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Don O’Neal Takes Back to Back Wins Tuesday Night at East Bay Raceway Park

Don O'Neal
Don O'Neal - Photo from East Bay Raceway Park
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TAMPA, FL (February 14, 2012) – Don O’Neal of Martinsville, IN captured $5,000 tonight with his second win at the DART Winternationals East Bay Raceway Park on Tuesday Night. O’Neal took command of the Lucas Oil Late Model Dirt Series sanctioned event and stormed on for his 14th career win at the 1/3 mile oval. John Blankenship of Williamson, WV passed Austin Hubbard of Seaford, DE on the final lap to place second. Scott Bloomquist of Mooresburg, TN and Steve Francis of Ashland, KY rounded out the top five.

The race got off to rough start with a false start. Then O’Neal and Shannon Babb, who started on the front row alongside each other, got together heading into turn number one on the second attempt to start the race. Babb suffered substantial damage, ending his night. In Victory Lane, O’Neal was subdued after the contact with Babb. “Man I hated that, Shannon and I are friends. I got in there and we got together, I drove it in wide-open. I think I blistered my tires again tonight as well. My hat’s off again to this MasterSbilt crew, they’ve built a great race car, and thanks to Jay Dickens for building us such a stout engine. We are off to a great start this season,” said the 47-year-old, who captured his 21st win in Lucas Oil Late Model Dirt Series competition.

O’Neal led all 25 laps, but a heated battle lasted the entire distance for second. All eyes were on Blankenship and Hubbard. Those two swapped the second spot four times during the race with Blankenship in the Coal America’s Energy, Cornett Racing Engines, Rocket Chassis going to the high-side, passing Hubbard coming off of turn number two on the final lap to capture the runner-up spot. Hubbard wound up third in the Tim Logan Racing, Trinity Logistics, Rocket Chassis Chevrolet.

O’Neal, who is fourth all-time in LOLMDS series wins, rode the cushion for most of the race and at times it appeared that both Blankenship and Hubbard were gaining ground on him. Once O’Neal reached traffic he was able to take command of the race. “Our goal is to win the Lucas Oil Series title this year and even though this doesn’t count toward the season-long points we are going to be ready for Friday and Saturday for sure.”

Bloomquist took fourth in his Hawkeye Trucking, Roush-Yates Racing Engines, Bloomquist Race Cars Ford. Francis grabbed fifth in the Valvoline, Clements Racing Engines, Barry Wright Race Cars Chevrolet.

Completing the top ten were Dennis Erb Jr. of Carpentersville, IL; Randy Korte of Highland, IL; Duke Whiseant of Texarkana, AR; Dillan White of Crofton, KY; and Jonathan Davenport of Blairsville, GA.

In preliminary action, O’Neal was the Red Buck Cigars Fast Qualifier among the 43 entrants with a lap of 14.402 seconds. Heat races were won by O’Neal, Terry Casey, Shannon Babb, and John Blankenship. The B-main winners were Eric Jacobsen and Dillan White. The PRC Strawberry Dash was taken by Brandon Sheppard.

Coming up on Wednesday Night, February 15th will be night number three of the 36th Annual DART Winternationals for the Lucas Oil Late Model Dirt Series with a complete show featuring a $7,000 to win main event. For more information log on to www.eastbayracewaypark.com.

For the latest breaking news on the Lucas Oil Late Model Dirt Series, log onto www.lucasdirt.com or call the series’ office at (951) 532-2503

Lucas Oil Late Model Dirt Series

Race Summary
Tuesday Night, February 14, 2012
36th Annual DART Winternationals
East Bay Raceway Park – Tampa, FL

Red Buck Cigars Fast Time:
Don O’Neal / 14.402 seconds (Group A)
Shannon Babb / 14.654 seconds (Group B and Overall)

Wiles Driveshafts First Heat (8 Laps- Top 4 Advance): Don O’Neal, Scott Bloomquist, Jared Landers, Jonathan Davenport, Eric Jacobsen, Scott James, Ray Cook, Morgan Bagley, Chris Brown, Terry Naugle, Robert Geiger-DNS

U. S. Steel Second Heat (8 Laps- Top 4 Advance): Terry Casey, Steve Francis, Randy Korte, Eric Wells, Scott Creel, Jason Riggs, Jackie Nosbisch, Danny Mitchell, Leon Henderson, Mark Andersen

