Phenix City, ALA - February 28, 2007 - Hundreds of dirt track racing
teams and fans alike came out of winter hibernation to enjoy a full
weekend of excitement at East Alabama Motor Speedway. The revised winter
schedule had the practice, qualifying, heats, and features during the
daytime hours and everyone was home before dark Saturday and Sunday. In
the Late Model Crate feature, last years Jimmy Thomas Memorial champion
Jake Knowles from Tyrone, Georgia set the pole with fast time qualifying.
When the green flag dropped on the feature Knowles blasted out to the
lead with William Thomas in his shadow. Mike Parkerson wasted no time
passing Shane Smith from Dade City, Florida to advance his position on
the first lap. Ty Lowe was about to put a move on William Thomas from the
inside of turn 2 when Jack Daughtry spun in turn 4 to bring out the
yellow flag caution. The single file restart order was Knowles, Thomas,
Lowe, Dana Eiland, David McCoy, Brad York, Larry Harrod, Shane Hmiel,
Jordy Nipper, and Mike Parkerson rounding out the top ten. On the restart
Nipper passed Hmiel but when they got back to turn four Hmiel returned
the favor and got his spot back by making a clean pass on the inside.
Harrod was hooked up and shot by McCoy to move into fifth. Lowe was
trying hard to shake Thomas out of second place but Thomas was fast and
hooked up enabling him to shoot off the corners and escape Lowe's
attacks. McCoy, York, and Parkerson had the fans holding their breath as
they came out of turn 4 three wide and scrambled for position. To add to
the excitement, Harrod was seeking the impossible dream, which would be
passing Dana Eiland's K-9 in full stride. Brandon Haley, Dwayne Britton,
and Jeff Culpepper suddenly found themselves tangled in turn one to bring
out a yellow flag caution. Culpepper fixed his flat left rear and
rejoined the field for the restart. Knowles, Thomas, and Lowe set a
blistering pace and pulled away from Eiland in fourth, who had his hands
full fighting off the constant attacks from Harrod. On lap 16 Haley lost
the handle and wound up into the wall at turn four to bring out the next
caution. On this restart Thomas found a weakness in Knowles and drove
deep into the corners and got a fender on him but could not make it stick
as Knowles blasted back into the lead. Suddenly McCoy was off the
backstretch for a caution. On this restart Harrod went back around Hmiel
to stay in fifth at the halfway point. Hmiel got forced off the back and
lost several spots but got back in the chase without bringing out the
yellow. Thomas was back trying to pass Knowles, getting deeper into the
corners but not quite enough to come off the corner to take the lead.
Going into turn 4 Thomas was on the inside and to avoid slamming into
Knowles he cracked his throttle which was just enough of and advantage
for Lowe to power by Thomas and take the second spot down the front
straight. Lowe came up on Knowles and went to the inside and swapped some
paint while Knowles was forced to pull out all the stops and hammer down
hard to maintain the lead. Eiland must have thought that maybe Thomas had
developed a problem and began to work him over trying to take the third
spot, but Thomas was still strong enough to fight him off and hang on to
third spot. On lap 34 Haley became Haley's Comet as smoke poured
profusely from his blown engine bringing out a yellow flag. Hmiel pulled
into the pits during this caution but the green came out and the shoot
out to the checkers was on. Lowe pulled inside Knowles and this time did
not fade away. It seemed that maybe Knowles' tires were fading out, as he
could not escape the charge from Lowe who made a clean pass in turn two
to take the lead at lap 38. Lowes could smell victory and sprinted to the
checkers unabated to become the 2007 Groundhog 300 Late Model Champion.
Jake Knowles finished second, William Thomas third, Dana Eiland fourth,
Larry Harrod fifth, Jordy Nipper sixth, Mike Parkerson seventh, Brad York
eighth, Terry Lumley ninth, and Alan Brewer rounded out the top ten in
Crate Late Model
T21 - Ty Lowe
66 - Jake Knowles
22 - William Thomas
K9 - Dana Eiland
27 - Larry Harrod
Phenix City, ALA - March 4, 2007 - On the heels of intense tornadic activity striking the area, East Alabama Motor Speedway held the 22nd Annual Jimmy Thomas Memorial in grand fashion on a beautiful weekend. The late Jimmy Thomas founded and built East Alabama Motor Speedway leaving a legacy of great Southern tradition- family unity, and dirt track racing, The years of pleasure to thousands of race fans returned to Jimmy as he surely saw his son Bobby Thomas win the Sportsman event in a BTR Scorpion Chassis built by another son Ben Thomas. The race director was Jimmy’s daughter Beverly Thompson and the gala and successful event was produced by Jimmy’s protégé and oldest son Billy Thomas. In the Late Model Crate division 100 lap $10,000 to win feature event, Jack Pennington brought a car so fast he totally dominated the 54 car field to win the pole for the feature which would run 24 cars. Jake Knowles, the incumbent champion, would take the green from the outside pole as he was also very fast. When the green dropped Pennington and Knowles went into turn one side by side.
