Wright On the Money in 500th O'Reilly ASCoT Feature Event LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (July 14, 2007) -- It was a familiar face in victory lane as the O'Reilly American Sprint Cars on Tour National series held its 500th feature in series...
Wright On the Money in 500th O'Reilly ASCoT Feature Event
LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (July 14, 2007) -- It was a familiar face in victory lane as the O'Reilly American Sprint Cars on Tour National series held its 500th feature in series history at I-30 Speedway on Saturday night, with Gary Wright taking the checkered flag in the 30-lapper that kicked off the 15th Annual ASCS Sizzlin' Summer Speedweek.
It marked just the second time that I-30 Speedway has hosted the ASCS Speedweek opener and the first time since 1995, when "The Texan" also triumphed. Wright, the three-time ASCS National champion and five-time ASCS Speedweek champion, has now topped the opening round of Speedweek on five occasions.
"That was tough, real tough!" an exhausted Wright exclaimed as he climbed from the Wesmar-powered Richwood Construction/Whiteco Commercial Funding/Southwest Express No. 9 Maxim after fending off Wayne Johnson as the duo sliced through lapped traffic much of the way, with just six cars on the lead lap as the checkered flag flew.
Barely earning a berth in the Pole Dash by ranking sixth in passing points following heat race action, Wright drew the number one position for the Dash and took full advantage by winning the Dash in front of Jason Johnson, who earned the front row outside starting position by charging from sixth.
Wright then outgunned Jason Johnson for the point at the drop of the green flag in the feature, with Brian McClelland and Matt Covington chasing as ninth-starter Wayne Johnson cracked the top five by the time the red flag flew after four laps for Foster Landon, who flipped in turn four after contact with Zack Pringle. At the same time, Brad Bowden came to a stop in the turn two infield with front end damage.
Wayne Johnson made quick work of Covington on the restart, while Jason Johnson surrendered the second position two laps later when he went off the top of turn three, bringing out a caution. Jason Johnson rejoined the field at the tail.
Wright took off on the restart, with Wayne Johnson taking second from McClelland on the eighth lap. Wright reached lapped traffic by the 12th round and spent the balance of the race working his way through slower traffic with Wayne Johnson constantly within striking distance.
Johnson's best opportunity came when he pulled along Wright's outside shoulder exiting turn four on the 22nd lap. But Wright fought off the bid and continued to work traffic adeptly over the final circuits to earn his 115th career ASCS National Tour feature win and ninth of the season.JIt was also Wright's 24th career ASCS Speedweek feature win.
Johnson settled for his eighth runner-up finish of the season aboard Mike and Tim Hammers' Wesmar-powered H&H Enterprises No. 94 Eagle.
While the packed house kept one eye on the lead duo racing masterfully through lapped traffic, another eye was on a pair of chargers throughout.
After winning the First "B" Main, Travis Rilat needed less than ten laps to charge from 17th to fourth in the F&J Construction No. 29 Triple-X and then took third from Brian McClelland in the final rounds.
After his off-track excursion just six laps into the feature, Jason Johnson tagged the rear of the field and charged all the way back up to fourth by race's end in Lanny Row's Wesmar-powered The Shop Motorsports No. 41 Eagle.
Fresh off his first career ASCS win, a Sooner Region triumph just seven nights earlier, Brian McClelland posted his best career ASCS National Tour finish by rounding out the top five aboard the Wesmar-powered R&B Motorsports No. 87 Triple-X.
Two-time American Bank of Oklahoma ASCS Sooner Region champion Kevin Ramey was the final car on the lead lap in sixth, picking off a handful of positions along the way.
Making just his eighth career Sprint Car start and first in ASCS National competition, 17-year-old Matt Covington crossed the stripe seventh, losing a lap to the leader just as the checkered flag flew. Covington was followed across the stripe by past ASCS National champions Terry Gray and Tim Crawley, with Kenneth Walker completing the top ten.
Zack Pringle, Covington, Landon, Jason Johnson and McClelland topped heat race action for the 35-car field. Rilat won the First "B" Main, with Anthony Nicholson topping the Second "B" Main. Nicholson then raced from 18th to eleventh in his first career ASCS National Tour feature event.
A.G. Rains flipped off the turn three embankment in the fourth heat, with John Hunt dumping his mount in turn four in the fifth heat. Rains was uninjured but done for the night, while Hunt returned for "B" Main action.
O'Reilly ASCoT 15th Annual ASCS Sizzlin' Summer Speedweek Round One Results from I-30 Speedway:
Heat Races (Top 16 in Passing Points to "A" Main; Balance to Twin "B" Mains):
Brodix Heat One (8 Laps): 1. 8z-Zack Pringle, 2. 7m-Kevin Ramey, 3. 9-Gary Wright, 4. 10-Terry Gray, 5. 58-Wade Oliver, 6. 15-Brad Bowden, 7. 85s-Forrest Sutherland.
