HomeDirt Late Model NewsBrian Shirley spanks field in MLRA Spring Nationals finale; Woods wins and...

Brian Shirley spanks field in MLRA Spring Nationals finale; Woods wins and Schultz doubles up

Brian Shirley - Lloyd Collins photo
Brian Shirley – Lloyd Collins photo

By Lyndal Scranton – Wheatland, Missouri (April 10, 2016) – Brian Shirley and his team made an overnight drive for the final night of the Lucas Oil MLRA 3rd Annual Spring Nationals Presented by RacingJunk.com. It was worth the trip.

The veteran Illinois driver, a night after a fifth-place run in a World of Outlaws Late Model race in Wheel, Tenn., led all 45 laps in a caution-free feature at Lucas Oil Speedway, picking up $5,000 on Saturday night.

Meanwhile, Republic’s Burl Woods captured the Carson’s Corner NAPA Auto Parts Street Stock feature and Terry Schultz of Sedalia won the Pitts Home USRA Modified main event for the second night in a row.

A total of 104 cars checked into the pits on the back half of the season-opening doubleheader at Lucas Oil Speedway.

The Late Model feature clicked off in 13 minutes with Shirley taking the other 23 drivers in the feature to the proverbial woodshed.

Bobby Pierce of Oakwood, Ill., made a run from a 13th starting position to finish a distant second. Nevada’s Brantlee Gotschall came home a solid third to lead Ozarks-area competitors.

Shirley, of Chatham, Ill., earned his first-ever win at Lucas Oil Speedway. The winner’s share included a $1,500 bonus from Pitts Homes, commemorating its 45th year in business, and $500 in memory of Ron Jenkins, who built the original Wheatland Raceway.

Shirley, a regular on the World of Outlaws Tour, said after the race in Tennessee he left it to his crew to decide where to race on Saturday. The scheduled WOO race Saturday at Tazewell (Tenn.) Speedway was cancelled due to cold weather.

“They said, ‘You want to go to Wheatland?’ I said, ‘I don’t know. I’m going to sleep and whether we wake up in Wheatland or Springfield, Illinois, that’s where we’ll race.’ ”

The choice was a good one after the eight-hour haul. Shirley won his heat race in dominant fashion, earning the pole position for the feature. He opened a clear lead, built it to half a lap by the mid-point and had plenty of margin over the hard-charging 19-year-old Pierce.

“t was that good and that made it real easy,” Shirley said of his Longhorn Race Car. ” I got to control where I wanted to be in lap traffic because I had such a big lead. We love coming to Lucas Oil Speedway and thankful to win my first race here.”

Pierce, who’s slated to run three NASCAR Camping World Truck Series races later this spring, was eating into Shirley’s lead. But without a caution, he had no chance.

“It was $10,000 to win, I probably would have took somebody out,” Pierce said, laughing. “We were really fast once the rear tires got going. It was a perfect track tonight. They hit it on the money. Thanks to the fans for coming out and congrats to Brian on the win.

“Maybe we’ll be back for the Show-Me (100) and hopefully we’ll have a better run,” Pierce said.

Gotschall’s strong finish came despite brake issues throughout.

“But we struggled through it and ended up pretty good. It’s been a great night,” he said.

Lebanon’s Tony Jackson Jr. finished fourth with Randy Timms of Wheatland, Okla., fifth ahead of Billings’ Jesse Stovall.

The next MLRA race is April 17 at State Fair Speedway in Sedalia.

Woods finished comfortably ahead of Derek Brown of Stoutland, denying Brown a sweep of the season-opening weekend action. David Hendrix of Buckhorn finished third with Hurley’s James Flood fourth.

Woods was driving a new car built by Tony Jackson Jr., Motorsports – the same builder of Brown’s car. He won $500, courtesy of Elite Auto Repair.

“It’s one heck of a car,” Woods said. “We struggled last year and got behind on some stuff. Tim Brown (another TJR Motorsports driver) has been really strong and me and Tim talked and I decided to go with Tony.”

Schultz passed Jason Pursley for the USRA Modified lead on the 17th lap after the two dueled for several laps – Schultz working the outside cushion and Pursley hugging the inside line.

“Me and Pursley had a good race going on,” Schultz said. “There’s no one better to race with than him.”

Racing resumes next Saturday at Lucas Oil Speedway with opening night of the 13-event Budweiser Weekly Championship Series, presented by KOZL 27. Defending track champs are Camdenton’s Kenny Carroll (Carson’s Corner NAPA Street Stocks), Henley’s Justin Russell (Alps Food Store ULMA Late Models), Bolivar’s Jeff Cutshaw (Pitts Homes USRA Modifieds) and Wheatland’s Mike Striegel (Ozark Golf Cars USRA B Mods).

Gates will open at 5 p.m. with hot laps at 7 and racing at 7:30.

For complete event information, archived stories and schedule information for the season, visit lucasoilspeedway.com.

