Home Dirt Late Model News Devin Moran claims first Big Gator Championship

Devin Moran claims first Big Gator Championship

Devin Moran

UNEXPECTED GATOR: Devin Moran claims first Big Gator Championship
With the help of a Florida couple, Moran made the trip to Florida for a career week

CONCORD, N.C. – A trip to Volusia Speedway Park for the 50th DIRTcar Nationals wasn’t initially on Devin Moran’s 2021 itinerary. His new gator-wide smile signified his joy of that change.

Moran, 26, of Dresden, OH, claimed his first DIRTcar Nationals Big Gator championship on Saturday after an impressive display of consistency through the five rounds of Late Model races. If it wasn’t for a broken driveshaft on Wednesday, he could’ve finished on the podium in each event – he had finishes of third, second, 31st, first (his first Volusia win) and second.

“It’s pretty cool,” Moran said about claiming his first Big Gator title. “It’s pretty unexpected, to be honest. At the start of the week, we weren’t even planning on coming down here. Then to run top three even night, except for that one DNF, which I think we had a shot to win, it just gives us a lot of confidence… To start out the year the way we have, it’s been a lot of fun and like I said, it gives us a lot of confidence.”

If it wasn’t for Florida-residents Terry and Marry Ann Wright – who have been friends with Moran’s car owner for a while – Moran and his team would’ve skipped the prestigious event. They’ve been trying to get the team to come down for a couple of years and this year helped make it affordable for them, Moran said.

“I’m glad they did because it definitely paid off,” he added.

Bobby Pierce was his closest competitor in the championship hunt going into the final race – before Saturday’s event was canceled due to rain. He entered the night only nine points behind Moran and was on track to cut into that lead after setting Slick Woody’s Quick Time and starting on the outside pole of the Feature.

However, as fate would have it, he suffered a motor issue and the team was unable to get a new one in before the Feature started. Pierce hoped in Reid Millard’s car for the Feature but pulled in early and was unable to finish, unofficially handing the Big Gator championship to Moran who finished second that night. He earned his first golden gator trophy the night before.

Defending Big Gator champion and three-time defending World of Outlaws Morton Buildings Late Model Series champion Brandon Sheppard finished second in over Big Gator points.

“Like I said, it’s so unexpected,” Moran said. “First of all, with us not coming and then winning the whole week. It sucks with what happened with Bobby that he had to change motors and couldn’t… It’s a bummer that he couldn’t race. But we had a really consistent fast car all week. It’s a special thing to take home this gator with as unexpected as it was.”

UP NEXT
The World of Outlaws Morton Buildings Late Model Series, on Friday, March 5, will return to Duck River Raceway Park in Lewisburg, TN.

If you can’t make it to the track, you can watch all the action live on DIRTVision.

FULL BIG GATOR POINTS

place # Fullname 8-Feb 9-Feb 10-Feb 11-Feb 12-Feb TOTAL
1 9 Devin Moran 70 75 25 80 75 325
2 32 Bobby Pierce 60 80 26 75 28 269
3 1 Brandon Sheppard 55 65 36 55 45 256
4 40B Kyle Bronson 65 42 41 37 70 255
5 8 Kyle Strickler   44 80 65 55 244
6 76 Brandon Overton 53 55 24 26 80 238
7 OE Rick Eckert 49 47 43 36 60 235
8 16 Tyler Bruening 47 30 55 49 51 232
9 58 Ross Bailes 44 40 53 44 41 222
10 28 Dennis Erb Jr 31 41 35 60 53 220
11 7 Ricky Weiss 29 53 49 53 34 218
12 29V Darrell Lanigan 43 60 37 29 49 218
13 44 Chris Madden 30 43 21 51 65 210
14 14 Josh Richards 51 32 47 28 47 205
15 O Scott Bloomquist 26 45 45 43 35 194
16 5 Mark Whitener 75 36 19 25 38 193
17 3S Brian Shirley 45 38 60 20 27 190
18 97 Cade Dillard 41 29 38 31 44 183
19 18 Chase Junghans 42 28 32 40 39 181
20 20RT Ricky Thornton Jr 28 51 70 30   179
21 17M Dale McDowell 32 34   70 42 178
22 99B Boom Briggs 37 23 42 38 36 176
23 25 Shane Clanton 31 33 31 47 32 174
24 56 Tony Jackson Jr 22 31 44 39 37 173
25 39 Tim McCreadie 80 49 23 20   172
26 20 Jimmy Owens 40 29 65 35   169
27 71 Hudson O’Neal   70 75 23   168
28 B1 Brent Larson 27 37 20 41 40 165
29 72 Mike Norris 39 27 33 21 43 163
30 54 David Breazeale 34 23 28 45 30 160
31 19R Ryan Gustin 31 20 51 24 33 159
32 33 Jeff Mathews 30 26 22 42 26 146
33 14B John Baker 25 39 34 24 23 145
34 6 Blake Spencer 24 24 30 32 31 141
35 7R Ross Robinson 29 25 40 22 24 140
36 76N Blair Nothdurft 28 35 18 20 26 127
37 31 Tyler Millwood 27 28 22 21 27 125
38 2 Dan Stone 38 24 39 22   123
39 14G Joe Godsey 26 27 20 19 25 117
40 6JR Parker Martin 35 27 18 34   114
41 OS Ryan Scott 25   27 33 29 114
42 89 G.R. Smith 25 21 19 22 23 110
43 12 Ashton Winger 30 21 29 19   99
44 21 Billy Moyer Jr 33 22 22 21   98
45 42 Chad Finley 23 26 19 27   95
46 3W Brennon Willard 24 25 21 23   93
47 3 Mike Collins 27 24 17 23   91
48 7F Jason Fitzgerald 26 25   25   76
49 11 Josh Rice 28 29 18     75
50 25C Donnie Chappell 29 28 16     73
51 14M Reid Millard 24 23     25 72
52 1st Johnny Scott       24 24 48
53 11H Spencer Hughes   26 20     46
54 14 Gordy Gundecker     21 25   46
55 8 Nick Allen 23 20       43
56 7MM Michael Maresca 36         36
57 6H Clay Harris     17     17
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