Simpson Performance Products Third Heat (8 Laps- Top 4 Advance): Shannon Babb, Duke Whiseant, Dennis Erb, Jr., Daniel Stone, Justin Rattliff, Chad Stapleton, Chad Hollenbeck, James O’Hara, Todd Frank, Shane Cottle

HAWK Brakes Fourth Heat (8 Laps- Top 4 Advance): John Blankenship, Austin Hubbard, Josh McGuire, Bobby Pierce, Dillan White, Brandon Sheppard, Tyler Reddick, Travis Varnadore, Victor Lee, Doug Blashe

JRi Shocks First B-Main (10 Laps- Top 4 Advance): Eric Jacobsen, Scott Creel, Scott James, Jason Riggs, Ray Cook, Danny Mitchell, Morgan Bagley, Jackie Nosbisch, Leon Henderson, Chris Brown, Mark Andersen

PAC Racing Springs Second B-Main (10 Laps- Top 4 Advance): Dillan White, Justin Rattliff, Chad Hollenbeck, Tyler Reddick, Brandon Sheppard, Victor Lee, Shelby Miles, James O’Hara, Doug Blashe, Chad Stapleton, Todd Frank, Travis Varnadore

PRC Strawberry Dash Presented by DirtonDirt.com (Laps- Winner Advances): Brandon Sheppard, Victor Lee, Shelby Miles, Doug Blashe, James O’Hara

Feature Finish – 25 Laps:

FINISH START CAR # DRIVER NAME HOMETOWN
1 1 71 Don O’Neal Martinsville, IN
2 4 23 John Blankenship Williamson, WV
3 8 11h Austin Hubbard Seaford, DE
4 5 0 Scott Bloomquist Mooresburg, TN
5 7 15 Steve Francis Ashland, KY
6 10 28e Dennis Erb, Jr. Carpentersville, IL
7 11 81x Randy Korte Highland, IL
8 6 A1 Duke Whiseant Texarkana, AR
9 18 54W Dillan White Crofton, KY
10 13 15d Jonathan Davenport Blairsville, GA
11 14 21d Daniel Stone Thompson, PA
12 25 53 Ray Cook Brasstown, NC
13 12 41 Josh McGuire Grayson, KY
14 17 5J Eric Jacobsen Watsonville, CA
15 20 16 Justin Rattliff Campbellsville, KY
16 22 4-Ds Chad Hollenbeck Montrose, PA
17 15 18e Eric Wells Hazard, KY
18 16 32 Bobby Pierce Oakwood, IL
19 19 31 Scott Creel Franklinton, LA
20 3 42c Terry Casey New London, WI
21 21 81 Scott James Lawrenceburg, IN
22 24 11T Tyler Reddick Corning, CA
23 26 b5 Brandon Sheppard Berlin, IL
24 23 81JR Jason Riggs Harrisburg, IL
25 9 5 Jared Landers Batesville, AR
26 2 18 Shannon Babb Mowequa, IL

 

 

 

Race Statistics

Entrants: 43

Lap Leaders: Don O’Neal (Laps 1 – 25)

Caution Flags: Shannon Babb (Lap 1); Jared Landers (Lap 1); Eric Wells (Lap 7)

Lucas Oil Late Model Dirt Series Provisionals: n/a

DirtonDirt.com Fast Time Provisional: Ray Cook

Lucas Oil Late Model Dirt Series Emergency Provisional: n/a

Performance Bodies First Non-Qualifier: Victor Lee

Optima Batteries Hard Charger of the Race: Ray Cook (Started 25th; Finished 12th; Advanced 13 positions)

Allstar Performer of the Race: Austin Hubbard

Sunoco Race for Gas Highest Finisher: Austin Hubbard

ASi Racewear Challenge Finisher: Don O’Neal

Quarter Master Rookie of the Race: n/a

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: Tom Buckingham

Time of Race: 18 minutes 16 seconds

 

DART Winternationals Point Standings:

1 71 Don O’Neal 510
2 0 Scott Bloomquist 415
3 81x Randy Korte 390
4 23 John Blankenship 385
4 28e Dennis Erb, Jr. 385
6 18 Shannon Babb 375
7 15 Steve Francis 370
7 5J Eric Jacobsen 370
9 21d Daniel Stone 365
10 53 Ray Cook 340