Coming out of turn two Knowles took the lead as Shannon Buckingham showed serious speed passing Jordy Nipper to move into third. Pennington stayed right on Knowles looking for the lead and then took the inside groove all the way around the high banked clay oval door to door. On lap 10 they were already putting the back of the field a lap down as Billy Franklin was to the first to fall. Lee Cooper put a move on Jordy Nipper in turn two of lap 13 to move up a spot. Dewayne Johnson cut down a tire and drew a yellow flag caution on lap 15. When the green came out Buckingham powered into third and was sizing up Jack Pennington to take second.
Pennington decided it was time to move on, hammer down and take the lead on lap 18. Frankie Beard was in a heated battle with Knowles for third while Ronnie Lee Hollingsworth waited in the wings. Beard made the pass on Knowles on lap 27 but found out Pennington and Buckingham were over a straightaway ahead. Dewayne Johnson suddenly rolled into the pits on lap
31 then Frank Ingram pulled up on the grandson of the patriarch Jimmy Thomas, William Thomas in his BTR Chassis JW Miller Land and Timber Monte Carlo. Ingram made the pass on lap 33 to take over the tenth position.
Ronnie Johnson, The Chattanooga Flash, was suddenly on a run and began working on Thomas. The leaders were lapping Chad Wallace and Brent Carey when Lee Cooper, Jeff Fields, and Frank Ingram found themselves spun out to a stop in turn 4 for the lap 40 caution. The restart order was Pennington, Buckingham, Beard, Knowles, Hollingsworth, Travis Pennington, Fields, Nipper, Ingram, Thomas, and the Chattanooga Flash was in eleventh. The green came back out and Nipper made a fast clean pass on Fields and Ingram, Thomas and Johnson followed him around. Fields went to the pits then Jeff Smith came to a stop on turn 2 to bring the yellow back out. Wallace ducked in to the pits with a flat then the green was back out and Cooper put it on David McCoy to take his spot. Thomas and The Flash also moved up passing Nipper to take 10th and 11th. Jack Pennington and Buckingham were over a straightaway ahead of third place when a rash of flats broke out. Rickey Culpepper, Lee Cooper, and David McCoy all went to the pits with flats on lap 55. On the restart Ingram passed Travis Pennington, then the second place car of Shannon Buckingham caught the flat rash a was forced to relinquish his spot. Terrance Nowell appeared to have a serious rear suspension malady and was forced into the pits. Then Ricky Williams, William Thomas, and Brent Carey all went to the pits with tire problems. Jack Pennington was so fast Frankie Beard had no chance of passing and was running all out just to maintain pace as they distanced themselves from the pack. Knowles was in third but engaged in heavy battle with Hollingsworth to maintain his position. Ricky Williams and The Flash were also going door to door for position. As the laps wound down Jack Pennington stretched his lead out to 10 car lengths from second place Beard who posed no threat to the leader. Pennington sprinted to the checkers unabated to take the win. However, in post race inspection of the mandatory engine tear down, Pennington’s engine was found to have a camshaft that was not manufactured by General Motors.
This was a violation of the Crate rules and Pennington was disqualified passing the win, the big trophy, the 10 grand, and the prestige of becoming the 2007 Jimmy Thomas Memorial Late Model Champion to Frankie Beard of Hartwell,GA. Second place went to Jake Knowles, third to Ronny Lee Hollingsworth, fourth to the young son of Jack, Travis Pennington, the Chattanooga Flash, Ronnie Johnson picked up fifth. Ricky Williams finished sixth, Ricky Culpepper seventh, William Thomas picked up an eighth spot for Grand Daddy, Frank Ingram ninth, and Brent Carey rounded out the top ten in tenth.
