PONTOON BEACH, IL (May 4, 2012) – It took Don O’Neal of Martinsville, IN just four laps to gain the lead as he went on to take the $10,000 to win Spring Classic 50. O’Neal knew he had a good race car when he won the first heat race to earn the pole for Friday Night’s Lucas Oil Late Model Dirt Series event at Tri-City Speedway.
Tyler Reddick of Corning, CA tried to chase down O’Neal in the closing laps as he settled for his best LOLMDS finish of the year to place second. Scott Bloomquist of Mooresburg, TN held off point’s leader, Jimmy Owens of Newport, TN for third. Wendell Wallace of Batesville, AR came home in fifth.
O’Neal came into the race tied for second in Lucas Oil Championship Points and made it to Lucas Oil Victory Lane for the fifth time behind the wheel of the Tader and Keith MasterSbilt house car. “The car was awesome tonight, we didn’t qualify like we wanted to, but winning that first heat sure made us feel like we had a great shot at winning here tonight. (Brian) Shirley fired off real good, but our car was so good on the bottom,” said O’Neal, who trailed Shirley for the first three laps of the race.
“Our last race in Pennsylvania was not good at all, I think we finished 18th. If we are going to win the championship this year, we can’t have finishes like that! This is definitely a step in the right direction. I have to thank Keith, Tader, and the crew. The car was just on a rail tonight,” said the 47-year-old. The victory marks the 24th career series win of O’Neal’s career.
O’Neal’s Jay Dickens Racing Engines powered car is sponsored by Optima Batteries, Independence Lumber, Tarpy Trucking, O’Neal Mulch, Seubert Calf Ranches, Superior Cleaning Services, Jones Core, and Budda Bert Transmission.
O’Neal had very little difficulty maintaining his lead, only once in traffic was Bloomquist able to close ground on him, but after several cautions O’Neal had the dominant car the rest of the race. Reddick was able to wrestle second away from Bloomquist with 15 laps to go.
“We had a really good car tonight, I think if we could have won that first heat we might have been the car to beat tonight. I didn’t have anything for Don, but Scott and I had a really good race, we will take this finish, it was our best of the year and head to Paducah,” said the driver of the Broken Bow Records, Stoney Creek Records, Bloomquist Race Cars Chevrolet.
Completing the top ten were Brad Neat of Dunnville, KY; Jimmy Mars of Menomonie, WI; Earl Pearson Jr. of Jacksonville, FL; John Blankenship of Williamson, WV; and Austin Hubbard of Seaford, DE.
In preliminary action Tyler Reddick was the Red Buck Cigar Fastest Qualifier among the 48 entrants. Heat races were by Don O’Neal, Brad Neat, Brian Shirley, and Scott Bloomquist. Jimmy Owens and Jared Landers won the B-Mains.
The Lucas Oil Late Model Dirt Series will be at Paducah International Raceway in Paducah, KY on Saturday Night, May 5th for a $10,000 to win event. For more information log on to www.paducahracing.com.
For the latest breaking news on the Lucas Oil Late Model Dirt Series, log onto www.lucasdirt.com and make sure to follow us at www.facebook.com/lucasdirt and www.twitter.com/#!/lucasdirt.
