Home Missouri Lebanon I-44 Speedway I-44 Has 5 New NASCAR Winners Saturday Night

I-44 Has 5 New NASCAR Winners Saturday Night

Lebanon, Mo. / Some information contributed by Ronnie Williams
For Immediate Release 4/13/2016 –

Brian Brown may not live in Lebanon anymore but I’m sure the drive back to Strafford Saturday night was a little sweeter after he showed great patience during the early stages of the 30 lap NASCAR Whelen All American Series O’Reilly Auto Parts feature. Brown overtook leader Steve Holt on the 19th lap to record his first Lebanon I-44 Speedway Pro Late Model feature win.

Steve Holt grabbed the opening lead from his pole position with Stephen Counterman, Mandy Chick, and Brown in tow. By the 2nd circuit, Brown and Terry Limberopoulos moved forward as Counterman and Brown were waging a tight race. By the 5th lap, tenth place starter Jake Griffin had cracked into the top 5 while Counterman and Brown kept the pressure on Holt up front. On lap 6, Brown had just made the pass on Counterman when the caution waved for a single car spin. During the restart, the pack up front now included Paul Jepsen, NASCAR K&N West driver Cole Rouse, Jimmy Vanzandt and Brennon Willard. The restart after a lap 9 caution would prove to be a turning point in the feature as Jake Griffin spun in turn 4 causing a chain reaction mid-way through the pack. Mandy Chick and Jim Vanzandt sustained damage ending there night as Rouse and Griffin headed to the pits for repairs while Jepsen was able to continue after the cars were pulled apart. On the restart, Brown made an outside move on Counterman moving into 2nd place and closed quickly on Holt in the lead. With the battle focused up front, Jepsen and Willard made moves around Counterman on lap 15 and began a charge to the leaders. After several attempts on the top groove, Brown switched lanes and moved to the inside of Holt as the duo ran door to door for 3 laps before Brown made the winning move leaving the race for 2nd place. In the last lap action, Willard shot around Holt to secure the runner-up spot as Jake Griffin followed to take home 3rd with early leader Holt, 17th place starter Kyle Donahue, Jepsen, Counterman, Kevin Donahue, Joe Ross and Ronnie Hartford completing the top 10 with 12 of the 17 starters finishing on the lead lap.

“That was fun, knowing you can run door to door with these guys and race clean.” Said an excited Brown who was the 1996 Street Stock Ozarks Champion. “After running up front last year and leading several laps, we had the chance to get a New Chassis with less than 5 races from Hamke. This car is the best I have ever driven and Justin Blake (former I-44 Street Stock Champion) has really worked hard with me the last couple of seasons. Everyone helps each other and tonight we made just a small adjustment which paid off. O GM 604 Sealed Motor really held strong. I really want to say Thank you to my family for all their support in my racing, especially in last few seasons since the track went back to pavement. Qualifying heats went to Willard, Limberopolous, and Vanzandt.

Former Budweiser Modified Champion David Bates took command from defending champion Tim Swearengin on the 5th lap and then had to hold off the veteran Springfield driver for the last 2 laps in taking his first win of the season. Between that duo, they have 7 track titles at I-44 and showed the crowd just how exciting the “Ground-Pounders” are. With 5 laps to go, Bates had a 5 car advantage over Swearengin, but Swearengin found a fast lane through the middle to close the gap quickly only to fall one car length short. Chris Johnson, Jimmy Poindexter and Phil Harris completed the top 5 in the caution free event. Bates made it a clean sweep with the heat race win.

Defending Hoosier Street Stock Champion Jordan Nisbett rallied from a mid-race spin and took advantage of a lap 13 caution to take the action packed 15 lap feature. Past Champion Steve Shaw took the opening lead with rookie Justin Allen following close in his Ford. Point leader and last week’s feature winner Michael Juergensen joined the lead duo on lap 2 as Nick Cherry, Tony Johnson and Nisbett were swapping spots. Cherry’s strong run ended on lap 5 as the rear hub broke loose sending him spinning wildly. On the restart, Nisbett spun in turn 3 while moving forward forcing him to restart in the rear. On the restart, Shaw would find Juergensen putting on pressure as Allen stayed close in 3rd spot. After a torrid battle, Juergensen moved around Shaw on lap 8 as Zack Morgan and Nisbett were moving forward in the pack. Nisbett moved into 3rd spot on lap 13 making it a 3 car battle when the caution flew for Morgan with a blown motor and then Aaron Wilke had mechanical issues in turns one and two setting-up a tight finish. On the restart, Nisbett got underneath Juergensen to take the lead as Juergensen and Shaw both closed quickly. Nisbett held on for the win followed by Juergensen, Shaw, Allen and Tony Johnson. Morgan and Nisbett took the heat wins.

For Coca-Cola Charger Rookie Ronnie Taylor, a great 2nd place finish last week was improved on by winning this week’s feature event which went caution free. Taylor took full advantage of his pole starting spot to grab the lap one lead from Jesse Poindexter. Out in front, all the attention pulled to the great race for 2nd place involving Poindexter, Nik Taylor, Billy Taylor and Jerry Ellis as these 4 drivers kept the action hot while dicing for position. Nik Taylor took the 2nd place spot on lap 4 and Ellis took 3rd on lap 10 only to have Billy Taylor secure 3rd on the final lap making it a Taylor family sweep with Ronnie Taylor, nephew Nik Taylor and Brother Billy with Ellis and Poindexter completing the top 5 as 12 of the starters finished on the lead lap. Billy Taylor, Nik Taylor and Ellis took the heat race wins.