2012 Lucas Oil Late Model Dirt Series Schedule 

Venue

Track City, State To Win

13-Feb

East Bay Raceway Park Tampa, FL

$5,000

14-Feb

East Bay Raceway Park Tampa, FL

$5,000

15-Feb

East Bay Raceway Park Tampa, FL

$7,000

16-Feb

East Bay Raceway Park Tampa, FL

$7,000

17-Feb

East Bay Raceway Park Tampa, FL

$10,000

18-Feb

East Bay Raceway Park Tampa, FL

$10,000

24-Mar

Brownstown Speedway Brownstown, IN

$10,000

30-Mar

Jackson Motor Speedway Jackson, MS

$10,000

31-Mar

Lonestar Speedway Kilgore, TX

$10,000

13,14-Apr

Virginia Motor Speedway Saluda, VA

$25,000

20-Apr

Roaring Knob Motorsports Complex Markleysburg, PA

$10,000

21-Apr

Hagerstown Speedway Hagerstown, MD

$10,000

4-May

Tri-City Speedway Pontoon Beach, IL

$10,000

5-May

Paducah International Raceway Paducah, KY

$10,000

11-May

Hartford Motor Speedway Hartford, MI

$10,000

12-May

La Salle Speedway La Salle, IL

$10,000

18,19-May

Batesville Motor Speedway Batesville, AR

$20,000

25,26-May

Lucas Oil Speedway Wheatland, MO

$30,000

1-Jun

Tazewell Speedway Tazewell, TN

$10,000

2-Jun

Florence Speedway Florence, KY

$10,000

22-Jun

Cherokee Speedway Gaffney, SC

$10,000

23-Jun

Wythe Raceway Rural Retreat, VA

$10,000

1-Jul

Portsmouth Raceway Park Portsmouth, OH

$10,000

3-Jul

Muskingum County Speedway Zanesville, OH

$10,000

6,7-Jul

Magnolia Motor Speedway Columbus, MS

$20,000

13-Jul

Tri-City Speedway Pontoon Beach, IL

$10,000

14-Jul

Lucas Oil Speedway Wheatland, MO

$10,000

20,21-Jul

I-80 Speedway Greenwood, NE

$25,000

24-Jul

Stateline Speedway Busti, NY

$10,000

25-Jul

Utica Rome Speedway Vernon, NY

$10,000

26-Jul

Fonda Speedway Fonda, NY

$10,000

28-Jul

Hagerstown Speedway Hagerstown, MD

$10,000

10,11-Aug

Florence Speedway Florence, KY

$50,000

17,18-Aug

Batesville Motor Speedway Batesville, AR

$40,000

23-Aug

Volunteer Speedway Bulls Gap, TN

$10,000

25-Aug

Lawrenceburg Speedway Lawrenceburg, IN

$10,000

31-Aug, 1-Sep

Portsmouth Raceway Park Portsmouth, OH

$20,000

2-Sep

I-77 Raceway Park Ripley, WV

$25,000

14,15-Sep

Virginia Motor Speedway Saluda, VA

$20,000

21,22-Sep

Brownstown Speedway Brownstown, IN

$20,000

27-Sep

Knoxville Raceway Knoxville, IA

$7,000

28-Sep

Knoxville Raceway Knoxville, IA

$7,000

29-Sep

Knoxville Raceway Knoxville, IA

$40,000

6-Oct

Dixie Speedway Woodstock, GA

$10,000

7-Oct

Rome International Speedway Rome, GA

$10,000

19,20-Oct

Portsmouth Raceway Park Portsmouth, OH

$50,000

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 Men’s 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, Cruise with the Champions, CV Products, DirtonDirt.com, Dyers Top Rods, ECR Race Engines, Eibach Springs, Fast Shafts, FK Rod Ends, Gaerte Engines, GRT Race Cars, 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, Rhyne Race Engines, Rick Schwallie Photography, Ringers Gloves, Rocket Chassis, Roush Yates Engines, Roush Yates Performance Parts, Simpson Performance Products, Sweet Mfg, Vic Hill Race Engines, Weld Racing Wheels, Wiles Drive Shafts, Wrisco, 5150 Race Trailers.

James Essex, Public Relations Coordinator, jessex@lucasdirt.com

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