Lucas Oil Late Model Dirt Series
Friday Night, May 4th, 2012
Tri-City Speedway – Pontoon Beach, IL
Red Buck Cigars Fast Time:
Tyler Reddick / 14.468 seconds (Group A and Overall)
Ronny Lee Hollingsworth / 14.694 seconds (Group B)
Wiles Driveshafts First Heat (10 Laps- Top 4 Advance): Don O’Neal, Tyler Reddick, Shannon Babb, Jimmy Mars, Jonathan Davenport, Frank Heckenast, Jr., Jason McBride, Tim Manville, Eric Jacobsen, Jerry Lierly, Randy Korte, Rickey Frankel
U. S. Steel Second Heat (10 Laps- Top 4 Advance): Brad Neat, Billy Moyer, Brandon Sheppard, Austin Hubbard, Jimmy Owens, Brady Smith, Brian Birkhofer, Klint Byars, Bobby Pierce, Chad Simpson, Tim Rivers, Craig Smith
Simpson Performance Products Third Heat (10 Laps- Top 4 Advance): Brian Shirley, Dennis Erb, Jr., Ronny Lee Hollingsworth, Duke Whiseant, Jared Landers, Ryan Unzicker, Mark Burgtorf, Chris Simpson, Justin Reed, Dustin Griffin, Billy Laycock, Billy Faust
HAWK Brakes Fourth Heat (10 Laps- Top 4 Advance): Scott Bloomquist, Eric Wells, Wendell Wallace, Eddie Carrier, Jr., Kevin Cole, Chad Zobrist, Earl Pearson, Jr., John Blankenship, Jason Feger, Steve Francis, Jay Johnson, Dillan White
JRi Shocks First B-Main (12 Laps- Top 3 Advance): Jimmy Owens, Brady Smith, Brian Birkhofer, Jonathan Davenport, Frank Heckenast, Jr., Jason McBride, Bobby Pierce, Klint Byars, Chad Simpson, Tim Rivers, Tim Manville, Eric Jacobsen, Jerry Lierly, Randy Korte, Rickey Frankel-DNS, Craig Smith-DNS
PAC Racing Springs Second B-Main (12 Laps- Top 3 Advance): Jared Landers, Earl Pearson, Jr., Kevin Cole, Jason Feger, Chad Zobrist, Chris Simpson, John Blankenship, Mark Burgtorf, Steve Francis, Dustin Griffin, Dillan White, Billy Laycock, Ryan Unzicker, Justin Reed, Jay Johnson, Billy Faust
Feature Finish – 50 Laps
FINISH START CAR # DRIVER NAME HOMETOWN
1 1 71 Don O’Neal Martinsville, IN
2 5 11T Tyler Reddick Corning, CA
3 4 0 Scott Bloomquist Mooresburg, TN
4 17 20 Jimmy Owens Newport, TN
5 12 6m Wendell Wallace Batesville, AR
6 3 41n Brad Neat Dunnville, KY
7 13 28m Jimmy Mars Menomonie, WI
8 20 44 Earl Pearson, Jr. Jacksonville, FL
9 26 23 John Blankenship Williamson, WV
10 15 11h Austin Hubbard Seaford, DE
11 11 b5 Brandon Sheppard Berlin, IL
12 24 15 Steve Francis Ashland, KY
13 6 28e Dennis Erb, Jr. Carpentersville, IL
14 18 5 Jared Landers Batesville, AR
15 23 15d Jonathan Davenport Blairsville, GA
16 8 18e Eric Wells Hazard, KY
17 2 3s Brian Shirley Chatham, IL
18 10 18H Ronny Lee Hollingsworth Northport, AL
19 19 2 Brady Smith Solon Springs, WI
20 14 A1 Duke Whiseant Texarkana, AR
21 9 18 Shannon Babb Mowequa, IL
22 16 28 Eddie Carrier, Jr. Salt Rock, WV
23 25 78 Chad Zobrist Highland, IL
24 22 81c Kevin Cole Benton, IL
25 21 15b Brian Birkhofer Muscatine, IA
26 7 21 Billy Moyer Batesville, AR
Lap Leaders: Brian Shirley (Laps 1 – 3); Don O’Neal (Laps 4 – 50)
Caution Flags: Shannon Babb (Lap 1); Billy Moyer, Eric Wells, Austin Hubbard (Lap 1); Debris (Lap 22); Dennis Erb Jr. (Lap 24); Earl Pearson Jr., Jared Landers (Lap 28); Brian Shirley (Lap 38), Debris (Lap 41)
Lucas Oil Late Model Dirt Series Provisionals: Jonathan Davenport, Steve Francis
Lucas Oil Late Model Dirt Series Emergency Provisional: John Blankenship
Tri-City Speedway Track Provisional: Chad Zobrist
