat wins going to Earl Kinderknect of Salina, Kan., and Gregg.

Current series points leader Delbert 'The Iceman' Smith of Wichita, Kan., started 20th in the A Feature after suffering mechanical problems in his heat race and wound up eighth.

In O'Reilly NCRA Modified Series action, David Lahey of Moscow, Kan., was hoping to match Phillips' back-to-back wins at Belleville, but those hopes were squashed by Wichita's Marc Robe, who ran away and hid from the field in the 20-lap main event.

Robe started on the pole after winning his heat race and proceeded to lead every lap for the $1,000 victory. Lahey started and finished second.

Curt Fulps of Wichita finished third, while Brent Burkhart of Hutchinson, Kan., was fourth.

Two-time defending series champ Johnny Allen of Chanute, Kan., completed the top-5 finishers and also gained ground in this year's title chase. Current points leader Greg Skaggs of Glenpool, Okla., had to use a provisional to get into the A Feature where he finished 17th. Brian Franz of Newton, Kan., who trailed Skaggs by 40 points and led Allen by 50 coming into Sunday night's show, had to qualify through the B Feature and finished 13th in the main event.

Both the O'Reilly NCRA Late Model and Modified Series return to the Belleville High Banks for the third and final doubleheader this season on Sunday, Sept. 2. Racing starts at 7:30 p.m.

Up next at Belleville is a special Vintage Super-Modified and Stock Car Meet on Saturday, July 28. Then, the O'Reilly NCRA 360 Sprint Series joins the I.M.C.A. Late Models of the Friesen Chevrolet Challenge Series for a special wings-and-fenders doubleheader on Tuesday, July 31. Two days later, the greatest Midget drivers in the world converge on the Belleville High Banks for the 24th Annual Belleville Midget Nationals presented by WhoWon.com, Thursday-Saturday, Aug. 2-4.

For more information on the Belleville High Banks, write to: Belleville High Banks, P.O. Box 349, Belleville, KS 66935, or call (785) 527-6050. Sponsorship inquiries may call or fax (402) 761-3676 or via e-mail at wdake@alltel.net. Information is also available on the World Wide Web by logging on to http://www.highbanks.org or http://www.whowon.com.

Reserved tickets for the 24th Annual Belleville Midget Nationals presented by WhoWon.com are available by calling (785) 527-5179, 9 a.m. to 4 p.m., Monday through Friday, or by logging onto the Belleville High Banks Web site.

-BHB

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Series Sprint
Drivers Ted Martin