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Owens Takes Third Career Ralph Latham Memorial Win at Florence Speedway

Jimmy Owens - Jim Denhamer photo

Jimmy Owens – Jim Denhamer photo

UNION, KY (May 31, 2014) – Jimmy Owens led a Club 29 Race Cars sweep of the top two spots Saturday Night at Florence Speedway. Owens took the lead from Duane Chamberlain just past the half-way mark and went on to win his third career Ralph Latham Memorial Race sanctioned by the Lucas Oil Late Model Dirt Series.

Darrell Lanigan, who builds the Club 29 Race Cars out of his shop just a few miles from the race track finished second to Owens followed by Don O’Neal, Scott Bloomquist, and John Blankenship.

“The car was just rolling,” said the winner who has now captured three of out the last four LOLMDS events. “I was thankful they went out and re-did the bottom of the race track. Starting seventh, I felt a little bit better at my chances. The fans here always get to see a good show. He (Chamberlain) was running the top and I decided I could run the low line better during the mid-part of the race. Once I got by him, I moved back to the top. Last week we moved to the bottom and it kind of bit us.”

“What a weekend we have had! Winning at Tazewell last night and here tonight, it’s been just awesome. I have always liked running here. I want to thank my car owner, Mike Reece and my sponsors: Reece Monument Company, Edge Services, Sunoco, Midwest Sheet Metal, Keyser, Ohlins, C&C Trucking, Cornett Engines, and FORD. It’s been great working with Darrell on these cars. We had a great race here in April between us. He builds a nice car. The maneuverability is just tremendous the last two nights I could run anywhere on the race tracks we have raced on.’

Chamberlain was looking for the biggest win of his racing career. He set overall fast time for the night, and then rocketed to the lead at the start of the main event, looking to continue his momentum. He held the top spot for the first 25 laps of the race until Owens forged ahead. O’Neal then took over the second spot and ran in that position until Lanigan, who started 12th, passed him with ten laps to go. Lanigan could not make up any ground on the front-running Owens.

“Congrats to Jimmy on the win. We just started too far back, but when they worked on the track, that helped a lot. It’s good to come here close to home and run well. Our program has been really good this year. Building these cars with Ronnie Stuckey has really kept us at the shop busy over the last year. Hopefully the wins will keep coming and we can have a great year.”

O’Neal maintains to hold on to the series points lead as the series takes a weekend off. He was trying to expand his lead a-top the standings and also looking for his third-straight win in the annual event. “We always seem to be near the front here at Florence. Our car was good tonight, we were just a little bit off. I am sure it was real a good race for the fans to watch. Jimmy has gained a lot of ground on us in the last few weeks. We need to start getting some more wins.”

Completing the top ten were Kent Robinson, Steve Francis, Rod Conley, Mike Marlar, and Jared Landers.

In preliminary action, Duane Chamberlain set the overall Miller Welders Fast Time (Group B) amongst the 36 entrants, with a lap of 16.479 seconds. RJ Conley set the fastest time in Group A with a time of 16.568 seconds. RJ Conley, Don O’Neal, Duane Chamberlain, and Steve Francis won their respective heat races. John Blankenship and Rod Conley won their respective B-Mains.

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Lucas Oil Late Model Dirt Series
Race Summary
Saturday Night, May 31st, 2014
Florence Speedway – Union, KY

Miller Welders Fast Time Group A: RJ Conley / 16.568 seconds
Miller Welders Fast Time Group B: Duane Chamberlain/ 16.479 seconds

Fast Shafts Heat Race #1 Finish (10 Laps, Top 4 Transfer): RJ Conley, Kent Robinson, Randy Weaver, Eddie Carrier, Jr., John Blankenship, Dustin Linville, Eric Wells, Brad Neat, Jeff Alsip

Eibach Springs Heat Race #2 Finish (10 Laps, Top 4 Transfer): Don O’Neal, Jimmy Owens, Scott Bloomquist, Justin Rattliff, Jesse Lay, Ethan Burgess, Robby Hensley, Dennis Erb, Jr., Dustin Neat-DNS

Simpson Performance Products Heat Race #3 Finish (10 Laps, Top 4 Transfer): Duane Chamberlain, Ray Cook, Scott James, Jason Papich, Nick Latham, Steve Landrum, Earl Pearson, Jr., Jason Hughes, Terry Lanigan-DNS

FK Rod Ends Heat Race #4 Finish (10 Laps, Top 4 Transfer): Steve Francis, Mike Marlar, Darrell Lanigan, Greg Johnson, Michael Chilton, Rod Conley, Steve Casebolt, Jared Landers, James Rice-DNS