Optima Batteries Hard Charger of the Race: John Blankenship (Started 26th; Finished 9th; Advanced 17 positions)
Allstar Performer of the Race: Don O’Neal
Sunoco Race for Gas Highest Finisher: Jimmy Owens
ASi Racewear Challenge Finisher: Don O’Neal
Quarter Master Rookie of the Race: Austin Hubbard
COMP Cams Engine Builder of the Race: Jay Dickens Racing Engines
Ohlins Shocks Chassis Builder of the Race: MasterSbilt Race Cars
Sweet Mfg Crew Chief of the Race: Clarence Reddick (Tyler Reddick)
Time of Race: 43 minutes 08 seconds
Lucas Oil Championship Point Standings:
POS CAR # DRIVER NAME HOMETOWN POINTS
1 20 Jimmy Owens Newport, TN 1755
2 71 Don O’Neal Martinsville, IN 1620
3 0 Scott Bloomquist Mooresburg, TN 1560
3 44 Earl Pearson, Jr. Jacksonville, FL 1560
5 11T Tyler Reddick Corning, CA 1520
6 15 Steve Francis Ashland, KY 1495
7 15d Jonathan Davenport Blairsville, GA 1490
8 28e Dennis Erb, Jr. Carpentersville, IL 1465
9 5 Jared Landers Batesville, AR 1405
10 23 John Blankenship Williamson, WV 1365
11 11h Austin Hubbard Seaford, DE 1305
12 18e Eric Wells Hazard, KY 1270
*Points are unofficial until Close of Business on the Tuesday following Race Day*
2012 Lucas Oil Late Model Dirt Series Sponsors
ASI Racewear – “The Official Merchandise Vendor” of the Lucas Oil Late Model Dirt Series
Canidae Pet Foods – “The Official Pet Foods” of the Lucas Oil Late Model Dirt Series
DART Machinery – “The Official Engine Components” of the Lucas Oil Late Model Dirt Series
E3 Spark Plugs – “The Official Spark Plug” of the Lucas Oil Late Model Dirt Series
Geico – “The Official Insurance” of the Lucas Oil Late Model Dirt Series
General Tire – “The Official Tire” of the Lucas Oil Late Model Dirt Series
Hoosier Tire – “The Official Race Tire” of the Lucas Oil Late Model Dirt Series
Lucas Oil Products – “The Official Oil” of the Lucas Oil Late Model Dirt Series
MAVTV – “The Official TV Network” of the Lucas Oil Late Model Dirt Series
Optima Batteries – “The Official Battery” of the Lucas Oil Late Model Dirt Series
Speedco – “The Official Truck Lube and Tire Center” of the Lucas Oil Late Model Dirt Series
Sunoco Race Fuels – “The Official Fuel” of the Lucas Oil Late Model Dirt Series
U. S. Steel – “The Official Steel Manufacturer” of the Lucas Oil Late Model Dirt Series
2012 Lucas Oil Late Model Dirt Series Supporters Include:
Allstar Performance, American Racer, Banshee Graphics, Barry Wright Race Cars, Bloomquist Race Cars, COMP Cams, Chizmark Larson Insurance, Cornett Racing Engines,Crawford Supply, CV Products, DirtonDirt.com, Dunn-Benson Ford, Dyers Top Rods, Edlebrock, Eibach Springs, Fast Shafts, FK Rod Ends, Gaerte Engines, Hawk Performance, Jay Dickens Racing Engines, JE Pistons, JRi Shocks, Keyser MFG, Longhorn Chassis, MasterSbilt Chassis, Öhlins, Outerwears, PBM/Erson Cams, PAC Racing Springs, Performance Bodies, Pierce Racecars, PRC, Pro Power Racing, Quarter Master, Race Engine Design, Red Buck Cigars, Rick Schwallie Photography, Ringers Gloves, Rocket Chassis, Roush Yates Engines, Roush Yates Performance Parts, Simpson Performance Products, Sweet Mfg, Traeger Grills, Vic Hill Race Engines, Weld Racing Wheels, Wiles Drive Shafts, Wiley X Sunglasses, Wrisco, 5150 Race Trailers.
James Essex, Public Relations Coordinator, email@example.com