MetraPark Raceway - Billings, MT - June 30, 2000 by George Hespe hy-per-lube Northern Sprint Tour Tackles MetraParkâ€™s High Speed Half-Mile The 1999 hy-per-lube Northern Sprint Tour took to the high speed half-mile track at MetraPark in...
MetraPark Raceway - Billings, MT - June 30, 2000 by George Hespe
hy-per-lube Northern Sprint Tour Tackles MetraPark’s High Speed Half-Mile
The 1999 hy-per-lube Northern Sprint Tour took to the high speed half-mile track at MetraPark in Billings, MT on Friday night, June 30th. When the dust had settled from the feature event, Randy Miller, of Rapid City, SD, had led the way from green to checkered and went into the record books as the first hy-per-lube Northern Sprint Tour winner at the track. On a track that went abrasive and dry slick early in the event, pole sitter Miller saying “I felt right at home, it’s my favorite type of track, big and smooth”, showed he was telling the truth as he grabbed the lead from his front row partner Jay Cole and never looked back. Even though passing was at a premium, third finisher Shawna Wilskey took the battle to Cole several times but couldn’t find the power or traction to make the pass for the runner up position. Further back in the pack Ron Hodgson, Rick Fauver, Jay Smith and Dan Menne mixed it up mid-race until the battle ended with Fauver spinning in turn two. Although sent to the back of the pack, Fauver manage to finish a respectable 8th place at the finish and may have moved higher had not the feature been shortened to 20 laps due to the abrasive nature of the track and concern over excessive tire wear. Shane Liebig was the hard charger for the night, moving up 10 spots as Rick and Jay Smith each picked off three spots. The event was slowed by 4 yellows and the single red of the night when Marc Duperron flipped coming out of turn two. At the checkered flag it was Miller, Cole, Wilskey, J. Smith, R. Smith and Liebig in the top six. It was J. Smith out gunning Richie Peterson on the start of the B-main event and holding the point to the finish. Slowed by only two yellows, the event was fast paced with plenty of passing as the leaders were quickly into traffic as they battled for position. Between the lap five yellow for Doc Leichner, and yellow number two with one lap to go, Smith was out front leaving Martinez, Menne, Peterson, Bill Boyce and Rick Poehls to trade positions as they threaded their way through the slower cars. At the Jim Dennis checkered flag, it had sorted out to J. Smith, Martinez, Menne and Boyce transferring to the “A” feature with Poehls as back up. Heat race action saw Miller in the point position at the end of the first lap of the opening heat and he had almost a half-lap lead when action slowed for a yellow on lap seven. With the field closed up, it was a three lap dash to the finish line that had second and third place drivers, Shawn Rice and J. Smith spinning in turns 4 and 3 respectively. That put them in the “B” main and gave Kirk Haefs, R. Smith and Joe Ramaker a spot in the “A” feature event. Heat two was one that didn’t want to get under way. After two bad starts and two spins it went to a single file start to get under way. Once under way, winner Fauver and runner up Liebig ran away from the pack with the best battle between Wilskey and Martinez for the final “A” main spot behind Jeff Thompson. Wilskey got the spot. Heat three was all Ed Evans, as the driver went non-stop wire to wire for the win with the closest racing being for mid-pack positions. Final heat action had Duperron taking the lead on the second lap from Hodgson and holding for the win. Hodgson settled for fourth as both Jayme Barnes and William Hernandez worked by him. In the dash it was Cole wire to wire with Miller moving Barnes to third. Fauver and Wilskey had a nice wing to wing race going until it got a little close and Fauver was left sitting along the turn two wall. At the line it was Cole, Miller, Barnes, Wilskey, Fauver and Hernandez.
Fast Time - Randy Miller- 21.297 Heat 1 - Randy Miller, Kirk Haefs, Rick Smith, Joe Ramaker, Tim Levin, Kevin Journey, Clint Houston, Jay Smith, Shawn Rice. Heat 2 - Rick Fauver, Shane Libeg, Jeff Thompson, Shawna Wilskey, Barry Martinez, Dan Menne, Jerry Brey, Phil Dietz, Steve Nelson. Heat 3 - Ed Evens, Cale Carder, Bob Shiplet, Jay Cole, Richie Peterson, Rick Poehls, Doug Strong, Jim Cress, Jerry Brown, Jr. Heat 4 - Marc Duperron, Jayme Barnes, William Hernandez, Ron Hodgson, Butch Hansen, Bill Boyce, Richard Waddell, Brian Robison, Stuart Selby, Doc Leichner, Randy Hennelly. Dash - Cole, Miller, Barnes, Wilskey, Fauver, Hernandez. B-Main - J. Smith, Martinez, Menne, Boyce, Poehls, Brey, Levin, Hansen, Strong, Journey, Waddell, Dietz, Nelson, Selby, Cress, Robison, Brown, Peterson, Houston, Leichner, Rice. A-Main - Miller, Cole, Wilskey, J. Smith, R. Smith, Liebig, Hernandez, Fauver, Martinez, Hodgson, Haefs, Boyce, Menne, Thompson, Evans, Barnes, Shipley, Carder, Duperron, Carder, Ramaker.