JRi Shocks B-Main #1 (12 Laps, Top 3 Transfer): John Blankenship, Jesse Lay, Dustin Linville, Ethan Burgess, Eric Wells, Robby Hensley, Jeff Alsip, Dennis Erb, Jr., Dustin Neat, Brad Neat

CV Products B-Main #2 (12 Laps, Top 3 Transfer): Rod Conley, Nick Latham, Michael Chilton, Jason Hughes, Steve Landrum, Steve Casebolt , Earl Pearson, Jr.-DNS, Jared Landers-DNS, Terry Lanigan-DNS, James Rice-DNS

Feature Finish (50 Laps):
FINISH START CAR # DRIVER NAME HOMETOWN
1 7 20 Jimmy Owens Newport, TN
2 12 29 Darrell Lanigan Union, KY
3 3 5 Don O’Neal Martinsville, IN
4 11 0 Scott Bloomquist Mooresburg, TN
5 17 23 John Blankenship Williamson, WV
6 5 7R Kent Robinson Bloomington, IN
7 4 15 Steve Francis Ashland, KY
8 18 71R Rod Conley Wheelersburg, OH
9 8 157 Mike Marlar Winfield, TN
10 24 777 Jared Landers Batesville, AR
11 13 28 Eddie Carrier, Jr. Salt Rock, WV
12 21 D8 Dustin Linville Lancaster, KY
13 25 28e Dennis Erb, Jr. Carpentersville, IL
14 14 91p Jason Papich Nipomo, CA
15 23 44 Earl Pearson, Jr. Jacksonville, FL
16 6 53 Ray Cook Brasstown, NC
17 19 63 Jesse Lay Walton, KY
18 26 12 Jason Hughes Watts, OK
19 10 83 Scott James Bright, IN
20 2 20c Duane Chamberlain Richmond, IN
21 16 15J Greg Johnson Bedford, IN
22 20 31 Nick Latham Winchester, OH
23 1 71c RJ Conley Wheelersburg, OH
24 22 97 Michael Chilton Salvisa, KY
25 15 16 Justin Rattliff Campbellsville, KY
26 9 116 Randy Weaver Crossville, TN

Race Statistics
Entrants: 36
Lap Leaders: Duane Chamberlain (Laps 1 – 25); Jimmy Owens (Laps 26 – 50)
Caution Flags: Don O’Neal, Jimmy Owens (Start); Justin Rattliff (Lap 13); Dustin Linville, Ray Cook (Lap 17); Duane Chamberlain, Nick Latham (Lap 39); Scott James (Lap 47)
Lucas Oil Late Model Dirt Series Provisionals: Earl Pearson Jr., Jared Landers
Lucas Oil Late Model Dirt Series Emergency Provisionals: Dennis Erb Jr., Jason Hughes
Wrisco Feature Winner: Jimmy Owens
Optima Batteries Hard Charger of the Race: Jared Landers (Started: 24th; Finished: 10th; Advanced 14 Positions)
Keyser Mfg Spoiler Challenge Point Leader: Don O’Neal
Allstar Performer of the Race: John Blankenship
Sunoco Race for Gas Highest Finisher: Jimmy Owens
Dunn Benson Ford Rookie of the Race: Jason Papich
Midwest Sheet Metal Highest Finishing Rookie: Jason Papich
COMP Cams Engine Builder of the Race: Cornett Racing Engines
Ohlins Shocks Chassis Builder of the Race: Club 29 / Black Diamond Race Cars
Outerwears Crew Chief of the Race: Chris Fox (Jimmy Owens)
HAWK Performance Fastest Lap of the Race: Jimmy Owens (Lap #7 – 17.833 seconds)
Time of Race: 35 minutes 00 seconds

Lucas Oil Championship Point Standings:

POS CAR # DRIVER NAME HOMETOWN POINTS
1 5 Don O’Neal Martinsville, IN 2810
2 20 Jimmy Owens Newport, TN 2800
3 0 Scott Bloomquist Mooresburg, TN 2625
4 44 Earl Pearson, Jr. Jacksonville, FL 2575
5 28 Eddie Carrier, Jr. Salt Rock, WV 2560
6 15 Steve Francis Ashland, KY 2550
7 23 John Blankenship Williamson, WV 2345
8 777 Jared Landers Batesville, AR 2280
9 28e Dennis Erb, Jr. Carpentersville, IL 2145
10 12 Jason Hughes Watts, OK 2005
11 91p Jason Papich Nipomo, CA 1895

*Points are unofficial until Close of Business on the Tuesday following Race Day*

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