Brandon Sheppard held off all challengers for his first Lucas Oil Late Model Dirt Series win of the 2020 season, scoring the victory on the second night of action for the series at East Bay Raceway Park (FL).
Sheppard survived a see-saw battle with pole-sitter Tim Dohm and held off a late-race charge from Brandon Overton to secure the victory during the East Bay Winternationals.
Sheppard and Overton nearly collided during their battle for the top spot, battling for an advantage along the inside line of the 1/3-mile East Bay racing surface. Sheppard knew he might have forced the issue, but also felt it was imperative to claim that valuable real estate.
“There’s a lot of tough cars out here,” said Sheppard on the Lucasoilracing.tv broadcast. “I knew, especially when I messed up that bad down there, I needed to do something different. I knew the top was going away. I probably squeezed Brandon off a little bit getting into one. It was one of those deals where it was rubbering up at the bottom and we had to get down.”
The win also marked Sheppard’s first of the season in the Rocket house car, taking some pressure off of him following what might be considered a slow start for Sheppard’s expectations.
“It seems like it’s been forever since we got this thing in victory lane. It feels really good to get the first win with the house car out of the way. It’s a relief for me, for sure, I was beginning to wonder what I was doing for a while.”
Overton ultimately finished second after charging from the 13thstarting spot in the 30-lap feature. He was pleased with his car’s performance, even if he tapped into its strength too late in the evening to make the most of it.
“I just got there a little too late,” said Overton. “It cleaned up on the bottom. We had a really good race car again. Yesterday, I just made the wrong adjustments on everything and figured it out later this evening in our heat race.
It was another charge through the field for “Big Sexy,” who hopes he can put a full evening together moving forward to get a chance to start up front and truly contend for a win before the time in East Bay is over.
“We’ve just got to quit burying ourselves early in the night,” said Overton. “It’s hard to start back there. You use up your stuff before you get up there and get a chance to race. We’ll get it, we’ll just keep plugging along, trying stuff different every day and hopefully hit on something.”
Racing in the East Bay Winternationals for the Lucas Oil Late Model Dirt Series will continue on Wednesday night, with a $7,000-to-win feature on the line.
-Story by: Zach Evans, Speed51 Content Supervisor – Twitter: @ztevans
-Photo credit: Heath Lawson
|1||2||1S||Brandon Sheppard||New Berlin, IL||$5,000.00|
|2||13||76||Brandon Overton||Evans, GA||$3,000.00|
|3||10||39||Tim McCreadie||Watertown, NY||$2,000.00|
|4||1||6T||Tim Dohm||Charleston, WV||$1,500.00|
|5||3||49||Jonathan Davenport||Blairsville, GA||$1,000.00|
|6||6||157||Mike Marlar||Winfield, TN||$800.00|
|7||12||14||Josh Richards||Shinnston, WV||$750.00|
|8||16||33J||Jeff Mathews||Brandon, FL||$700.00|
|9||17||9||Devin Moran||Dresden, OH||$750.00|
|10||9||21M||Billy Moyer Sr||Batesville, AR||$600.00|
|11||26||25Z||Mason Zeigler||Chalk Hill, PA||$550.00|
|12||14||21||Billy Moyer Jr||Batesville, AR||$500.00|
|13||28||16||Tyler Bruening||Decorah, IA||$500.00|
|14||5||71||Hudson O’Neal||Martinsville, IN||$500.00|
|15||21||25||Shane Clanton||Zebulon, GA||$500.00|
|16||8||20F||Trever Feathers||Winchester, VA||$500.00|
|17||22||1||Earl Pearson Jr||Jacksonville, FL||$500.00|
|18||15||28E||Dennis Erb Jr||Carpentersville, IL||$500.00|
|19||18||20||Jimmy Owens||Newport, TN||$500.00|
|20||19||50||Shanon Buckingham||Morristown, TN||$500.00|
|21||4||1T||Tyler Erb New||Waverly, TX||$500.00|
|22||23||2S||Stormy Scott||Las Cruces, NM||$500.00|
|23||27||42||Chris Garnes||Evans, WV||$500.00|
|24||25||10B||David Breazeale||Four Corners, MS||$500.00|
|25||24||3S||Brian Shirley||Chatham, IL||$500.00|
|26||7||99B||Boom Briggs||Bear Lake, PA||$500.00|
|27||30||1ST||Johnny Scott||Las Cruces, NM||$500.00|
|28||29||89||G.R. Smith||Statesville, NC||$500.00|
|29||20||18J||Chase Junghans||Manhattan, KS||$500.00|
|30||11||40B||Kyle Bronson||Brandon, FL||$500.00|