Ocala, FL, August 26, 2000 – With no threatening weather in sight, drivers and fans alike settled in for a great night of racing here at Ocala Speedway.
The Budweiser Modifieds ran first to make up for their rained-out feature from last week. The field was large and drivers were rearing to go. Kevin Spiddle (77) sat on the pole, and Jack Icard (39) sat on the outside. Rex Williams (88) took the lead for the first lap, but before it could be completed, several cars tangled in turn four. When the red flag flew and the dust settled, Rick Hall (15) had come to rest with his two right-side tires on top of the wall. Monty Morgan (46) stopped right underneath Hall, but he suffered only minor damage and was able to drive away. A single file restart was called. This feature was plagued by yellow flags and rarely went more than two laps between flags. But the leaders were never affected and Raymond Vann (99) got a chance to shine. Raymond Vann held the lead solidly from the third lap to the finish. Alan McCafferty (32) pushed his way into second position by the eighth lap and David Baxley (64) moved up with him. Red Vann (32) started in the rear and he was occupied just moving up. Red Vann was coming up surely but time was running out and his toughest competition was way ahead. Raymond Vann finished first to take the checkered flag. Alan McCafferty finished second followed by David Baxley, Red Vann and Monty Morgan.
The Junior Cup cars came out and Cynthia Boettcher (88) sat on the pole for the heat race. Mike Wilson Jr.(64) sat on the outside. After some confusion, the green flag flew and Boettcher jumped for the lead. She held on to take the checkered flag. Her win earned her the pole for the feature. With Boettcher on the pole again, Mariah Berry (24) sat on the outside. The battle between the two ladies was fierce. Boettcher and Berry tangled for a moment and when they came apart, Boettcher spun on the backstretch, bringing out the yellow flag. Mariah Berry ran hard for the wire and the win, and Boettcher battled Wilson to regain and finish in second. Mike Wilson Jr. finished third.
The Coca-Cola 4-Cylinder Bombers ran a special 25-lap feature tonight. Qualifying was held and Chauna Johnston (43) was the quickest. An inversion prevented her from benefiting by putting her mid-pack to start. Jason Tharpe (85) sat on the pole, and Dwayne Hillary (22) sat on the outside. After two bad starts, Tharpe jumped for the lead with John Nabor (3) close behind. Nabor quickly took over the lead and Carl Thomas (19) pulled into second position. Johnston and Bobby Valeo (8), who was second quickest in qualifying, were working their way up through the ranks. Valeo moved into second on the eighth lap, and Johnston got to fifth by the ninth lap. Valeo battled Nabor for first, but it wasn’t until the twenty-second lap that Valeo was able to overcome Nabor. Johnston was moving up with impressive strength although Joel Eckman (27) was holding her off in every turn. With three laps to go, the whole lineup changed. Valeo got loose and spun, bringing out the yellow flag and putting him in the rear. Nabor regained the lead and took the checkered flag. Joel Eckman finished second, and Chauna Johnston was in close for third. The finishing order was rearranged after tech when both Nabor and Eckman were disqualified. Chauna Johnston earned the win and Carl Thomas came in second. Marlon Durbin finished third followed by Neal Durbin and Brock Oglesby.
The WTS Pure Stocks fielded a full pack of cars tonight. Tommy Roberts (44) sat on the pole, and Dave Dinehart (79) sat on the outside. Roberts took the lead but it was small because Dinehart rode beside him. With Edward England (00) in the inside hole on Roberts’ bumper, there was no room for mistakes. Six laps ticked off with the top three in very tight formation. A yellow flag on the seventh lap did not affect the leaders. On the restart, England began to find some extra power by the tenth lap he was in first. Doug Leveque (68) also put in a late run, and with two laps to go he pulled into second. Edward England ran hard to take the checkered flag. Doug Leveque finished second followed by Tommy Roberts, Moose Alderman and Dave Dinehart.
The Stephen A. Bagen Sportsmen were next to run. Again the field was full and Scott Bess (9) sat on the pole. Patrick Mennenga (16) sat on the outside. Except for one yellow the came out on the first start, the feature was caution free. Charles Kopach (53) got a good start and jumped into the lead. Mike Wilson (79) was very strong tonight and by the second lap, he had a commanding lead. Tom Posavec (01) also put in a strong race, holding second position for two laps. The current points leader, Eddie Kilbury (71) started near the rear, but by moving up a place or two every lap, he was able to gain second position by lap seven. Wilson was still way ahead at this point, but Kilbury was running hot and gaining ground. On lap thirteen, the two were running neck and neck and Kilbury was able to pull ahead. The last three laps were full of tension, but Eddie Kilbury held on to take the checkered flag. Mike Wilson came in a strong second followed by Tom Posavec, Charles Kopach and Glenn Baum.
The Budweiser Modifieds came out for their scheduled feature with a full pack. John Claire (44) sat on the pole with Red Vann (32) on the outside. Vann made his customary strong start and claimed the lead. Monty Morgan (46) and David Baxley (64) were in a tough battle for second, until Baxley finally settled it and pulled ahead. There were several yellow flags during this feature, the worst of which involved Scott Millar (14) when he hit the wall in turn four, damaging his right front end. Racing resumed with Vann still leading and Baxley on his tail. Raymond Vann (99) was working his way up and gained third position over Morgan. Red Vann took the checkered flag for the win, but David Baxley put in a good race to finish a close second. Raymond Vann came in third followed by Moty Morgan and Johnny Newsome.
With the weather being agreeable this week, the Mechanic’s Race was called to the track. Dick Wilson (79) sat on the pole and Richard Kilbury (71) sat beside him. The two put on a good show for several laps until a yellow flag slowed the action. On the restart, Wilson jumped well as did Jimbo (65) from the third position. Kilbury slipped to third. One more caution flew on the ninth lap so the restart was green and white. Dick Wilson finished first followed by Jimbo. Richard Kilbury rolled in third with the number 117 car finishing fourth. Ted Visneski finished fifth.
The Pro Figure 8 cars raced tonight. Tim Quick (17) sat on the pole, and Tommy Roberts (44) sat on the outside. Roberts quickly took the lead and Shane Nichols (65) pulled into second. Alan McCafferty (32) was also running very well and by lap six, he moved into second and began a serious run on Roberts. Kenny Abney (3) spun his car in turn four and couldn’t get restarted so he became an obstacle for the others. He was able to roll backwards into the grass somewhat. By lap fourteen, McCafferty claimed the point and thrilled the fans with his daring through the crossroads. Charles Kopach (53) was making good laps and he worked his way up to third behind Roberts. Alan McCafferty ran hard and took the checkered flag. Tom Roberts finished second with Charles Kopach coming in third. Rick Hart and Ken Thornton filled out the top five.
The Ocala Speedway 2000 season continues with weekly racing. Next Saturday night, September 2nd, the track will be closed for the Holiday. Racing will resume Saturday, September 9th. All the regular features will run plus the Dwarf Cars as guests. Come out every Saturday night during the regular season for the many exciting features. This is high-action racing fun for the whole family.