NCRA: Modifieds return to action

O'Reilly/NCRA Modifieds in Action Saturday and Sunday TOPEKA, Kan. (June 29, 2005) -- Two-time defending series champion Brian Franz hopes to creep a little bit closer to the points lead this weekend, as the O'Reilly/NCRA Modified Series, ...

O'Reilly/NCRA Modifieds in Action Saturday and Sunday

TOPEKA, Kan. (June 29, 2005) -- Two-time defending series champion Brian Franz hopes to creep a little bit closer to the points lead this weekend, as the O'Reilly/NCRA Modified Series, presented by Hoosier Racing Tires, swings back into action with a pair of shows.

Former NCRA modified rookie of the year Chad Wheeler is atop the standings but Franz is nipping at his heels only 50 points behind. Wheeler stormed to the top of the list with wins in the first two races this year and hasn't looked back, also recording a pair of top 10 finishes in the last two events.

Franz ran second to Wheeler's wins to stay close, but a dismal finish by Franz in the B feature of the third race widened the margin. He stormed back to win June 18 at is home track, 81 Speedway, and pulled back into contention.

If you just looked at the schedule, you might think this is a good weekend for Franz to continue his assault as the modifieds will be at tracks he's familiar with -- 81 Speedway and the Belleville High Banks. But Wheeler will definitely have something to say about that as he was fourth at Belleville and ninth at 81 just two weekends ago.

Marc Robe owns the other victory this season, along with two other top 10 finishes, and currently sits third in points, trailing Franz by 90 markers. But 90 points is all that separates Robe from eighth place in the standings.

Brian Powers is fourth, trailing Robe by 35 points; Marc Hurd is fifth, 25 points behind Powers; Greg Stephens is 15 points behind Hurd in sixth; Scott Green trails Stephens by only five points; and Conner Ward in eighth is only 10 points behind Green.

With Alan Dix just 15 points behind Ward and Darrick Klima only five points behind Dix, positions three through 10 are really tight so far this season.

-ncra-

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