RESULTS from Saturday, April 9:


Lucas Oil Products A Feature (45 Laps): 1. Brian Shirley 2. Bobby Pierce 3. Brantlee Gotschall 4. Tony Jackson Jr. 5. Randy Timms 6. Jesse Stovall 7. Billy Moyer 8. Tyler Erb 9. Rodney Sanders. 10. Tad Pospisil 11. Terry Phillips 12. Jeremy Payne 13. Brad Looney 14. Austin Rettig 15. Jason Papich 16. Kyle Beard 17. Gavin Landers 18. Chris Brown 19. Jack Sullivan 20. Dave Eckrich. 21. Gordy Gundaker 22. Brandon McCormick 23. JC Wyman 24. Michael Kloos.

Impact Signs, Awnings, Wraps B Feature 1: 1. Chris Brown 2. Jason Papich 3. Kyle
Beard. 4. JC Wyman 5. Tim Manville 6. Jimmy Mars 7. Austin Siebert 8. Reid Millard 9. Dalton Ragsdale. 10. Mike Stadel 11. Curt Acker 12. Justin Reed 13. Kyle Berck 14. Jason Krohn 15. Payton Looney 16. Bill Leighton.

Hoosier Racing Tires B Feature 2: 1. Michael Kloos 2. Jack Sullivan 3. Gordy Gundaker. 4. Brandon McCormick 5. Darrel Moser 6. Robert Baker 7. Tommy Weder Jr. 8. Jacob Magee 9. Matt Buller 10. Josh Poe 11. Chris Cox 12. Larry Jones 13. Bryon Allison 14. Dustin Walker.

Bilstein Shocks Heat 1: 1. Rodney Sanders 2. Billy Moyer 3. Tyler Erb 4. Bobby Pierce. 5. JC Wyman 6. Josh Poe 7. Bill Leighton 8. Tommy Weder Jr. 9. Justin Reed 10. Matt Buller.

Casey’s General Stores Heat 2 (10 Laps): 1. Tony Jackson Jr. 2. Terry Phillips. 3. Brantlee Gotschall. 4. Kyle Beard 5. Michael Kloos 6. Jacob Magee 7. Bryon Allison 8. Mike Stadel 9. Larry Jones 10. Curt Acker.

Chix Gear Racewear Heat 3 (10 Laps): 1. Jesse Stovall 2. Tad Pospisil 4. Chris Brown 5. Jason Papich 6. Austin Siebert 7. Reid Millard 8. Chris Cox 9. Payton Looney.

Malvern Bank Heat 4 (10 Laps): 1. Randy Timms 2. Dave Eckrich 3. Jeremy Payne. 4. Robert Baker 5. Kyle Berck 6. Jack Sullivan 7. Dustin Walker 8. Dalton Ragsdale.

Sunoco Race Fuels Heat 5 (10 Laps): 1. Brian Shirley 2. Brad Looney. 3. Gavin Landers. 4. Darrel Moser 5. Gordy Gundaker 6. Tim Manville 7. Jaosn Krohn 8. Brandon McCormick 9. Jimmy Mars.

1. Burl Woods (Republic, MO), 2. Derek Brown (Stoutland, MO), 3. David Hendrix (Buckhorn, MO), 4. James Flood (Hurley, Mo), 5. Steve Beach (Eldon, MO), 6. Mark Simon (Buffalo, MO), 7. Chip Shaddox (Wheatland, MO), 8. Kenny Carroll (Camdenton, MO), 9. Toby Ott (Wheatland, MO), 10. Marc Carter (Warrensburg, MO), 11. Clayton Campbell (Otterville, MO), 12. Johnny Coats (Joplin, MO), 13. Ted Welschmeyer (Tebbetts, MO), 14. Craig Danuser (Montreal, MO), 15. Larry Ferris (Kansas City, KS), 16. Bobby Barnett (Republic, MO), 17. Grayson McKiney (Springfield, MO), 18. Jay Prevete (Windsor, MO), 19. Timothy Brown (Stoutland, MO), 20. Dale Berry (Tuscumbia, MO), 21. Rodger Detherage (Calhoun, MO), 22. Chad Coleman (Mound City, KS), 23. Brett Wood (Warrensburg, Mo),

Heat 1:
1. Timothy Brown (Stoutland, MO), 2. Mark Simon (Buffalo, MO), 3. Derek Brown (Stoutland, MO), 4. Marc Carter (Warrensburg, MO), 5. Clayton Campbell (Otterville, MO), 6. Chad Coleman (Mound City, KS), 7. Rodger Detherage (Calhoun, MO), 8. Brett Wood (Warrensburg, Mo),

Heat 2:
1. David Hendrix (Buckhorn, MO), 2. Steve Beach (Eldon, MO), 3. James Flood (Hurley, Mo), 4. Ted Welschmeyer (Tebbetts, MO), 5. Grayson McKiney (Springfield, MO), 6. Johnny Coats (Joplin, MO), 7. Dale Berry (Tuscumbia, MO), 8. Craig Danuser (Montreal, MO),