Crate Late Model
21 - Frankie Beard
66 - Jake Knowles
M63 - Ronny Lee Hollingsworth
01 - Travis Pennington
16 - Ronnie Johnson
17 - Ricky Williams
110 - Ricky Culpepper
22 - William Thomas
F9 - Frank Ingram
1a - Brent Carey
187 - David McCoy
T21 - Ty Lowe
44 - Shannon Buckingham
1n - Jordy Nipper
7 - Lee Cooper
15 - Henry Carter
7 - Terrance Nowell
16 - Jeff Fields
34 - Chad Wallace
00 - Jeff Smith
45 - Dewayne Johnson
B5 - Stacey Roberts
22x - Billy Franklin
90 - Bobby Thomas
888 - Dennis Hale
5 - Ronnie Johnson
7 - Terrance Nowell
66 - Johnny Tribble
44 - Parker Herring
99 - J.R. Moseley
98 - Jimmy Johnson, Jr.
0 - Mike Nasworthy
17 - Lavon Sparks
1 - Robbie Land
74 - Jody Farmer
42 - Steffan McGlamory
55 - Steve Richardson
11 - Gus Simpson
60 - Leon Watson, Jr.
13 - Kelly Leonard
21 - Jerry Summers
27 - Larry Harrod
C38 - David Conner, Jr.
91 - Tod Darda
14 - Dennis Moncrief
18 - Larry Eldridge
K9 - Dana Eiland
1 - Sam Moore
5 - Rodgerick Dykes
71 - Jimmy Maness
11 - Lynn Robbins
42 - Steven Garnto
K99 - Kelly Moore
47 - Thomas Phillips
1 - Gene Nasworthy
31a - Randy Peppers
26plus - Todd Moseley
87 - Charlie Gushue
107 - Chaz Haskins
50jr - Steven Gaines, Jr.
29 - Joey Eiland
22g - Ricky Haugen
10 - Jeff Chumley
55 - Chuck Compton
8t - Darrell Tumlin
39 - Alan Franks
15 - Dana Brittingham
00 - Richie Stephens
47 - Jerry Luke
27 - Don Whitehead
92 - Danny Earl Warren
1 - Aron Hendrix
8 - Rodney Gorman
00 - Gary Thiede
ME1 - Ed Jarvis
13 - Brian Dodgen
J3 - John Capps, III
11 - Greg Gatlin
2 - PJ Taylor
75 - Ritchie Graham
1 - Michael Whaley
11 - Henry Vaughn
21 - Matthew Gainer
14 - Ross Baines
C20 - Joey McCoy
66 - Kenny Dobbs
99 - Ronnie Poole
99 - Jeff Dobbs
26 - Anthony Craft
8 - Tony Head
9 - Jessie Spradley
25 - Michael Cauley
19 - Lane Beck
25 - Robbie Burt
85 - Steve McCauley
7 - Jeff Elliott
7 - Trevor Elliott
30 - Tim Bosley
A18 - Mike Archer
22 - Clint Stone
3 - Steve Bryan
18 - Tony Head
89 - Jason Howell
33 - Joe Trantham
M57 - Paul Morris
J57 - Wayne Pierce
21 - Jesse Barnhill
47 - Billy Duell, Jr.
SEASON OPENER at EAST ALABAMA
By Jay Vaquer
Phenix City, ALA - March 17, 2007 - St. Patrick ushered in the start of
the 2007 racing season at East Alabama Motor Speedway this Saturday
night. Not only were the cars sporting great paint jobs and eye catching
graphics, they were also extremely fast. In the Late Model division
Terrance Nowell turned a 15.42 which was faster than most of the Super
Late Models at the big races. However, Nowell would have to move to the rear
of the field for the start after not making weight after qualifying so
it was the Master of Going Faster, Dana Eiland who would start the feature from the pole. When the green dropped
on the feature Larry Harrod ran door to door with Eiland down the front
straight and into turn one. When they hit turn two, Harrod slid off the
top bank and the caution was displayed. For the 3rd restart of the race it was restarted single file. With Dana Eiland's
legendary K-9 leading the pack to the green, it was pretty much a done
deal before the start. Eiland blasted out to the lead in clean air with
Harrod running wide open just to keep pace. Within two laps Eiland and
Harrod were several carlengths ahead of Ricky Culpepper in third. Bobby
Eiland, starting next to last, began his run to the front and tangled
with Gordy Scarborough to bring out the yellow flag caution. On the
restart Dana Eiland asserted his strength and again ran away from the
field with Harrod just far enough behind to not be able to pose a threat.
