A disqualification at the speedway
Saturday night’s Thunder Bomber Division main event did not have an impact on the point standings – each driver in the division earned a flat 50 points just for racing in the main event – but it doesn’t mean there was a lack of interest as the winner earned a $1,000 prize at Laurens County Speedway.
Nor was there a lack of drama as the winner of the race, Rod Tucker, was eventually disqualified after the race due to a tire issue. Dylan Chappell was the benefactor of the disqualification, taking the top spot. Dan Lawson was second and Brandon Satterfield was third.
Tucker had been the top driver all night, earning the pole in qualifying and avoiding having to race in the heat races that determined the order for the next four rows. Tucker maintained the top spot throughout the race and even led by as much as 7.17 seconds before a caution came out with three laps to go in the 20-lap main event.
The caution gave Chappell what appeared to be his final chance to win the main event in a three-lap sprint to the finish, but as soon as the race resumed Tucker jumped out ahead and pulled away – only to have the victory eventually pulled back.
The Thunder Bomber Division will not race this week, thus there is only one race left in the season to determine the division champion. Chappell will enter the double-point final race with an 82-point lead on Lawson.
Limited: Tony Quarles could all-but clinch the division championship this week after winning the main event. Steven Bowie was second and Frank Coates was third.
Quarles led Michael Smith by 58 points entering the night, but Smith was not at the speedway for Saturday’s racing card. That allowed Quarles, who started on the pole after the inversion draw, to go wire-to-wire and net 50 points. Another victory this week could be enough to clinch the division crown.
Quarles had control of the race throughout, eventually winning by 5.781 seconds, and Bowie held second despite the best efforts of Frank Coates and Charlie Walker to take over the spot.
SECA 604 Crate: Brad Rachels made up some of the deficit he faced in the division standings by winning the main event, but still sits 68 points behind Taylor Puckett – even though Puckett did not race Saturday.
Rachels finished first while Terry Bullard was second and Jeff Robinson was third.
Rachels qualified fourth for the main event but moved up to the pole with the inversion draw. Rachels held the lead throughout while Bullard and David McCoy battled for second place in the early going. McCoy held early in the race, before Bullard eventually got past McCoy as the latter eventually finished fourth.
Robinson was later able to get to third and made a challenge for second on Bullard, who used a good slide late in the race to keep his spot. But while all of this took place Rachels was able to win without much difficulty.
4-Cylinder: Larry Teal inched closer to back-to-back division titles after he won the main event. Phillip Wilson was second and Rod Tucker was third. Teal gained a net of three points in the race, moving him into an estimated 66-point lead with two races to go.
Teal held off a good challenge at the start of the race and managed to stay in first after starting on the pole. Tucker, who started the race in sixth after having to switch cars following the heat race, moved up to third in the first two laps but could never find a way past Wilson for second place.
Teal, meanwhile, was safely in control of the lead for the duration and eventually pulled away.
602 Crate: Colt Smith extended his point lead over Matt Dean in the division standings by finishing second, while Mac Owens won the main event. Mart Patterson was third.
Smith, who has not won a main event this year at LCS, now has an estimated 77-point lead in the division over Dean, who finished fifth.
The caution-free race saw Smith start on the outside of Row 1 after the winner of the second heat, Alan Shifferly, moved to the back of the field after crashing his car after winning the heat. Owens held the lead throughout and built the margin to .421 seconds after five laps. Smith got a little out of shape soon after and fell further behind Owens in time – but not place, as he never fell out of second for the duration of the race.
FWD: Joel Cabe picked up some ground on Jason Bishop in the point race, winning the main event. Travis Jamieson was second and Mason Mack was third.
Cabe, who entered the night leading Bishop by 54 points, gained a net of 29 on Bishop after he finished seventh. Jamieson, who entered 107 points behind in third place, gained 24 points on Bishop but is still in third place.
The most exciting moment on the night came in the first heat race as Justin Owens flipped his car in turn 3. Owens was okay after the crash, which brought the evening to a brief halt.
In the main event Cabe was able to grab the lead and never gave it up, battling Jamieson for much of the night as the two veteran drivers stayed within a short distance of each other until the very end. Cabe, though, had just enough to keep himself in front of the field and won the race as a result.
Enduro: Adam Jackson won the main event in the Enduro Division. Allen Staton was second and Robbie Hartman was third.
Jackson started third in the main event and had to shake off some early trouble when he got hooked with Hartman’s car, but the race was not stopped as both drivers were able to continue. Staton had to battle his car for the entire race as smoke trailed from the back on each lap, but he was also able to continue.
Hartman eventually retired on the fifth lap when damage to his car after a crash proved too much to overcome. Once the race resumed Jackson was able to pull away and won the race after Staton’s car finally gave out.