Nick Smith Captures Classic I-30 Speedway ASCoT Win LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (April 26, 2008) -- Oklahoma racer Nick Smith broke into O'Reilly American Sprint Cars on Tour National victory lane for the first time this season by emerging...
Nick Smith Captures Classic I-30 Speedway ASCoT Win
LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (April 26, 2008) -- Oklahoma racer Nick Smith broke into O'Reilly American Sprint Cars on Tour National victory lane for the first time this season by emerging atop a classic I-30 Speedway duel on Saturday night.
Smith and Kenneth Walker traded the lead several times over the first half of the 30-lapper atop the 0x00bc-mile clay oval before Smith took command for keeps on the 16th circuit, ultimately beating tenth-starter Tim Crawley and eighth-starter Gary Taylor to the checkered flag in Kip Smith's Wesmar-powered Sooner Network Solutions No. 15s J&J.
But, until the race's only caution flew after 26 laps, Smith rarely held an advantage of more than a couple of car lengths over a host of pursuers that included Wayne Johnson, Crawley, Kenneth Walker, Taylor and Garry Lee Maier.
After drawing the pole position for the feature, Walker outgunned Joe Young for the point at the drop of the green flag and led the opening circuit. Fourth-starter Smith was on the move on the top side of the track though, charging past Walker for the lead upon the completion of the second lap.
With Walker, third-starter Wayne Johnson and Maier in tow, Smith soon reached lapped traffic. And when he slipped off the backstretch exiting turn two on the tenth lap, Walker charged back into the lead.
"We were in traffic and I kept telling myself to hit my marks, hit my marks," Smith recalled afterward. "Then that lap I just slipped up a little too high and dropped right off the track."
Smith gathered it back up in time to retain second as he assumed the rule of chaser while Walker vied for his first career ASCS National Tour win aboard Sandra Walker's Wesmar-powered Action Auto Collision No. 2 J&J.
Dicing through heavy traffic, Smith closed in and slid back around Walker for the lead on the 16th lap with Wayne Johnson working past Walker for second three laps later.
Meanwhile, Crawley cracked the top five aboard Mike Ward's McCarver-powered Boater Sports No. 88 Maxim soon after the midway point. And with Taylor on his tailtank, the duo advanced past Maier for fourth and fifth, respectively, on the 20th lap.
Crawley continued marching, battling past Walker for third and setting his sights on the lead duo of Smith and Johnson.
With Smith holding a slim lead, Crawley pulled to Johnson's inside as the duo charged down the backstretch on the 27th lap. Johnson tried to close the door through turns three and four, spinning to a halt in turn four after the resulting contact and collecting fourth-runner Walker and rookie shoe Kathryne Minter in the mix. Johnson rejoined the chase at the tail while Walker's strong run came to a premature end.
With clear track ahead on the restart, the series 2006 Rookie of the Year slipped away and cruised over the final four laps to his third career ASCS National Tour feature win with Crawley settling for second.
"We could have done without that yellow," Crawley surmised. "I think we could have got that one more spot if we'd stayed in traffic."
Brodix Rookie of the Year contender Taylor posted his best career ASCS National Tour finish by claiming the show position aboard Mike and Megan Eubanks' Wesmar-powered Tel-Star Communications No. 5* Triple-X, with Maier fourth in Scott Brown's ASI-powered Lubbock Wrecker Service/Max Jantz Excavating No. 11x Maxim.
Zach Chappell rounded out the top five in the Legend's Bar-B-Que No. 50z Maxim, making a late pass of current series points leader Gary Wright, who settled for sixth. Jason Johnson climbed from 14th to finish seventh, with Travis Rilat, Jason Sides and Brad Bowden completing the top ten.
Young, Maier, Chappell and Wayne Johnson topped heat race action for the 34-car field, with Lewis Jenkins, Jr., and Marshall Skinner winning the twin "B" Mains.
Wade Oliver escaped injury after tumbling off the turn two banking in the second "B" Main.
