Furr flies in Southern Bleacher Classic preliminary FORT WORTH, TX (April 5) - Brad Furr knew his engine problems were behind him when his crew installed a new Don Ott power plant in his ...
Furr flies in Southern Bleacher Classic preliminary
FORT WORTH, TX (April 5) - Brad Furr knew his engine problems were behind him when his crew installed a new Don Ott power plant in his #2 Sanmina/ISC Eagle Friday.
The 25-year-old driver from Pleasanton, CA, made sure everybody was behind him that night as he led all 30 laps to win the preliminary feature in the Third Annual Southern Bleacher Classic at the Texas Motor Speedway Dirt Track.
The preliminary victory was Furr's third in the Pennzoil World of Outlaws Series' last six multi-program events. This $5,000 victory, his second of the season, pushed him into ninth place in the point standings. Furr also won the preliminary feature at Devil's Bowl Speedway March 15th.
"The track was hard tonight, but I've raced on a lot of narrow tracks," Furr said. "I usually don't get to race in front, so it was nice to start up there. I knew those guys were coming, so I just drove it hard. Hopefully, they will get the track different for tomorrow, but we're locked in (to the "A" Feature) so I feel really good about it."
Furr, the 14th-fastest qualifier in the 37-car field, felt good about winning the First O'Reilly Auto Parts Dash, too. His third dash victory of the season gave him the pole position in the preliminary feature.
Furr burst into the lead as the green flag fell in the evening's main event. Steve Kinser, who started outside the fourth row, drove his #11 Quaker State Maxim high around Daryn Pittman, Johnny Herrera, Donny Schatz and Shane Stewart in turn one to take over fourth place.
"The key was eighth to fourth in the first corner," Kinser said. "After that, it was on the bottom. It was a little too slick on the bottom to pass. Tomorrow, we just have to watch what the track is going to do."
"The King of the Outlaws" was fortunate to start anywhere near the front of the 24-car field. After spinning late in the first lap of the Third Heat Race, Kinser took advantage of Tyler Walker's last-lap spin to claim fifth place and a position in the Second O'Reilly Auto Parts Dash.
Furr opened a 10-car-length advantage within four laps, and entered lapped traffic two laps later. Kraig Kinser, Steve's 17-year-old son, won the Second O'Reilly Auto Parts Dash, started outside the front row in the feature and chased Furr throughout the 30 laps.
"I knew Furr was fast," Kraig said. "I felt if I could stay on the bottom, I would be OK. My biggest concern was my right rear (tire). I think tomorrow will be a great race. It was nice starting out front tonight."
Kraig Kinser closed to within 10 car-lengths of Furr midway through lap 10. He lined up close behind Furr four laps later, after First Heat Race winner Travis Rilat's flat right rear tire brought out the only caution flag of the race.
Pittman, racing with the Pennzoil World of Outlaws Series for the first since suffering a back injury at Hollywood Hills Speedway in early March, passed Schatz for sixth place early in lap 12.
Furr controlled the 14th-lap restart and opened a ¼-straightaway advantage within four laps. He was a half-straightaway ahead of his Kraig Kinser when he caught the back-markers again during the 20th lap. Furr was 1.75 seconds ahead when he took the checkered flag.
Ricky Logan held off Steve Kinser for third place. Stewart, racing with the Pennzoil World of Outlaws Series for the first time this season, finished fifth, ahead of Pittman, Mark Kinser, Schatz, Herrera and 14th-starting Craig Dollansky.
"The (#3S Lucas Oil Products Avenger) car was working really well," Logan said. "We had a strong motor. Starting position was the key - there wasn't going to be a lot of passing. It was important to start up front. We felt the motor starting to let go; we'll get it checked out for tomorrow."
Joey Saldana paced the qualifying session for the second time this year, circling the semi-banked, 4/10-mile oval in 13.653 seconds, an average speed of 105.471 m.p.h. A mechanical problem in his #17 Eagle Raceway/HEM Saw Eagle kept Saldana from completing a lap in the First Heat Race, however. The 1996 Rookie of the Year won the "B" Feature and finished 19th in the preliminary feature.