Terrance Nowell started at the rear of the field for a rule infraction
but was passing to the front seemingly at will as he went by Jeff Mills,
Mickey Benton, and Tod Darda, who uncharacteristically seemed to have
missed the set-up. Nowell could shoot off the corner in turn three and
dive to the apron to pass whoever was in the preferred groove and come
out of turn four ahead of them. Then suddenly Nowell coasted to a stop at
the flag stand. When flagman Chad Wallace displayed the caution, Nowell
went to the pits and tried to cool his engine then return to the field
before the green. He started but was unable to keep pace and circulated
slowly on the apron. Bobby Eiland was the hard charger and was on his way
to the front passing Marvin Cook, who also seemed to be having a handling
problem, and then passing Chad Marchman, Ricky Culpepper, and Jerry
Summers. Nowell called it quits and rolled into the pits for a DNF on lap
17. Josh Noles suddenly broke on the front straight and Mickey Benton
spun to avoid a collision bringing the yellow back. On the restart Ricky
Culpepper, running in fourth, seem to lose power and Summers was quick to
take advantage and the fourth spot. Daniel Goodman and Jeff Mills both
rolled into the pits calling it a day as Dana Eiland caught a glimpse of
a leprechaun pointing to the pot of gold. Eiland took the white flag and
powered his K-9 to the checkers leaving the rest of the field green with
envy as he set the bar for what promises to be an exciting new season.
Larry Harrod finished second, Bobby Eiland came from next to last to
finish third, Jerry Summers finished fourth, Ricky Culpepper fifth, Chad
Marchman sixth, Tod Darda seventh, Marvin Cook eighth, Gordy Scarborough
ninth, and Mickey Benton rounded out the top ten in tenth.
Allen Sparks Tribute at East Alabama
By Jay Vaquer
Phenix City, ALA - March 24, 2007 - The grandstands were filled at East
Alabama Motor Speedway on an unseasonably warm spring night for the
second race this season. Missing from the regular Saturday night line-up
was the Late Model number 34 of Allen Sparks. Last year during a post
season race at Cochran Speedway Allen suffered a fatal heart attack while
on the track. Because he was in a race car his insurance company would not
pay the beneficiaries. Condolences were fine but what Allen's family
really needed was cash. During the intermission a special tribute was
held with Allen's car on the track and all the drivers went through the
grandstands taking up a collection which was given to Allen's wife. When
the Late Model feature lined up to take the green flag, the number 34 led
the field for a few laps then pulled off the back straight just before
the green flag came out. Terrance Nowell was on the pole and track
Champion Tod Darda was on the outside. They powered wide open into turn
one and Nowell came out of turn two with the lead while Darda had his
hands full of a charging Dana Eiland in third. Larry Harrod and JR
Moseley were battling hard over fourth when Ricky Culpepper came up to
get into the mix. On lap 5 Joey Miles spun in turn four to bring out the
lap 5 caution. Suddenly Darda began smoking and rolled into the pits with
a mechanical failure. He said one of his fan belts broke and the smoke
was steam so he called it quits and took an early DNF. When the green
came back Nowell blasted back out to the lead but this time he had an
unrelenting K9 on his heels. Eiland took the inside groove and got a
fender on Nowell in the turns but Nowell had more momentum in the upper
preferred line and was able to escape on the straights. JR Moseley was
looking like he finally found his lost Championship form, maybe its his
new Barry Wright chassis, but he was fast and challenging Harrod for
third. Chad Marchman was also looking sporty as he was trying to take
seventh away from Ricky Culpepper, who had just won the Modified feature.
Culpepper was strong and had all the blocks and parries to keep Marchman
at bay. Parrish Duncan suddenly lost power and coasted to the pits on lap
11 for a DNF. Lap 13 proved lucky for Marchman as he made a pass on
Culpepper but proved unlucky for our leader as Nowell came to a stop on
the back straight to bring out the caution. When he fired up and drove
into the pits to the watering hole it was obvious he was running hot and
brought out the caution to buy time to cool off but the field went green
before he could get back on the track. The fat lady was warming her vocal
cords as the Master of Faster, Dana Eiland took the lead. The K9 picked
up the scent of the checkers and took a full straightaway lead from
second place Harrod who was struggling with a persistent JR Moseley. On
lap 17 Culpepper ran over some debris which not only flew into his
cockpit but also cut down his tire bringing out a caution. When the green
came back out Dana Eiland put the whip to his K9 and again stretched out
to a comfortable lead. Surprisingly Harrod went off the backside, let
Moseley take second place, then came back on the track and went to the
pits for a DNF. Dana Eiland shot by the white flag and demonstrated to
the large crowd why he is the legend, taking the checkers for the second
week in a row. Eiland also showed that not only is he a great champion
but he is also a great humanitarian as he donated his entire first place
prize money to Allen Spark's family. Following this kind gesture, another
great champion, Rodgerick Dykes, after winning the Super Street division
feature, also donated his first place prize money to the Sparks family.
