"Bid Crowd, Big Car Count, Produces A Big Show @ Jax" By: Donnie Helmly: JACKSONVILLE, FLORIDA, (May 16, 1999) Despite a live televised Saturday night Winston Cup event, a big crowd and a big car count showed up to produce a big night of ...
"Bid Crowd, Big Car Count, Produces A Big Show @ Jax"
By: Donnie Helmly: JACKSONVILLE, FLORIDA, (May 16, 1999) Despite a live televised Saturday night Winston Cup event, a big crowd and a big car count showed up to produce a big night of racing action a Jax Raceways NASCAR sanctioned 1/4 mile dirt track.
The night got underway with qualifying action for the Late Model and Pure Stock divisions, which would place Pure Stock points leader Darren Greenslet and, Late Model stand out Jeff Godbee on the pole for their respected feature events.
Jeff Godbee would start the 30 lap Late Model event on the pole, but it would be outside pole sitter, and former division champion Steve Whitener taking the lead at the drop of the green flag. Whitener would lead the field for 22 laps, with Godbee in second. Lap 23 would see Godbee take the lead of the event, passing Whitener on the outside grove, and holding him off for the remaining 7 laps to claim his 6th feature event of the season, four more than current points leader Buddy Geiger. Last weeks winner Chuck Chitty crossed in the strip in third with David Browning fourth and Buster Delay rounding out the top five. Sixth through tenth was Robert McCormick, Geiger, Homer Leonard, Michael Murrer and Terry Pless.
The Pure Stock division once again saw a familiar face in victory lane, as pole sitter Darren Greenslet would lead the feature flag to flag for his 8th win of the year. Outside pole sitter Richard Goodwin gave Greenslet a run for the top spot until being forced to the pits with a badly smoking engine. Joey Zimmerman would take over the second where he would finish, with Windal Clark in third, Priscilla Yergy and former division champion John Taylor rounded out the top five. Sixth through tenth was Ron Doan, Hardy Jarvis, John Shortridge, Pete Timbe and Ray Pruett.
The Modified Division had trouble getting started, as the first lap had Robert McCormick and Ronnie Ponce getting together entering turn one, resulting in both cars going to the tail of the field. Lap two had another pair of cars, spinning out, forcing track officials to start the race in single file. Kenny Bayless would bring the field around the ½ mile track for the start, and would never give up the top spot to claim his 4th win of the season, two more than any other driver in the division. Marty Whitener gave Bayless a run for the money but was forced to settle for second, with Keny Porter driving a borrowed car in third, Bobby Balkcom and Ronnie Ponce finished out the top five. Sixth through tenth was point leader Kevin Bayless, Donnie Higginbotham, Robert McCormick, Manny Valderrama and Calvin Pike.
The Hobby Stock race was once again the most competitive event of the night's action, as fans would see four different leaders, before the 20-lap race would be decided. Tim Noland and former division champion Michael Lloyd would sit on the front row, with Noland getting the lead on the first lap. Current points leader Eddie Holton would go to work on the outside grove, and would stay there until taking the lead on lap four. Holton appeared to be heading for his 7th win of the season, until slowing dramatically on a restart with just five laps remaining. Noland would retake the lead but would lose it to Lloyd for a lap. Randy Clark JR would make his move to the front on lap 18 and would hold off Lloyd and Noland for his second win of the season. Marty Kelly and rookie of the year contender Mark Beebe made up the top five. Sixth through tenth was Defending champion Tony Callaway, Holton, Robert McDaniel, Tim Hodge and Lee Blacksher.
( Donnie Helmly host "The Race Report" Monday nights @ 7PM on 1320 AM WJGR Jacksonville, Florida)