SIKESTON DRAG STRIP
SIKESTON -- Zalma's Randy Merick set a new track record before a standing room only crowd at the Sikeston Drag Strip on Saturday night. Merick ran a blistering 4.02 at 184 m.p.h. Second place went to Donnie Little from Columbia, Ill. In the Super Pro Class, rain came late and left four to split $3,100. The purse was split between Gary Summers, Ronnie Egner, Brian Bickings and Gary Pigg.
In the Pro Class, Three racers split the purse. It was divided up between Blake Jones, Tony Jacques and Donnie Drew. In the E.T. Class, only two racers remained as rained closed out the night: Stanley Byrd and Chad Hagen. Outlaw Super Street and Easy Street will be at the drag strip this Saturday night.
MALDEN -- The opening of the points season at the Malden speedway saw a couple of drivers pick up personal firsts.
Bronson Berry, a multiple winner in other classes, picked the first Late Model feature of his career; also 15-year old Jimmy Cornell carried the checkered flag on his first ever night of racing as he won the Pure Street B Feature. In the Late Model feature, Bronson Berry dove under Billy James coming out of turn 2 to take the lead on lap 3 and never looked back. Berry built a comfortable cushion over the next 3 laps before it was erased by a caution. James made a short challenge following the restart, but Berry held and once again pulled away to a comfortable lead. Berry had a 2 second lead by the finish. James and Brian Maynard locked in a good tussle for second, as they swapped the position several times. Maynard took the position for good on the back straight of the final lap. Todd Hall moved up to take fourth after suffering mechanical problems in his heat race and relegated to a back row start in the feature. Barry Barkley picked up fifth in his first start at the speedway.
Nationally recognized Late Model driver Don O'Neal visited the Malden Speedway for the first time and won his heat race, but mechanical failure left him out of the feature. James won the other heat race.
28 Modfieds entered to race the points season opening event. Greg Geiler of Fenton picked up his first Malden Speedway feature win. Geiler jumped to the lead from the outside front row and led all 20 laps, holding off a strong mid race challenge by Jared Wagster. Geiler pulled away from the field in the late stages of the race to win by 4 seconds. Chris Hall found a fast groove on lap 14 and starting picking off positions about one a lap until he moved under Wagster to grab second. Wagster held off Larry Hull on the final lap to take third. Tony Anglin rounded out the top five. Wagster, Geiler, and Jeff Davis won the heat races. Josh Hughes of West Plains won the B-Feature. Tony Anglin led from green to checkered in the slick number 54 car to take the Hobby Stock Feature. Daniel Bassett won an early duel with Jason Pennington to grab second and was able to close the gap and challenge Anglin late. Pennington held on to edge Scott Tracer for third as the pair went under the checkered flag side by side. Dietrich Bollinger picked up fifth.
Heat winners were Anglin and Bassett.
Greg Casey of Sikeston moved up from a third row start to win the Pure Street Feature. Casey had moved up to second by lap 2 and was bearing down on early leader and ultimate second place finisher Danny Hampton. Casey swooped down out of turn two to take the lead on the third lap but surrendered the lead back a lap later. Casey took the lead for good on lap 6 using the same turn 2 move. Hampton and Chuck Tilley put up a good battle for second before Tilley fell out of contention with mechanical problems late in the race. Paul Reeder continued his good 2003 run with a third place finish. Aaron Darby and Johnny Houart rounded out the top five. Heat winners were Eric Lacy, Reeder, and Hampton. Jimmy Cornell drove the J3 car to victory lane in the Pure Street B Feature.
Steve McChristian and Terry Magourik made it three for three in the Cruiser class, as they led from start to finish in the feature. Jason and Chris Simpson took second in the 357 car.
ST. FRANCOIS RACEWAY
FARMINGTON -- Kevin Bess and Daniel Adler's wild accident was the only dark spot on an otherwise outstanding sprint car finale that featured Jimmy Moughan of Springfield, Ill. cruising to his first win of the season at the St. Francois County Raceway.
It appeared as if the feature may go from green to checkered flag, but on the 17th lap a caution flag due to a simple spin by Tommy Shepard caused the first restart. As the pack was entering into turn three Bess and Adler got together causing both cars to roll and flip violently into the air. Two other cars, the #98 of Bryan Matthews and the #66 of Shepard, were also involved in the accident. Amazingly, there were no major injuries reported from the accident.