O'Reilly ASCoT I-30 Speedway Results:
Heat Races (Top 14 in passing points to "A" Main; Balance to 2 "B" Mains)
Brodix Heat One (8 Laps): q. 12T-Joe Young, 2. 2-Kenneth Walker, 3. 9x-Justin Sturch, 4. 15-Brad Bowden, 5. 9JR-Derek Hagar, 6. 38-Rick Pringle, 7. b4-Eric Baldaccini, 8. 8x-Chris Williams, 9. 13-Kathryne Minter.
Wesmar-Shaver Heat Two (8 Laps): 1. 11x-Garry Lee Maier, 2. 29-Travis Rilat, 3. 9-Gary Wright, 4. 41-Jason Johnson, 5. 91-Don Droud, Jr., 6. 51-Lee Sowell, 7. 95-Matt Covington, 8. 75-Don Young, 9. 5k-Jerry Kamer.
Brodix Heat Three (8 Laps): 1. 50z-Zach Chappell, 2. 88-Tim Crawley, 3. 7s-Jason Sides, 4. 7h-Lewis Jenkins, Jr., 5. 26-Marshall Skinner, 6. 8z-Zach Pringle, 7. 1g-Cody Gardner, 8. 71-Chris Tarrant.
Wesmar-Shaver Heat Four (8 Laps): 1. 94-Wayne Johnson, 2. 15s-Nick Smith, 3. 5*-Gary Taylor, 4. 4-Tommy Snellgrove, 5. 01-Jeremy Newkirk, 6. 1-Andy McElhannon, 7. 58-Wade Oliver, 8. 11c-Dave Speer.
"B" Mains -- Top 4 From Each Advance to "A" Main
First "B" Feature (10 Laps): 1. 7h-Lewis Jenkins, Jr., 2. 91-Don Droud, Jr., 3. 9JR-Derek Hagar, 4. 1g-Cody Gardner, 5. b4-Eric Baldaccini, 6. 71-Chris Tarrant, 7. 13-Kathryne Minter, 8. 8x-Chris Williams, 9. 01-Jeremy Newkirk, 10. 51-Lee Sowell.
Second "B" Feature (10 Laps): 1. 26-Marshall Skinner, 2. 8z-Zach Pringle, 3. 4-Tommy Snellgrove, 4. 95-Matt Covington, 5. 38-Rick Pringle, 6. 1-Andy McElhannon, 7. 5k-Jerry Kamer, 8. 75-Don Young, 9. 11c-Dave Speer, 10. 58-Wade Oliver.
O'Reilly ASCoT "A" Main Event:
"A" Feature (30 Laps): 1. 15s-Nick Smith, 2. 88-Tim Crawley, 3. 5*-Gary Taylor, 4. 11x-Garry Lee Maier, 5. 50z-Zach Chappell, 6. 9-Gary Wright, 7. 41-Jason Johnson, 8. 29-Travis Rilat, 9. 7s-Jason Sides, 10. 15-Brad Bowden, 11. 91-Don Droud, Jr., 12. 7h-Lewis Jenkins, Jr., 13. 26-Marshall Skinner, 14. 94-Wayne Johnson, 15. 9x-Justin Sturch, 16. 12T-Joe Young, 17. 9JR-Derek Hagar, 18. b4-Eric Baldaccini, 19. 1g-Cody Gardner, 20. 13-Kathryne Minter, 21. 95-Matt Covington, 22. 2-Kenneth Walker, 23. 8z-Zach Pringle, 24. 4-Tommy Snellgrove.
Lap Leaders: Kenneth Walker 1, Nick Smith 2-9, Walker 10-15, Smith 16-30.
Note: Eric Baldaccini and Kathryne Minter utilized O'Reilly ASCOT provisionals to start the "A" Main.
O'Reilly ASCoT Points (Top Fifteen): 1. Gary Wright 1,131, 2. Wayne Johnson 1,081, 3. Jason Johnson 1,073, 4. Garry Lee Maier 997, 5. Zach Chappell 989, 6. Travis Rilat 950, 7. Jason Sides 888, 8. Eric Baldaccini 860, 9. Don Droud, Jr. 827, 10. Nick Smith 822, 11. Kenneth Walker 782, 12. Gary Taylor 699, 13. Kathryne Minter 673, 14. Jack Dover 613, 15. Brian Brown 593.