By Sam Stoecklin
ULMA Public Relations
June 11, 2013
All three Lucas Cattle Company ULMA-sanctioned tracks were in action this past weekend as Mother Nature finally gave local racing a reprieve. Callaway Raceway, Lucas Oil Speedway, and Randolph County Raceway all hosted events as ULMA drivers approach an extremely busy portion of the season’s schedule, including this weekend’s appearance at Double XX Speedway on Sunday evening in California.
Action began last Friday at Callaway Raceway in Fulton, when 12 drivers checked in for competition. Vance Wilson shot out to an early race lead in the opening heat race and cruised to an easy win over four-time season winner Jason Russell in second and Chris Lapp in third. Payton Looney picked up where he left off two weeks before by coming from third on the starting grid to claim heat race two over Earl Roark and Justin Russell.
For the main event, all eyes were on the front-three starters as Wilson and Jason Russell, both of which are former ULMA champions, surrounded second-generation driver Payton Looney on the grid. Looney quickly paced the early laps to lead over Wilson and Russell as the former champs stalked the youngster like hungry wolves but Looney was not phased and built up close to a half a straightaway lead by lap five. Behind the lead trio, Roark, Justin Russell, and Lapp were caught up in a close battle of their own as they fought hard to secure spots in the top five.
The event ran at a blistering pace early on as the leaders began to lap traffic by lap 11. Wilson seemed to come to life in the second half and closed in on Looney by lap thirteen in lapped traffic, but once again the Looney kept all challengers behind him. The first caution flag flew on lap 15 as mechanical woes ended Justin Russell’s night in turns three and four. When the race resumed, another quick caution flew for debris on the field with Looney still leading Wilson, Jason Russell, and Roark.
As the leaders prepared for the race to resume for the final run, both Wilson and Russell appeared to pull alongside Looney on the slow laps as if to say “we’re here,” but Looney remained focused and went on to claim his second straight Callaway Raceway victory in as many appearances at the track. Second on back at the line were Wilson, Jason Russell, Brandon Imhoff, Roark, Lapp, Darren Turner, Chris Cox, Zeke Langley, and Ashley Lancaster. Action resumes this Friday, June 14. The track is currently experiencing website troubles; however, information is available by contacting race promoter Betty Atterberry at (573) 220-1751. When working properly, the website for the track is found at www.callawayraceways.com.
Randolph County Raceway in Moberly, Missouri held another weekly racing event on their high banked facility last Saturday evening with ten drivers checking in for the late model action. Vance Wilson began his night with a big win in the opening heat race by outdueling Chris Lapp at the front of the field. Previous feature winner Kenny Mudd came from fourth to second in the lineup but ran out of time as Wilson took the heat win over Mudd and Lapp. For heat race number two, Larry Winn of Hallsville, Missouri held on to his pole-starting position to take the victory ahead of fourth-starting Ben Ballard and David Miller of Mexico, Missouri.
Wilson earned the pole by virtue of his heat-race performance alongside of Winn as the field set sail for the main event. Wilson was steady at the front commanding the race as the rest of the field tried to figure a way to close in on him. Winn slipped from his second starting position on the grid outside of the top five while Mudd and seventh-starting Jon Melloway raced their way inside the top three.
As the laps wound down, another driver advanced through the field to claim a top-five position as Bobby Penney of Excelsior Springs, Missouri settled into a solid groove to come to fourth position. Up front it was the Vance Wilson show; as he ultimately went on to claim the win, his eleventh win with ULMA. Behind Wilson at the checkered flag were Mudd, Melloway, Penney, and Chris Lapp inside the top five, followed by Winn, Dalton Imhoff, Ben Ballard, Miller, and Cliff Powell.
Action resumes again this Saturday at the track as the raceway hosts fans and drivers for another exciting weekly race program. Find out more about Randolph County Raceway by visiting the track’s all-new website, located at www.randolphcountyraceway.com.
Twenty-four cars made their way to Wheatland, Missouri’s Lucas Oil Speedway for three heat races and a 20-lap main event. The late models ran second on the bill throughout the night, a little earlier than normal and the preliminary events were lightning fast. Andy Kennedy, Kevin Coyne, and Bob King crossed the line first through third in the opening heat race. In heat two, Jason Bodenhamer claimed the win ahead of Lane Ehlert and Jeremy Kelley, and in the third and final prelim Jon Binning came from sixth to take the win over Daniel Jessen and Jason Russell.
