Below are the rankings after last weekend after the dramatic Dirt Million. What can you say about Cody Sommer and his staff they pulled off another one. If Dirt in December was not enough, now Cody has put together the biggest purse of the season and pulled it off in dramatic fashion last weekend at the Mansfield Motor Speedway. The race paid over $200,000 to win and over $4,000 to start, plus two features on Friday paying $10,000 to win. Nearly 80 cars were on the grounds for the historical event to take on the fast half mile dirt oval. The biggest names were on display and the stands were packed in Mansfield all weekend. When all was said and done it would be Florida native Earl Pearson Jr. taking home the biggest purse this year in his Black Diamond Ronnie Stuckey Entry.
Action kicked off Friday and of course Scott Bloomquist would be the conversation after setting fast time he was light at the scales. Scott would have to start tail of the first heat. Brandon Overton was also light after qualifications. Tim McCreadie flipped in the first feature and the New Yorker was done for the weekend. Just has not been TMAC’s year especially after all the success in 2017. Jonathan Davenport won the first feature over Ricky Weiss and Don O’Neal. Darrell Lanigan won the second feature over Josh Richards and Mike Marlar. One of the coolest things that happened Friday was seeing the “Muscatine Mad Man” Brian Birkhofer back in action and not only that but he won a heat race, finished 6th Friday night and finished it up with a 15B finish Saturday.
Onto Saturday lets just say The Dirt Million had everything this past weekend. It was crazy you had guys up front you expected to see up front and of course the race track was very fast and demanding so attrition would play a major role as it did. I knew Saturday afternoon after the rain had come and gone and seeing the racetrack that the Illinois hot dogs definitely have a shot at this. You could just tell there was going to be a cushion and Bobby Pierce is the best in the country when he has something to lean on, and Shannon Babb and Brandon Sheppard ain’t bad !!! It was a shame that Brian Shirley blew an engine on Friday otherwise I truly believe he would have been in the hunt. Brian had the fastest car in practice by 3 tenths of a second but oh well that is racing. One other thing about our Illinois guys that should be mentioned give some credit to Mark Richards they are all in Rockets.
The big money race for 100 laps would see Don O’Neal lead the first ten laps before retiring from the event with mechanical issues. The North / South Winner Ricky Weiss would take the lead, and I knew he would be tough in his Bloomquist car. The Canadian would lead til lap 15, and that is when the Babbster would set sail. Babb would pound the surface putting on an incredible display of tenacity, but unfortunately for him, he would suffer a flat tire on lap 76. Babb led 60 laps with Jimmy Owens, Bobby Pierce and Brandon Sheppard, and Mike Marlar all racing hard near the front. It was later determined that Babb’s flat was caused by a rock. Owens than would take charge and lead the next five laps, his car was smoking, he suffered some radiator damage and retired from the event with a broken motor. Once Pierce had the lead I thought it was over losing the race at I-80 maybe this was payback. Pearson who had pitted 5 times making several changes including damage he received in the opening laps in an altercation with Davenport. The team just kept inching their way forward taking advantage of the pit stops and it was clear his tires just had more tread than Bobby’s. He passed Bobby with just under ten laps to go to take the win and $200,000. Bobby Pierce was second and 16th starter Gregg Satterlee took home third. Satterlee also pitted early and had some fresh tires. Ricky Weiss and Scott Bloomquist rounded out the top five. Bloomer pitted 5 times making tire changes the entire race. Brandon Sheppard, Steve Casebolt, Dale McDowell, Darrell Lanigan, and Max Blair rounded out the top ten.
In closing, I can’t say enough about Cody Sommer and his dreams. It is one thing to say but he did it, and pulled it off. I just have a feeling this is a race that is going to gain traction for years to come. Great job also to the Lucas Oil Racing Series and all of the race fans for bringing this event to life.
As we head into Labor Day Weekend, the Lucas series will be the headliner once again. They will kick-off the holiday Friday night at Ponderosa Speedway in Kentucky before heading to Portsmouth on Saturday for a pair of $12,000 to win races. Sunday is the Hillbilly 100 at Tyler County, and Promoter Carl Short is putting up $50,000 to win.
Beaver Dam Speedway located just outside of Milwaukee Wisconsin is paying $10,000 to win Friday night and you can bet Wisconsin’s Bob Cullen car owner will have Brian Shirley in town for that one. Farley Speedway in Iowa is having a $10,000 to win race this weekend and locally Farmer City is having a $5,000 to win Late Model Show Friday night.
Other races of note this weekend the AMS Modified will be in Illinois for 4 straight days kicking off Thursday night at Granite City late models are also on the card paying $2000 to win. Friday at Farmer City, Saturday Fairbury for $10,000 to win and Fayette County Sunday $5,000 to win.
I am sure Mike Harrison is licking his chops this weekend, curious how many of the 4 he will win, but the best of the best will be in Illinois this week. Harrison is closing in on 30 wins again this season already.
The USAC Sprint cars will be at Tri-City and Pevely this Weekend if Sprint cars are what you like. Tri-City will also have the MOWA Winged Sprint Cars on the ticket. You can expect to see Dave Darland, Tyler Courtney, Justin Grant, Brady Bacon, and Kevin Thomas Jr. to name a few.
Sunday the Silver Crown Cars will be at DuQuoin for the Ted Horn 100 on the big mile under the lights.
Below are the rankings after last week’s Dirt Million.
StlRacing.com Top 25 Super Dirt Late Model Rankings 8.28.2018
1 Brandon Sheppard
2 Scott Bloomquist
3 Jonathan Davenport
4 Mike Marlar
5 Chris Madden
6 Bobby Pierce
7 Dale McDowell
8 Jimmy Owens
9 Shannon Babb
10 Earl Pearson Jr.
11 Ricky Weiss
12 Brian Shirley
13 Tim McCreadie
14 Josh Richards
15 Devin Moran
16 Hudson O’Neal
17 Gregg Satterlee
18 Don O’Neal
19 Chris Simpson
20 Darrell Lanigan
21 Brandon Overton
22 Billy Moyer
23 Tyler Erb
24 Shane Clanton
25 Dennis Erb Jr.
Enjoy the races and keep supporting your local dirt tracks !!