Wesmar-Shaver Heat Two (8 Laps): 1. 95-Matt Covington, 2. 2-Kenneth Walker, 3. 14-Coleman Gulick, 4. 16-Anthony Nicholson, 5. 2m-Bryce Vowan, 6. 66-Kenny Taylor, 7. 11c-Dave Speer.
Brodix Heat Three (8 Laps): 1. 11F-Foster Landon, 2. 15s-Nick Smith, 3. 88-Tim Crawley, 4. 91-Darren Stewart, 5. 29-Travis Rilat, 6. 7h-Rob Hartman, 7. 14T-Tyler Brown.
Wesmar-Shaver Heat Four (8 Laps): 1. 41-Jason Johnson, 2. 1g-Cody Gardner, 3. 16x-Dewayne Prince, 4. 74e-Claud Estes, 5. 5k-Jerry Kamer, 6. 12T-Joe Young, 7. 3-A.G. Rains.
Heat Five (8 Laps): 1. 87-Brian McClelland, 2. 94-Wayne Johnson, 3. 4T-Justin Sturch, 4. b4-Eric Baldaccini, 5. 38-Rick Pringle, 6. 7hx-Robert Jenkins, 7. 85-John Hunt.
Pole Dash (Finishing Order Determines Front Three Rows of "A" Main):
Pole Dash (5 Laps): 1. 9-Gary Wright, 2. 41-Jason Johnson, 3. 95-Matt Covington, 4. 11F-Foster Landon, 5. 87-Brian McClelland, 6. 8z-Zack Pringle.
"B" Mains (Top 3 From Each Transfer to "A" Main):
First "B" Feature (10 Laps): 1. 29-Travis Rilat, 2. b4-Eric Baldaccini, 3. 15-Brad Bowden, 4. 85s-Forrest Sutherland, 5. 16x-Dewayne Prince, 6. 14T-Tyler Brown, 7. 85-John Hunt, 8. 12T-Joe Young, 9. 2m-Bryce Vowan, 10. 38-Rick Pringle.
Second "B" Feature (10 Laps): 1. 16-Anthony Nicholson, 2. 74e-Claud Estes, 3. 58-Wade Oliver, 4. 5k-Jerry Kamer, 5. 66-Kenny Taylor, 6. 7h-Rob Hartman, 7. 7hx-Robert Jenkins, 8. 11c-Dave Speer. DNS: 3-A.G. Rains.
O'Reilly ASCoT 15th Annual ASCS Sizzlin' Summer Speedweek Round One "A" Main Results from I-30 Speedway:
"A" Feature (30 Laps): 1. 9-Gary Wright, 2. 94-Wayne Johnson, 3. 29-Travis Rilat, 4. 41-Jason Johnson, 5. 87-Brian McClelland, 6. 7m-Kevin Ramey, 7. 95-Matt Covington, 8. 10-Terry Gray, 9. 88-Tim Crawley, 10. 2-Kenneth Walker, 11. 16-Anthony Nicholson, 12. 4T-Justin Sturch, 13. 14-Coleman Gulick, 14. 91-Darren Stewart, 15. b4-Eric Baldaccini, 16. 58-Wade Oliver, 17. 74e-Claud Estes, 18. 1g-Cody Gardner, 19. 8z-Zack Pringle, 20. 15s-Nick Smith, 21. 15-Brad Bowden, 22. 11F-Foster Landon.
Lap Leaders: Gary Wright 1-30.
O'Reilly ASCoT Points (Top Fifteen): 1. Gary Wright 3,094, 2. Wayne Johnson 3,090, 3. Jason Johnson 3,083, 4. Travis Rilat 2,955, 5. Foster Landon 2,632, 6. Darren Stewart 1,903, 7. Andy Shouse 1,559, 8. Chris Schmelzle 1,318, 9. Nick Smith 1,224, 10. (tie) Eric Baldaccini and Chuck Swenson 1,152, 12. Johnny Miller 1,047, 13. Natalie Sather 933, 14. Kenneth Walker 888, 15. Kevin Ramey 851.
15th Annual ASCS Sizzlin' Summer Speedweek Points (Top Ten after Round One of Five): 1. Gary Wright 150, 2. Wayne Johnson 146, 3. Travis Rilat 144, 4. Jason Johnson 142, 5. Brian McClelland 140, 6. Kevin Ramey 138, 7. Matt Covington 136, 8. Terry Gray 134, 9. Tim Crawley 132, 10. Kenneth Walker 130.