Such altruistic compassion speaks volumes for the quality and character
of the East Alabama dirt track racing family.
Dana Eiland finished first with JR Moseley taking second place. Jerry
Summers came in third, Chad Marchman fourth, Marc Gooden fifth, Ricky
Culpepper sixth, Joey Miles seventh, Larry Harrod eighth, Leon Watson, JR
ninth, and rounding out the top ten in tenth was Gordy Scarborough.
THOMAS FASTEST FASTRAK at EAST ALABAMA
By Jay Vaquer
Phenix City, ALA - March 31, 2007 - Once again the grandstands filled to near capacity at East Alabama Motor Speedway as the Fastrak Late Model Racing Series came to town and put on their exciting dirt track spectacle. This series is unique in that among other rules, all the competitors are required to run factory crate engines and Goodyear tires placing them on an equal playing field where more emphasis is placed on the drivers’ skills rather than on how much money they have to go fast. This year’s Jimmy Thomas Memorial champion Frankie Beard was on the pole for the feature with Phenix City’s own William Thomas sitting on the outside pole. When the green dropped Thomas and Beard sped into turn one. Since Thomas likes to run at the very top of the track anyway, he took the lead going into turn 2 while Beard spun out causing a melee behind as the full field began checking up and colliding. The second start had Thomas again taking the lead riding precariously at the very top of turns one and two to take the lead and right after the first lap was counted another spin brought out the yellow. This time they lined up single file with Thomas blasting into the lead. Beard was able to stay a few car lengths behind as they quickly distanced themselves from the field. Bobby Eiland began working on Shane Riner and Ty Lowe was quick to put a move on Terrance Nowell to move into fourth. Thomas and Beard were pulling away from Jordy Nipper and Lowe with each passing lap. Shane Thompson, in the # 00 Fun Carts of Opelika Rocket Chassis Monte Carlo got pinched into the front wall by Bill Morgan and suffered a flat tire and some suspension damage on lap 10 to bring out the yellow. Again Thomas out powered the field as he pulled away from Beard to dominate. Eiland moved into ninth as Marvin Cook went to war with Mike Parkerson in a fierce battle for position. Shan Smith put it on Bill Peters with a clean pass and then went after Anthony Meadows. Suddenly Parkerson went off turn four then slowly rolled into the pits bringing out the yellow flag. On this restart Meadows and Smith got tangled up in turn two and Meadows had to go to the pits. When the green waved again Thomas seemed to be faster as his set up dialed in and he powered out five car lengths ahead of Beard ,who was about 15 car-lengths ahead of third place Nipper. On lap 26 Thomas was putting Smith and Lee Cooper down a lap as he showed tremendous speed and knowledge of the track to pass anywhere. Bill Morgan lost power and rolled into the pits as the furious pace was about to cause more attrition. Larry Harrod was just about to pass AJ Watson when second place Beard blew his motor spewing oil and water in the center groove all the way around the high banked clay oval. On the lap 29 restart the running order was Thomas, Nipper, Lowe, Nowell, Larry Eldridge, Ricky Culpepper, Shane Riner, Bobby Eiland, Marvin Cook, and David McCoy. All those long nights working in the shop, when most teenage boys are out messing around, began to pay off as William Thomas really dominated the field. Thomas gained ground from second place Nipper with each passing second. The pace was so fast most drivers had to hang on to what they had for fear of losing a spot as they all ran wide open just to stay in the race. Nowell was looking for a way around Lowe but when you moved off your line and slowed even a fraction of a second you risked getting caught from behind. On lap 40, as Thomas lapped Cooper, he was over a full straightaway ahead of second place Nipper. There was going to be no denying a victory for the # 22 JW Miller Land and Timber Ben Thomas Racing Scorpion chassis Thomas Racing Enterprise Monte Carlo as William skillfully drove, wire to wire, the perfect race to the checkers. Jordy Nipper finished second, Ty Lowe third, Terrance Nowell fourth, Larry Eldridge fifth, Ricky Culpepper sixth, Shane Riner seventh, Marvin Cook eighth, David McCoy ninth, and AJ Watson rounded out the top ten in tenth. Six of the top ten finishers were local drivers who met the Fastrak challenge and gave the hometown crowd another reason to be proud of our racing program.
By Tim George:
The Rocket Man Richard Stephens Jr. drove his double zero to victory lane once again in the Hobby Division. Stephens pulled off a come from behind win in the heat race earning himself the pole starting position in the feature event. Rocket Man claimed the checkers in the feature relegating second to Randy Renfroe, and third to Allen McConnell.