Heat 3:
1. Jay Prevete (Windsor, MO), 2. Burl Woods (Republic, MO), 3. Larry Ferris (Kansas City, KS), 4. Chip Shaddox (Wheatland, MO), 5. Bobby Barnett (Republic, MO), 6. Toby Ott (Wheatland, MO), 7. Kenny Carroll (Camdenton, MO),

1. Terry Schultz (Sedalia, MO), 2. Darron Fuqua (Mayetta, KS), 3. Jason Pursley (Hermitage, MO), 4. Jon Sheets (Nevada, MO), 5. Kenny Schrader (Concord, NC), 6. Jason Russell (Henley, MO), 7. Terry Beckham (Webb City, MO), 8. Steve Muilenburg (Sparta, MO), 9. Matt Dotson (Clark, MO), 10. Jeff Cutshaw (Bolivar, MO), 11. Brandon Givens (Hutchinson, KS), 12. Logan Martin (West Plains, MO), 13. Dean Wille (Warrensburg, MO), 14. Johnny Fennewald (Appleton City, MO), 15. Mitch Keeter (Webb City, Mo), 16. Mike Striegel (Hermitage, MO), 17. Eric Turner (Hermitage, MO), 18. Dwight Niehoff (Lockwood, MO), 19. Robbie Test (Jefferson City, MO), 20. Chad Lyle (Oak Grove, Mo), 21. Scotty Bough (Nevada, MO), 22. Chase Jones (Eldorado Springs, MO), 23. Paden Phillips (Chanute, KS), 24. Chris Tonoli (Hermitage, MO),

1. Jason Russell (Henley, MO), 2. Dean Wille (Warrensburg, MO), 3. Dwight Niehoff (Lockwood, MO), 4. Steve Muilenburg (Sparta, MO), 5. Robbie Test (Jefferson City, MO), 6. Eric Turner (Hermitage, MO), 7. Scotty Bough (Nevada, MO), 8. Mike Striegel (Hermitage, MO), 9. Cody Schniepp (Wichita, KS), 10. Daniel Wosoba (El Dorado Springs, MO), 11. Donnie Fellers (Wheatland, MO), 12. Blonde Bomber Mitchell (Pea Ridge, Ar), 13. Russell Niehoff (Lockwood, MO), 14. Cody Nivens (Springfield, MO), 15. Dwayne Mitchell (Laurie, Mo), 16. Tyler Shaw (Mexico, MO), 17. Nathan Gold (Willard, MO), 18. Bryce Schniepp (Witchita, KS),

Heat 1:
1. Chase Jones (Eldorado Springs, MO), 2. Johnny Fennewald (Appleton City, MO), 3. Paden Phillips (Chanute, KS), 4. Matt Dotson (Clark, MO), 5. Dean Wille (Warrensburg, MO), 6. Steve Muilenburg (Sparta, MO), 7. Scotty Bough (Nevada, MO), 8. Eric Turner (Hermitage, MO), 9. Cody Schniepp (Witchita, KS),

Heat 2:
1. Jason Pursley (Hermitage, MO), 2. Terry Schultz (Sedalia, MO), 3. Kenny Schrader (Concord, NC), 4. Jeff Cutshaw (Bolivar, MO), 5. Chris Tonoli (Hermitage, MO), 6. Blonde Bomber Mitchell (Pea Ridge, Ar), 7. Cody Nivens (Springfield, MO), 8. Dwayne Mitchell (Laurie, Mo), 9. Mike Striegel (Hermitage, MO),

Heat 3:
1. Terry Beckham (Webb City, MO), 2. Darron Fuqua (Mayetta, KS), 3. Logan Martin (West Plains, MO), 4. Jon Sheets (Nevada, MO), 5. Bryce Schniepp (Witchita, KS), 6. Daniel Wosoba (El Dorado Springs, MO), 7. Donnie Fellers (Wheatland, MO), 8. Russell Niehoff (Lockwood, MO),

Heat 4:
1. Mitch Keeter (Webb City, Mo), 2. Chad Lyle (Oak Grove, Mo), 3. Brandon Givens (Hutchinson, KS), 4. Jason Russell (Henley, MO), 5. Dwight Niehoff (Lockwood, MO), 6. Tyler Shaw (Mexico, MO), 7. Robbie Test (Jefferson City, MO), 8. Nathan Gold (Willard, MO).

Visit www.LucasOilSpeedway.com for the most up to date information about “America’s New Motorsports Destination,” Lucas Oil Speedway.

Lucas Oil Speedway is located at Highways 83 and 54 in Wheatland, Missouri. A campground with shower and bathroom facilities is also available. With it’s entrance located just outside the pit gate this sprawling scenic camping facility will continue to enhance the racing experience at the Diamond of Dirt Tracks.

Click www.LucasOilSpeedway.com for more information and detailed directions to the speedway or call the Track Hotline at (417) 282-5984.

In addition, fans can get social with Lucas Oil Speedway by following @LucasSpeedway on Twitter, clicking “Like” at www.facebook.com/LucasOilSpeedway and on www.youtube.com/LucasOilSpeedway.

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