By: Bryan Hulbert
Tommy Weder Jr. captured night 2 of the USRA Modified Winter Meltdown Saturday night at Southern New Mexico Speedway. Weder’s victory stopped Terry Phillips efforts at sweeping the weekend and the $30,000 that goes with it. $20,000 is still up for grabs to whoever wins Sunday evening’s main event.
Weder set the tone from the pole, jumping into the race lead in the Boom Drilling/Hughes Chassis 02, then pulling away from the field as the battle began to heat up for the runner up spot.
Running third, Blooming Prairie, Minnesota racer Tommy Myer would battle door to door with Kelly Estey, eventually taking over the runner up spot. Unable to hold the bottom of the Southern New Mexico Speedway, the 37 of Estey would have his hands full trying to maintain a spot in the top five as the 7k of Jason Krohn moved into third.
With the bottom of the track figured out, Las Cruces, NM veteran Jimmy Ray would wheel his MVT/AOS Chassis 9 from his seventh starting position into a battle with the 99g of Jason Grimes for fifth. Working side by side, the Jamestown, ND racer held off the 9 of Ray before the Speedway co-owner was able to move by the 99g of Grimes and the 37 of Estey to take over forth.
With a late race caution bringing the field into the Delaware Double File Restart, Tommy Weder Jr. would see a nearly twelve car lead diminished to nothing but as the green flag flew, the Woodward, OK racer wasted no time in getting back up to speed as the 02 pulled away, leaving the 65 of Myer to contend with the 7k of Krohn and the 9 of Ray.
After starting fourteenth on the field, Friday night winner Terry Phillips had worked into the top ten, making the pass into seventh and setting his sights on sixth place running Darrell Nelson, who had started twelfth in the Big’uns Southwest Services 110.
With the Pepsi/MVT scoreboard showing one lap to go, Weder Jr. had again extended his lead over Myer to twelve car lengths, using lapped traffic to score his first preliminary night win in the USRA Modified Winter Meltdown; a victory worth $2,000. Tommy Myer would cross the line second, improving from his fifth place run the night before. Jason Krohn would grab third with Jimmy Ray forth; holding off several charges by Jason Grimes who rounded out the top five.
With Terry Phillips and Tommy Weder Jr. each $2,000 richer, the battle for the big check is now set with the 16th annual USRA Modified Winter Meltdown concluding Sunday February 27, 2011 with someone walking away with $20,000 in their pocket. Grandstands open at Noon with racing getting underway at 2:00pm MST.
The 16th running of the USRA Winter Meltdown and 5th Chub Daniels Memorial is presented by Mesilla Valley Transportation, Border International Trucks Sales, and Barnett’s Harley Davidson of El Paso and Las Cruces. Media partners include the Las Cruces Sun News, Radio of Las Cruces, and ModFury.com.
Previous Champions of the USRA Winter Meltdown include Don Veal (1995), Eddie Martin (1996), Danny Bradford (1997), Monte Bolton (1998), Ron Jones (1999-2001, 2003, 2007), Terry Tipton (2002), George White (2004), Johnny Scott (2006), Terry Phillips (2009), Jason Hughes (2005, 2008, 2010).
The Southern New Mexico Speedway is located 11 miles west of Las Cruces at the Southern New Mexico State Fairgrounds. Take exit 132 off I-10 to the South Frontage Road (Robert Larson Blvd.) then head west. For turn by turn directions, log onto www.snmspeedway.com/maps.php.
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(Heat 1 finish) Rowland, B. Jones, Falco, J. Scott, Sanders, Seidler, R. Jones, Engles, Haug, DeVilbiss, Tipton (DNF)
(Heat 2 finish) Arneson, Estey, H. Jones, Patrell, Budlong, Stanford, Shryock, B. Sikes Jr,. Mason, Jenkins, S. Barnett
(Heat 3 finish) Taylor, Grimes, Schreiner, Lovelady, B. Sikes, Houston, Mari, D. Gorham, Calvert (DNF), Harris (DNF), Alonso (DNF)
(Heat 4 finish) Myer, Weder Jr., Phillips, Sharpensteen, Carney, Puckett, Coen, McDaniel, Resser, Ortega
(Heat 5 finish) Chadwick, Krohn, O’Neil, Gallardo, D. Gorham, Davis, Herring, T. Sikes, Sims, Owens
(Heat 6 finish) Ray, Georges, Nelson, Scott, Clark, Brown, Chiles, Fleming, Robinson, Ford Jr.
(Mod B-Main #1 Finish – top 4 to A-Main) Bumper Jones, Fito Gallardo, Johnny Scott, Alan Sharpensteen, Shryock, Houston, Tipton, Mari, McDaniel, Resser, DeVilbiss, Haug, Ford Jr., Chiles (DNF), B. Sikes (DNF), Ortega (DNF), S. Scott (DNF)
(Mod B-Main #2 Finish – top 4 to A-Main) Terry Phillips, Brian Clark, Holly Jones, Rodney Sanders, Herring, Jenkins, Mason, Carney, Coen, Sims, Engles, Barnett, Lovelady, Puckett, Tipton (DNF), R. Jones (DNF), Owens (DNS)
(Mod B-Main #3 Finish – top 4 to A-Main) Jake O’Neil, Christy Georges, Alex Stanford, Marlyn Seidler, D. Gorham, Fleming, Davis, Robinson, Ford Jr., Harris, B. Sikes Jr., Falco, Brown, Budlong, Calvert, Petrell, Alonso
(Modified A-Main Finish – Night #2) Tommy Weder Jr., Tommy Myer, Jason Krohn, Jimmy Ray, Jason Grimes, Darrell Nelson, Terry Phillips, Ron Schreiner, Bumper Jones, Bryan Rowland, Johnny Scott, Austin Arneson, Nick O’Neil, Rodney Sanders, Brian Clark, Alex Stanford, Alan Sharpensteen, Kelly Estey, Kellen Chadwick, Jeff Taylor, Holly Jones, Marlyn Seidler, Christy Georges (DNF), Fito Gallardo (DNF)