The field was then set for the main event, which turned out to be tricky in places for some drivers. Bodenhamer took command of the race early on from his outside second row starting position with Binning and Ehlert following close behind. It didn’t take long for a caution flag to fly as Earl Roark spun in the treacherous turn one and two turn area at the end of lap one. At the restart, a three-car incident in the same area put the field back under caution once again. When racing resumed, the fiercest battles took place just outside the top five as several drivers maneuvered high and low to improve their positions, up front. it was still Bodenhamer, Binning and Ehlert leading the way.
On lap five, the caution flew for Bob King as turns one and two claimed another single-car spin. Shortly after the restart, Binning shockingly spun in the same area while running second to draw yet another caution flag. On the next restart Lane Ehlert took off like a rocket to challenge Bodenhamer for the lead but could not make it stick as ‘Bodee’ again led the way the next time around. Second position must have been jinxed though as then Ehlert became the latest victim of the first two turns when he spun out of contention!
Bodenhamer now had company on the next restart as Jason Russell came forward to challenge for the win at lap eight. For the next two laps, the pair raced at close quarters, sometimes making slight contact as they contested for the win. All the while Payton Looney was stalking in third with Jessen fourth. On lap 12, Kevin Coyne’s night came to a grinding halt after contact with the turn four and front-stretch wall as the caution flag flew again. With eight laps remaining, Russell led Bodenhamer and Looney when the race resumed.
Unfortunately, the attrition continued for the front-runners as on the next lap as Jessen made heavy contact using up the high side in turn three in a single-car incident. One last caution waived over the field after the incident and then it was a dog-fight to the finish as the race was cut short to 15 laps. For the final lap, Bodenhamer and Russell gave it all they could to bring home the win. In the end, Bodenhamer, the 2008 ULMA champion, brought home his first win of the year and 27th career ULMA victory over Jason Russell, Looney, Kelley, Cordray, Larry Jones, Harlen Kennedy, Andy Kennedy, Ethan Young, and Roark.
Action continues at Lucas Oil Speedway again this Saturday, June 15 for another four-class regular race program. Be sure to visit Lucas Oil Speedway online at www.lucasoilspeedway.com for a full schedule of events and track details.
ULMA drivers will make their way to California, Missouri, on Sunday, June 16 at the fan-favorite Double XX Speedway for the first of three appearances at the track this season. Last year, Jason Russell and Jon Binning drove to victories in ULMA action at Double XX Speedway, where it is always fun for the fans to see the big cars on the beloved track. For track details and start-time information for “Sunday Night Thunder” on Father’s Day weekend, visit www.xxspeedway.com, find the track on Face Book or call 573.796.4694.
ULMA licensing is mandatory at all sanctioned tracks. Drivers must present their license on arrival when checking in at all tracks. Visit www.ulmaracing.com for scheduling full results, information, stats, rules, and to print and complete the 2013 form prior to competing. Drivers should be prepared for technical inspection at all tracks at all times.
This season marks the first year for ULMA to partner with Hoosier Tire Midwest. Drivers may purchase tires from ULMA throughout the season by contacting ULMA officials, the program benefits drivers at the end of the season during the October 19 championship banquet, which takes place in California, Missouri. Please visit www.racetires.com for additional information.
Drivers earn championship points from their 15 best race appearances throughout the season of the more than 50 possible scheduled race nights. Visit ULMA’s title sponsor at www.lucascattlecompany.com. ULMA sincerely thanks Hoosier Tire Midwest, FastShafts, Rod End Supply, RacingJunk.com, and PhotoGraphics by Shelly Payne for their support this season.
Top 10 Lucas Cattle Company Standings (Full Standings at www.ulmaracing.com)
Pos Car# Name Starts Points
1) 0x Justin Russell 7 715
2) 2j Jason Russell 6 713
3) 1tc Chris Cox 7 689
4) 23z Zeke Langley 6 588
5) 12 Payton Looney 5 558
6) 7x Todd McCoin 5 551
7) B1 Vance Wilson 5 525
9 Chris Lapp 5 504
9) t8r Earl Roark 4 442
10) 04 Jeremy Kelley 4 441
ULMA Schedule at a Glance
Friday, June 14th – Callaway Raceway
Saturday, June 15th – Lucas Oil Speedway
Saturday, June 15th – Randolph County Raceway
Sunday, June 16th – Double XX Speedway
Friday, June 21st – Callaway Raceway
Saturday, June 22nd – Randolph County Raceway
Friday, June 28th – Callaway raceway
Saturday, June 29th – Lucas Oil Speedway, $1,000-to-win track special
Sunday, June 30th – Double XX Speedway
Friday, July 5th – Callaway Raceway
Saturday, July 6th – Lucas Oil Speedway
Saturday, July 6th – Randolph County Raceway