On the restart following the accident, Moughan jumped out to a big lead and then cruised to the victory. Tommy Worley Jr. was second with Joey Montgomery third, Timmy Montgomery fourth and Jason Keith fifth. They were followed by Terry Babb, Steve Short, Bob Thoman, Timmy Moss and Ted Adams. Short won the first heat race with Joey Montgomery second and Thoman third. Worley Jr. won the second heat with Timmy Montgomery second and Keith third. Moughan won the third heat with Moss second and Adler third. Moughan also won the dash with Worley second and Timmy Montgomery third.
In the Modified class, Mike Crader of Farmington picked up the checkered flag in the feature after he outdueled Jeff LeBaube for the win. Adam Parmely finished third with Kenny Kennedy fourth and Pete Koenig fifth. They were followed by Billy Ames, Kevin Gegg, Billy Smith, Dan Zander and Kevin Hulsey. Koenig won the first heat race with Smith second and LeBaube third. Crader won the second heat with Ames second and Gegg third.
In the Hobby Stock class, defending track champion Chuck Adams of Piedmont picked up his first victory of the season after he held off the challenge of last week's feature winner, Kasey Nations. Nations settled for second place with Chris Boyd taking third, Jeremy Greenwalt fourth and Matt Eaton fifth. They were followed by Doug Savage, Randy Forster, Nathan Gibson, Kevin Mosier and Charles Adams (Chuck's son). Chuck Adams won the first heat race with Nations second and Eaton third. Greenwalt won the second heat with Mosier second and Mark Howell third.
In the 600cc Multi class, Dustin Barks of Farmington earned his first feature win of the season at SFCR after he made a late pass of Matt Dotson and then held on for the victory. Dotson finished second with Casey Barnhouse third, Josh Kennedy fourth and Tommy Boyd fifth. They were followed by Joey Boyd, Andy Moss, David Chilton, Rodney Williams and Troy Naeger.
Dotson won the first heat race with Conner Thompson second and Williams third. Joey Boyd won the second heat with Junior Ferguson second and Barnhouse third.
FREDERICKTOWN -- Andy Pryor of Belleville, Ill. captured his first-ever UMP Late Model feature win Friday night and it occurred at the Fredericktown Raceway. Pryor not only won the feature the youngster also won the dash and his heat race to pick up a triple crown.
In a feature that featured numerous caution flags, Pryor was able to turn back the charge of Kenny Rumble on several occasions to take the checkered flag in the feature. Mike Hammerle settled for third place with fourth going to Gary Phillips and fifth to Dewayne Kieffer. They were followed by John Bohn, Ron McQuerry, Mike Abney and Bryan Parson.
Pryor won the dash with Rumble second and Jarrells third. Parson won the first heat with Jarrells second and Phillips third.
Rumble won the second heat with Abney second and McQuerry third. Joe Giesler was extremely impressive during Modified feature. Giesler took the lead early and cruised to the victory. Danny Mosier finished in second place with Pete Koenig taking third, Adam Parmely fourth and Gary Johnson fifth. They were followed by Tommy Worley Sr., Kevin Gegg, Scott Carron, Mitch Parmely and Nick Werner. Koenig won the first heat with Carron second and Mosier third. Giesler won the second heat with Adam Parmely second and Johnson third. Koenig won the dash with Giesler second and Mosier third. In the RAMS Mini Stock class feature, Rick Ruch of Perryville took the lead with three laps to go and hung on to pick up the checkered flag over Dave "Wolf" Wofford. Wofford had won the previous two feature races and was seeking his third in a row before being dethroned by Ruch. Wes Kintz of Piedmont finished in third place with Brian Cox of Ste. Genevieve fourth and Shannon Burch fifth. They were followed by Phil Hannah, Rusty Voyles, Jason Harper, Jeff Gibson and Jon Paul Reando.
Wofford on the dash with Jathon Cruse second and Ruch third. Cruse won the first heat with Wofford second and Ruch third.
Bill Nickelson of DeSoto was the winner of the second heat with Kintz second and Cox third.
In the Pure Street class, Theran Pearl of Bismarck continued his dominance by winning his third consecutive feature. John Bloom captured second place with Josh DeSpain third, Derek DeSpain fourth and Brad Thurston fifth. They were followed by Barry Pender, Wesley McDowell, Ronnie Bader, Michael Abney and Dustin Holman.
Josh DeSpain won the first heat with Pearl second and Dewayne Tilk third. McDowell won the second heat with Patrick Naeger second and Bloom third. Pearl won the dash with McDowell second and Josh DeSpain third.