Thomas Wins the Lane 75 After Late Race Drama
111 cars packed the pit area Saturday night at Kalamazoo Speedway and helped put on one of the best shows in recent memory. Tom Thomas passed 12-time Outlaw Super Late Model champion Andy Bozell on a double file restart with just two laps to go to win the Lane 75 and the $1,250 payday that went with it. JR Roahrig picked up the ARP Fast Qualifier award earlier in the evening and then charged to a 3rd place finish, locking him into the All-Star Shootout on July 3. Trent “The Dent” Hellenga finished fourth ahead of young Tyler Roahrig, who led a good portion of the feature event. Point leader Phil Bozell finished sixth ahead of Billy Shannon, Rick Senneker, John Chapman and Doug True. Rick Sexton, who entered the event fourth in points, had an early accident and finished 22nd.
Ben Raber drove through the field to the lead and then survived a late race double file restart with Matt Bainbridge to win the Modified Big Gun 50. Bainbridge held on for second place ahead of Brian Bergakker, AJ Foote and Jordan Dahlke. Rodney Nettelton, Matt Frazier, Brent Hook, Ryan Wheeler and Joe Axsom completed the top ten. Defending champion Mike Brooks set quick time but was involved in an early accident and finished 17th. Dahlke and Ryan Wheeler won the heats.
Chris Shannon was in hot pursuit of race leader Todd Foote as the pair approached lapped traffic late in the Super Stock feature. Foote made contact with the slower car, causing him to spin and be sent to the tail of the field. That gave Shannon the lead which he never relinquished. Rick VanHouten had a strong second place finishing beating out Eric McGlothlen, who continued to have impressive runs. Kenny Head was fourth and Brandon Lyons finished fifth and set quick time driving the car normally driven by Kelli Jo Hofacker. Jamison Russell was sixth ahead of Jake Hopwood, Matt Corliss, Mickey Cornwell and Ron Houghson Jr. Defending champion Buddy Head struggled to an 11th place finish. Rich Hardy, Foote and Matt Frazier won the three Super Stock heat races.
Bob Metheny turned a very impressive driving display into a win in the Pro Stock Spring Fling 35. Metheny had a thrilling late race duel with Keith Wilfong, who eventually finished 2nd. Toby Montgomery set quick time and finished third ahead of Lloyd Brooks and young Tyler Hufford. Scott Elsey finished 6th with Ashley Markillie, Bryan Noble, James Wheaton and Ron Landis completing the top ten. John Foote Jr. and Elsey won the heat races.
Bryen Pion was the beneficiary of a late race “Days of Thunder” type battle between point leader Doug Smith and Nick Layman. Layman held on for second ahead of Cliff Lambert, Bob Miller and Smith. Everett Smith finished sixth ahead of Tim Towne, Doug Nelson, Jack Cook and Dan DenBraber. Notables included Jerry Jansen III in 13th and Kaylee Misak in 15th. Pion also set quick time while Jansen III and Everett Smith won the heats.
Next up on the schedule is the “King of the Mods” for the USA Modified series, today June 5!! Support divisions include the Mini Cups, MCR Dwarf Cars and VROA cars. Racing begins at 6:00.
Then next Saturday Kalamazoo Speedway will be expecting another huge turnout of cars with a full 5 in 1 show headlined by the Outlaw Super Late Models. The Super Stocks will run their Summertime 50, which will pay a possible $850 to win. The Modifieds will also be in action as will the Pro Stocks with the running of the Pro Stock Cash Bash. The Cyber Stocks will fill out the program. Stay tuned to www.kalamazoospeedway.com for more information regarding this week’s racing program.