Super DIRTcar Series Modifieds at Volusia 2/19/16
(Updated throughout the day – Be sure to refresh this page frequently)
What Won the Race: Laubach led wire-to-wire, but it was a split of two lapped cars in the closing laps that earned him the Friday night DIRTcar Nationals win.
The Skinny: One night after watching a win slip away, Rick Laubach kept his foot to the pedal while working lapped traffic in the final laps to score the victory. After starting from the outside of the front row, Laubach jumped out to an early lead and fended off Matt Sheppard on a handful of restarts. The win is Laubach’s third at the DIRTcar Nationals in the last four years, and all three have come on Friday night.
Winning Quote: “I’m like deja-vu, I just can’t let this happen again. I was cautious last night and tonight I kind of forced the issue and moved some people out of the way. I just didn’t want it to happen again and that’s what it takes to win.”
Notebook: The Big-Block Modifieds are turning their fastest laps of the week so far at the DIRTcar Nationals. Billy Pauch’s 17.433 second lap during hot laps was the fastest of the week.
Qualifying heat races went off relatively clean with only a handful of single-car incidents.
“The Doctor” Danny Johnson scored the win in the first of two B-Main features to secure his start in the A-Main feature. Darwin Green finished second to also lock himself into the main event. Eldon Payne, Jr. came out on top of an intense battle with Jessey Mueller and Brian Swartzlander to win the second B-Main. Mueller made his way by Swartzlander to secure the final transfer spot.
Rick Laubach jumps out to the early lead over Tyler Dippel and sets the pace up front. The first caution flag waves on lap 3 as Vic Coffey comes to a stop at the top of turn two after going up on two wheels. Larry Wight heads to pit road with a flat right rear tire. He entered the event second in DIRTcar Nationals points.
Laubach continues to lead Dippel, Sheppard and Friesen five laps into the race. Brett “The Jet” Hearn comes to a stop with a flat right rear tire on lap 9 to bring out the caution.
Mueller spins off of turn two and Fuller makes contact with him on lap 12. Both drivers pull away with minimal damage.
Sheppard takes over second from Dippel on the restart and begins closing the gap on Lawbach. Lawbach leads Sheppard, Johnson, Dippel and Rudoph with 15 laps down and 15 laps to go.
Eldon Payne, Jr. comes to a stop near the guardrail at the top of turn one with 16 laps complete.
Laubach pulls away from Sheppard on the restart and leads the way with 10 laps to go. He continues to pull away from Sheppard with five laps to go. All that stands in Laubach’s way is lapped traffic. Laubach gets pinned in traffic with five laps to go. Sheppard is closing in.
Laubach splits a pair of lapped cars in the closing laps and holds off a fierce charge from Sheppard to win.
Car Count: 35 Super DIRTcar Series Big-Block Modifieds are in the pit area at Volusia Speedway Park.
Title Fight: Matt Sheppard leads the way over Rick Laubach by 20 markers heading into Saturday night’s finale.
Winning Chassis: Teo Race Cars
Winning Engine: Boardwick Racing Engines
Winning Shocks: Bilstein Shocks
Heat Race Results:
Qualifying Events: The Big Block Modifieds will have timed hot laps/group qualifying to set the grid for four qualifying heat races. Each qualifying heat race will be eight laps with the top-five finishers advancing. There will also be two B-Features with the top two advancing from each. That will set the field for a 26-car A-Main feature that will be 30 laps in distance.
Practice Results: Drivers hit the track for hot laps by groups according to their heat races, which will be held later in the program.
Event Schedule: Hot laps and group qualifying for the Super DIRTcar Series begin at 6:30 p.m. ET. Opening ceremonies are scheduled for 7:20 with qualifying heat races beginning at 7:30. There will be four qualifying heat races and a B-Feature before the 30-lap feature at the end of the night.
Who To Watch For: Defending series champion Matt Sheppard scored the win one night ago, proving that he’s still going to be tough to beat in Super DIRTcar Series action despite switching teams. Back-to-back wins would put an exclamation point on that notion if he were to wind up in victory lane again on Friday night.
|0Bs||Jeremy Markle||Port Jarvis, NY|
|X||Ed Kitchell||South Kinston, RI|
|1||Billy Pauch||Frenchtown, NJ|
|1g||Darwin Greene||Susquehanna, PA|
|1T||Tyler Dippel||Wallkill, NY|
|5||Billy VanInwegen||Sparowbush, NY|
|5*||Tyler Siri||Corning, NY|
|6m||Mat Williamson||St. Catherines, ONT|
|7||Rick Laubach||Quakertown, PA|
|07||Tim Kerr||Picton, ONT|
|8||Rich Scagliotta||Bound Brock, ONT|
|9s||Matt Sheppard||Waterloo, NY|
|14||C.G. Morey||Rutland, VT|
|14J||Alan Johnson||Middlesex, NY|
|19||Tim Fuller||Edwards, NY|
|19m||Jessey Mueller||Oldmstedville, NY|
|20||Brett Hearn||Sussex, NY|
|21a||Peter Britten||Brisbane, AUS|
|21K||Randy Chrysler||Lewiston, NY|
|T21||Roger Chrysler||Lewiston, NY|
|25R||Erick Rudolph||Ransomville, NY|
|27J||Danny Johnson||Rochester, NY|
|28p||Eldon Payne||Canandaigua, NY|
|29e||Erik Martin||Zelienople, PA|
|29J||Chris Ostrowsky||Conklin, NY|
|30||Jamie Mills||Milford, DE|
|32c||Vic Coffey||Leister, NY|
|44||Stewart Friesen||Niagara-on-the-Lake, ONT|
|48too||Dave Rauscher||Waterloo, NY|
|49||Billy Dunn||Watertown, NY|
|54||Steve Bernard||Granby, QUE|
|64||Daniel Nadeau||Montreal, QUE|
|74||J.R. Heffner||Kinderhook, NY|
|83||Brian Swartzlander||Lernerville, PA|
|85j||H.J. Bunting III||Milford, DE|
|99L||Larry Wight||Phoenix, NY|
|323||Neil Williams||Pittsgrove, NJ|
The Track: Volusia Speedway Park is a half-mile dirt oval. The track opened as a 1/4 mile dirt oval in 1968, operating through 1969. It expanded to 3/8 mile (still dirt) in August of 1969, operating through 1971. It expanded again to 1/2 mile in February 1972, operating through 1989, when it was paved. It operated as a paved oval until 1997, when it was converted back to dirt.
The 3/8 mile dirt oval opened behind turn 4 of the original oval, operating from 1993 until it was paved in 1998, In late 2004 the paved surface was torn up and as of 2015 only the slight footprint of the 3/8 mile paved oval remains. A 1/8 mile dirt karting track is located inside the former 3/8 mile course. (From Wikipedia)
Weather: As hot laps approach, temperatures are in the low 50s with bright blue skies above the race track. Temperatures are expected to slowly decrease throughout the night, but there’s no precipitation in the forecast.
Thursday Night’s Results (30 Laps)
Wednesday Night’s Results (30 Laps)
Next Series Race: Tomorrow night, Saturday February 20
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