SCRA Race 13 MANZANITA SPEEDWAY PHOENIX, AZ 06/7/97 YELEY BACK HOME AGAIN AT MANZY By Robert Mayson PHOENIX, AZ., June 7-J.J. Yeley returned "back home again from Indiana" to win the Sprint...
SCRA Race 13 MANZANITA SPEEDWAY PHOENIX, AZ 06/7/97
YELEY BACK HOME AGAIN AT MANZY By Robert Mayson
PHOENIX, AZ., June 7-J.J. Yeley returned "back home again from Indiana" to win the Sprint Car Racing Association main event Saturday night at Manzanita Speedway. In addition to earning his second SCRA win of the season at Manzy, Yeley also established a new 30-lap track with a time of 10:55.12 around Keith Hall's "Haulin' half-mile." "Just getting to race here at Manzanita was nice," said the 20 year-old Yeley. "I've been in Indianapolis for three weeks and all I've been able to do is watch it rain." Ironically, Yeley's win came aboard Harlan Willis' Del Mar Wire/Avenue Cable TV No. 45 Drake in a substitute role for Cory Kruseman who was racing in Colorado. "I have to thank Harlan Willis and the crew for all their hard work and giving me a great race car," said Yeley. "I'm just fortunate that they let me drive it this week." The initial start of the 22-car feature was a wild one to say the least. As pole sitter Rip Williams lead the field into turn one, there was a massive pileup along the front straight involving several cars. Mike Boat, Rick Byler, Rickie Gaunt and John Scott all ended up flipping, with Troy Cline, Mike English and Steve Ostling also involved. Fortunately, there were no injuries to any of the drivers, in fact, Boat, English and Scott returned in time for the restart. As it turned out the red flag proved to be a break for Yeley. "At the start we had a good top-five car, but we didn't have a race winning car," Yeley later said. "On the red we tighten the car up quite a bit and it made all the difference in the world." Once action finally got underway, Williams again pushed Sharon Jory's AMA Plastics/Kurb King No. 3 Stinger into the lead. Richard Griffin made a nice from inside of row two to grab second at the start. At the end of lap one, Williams and Griffin were followed by Verne Sweeney, Ron Shuman, Mike Kirby and Yeley. With Shuman now up to third in the Skip Schuck Texaco-Havoline No. 2 Ellis, Yeley made a daring lap eight pass for the fifth spot on Kirby that nearly ended his night. "Kirby was getting in pretty low going into one and I thought he was going to the bottom on that lap, when he didn't I figured I better gas it or I'll be stuck in the fence...believe me it had my attention on that one," Yeley recalled. Near the half way mark, Griffin kept the Ron Chaffin Boot Jack Equipment Rental No. 50 Ellis on Williams' rear bumper as they battled their way through numerous slower cars. Shortly thereafter, fourth place Kirby retired to the pits with a flat right rear tire. Williams then began to catch lap traffic better than Griffin and started to extend his lead when Yeley darted passed Griffin with a spectacular low to high move through turn three. But Williams lapped traffic luck would run out on lap 23 when he found himself pinned behind two slower cars that were running side-by-side. Yeley, who earlier turned the DURA-Light Fast Time in qualifying, wasted no time taking advantage of Williams loss of momentum. Going down the backstraight less than a half a lap later, Yeley dove to the bottom of the race track and made it three-wide with Williams and a slower car for a moment before sliding back up to the turn three cushion as the leader. Williams refused to quit, however. With one lap to go, the "Ripper" was only inches from Yeley when he shot low entering turn one. Williams tried to slide up to the top of the track in front of Yeley, but Yeley beat him to the spot and held on to take starter Steve Vodden's checkered flags first. Williams was second followed by Griffin and Shuman. Finishing fifth was owner/driver Sweeney in his Custom Standard Transmission/R&S Studio Rentals No 98 Gambler and Scott was sixth in the Haas Machine Tools No. 83 Drake despite that opening lap flip.
Full Standings and previous results at:
SCRA DURA-LIGHT FAST TIME 1. J.J. Yeley, Lomita CA, Willis 45 , 19.266
HEAT 1 1. Richard Griffin 2. Rickie Gaunt 3. J.J. Yeley 4. Danny Ent 5. Troy Cline 6. Carrie Davis 7. Chad Jones 8. Rick Hinrichsen
HEAT 2 1. Billy Felts Jr. 2. Jimmy May 3. Mike Boat 4. Verne Sweeney 5. Rick Ziehl 6. Brandon Lane 7. Bob Ream, Jr
HEAT 3 1. John Scott 2. Ron Shuman 3. Rip Williams 4. Jerry Coons, Jr 5. Tony Jones 6. Ricky Johnson 7. Rob Davis
HEAT 4 1. Mike Kirby 2. Mike English 3. Ed Patterson, Jr 4. Steve Venard 5. Rick Byler 6. Steve Ostling 7. Troy Rutherford
DASH 1. Williams 2. Sweeney 3. Griffin 4. Shuman 5. Yeley 6. Kirby 7. Boat 8. Felts, Jr.
B FEATURE 1. Ostling 2. Cline 3. R. Davis 4. Ream, 5. Byler 6. Lane 7. Hinrichsen 8. Johnson, 9. Ziehl 10. C. Jones 11. T. Jones 12. C. Davis
A FEATURE 1. Yeley 2. Williams 3. Griffin 4. R. Shuman 5. Sweeney 6. Scott 7. Boat 8. English 9. Coons, Jr 10. Felts, Jr 11. May 12. R. Davis 13. Patterson, Jr 14. Venard 15. Lane 16. Ent 17. Hinrichsen 18. Kirby 19. Ostling 20. Cline 21. Gaunt 22. Byler
Laps Led: Williams 1-23 Yeley 24-30
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