The run for the roses in the Pony Division gave the long absent, former champion Ray Fowler a feature win. Fowler was faced with stiff competition including our two lady drivers in the Pony Division, Brandie Gatlin and Brandy Stephens. Jake Jacobs took home the second spot and Bryan Price finished third.
Rusty Harmon continues to leave his trail of victory in the Modified Division. Harmon won the feature leaving Ricky Culpepper with a second place finish. Nick Biddle finished third.
Danny Stroud and Steven Gaines Jr. battled it out in the Super Street Division. Stroud struck the final blow to Gaines' as he was able to hold Gaines down to the second place. Danny Stroud was the Super Street feature winner Steven Gaines was second, Rodgerick Dykes finished third.
Jason Howell won the Big Prize in the Bomber class. Lady driver Christy Noles pursued Howell throughout the entire event. Howell was the winner, Christy Noles finished second and Mikey Burt came in third.
HARROD WINS EAST ALABAMA
By Jay Vaquer
Phenix City,ALA - April 7, 2007 - Easter’s mysteries continued to mystify the crowd at East Alabama Motor Speedway this weekend. Some of the unexplained questions were, how did Jesus come back from the dead and how did he move that big rock from out of the cave? And how does the Easter bunny lay eggs? And how did Larry Harrod totally dominate the field of Late Model champions to take the checkers wire to wire? Harrod won the pole with fast time qualifying and began the feature from the inside. As he led the field to the cone in turn 4 where he fires first to begin the race, he delayed firing at the cone and the anxious field behind began to pile up and push the leaders through turn 4. Former Late Model Champion JR Moseley, who has been exceptionally fast this year, was on the outside pole and got punted into the outside retaining wall. Moseley suffered serious damage to his rear suspension and was forced into the pits for a DNF. Josh Noles was also caught up in the mishap and went to the pits for repairs. Then next start had Harrod pulling away from the field. Marvin Cook in second, and the legendary Dana Eiland from third gave chase. Rusty Harmon, the incumbent Open wheel Modified Champion was running his very first Late Model race and took a look inside Eiland but quickly retreated to a comfortable fourth position. Jerry Summers and Jeff Mills were sparring over fifth and Mills was very strong and held his ground. Meanwhile , back at the front Harrod was really pouring it on and was almost a full straightaway ahead of Dana Eiland in third. Cook’s tires seem to be dialing in and he was running down the leader and show signs of presenting a challenge. At lap 14 Matt Woodson seemed to be fighting a problem and slowed considerably. Then our current Late Model Champion Tod Darda lost the pace and began to slow and brought out a caution. Summers went to the pits as well as did Mike Parkerson. On the restart Tod Darda made an all out attack on Chad Marchman who had been driving a hard but calculating race staying out of trouble and maintaining his position. Marchman had all the right answers to keep Darda at bay and held on to his position. As the laps wound down and the white flag came out, Cook was gaining on the leader but Harrod was a hard Easter egg to crack and Cook ran out of laps as Harrod took the checkers for his first win this season. Marvin Cook finished second, Dana Eiland third, Rusty Harmon fourth, Jeff Mills fifth, Chad Marchman sixth, Tod Darda seventh, Matt Woodson eighth, Jerry Summers ninth, and Josh Noles rounded out the top ten in tenth.
By Tim George:
Super Street action was about as good as it gets. Steven Gaines Jr. picked up back to back feature wins. Gaines won the main event Friday night at Penton Raceway, continuing his walk in the clouds Saturday night. Gaines took on all challengers. The checkered flag flew on the final lap with Roderick Dykes hard on the tail of Gaines. Steven Gaines Jr was declared the official winner Rodgerick Dykes finished second and Danny Stroud finished third.
Rusty Harmon and Calvin Pike battled for the lead during the early stages of the Modified main event. Harmon lead the first ten laps anticipating another victory for the 2006 champion. Harmon exited the track on lap ten. Nick Biddle assumed the lead, leading all the way to the checkered flag. Nick Biddle was the official winner, Calvin Pike finished second, and Randy Register was third.
Lloyd Townsell made his way to the East Alabama Motor Speedway Saturday night. Townsell is a driver from the Dothan, AL area. Townsell put his Mustang straight to the front where he remained for the duration of the race. Post race inspection determined that Townsell's engine was not within East Alabama guidelines. The Victory was relegated to Bryan Price the second place finisher. Bryan Price was declared the winner Brandie Gatlin moved up from third to second. Forth place finisher Brandy Stephens was also disqualified by tech officials. Scott Prins Jr. finished fifth and was awarded the third place finish.
