Ocala, FL, May 1, 1999 – Is it spring or winter? At Ocala Speedway it doesn’t matter because the racing is great in all weather!
The Coca-Cola 4-Cylinder Bombers warmed up the track with a full field tonight. Bruce Teague (63) and Ashley Cassels (2) were the pole sitters for this feature. Teague jumped right out in front at the drop of the green flag. Cassels set up right behind him and held her own as the pack behind her jostled for places. Positions for third, fourth and fifth were shuffled several times between Dave Neiswender (69), Gary Hotalen (312), and Terry Dunbar (72). Pete Close (86) started in the rear again this feature but by lap six, he was making his presence known by working his way into fourth position. Teague had opened up a huge lead. By lap eight, Close had made it into second position but he had a long way to go to catch Teague. Luck is fickle. The yellow flag meant Dunbar was out of the race as he spins coming into turn 4 and tags the infield tire, but it was good for Close who gets to snuggle up to Teague for the restart. “Speedy” Pete Close went the final laps in front, taking the checkered flag. Bruce Teague came in for second with Ashley Cassels taking third. Dave Neiswender and Brock Oglesby filled out the top five.
The WTRS Pure Stocks put on a great show tonight at Ocala Speedway. They ran a completely caution free feature, while displaying their great driving skills. John Cook (17) sat on the pole and Jason Gamble (21) had the outside. Cook took the early lead, but Gamble got by him on lap two and took first position. The contest was hot as Gamble, Cook, John Betts (81), and Dave Dinehart (79) were all likely contenders for the lead. Betts took the lead for four laps, with Gamble never letting up. Behind them, Larry Bowden (77) was putting in a good race, passing Dinehart. Gamble reclaimed the lead as Bowden continued to progress through the ranks until he was in second. Jason Gamble claimed the checkered flag with Larry Bowden in second. John Betts took home third while Mark Mitchell came in fourth. John Kahl took fifth.
The Dave’s Towing Hobby Stocks were hot out of the pits tonight at Ocala Speedway. Eddie Kilbury had pole honors and Alan McCafferty sat outside. The green flag dropped and almost immediately, Shane Nichols (65) made a strong bid and took the lead. Kilbury (71) hung on to second with McCafferty easing into third. David Baxley (64) was a very close fourth and on lap two he took third from McCafferty. For six laps, these positions held, but tensions were high as Baxley and McCafferty were side by side so close they could have been welded at the doorhandle. On lap nine, Baxley was able to pull clear. Lap 12 saw the first caution flag of the feature but it was for a quick clean up of some debris. The restart was good for the top leaders as it gave them another shot at Nichols who had opened up a good lead before the caution. McCafferty took his car to the pits, leaving Moose Alderman (55) to take fourth position. A second caution flag flew on lap 14 as Alderman took a wild spin coming into turn four. On the restart, Shane Nichols was still leading and he held off all challenges to claim the checkered flag. Eddie Kilbury came in second with David Baxley pushing in close for third. Charles Kopach and Mike Wilson filled out the top five.
The Budweiser Modifieds started a large field tonight at Ocala Speedway. Ed Brown (1) had the pole and Red Vann (32) sat on the outside. Brown took the early lead with Gary Southard (39) sneaking past Vann to get into second position. On lap three, Chuck Burkhalter worked his way into third. On lap six, the first major shift came when Brown took a wild spin in turn four, heading for the outside wall. He didn’t hit but on the restart, he was placed in the rear. Southard was now the leader with Burkhalter pushing his bumper. Vann was in third position and Scott Grossenbacher was near the top in fourth. On lap 10 the second caution flag flew as Southard was turned around on the backstretch, giving him a good look at his competition. On the restart, Burkhalter found himself in the rear. Southard regained the lead with Vann now in second position and Grossenbacher in fourth. With no more cautions to repack the field, Gary Southard pushed the pedal and took the checkered flag. Red Vann took second place money and Scott Grossenbacher took third. Rick Hall came in fourth and Chuck Burkhalter, who had worked his way through the pack, took fifth.
The Steven A. Bagen Late Models brought a full field of cars to Ocala Speedway tonight. Patrick Williams (18) had the pole with Dave Westrich (38) on the outside. Williams took the early lead with Rich Pratt (0) moving into second and Chuck Burkhalter (30) settling into third. Back in the pack there was a struggle going on between Kevin Bryant (54) and Herb Neumann (9). On lap six, Bryant went spinning in turn 1 and Westrich found himself tapping Bryant’s right side. Bryant came through the middle under the caution flag and re-entered the track as Neumann was heading into turn 1. Bryant tapped Neumann before driving his car to the pits. On the restart, Neumann was sent to the rear. Williams was still leading, though fighting hard to keep his place. Pratt made a move and on lap fourteen, he took the lead from Williams. Burkhalter also got by Williams and moved into second. By lap 16, Harold Rankin (2) was in third position and Neumann had worked his way back up to fourth. On lap 19, another caution flew when Burkhalter and Rankin got tangled up coming into the front straightaway. With Burkhalter and Rankin in the rear, a new dynamic was set up with Pratt leading and Neumann battling for first. Rich Pratt took the checkered flag by holding Herb Neumann at bay for second. Patrick Williams claimed third with Dave Westrich taking fourth. Harold Rankin came home fifth.
Don’t miss any of the Ocala Speedway racing season. Ocala Speedway – The Fastest Short Track in Florida!
Next week, Ocala Speedway will feature the Coca Cola 4 Cylinder Bombers, the WTRS Pure Stocks, Dave’s Towing Hobby Stocks, the Budweiser Modifieds and the Outlaw Winged Sprints. Don’t miss a minute of the action.