For Immediate Release – February 9th, 2018 – FYE Motorsports Promotions
A great field of 54 Lucas Oil Late Model Dirt Series competitors, the most since 2011, signed in for the Friday night portion of the 42nd annual Wrisco Industries Winternationals presented by E3 Spark Plugs at East Bay Raceway Park just outside of Tampa, Florida under perfect conditions with Billy Moyer Jr. topping the field in Miller Welders qualifying with a lap of 14.393 seconds. Moyer Jr. then backed up his fast time award by winning the first heat race and putting his #21jr on the pole for the night’s $10,000 to win, 50-lap main event. Earl Pearson Jr., Bobby Pierce, Josh Richards, Kyle Bronson and Jonathan Davenport won the other five heat races before Chub Frank and Brandon Overton topped the pair of b-mains. Chase Junghans won the Strawberry Dash to set the 26-car starting grid.
Josh Richards got the jump on pole sitter Billy Moyer Jr. on the outset of the 50-lapper and paced the field over the first five circuits, while Moyer settled into second early. On lap six, Moyer swept to the low side of Richards for the lead and took command for the next three laps before Richards snuck back by for the top spot again on lap #9. Josh then lead until the first caution of the event flew on lap 11 for fifth place running Bronson, who suffered a flat right rear tire. Dennis Erb Jr. also went pit side with a flat tire and Darrell Lanigan retired with engine troubles under the lap 11 caution period.
On the restart, Richards again took off as the leader with Moyer, Davenport, Gregg Satterlee and Pearson Jr all in a tremendous battle just behind Richards’ #1 car. Richards continued to pace the field for the next 21 laps while the remainder of the field jockeyed for position behind. The second and final caution flew on lap 32 for a Chase Junghans breakdown, setting up an 18-lap run to the checkered.
On this restart, Davenport blasted by Richards on the outside for the lead and lead lap 33 before Richards swooped back by to the point on lap 34. Richards then went on to lead, while negotiating lapped traffic until Davenport put his #49 on the cushion with less than 10 laps to go and began to mount one final push. Davenport worked and worked around the cushion until he was able to pull alongside Richards on lap 47 and steal the lead for good with three laps to go. Davenport went on to pick up his second win of the week by .726 seconds over Richards, Satterlee, Moyer and Zeigler, who came home with top five finishes. Brandon Sheppard, who started 21st and Jimmy Owens, who rolled off 23rd charged through the field to 6th and 7th place finishes.
Feature finish: Jonathan Davenport, Josh Richards, Gregg Satterlee, Billy Moyer Jr., Mason Zeigler, Brandon Sheppard, Jimmy Owens, Brandon Overton, Don O’Neal, Earl Pearson Jr., Bobby Pierce, Tim McCreadie, Devin Moran, Tyler Erb, Hudson O’Neal, Scott Bloomquist, Dennis Erb Jr., Chub Frank, Boom Briggs, Kyle Bronson, Allen Murray, Chase Junghans, Jason Jameson, Dustin Mitchell, Darrell Lanigan, Matt Cosner
Mike Horne Photos