Richie Stephens started the Hobby feature in the final row in the last starting position. Stephens made short work of bringing himself to the front. Stephens held out another victory beating Montana Dudley who finished second and Andrew Barber the third place finisher.
Grady Holmes was on track this weekend driving a flag to flag victory in the Bomber division. Holmes earned the pole position by virtue of a heat race win. Holmes stayed out front through the entire race earning him the win. Jason Howell finished second and Jason Patrick was third.
MONSTER MADNESS at EAST ALABAMA
By Jay Vaquer
Phenix City, ALA - April 21, 2007 - East Alabama Motor Speedway held a two night Monster Truck show this weekend
and offered the community an excellent gift. The Friday night show was free for school kids as many underprivileged
children would never afford tickets to witness the likes of Reptoid and Wild Thing blasting thousands of decibels of
raw horsepower that would shake your bone marrow. The public responded by showing up in a record crowd of fans to get a glimpse of the excitement of the local dirt track. Saturday’s show included all six divisions
of cars plus the Monster trucks and the grandstands filled to near capacity again. In the Late Model division,
Dewayne Flat-Out Johnson put on a thrilling display of speed and power as he was the only driver to break the 16
second fast time barrier with a 15.92 and earned the pole. Another speedster, Larry Harrod was on the outside pole
as the green dropped on the feature event. Johnson took the lead down the front stretch as local legend Dana Eiland,
starting third, pulled even with Harrod going into turn one. Harrod was on the high side and kept the momentum to come
out of turn two firmly in second place. Johnson was so fast that by lap 5 he was almost a full straightaway ahead of
Harrod. Johnson was driving the 3/8ths mile high- banked clay oval as if it were a super speedway never letting up on
the throttle. On lap 6 Johnson was putting Kyle Bridges a lap down and when Harrod reached Bridges, Bridges moved into
the preferred line and blocked Harrod which allowed Dana Eiland to make the pass for second place. On lap 9, the K-9
of Eiland starting smoking and brought out a caution. As the K-9 limped into the pits Hubert Waller also went to the
pits for an early DNF. The restart order was Johnson, Harrod, Jerry Summers, Tod Darda, Rusty Harmon, Scott Land,
Jimbo Eiland, and Leon Watson JR. When they went green Johnson blasted out to the lead and began running away from
the field. Everybody stayed on the preferred line at the top of the track trying to keep pace with Johnson and there were no challenges for position until lap 15 when Land’s power plant
blew to bring out the next caution. When the green came back out Johnson put the pedal to the metal and just flat
out ran everybody to the checkers. During the post race inspection the techman discovered that Johnson was not
running the mandatory Sunoco Blue track fuel and he was disqualified passing the victory to Larry Harrod. Second
place was Jerry Summers, Tod Darda third, Rusty Harmon fourth, and Jimbo Eiland rounded out the top five in fifth.
By Tim George:
Rodgerick Dykes took on the best of the best in the twenty lap Super Street feature event. Dykes steamed ahead as the race wore on bringing home his second feature win of the season. Dykes was already the points leader going in to this weeks racing. Steve Gaines Jr., followed second in the points standings.Dykes powered himself ahead of the rest of the field and Gaines found himself in contact with another competitor severely damaging the Gaines machine. Gaines car was injured but able to finish in third place just behind Freddie Slaughter. Roderick Dykes was the official winner, Freddie Slaughter finished second, and Steve Gaines Jr. Finished third.
Points leader Rusty Harmon racked up his third feature win of the season in the Modified Division. Harmon dominated the twelve lap event. Brandon Pijenburg earned the second finishing spot, and Calvin Pike finished third. Harmon has three feature wins to his credit so far this season. Ricky Culpepper and Nick Biddle each have one feature win.
Montana Dudley quelled the reign of the Rocketman, Richard Stephen's Jr. in the twelve lap Hobby Stock feature event. Andrew Barber and Montana Dudley started heads up on the front row. Dudley quickly dominated the lead position, Stephens attempted to make his way to the front from row three inside and consistently kept himself in control of the lead. Montana Dudley earned the win breaking the four in a row winning streak of Stephens. Stephens did manage to pull out second place in his battered double zero. Mikey Mount finished third.
Jason Howell set a blistering pace in the twelve lap Bomber feature event. Howell led every lap of the race. When the checkered flag fell Howell was declared the winner. Second place finisher John Michael became suspicious as to how Howell was able to create the amount of horsepower that he was producing and still continue to remain within the guidelines of the Bomber Division. Michael initiated an official protest with the tech inspectors. Howell refused to have his engine taken apart and inspected, forfeiting the win to John Michael. Mikey Burt inherited the second finishing position, and Jeff Elliott moved up to third.
