(Rural Retreat, VA) – The Renegades of Dirt South Modified tour wasted no time getting back to exciting the racing fans after following the “MEGA 100” which witnessed the biggest car count in tour history last weekend. That momentum followed the Renegades of Dirt Southern tour presented by Arizona Sport Shirts into Wythe Raceway on an unpredictable weather Saturday where many thought the race wouldn’t happen, the track and series fought the elements and in front of a packed house to the rafters witnessed another spectacular on the ½ mile in Rural Retreat, Virginia.
Wythe Raceway celebrating its 45th Anniversary of offering great racing excitement on this night hosted the “Beasts of the East” for a $2,000 to win open wheel special presented by entitled the 2nd Annual Commonwealth Cup. When the race concluded a major upset “underdog” “Cinderella” story became a reality as Melvin,KY native Ervin Vance would take the $2,000 payday never running seeing the ½ mile clay gem nestled in the Allegheny mountains nor racing with the Renegades of Dirt Modified Tour. His victory on Saturday at Wythe made 14 different winners in 18 races on the 2015 race schedule as we continue to roar into the summer months.
The program would get kicked off with “QA1 QuickTime Qualifying and was the #2 Nick Hoffman in the Elite chassis house machine putting down the fast time around the ½ mile. Then with threatening skies lingering over the Mountain View with flashes of lighting the decision was made to quickly rush as fast as possible to get the full show in successfully. That factor would then subside with clear racing conditions for the remainder of the evening. The field would then battle it out in heat races with Nick Hoffman from Mooresville easily taking heat one and then the #98 MB Customs chassis of Church Hill, TN’s Shon Flannary taking heat two. The field was then set by the heat race finishing order and the 25 lap race paying $1500 to win plus an additional $500 bounty up for grabs on Kyle Strickler was for the taking. Strickler was the only driver to ever win on the ½ mile with the series wasn’t in attendance however the $500 Bounty was still up for grabs. The field would quickly make final adjustments and preparations before the start of the race.
The race would be one that started off with eventual winner #20p from Kentucky Ervin Vance looping his car around and collecting #312 Greg Brown in the process. With no laps complete the field would try at it again for an initial start for the feature. The race would get back underway with the top 3 machines of Rich Michael Jr., Hoffman and RJ Otto all pulling away from the pack with Flannary closing in the distance. RMJ was trying to look for his 1st position and his 1st win on the Renegades of Dirt series for 2015 with a strong run in the early going as well . The race would get a yellow flag again for #11 Troy Loomis after stalling and then on the restart would get involved again with an incident that collected Kentucky native #3 of Jody Puckett.
After this incident and restart a crazy turn of events would transpire has #98 Flannary was leading and was looking like to be the victor of the ½ mile. Nick Hoffman would tangle with the leader of turn four exciting the corner and take each other out in the process also collecting the #51 RJ Otto who had a phenomenal run going also ending all three drivers night. This crazy turn of events would then give #17x Rich Michael Jr. the top stop after it was decided the caution was caused by Hoffman but all drivers got out of their cars automatically ended their nights. Then if one incident involving the lead pack wasn’t enough, it would happen again. On the restart the battle between RMJ and Ramey was furious and heated. These two would battle door to door around the ½ mile and then with 2 laps to halfway RMJ in the Extreme chassis would bounce off the outside retaining wall hard and the outcome caused heavy front end contact on the man in 2nd #91 Derrick Ramey in the Lethal chassis and RoD South points leader. The process of elimination and crazy outcome of the extensive cleanup made the decision to be made to cut the race from 25 laps to 20 laps.
After the red flag for clean up the race would get back underway with Ramey having a damaged and battered machine but would continue the fight to compete on and set up a 7 lap shoot out with drivers that had bad luck in the early going or haven’t had impressive runs would prevail on this evening. The driver that brought out the 1st caution Vance would then have a shot for winning. Vance would then battle side by side with Ramey for the top spot the laps running out. Vance would pull to the inside off the backstretch and finally clear by him for the lead with 3 laps to go and eventually pull away from the rest of the field. That was all the Swartz chassis needed for Ervin Vance to win his first career start with the Renegades of Dirt Modified Tour and at Wythe Raceway. That win will also make the 14th different winner in 18 touring races in 2015 as we’re still in the dead of summer.
The next events for the Renegades of Dirt South Modified Tour will be at the 4/10th mile Fayetteville Motor Speedway in Fayetteville, North Carolina for a $2,000 win Sandhills Shootout on Saturday night August 8th. More details will be following very soon on this event. Don’t forget also that the 2015 race season will conclude at the ½ mile Wythe Raceway in Rural Retreat, Virginia for the Inaugural Renegades of Dirt National Championships on September 24th-26th.
-Renegades of Dirt Press Release. Photo Credit: Christopher Brown