Media Contact: Billy Rock
Moberly, MO (June 12, 2020) – The latest season start in the history of the Lucas Oil MLRA proved to be worth the wait for Shannon Babb on Friday night at the Randolph County Raceway in Moberly, Missouri. Babb collected the $3,000 top prize in Cedar Creek Beef Jerky Victory Lane after besting a strong field of 37 late models, represented by drivers from eleven different states.
Babb secured a strong starting spot by grabbing the quick time in Group “A” Time Trials and also capturing the win in his heat race, putting him on the DirtonDirt.com Pole Position for the 30 lap main event. Chad Simpson garnered the overall fast time with a lap of 17.178 seconds to capture the “Slick Mist” Fast Time Award.
At the drop of the green flag, Babb quickly took command over outside front row starter Tony Jackson Jr. Babb jumped out to a comfortable advantage as the race went green for the first nine circuits before the first caution stopped the event for the slowing car of Aaron Marrant.
On the restart, Jackson Jr. out drove Babb through turns one and two and was able to slip by and overtake the race lead as the pair excited turn four on lap number ten. Jackson Jr. quickly pulled away from Babb and appeared to be headed for back-to-back MLRA wins after he scored the win in last year’s season finale at the Lucas Oil Speedway. However, for the second time on the night the caution would again wave on lap eighteen when Tim Manville came to a stop at the exit of turn two.
With roles reversed from the prior restart, this time Babb used a top side move to the outside of Jackson Jr. to slip by for the race lead off the exit of turn two and regain the top spot. As the leaders crossed the strip with Babb at the point, the caution again waved this time for a three car incident involving Daryn Klein, and Roberts Motorsports teammates Jeremiah Hurst, and Garrett Alberson. Both Hurst and Alberson had to be towed to their pits with heavy damage, bringing an early end to the night for the Sunoco Race Fuels Rookie of the year contenders.
On the final restart of the night with just eleven laps to go, Babb jumped back to the lead over Jackson Jr. and two-time series champion Chad Simpson. Babb would go on to score his fourth career Lucas Oil MLRA feature win while Ryan Gustin moved past Simpson late in the race to grab runner-up honors. Simpson came home in third, followed by Jackson, Jr. and defending series champion Will Vaught rounding out the top five. Mitch McGrath secured the Casey General Stores Hard Charger Award with his seven position advancement, resulting in a 10th place finish.
Saturday night action heats up with $5,000 on the line, as the Lucas Oil MLRA returns to the Maquoketa Speedway in Maquoketa, Iowa for the first time since 2014. Under the direction of Drt Trak Racing, Inc. gates will open at 5 PM with hot laps at 6:30 and racing action to follow.
The opening weekend will conclude on Sunday at the West Liberty Raceway where Bobby Pierce will look to repeat his victory from a year ago, cashing in on the $5,000 top prize. Action will start at an early time of 4:30 for hot laps with racing to follow.
Randolph County Raceway Contingencies 6/12/20
Slick Mist “Fast Time Award” – Chris Simpson 17.178 sec.
Allgaier Motorsports Racing Shocks Award – Ryan Gustin
Casey’s General Store’s “Hard Charger of the Race” – Mitch McGrath
DirtonDirt.com “Pole Award” – Shannon Babb
Dynamic Drivelines “Crew Chief of the Race” – Pat Dempsey
Hooker Harness “11th Place Finisher” – Tony Toste
Midwest Sheet Metal “Points Leader Spoiler Challenge” – Shannon Babb
Performance Bodies “Performer of the Race” – Shannon Babb
RacingJunk.com “Hard Luck Award” – Justin Duty
Sunoco “Rookie of the Race” – Tony Toste
Lucas Oil Racing TV A Feature (40 Laps): 1.Shannon Babb 2.Ryan Gustin 3.Chad Simpson 4.Tony Jackson Jr. 5.Will Vaught 6.Payton Looney 7.Chris Simpson 8.Dennis Erb Jr. 9.Billy Moyer Sr. 10.Mitch McGrath 11.Tony Toste 12.Jeremy Conaway 13.Jeremiah Hurst 14.Daryn Klein 15.Garrett Alberson 16.Tim Manville 17.Gordy Gundaker 18.Jason Papich 19.Trevor Gundaker 20.Joseph Gorby 21.Jordan Yaggy 22.Aaron Marrant 23.Bobby Pierce 24.Jeremy Grady
Allgaier Motorsports Racing Shocks B Feature 1 (10 Laps): 1.Mitch McGrath 2.Tim Manville 3.Bobby Pierce 4.Daniel Hilsabeck 5.Dave Eckrich 6.Scott Crigler 7.Joseph Gorby 8.Dewayne Kiefer 9.Reid Millard 10.Ryan Johnson 11.Kolby Vandenbergh
MAV TV Motorsports B Feature 2 (10 Laps): 1.Trevor Gundaker 2.Garrett Alberson 3.Jorday Yaggy 4.Justin Duty 5.Justin Reed 6.Brennon Willard 7.Jeremy Grady 8.Joseph Hughes 9.Darek Wiss
Cedar Creek Beef Jerky Heat 1 (10 Laps): 1.Shannon Babb 2.Aaron Marrant 3.Jason Papich 4.Gordy Gundaker 5.Tim Manville 6.Dave Eckrich 7.Scott Crigler 8.Dewayne Kiefer 9.Reid Millard 10.Ryan Johnson
Casey’s General Stores Heat 2 (10 Laps): 1.Payton Looney 2.Chris Simpson 3.Billy Moyer Sr. 4.Jeremy Conaway 5.Mirchh McGrath 6.Bobby Pierce 7.Daniel Hilsabeck 8.Joseph Gorby 9.Kolby Vandenbergh
Sunoco Race Fuels Heat 3 (10 Laps): 1.Tony Jackson Jr. 2.Chad Simpson 3.Tony Toste 4.Dennis Erb Jr. 5.Garrett Alberson 6.Jordan Yaggy 7.Trevor Gundaker 8.Darek Wiss 9.Brennon Willard
Midwest Sheet Metal Heat 4 (10 Laps): 1 Will Vaught 2.Ryan Gustin 3.Jeremiah Hurst 4.Daryn Klein 5.Justin Duty 6.Jeremy Grady 7.Joseph Hughs 8.Justin ReedWheatland, Missouri (June 11, 2020) – Pismo Beach
For all of the latest news and information fans are encouraged to visit the series website at www.MLRARacing.com.