Sportsman action saw Jimmy Fohn celebrate his Birthday in style by closing the gap on leader Aaron Douglas by charging from 6 car lengths behind and take the lead on lap 12 after the duo made small contact in turn one to take his 1st win of the season. Fohn got his first win on the second night of action in the 2015 season as well. Fohn then had to withstand a rush from Jake Piel to record the win with Piel, Douglas and James Fohn following. Douglas took the heat race win.

Action continues Saturday night April 16th with racing action in The O’Reilly Auto Parts Pro Late Models, Budweiser Modifieds, Hoosier Tire Street Stocks, Coca-Cola Chargers, and Sportsman on Waynesville Snack in a Pack Night at the Races. Gates open at 5PM with racing to start at 6PM.

For more information visit the website at www.i44speedway.net and be sure to like us at Lebanon I-44 Speedway on Facebook for updated information on Missouri’s only NASCAR sanction facility and the only weekly asphalt track within 300 miles.
Lebanon I-44 Speedway April 9th Results
O’Reilly Auto Parts Pro Late Models
A Feature.-1) Brian Brown-Strafford 2) Brennon Willard-Sleeper 3) Jake Griffin-Quincy, ILL. 4) Steve Holt-Strafford 5) Kyle Donahue-Wildwood 6) Paul Jepsen-Rolla 7) Stephen Counterman-Fair Grove 8) Kevin Donahue-Wildwood 9) Joe Ross-Independence 10) Ron Hartford-Raytown 11) Josh Woody-Buckhorn 12) Adam Johnson-St. Peters 13) Terry Limberopolous-Cuba 14) Cole Rouse-Ft. Smith, Ark. 15) Jimmy Vanzandt-Springfield 16) Mandy Chick-Desoto, Kansas 17) Payton Lucas-Fair Grove

1st Heat.-1) Willard 2) Brown 3) Holt 4) Griffin 5) Rouse 6) Lucas
2nd Heat.-1) Limberopolous 2) Counterman 3) Jepsen 4) Kevin Donahue 5) Kyle Donahue 6) Hartford
3rd Heat.1) Van Zandt 2) Chick 3) Johnson 4) Woody 5) Ross

Budweiser Modifieds
A Feature.1) David Bates-Fair Grove 2) Tim Swearengin-Springfield 3) Chris Johnson-Lebanon 4) Jimmy Poindexter-Willard 5) Phil Harris-Springfield DNS-Terry Taylor-Fair Grove, Brian Lewis-Willard

Heat-1) Bates 2) Swearengin 3) Johnson 4) Poindexter 5) Harris 6) Taylor 7) Lewis

Hoosier Tire Street Stocks
A Feature. 1) Jordan Nisbett-Lebanon 2) Michael Juergensen-Lebanon 3) Steve Shaw-Rogersville 4) Justin Allen-Urbana 5) Tony Johnson-Lebanon 6) David Jennings-Springfield 7) Zack Morgan-Springfield 8) Aaron Wilke-Bridgeton 9) Nick Cherry-Springfield 10) David Douglas-Lebanon DNS-Les Mallard-Fair Grove

1st Heat.-1) Morgan 2) Cherry 3) Johnson 4) Wilke 5) Jennings DNS-Mallard
2nd Heat.-1) Nisbett 2) Juergensen 3) Allen 4) Shaw 5) Douglas

Coca-Cola Chargers
A Feature.-1) Ronnie Taylor-Springfield 2) Nik Taylor-Bolivar 3) Billy Taylor-Bolivar 4) Jerry Ellis-Richland 5) Jesse Poindexter-Willard 6) Japheth Nisbett-Rolla 7) Ty Allison-Mexico 8) Luke Oster-Linn Creek 9) Larry Hunter-Laquey 10) Nick Schmidt-Montreal 11) Mark Glorfeld-Springfield 12) Breken Johnson-Lebanon 13) Kent Cruzan-Springfield DNS-Travis Watson-Lebanon

1st Heat.-1) B. Taylor 2) Hunter 3) Poindexter 4) Johnson
2nd Heat.-1) N. Taylor 2) Allison 3) Schmidt 4) Cruzan 5) Glorfeld
3rd Heat.-1) Ellis 2) R. Taylor 3) Nisbett 4) Oster DNS-Watson

Sportsman
A Feature.-1) Jimmy Fohn-Eldridge 2) Jake Piel-Webster Grove 3) Aaron Douglas-Lebanon 4) James Fohn-Eldridge

Heat-1) Douglas 2) Jimmy Fohn 3) Piel 4) James Fohn

Action continues Saturday night April 16th with racing action in The O’Reilly Auto Parts Pro Late Models, Budweiser Modifieds, Hoosier Tire Street Stocks, Coca-Cola Chargers, and Sportsman on Waynesville Snack in a Pack Night at the Races. Gates open at 5PM with racing to start at 6PM.

For more information visit the website at www.i44speedway.net and be sure to like us at Lebanon I-44 Speedway on Facebook for updated information on Missouri’s only NASCAR sanction facility and the only weekly asphalt track within 300 miles.

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