Adam Rodriguez added his name to the list of winners in the Pony Stock four cylinder Division. Rodriguez started seventh in the twelve lap feature event. When the checkers were displayed it was Adam Rodriguez taking the win. Rodriguez was the fourth different winner this season. Two time winner Bryan Price finished second and Terry Mc Craine finished up in third.
MOSELEY WINS EAST ALABAMA
By Jay Vaquer
Phenix City, ALA - April 28, 2007 - The fans at East Alabama Motor
Speedway were treated to a surprise victory by former Late Model Track
Champion JR Moseley. It was nearly 5 years ago when Moseley dominated the
Late Model division and was the man to beat. During the interim Moseley
has raced several different race car combinations with out a victory but
this year he returned to his winning combination featuring the Barry
Wright Chassis and has been up front all year. Moseley posted the second
fastest time in qualifying and started the feature next to pole sitter
and last week’s winner Larry Harrod. When the green dropped on the
feature Harrod fired a few yards ahead of the designated cone at the
beginning of turn 4. The start was waved off and they tried it again.
Again Harrod fired before the cone and the start was aborted. Harrod was
penalized one spot which put Moseley on the pole for the single file
start and that was all he needed to bring out his championship form and
drive a perfect race to the checkers. Harrod gave chase right on
Moseley’s heels but the two competitors seemed equal in power and
set-ups. Moseley could not run away from Harrod but Harrod could not
catch up either. On lap 7 Lavon Sparks got loose in turn one and Dana
Eiland was quick to move his K-9 into position for the kill. On lap 8
Eiland made a clean pass in turn three to take over the fifth position.
Steve Gaines lost power and circulated slowly at the apron just as Rusty
Harmon went off the backstretch to bring out the yellow caution flag.
Dana Eiland’s K-9 also expired and he coasted to the pits for an early
and unfortunate DNF. On the green restart Moseley blasted back out to an
unmatchable lead as cars in the back tried to take advantage of the
restart to pass. Mickey Benton got a fender on the inside of Marvin Cook
but could not make the pass. Mike Parkerson and Chad Marchman also
sparred over position but there was no passing. On lap 21 Cook spun off
turn two to bring out a caution. On this restart current Late Model
Champion Tod Darda passed Sparks and was charging to the front but ran
out of laps as JR Moseley took the checkers unabated wire to wire, just
like the good ole days. Larry Harrod finished second, Larry Eldridge
third, Tod Darda fourth, Mickey Benton fifth, Chad Marchman sixth, Mike
Parkerson seventh, Marvin Cook eighth, Larry Summers ninth, and Lavon
Sparks rounded out the top ten in tenth.
By: Tim George
Joey Eiland became the fifth different winner in the previous six weeks of Super Street feature racing. Roderick Dykes is currently the only repeat winner in the division. Eiland brought the Smears team car into victory lane ahead of Roger Arnett and Steve Gaines Jr.
Nick Biddle bagged his second Modified feature win Saturday night. Biddle beat Stacy Mashburn and Ricky Culpepper for the win. Biddle now ranks right behind Rusty Harmon for the most feature wins. Harmon has three wins to his credit. Ricky Culpepper is the only winner other than Biddle and Harmon.
Lady driver Christy Noles started side by side in row one with Mikey Burt in the Bomber feature. Burt led the first four laps prior to suffering mechanical problems, Noles placed herself in the lead with John Michael in hot pursuit Michael was never able to out maneuver the Noels Comaro. Christ y Noles was awarded the checkers , John Michael finished a close second, and Trevor Elliott finished third. Trevor Elliott was disqualified after tech inspection . Chase Edge was moved up one spot and officially finished third.
Adam Rodriguez scored two in a row in the Pony Stock Division, Saturday night. Rodriguez was also last weeks feature winner. Rodriguez now stands on even ground with current points leader Bryan Price. Both drivers have two wins each to their credit. Rodriguez finished ahead of Jake Jacobs and Ray Fowler finished third.
The Rocketman Richie Stephens Jr., climbed back to the top of the perch Saturday night as he picked up his fifth feature win in the Hobby Division. Stephens was undefeated in the Hobby Division until last Saturday night. Montana Dudley scored victory over the Rocketman. This weeks results yielded Stephens the win and Dudley second. Allen McConnell finished third.
HARROD HAMMERS EAST ALABAMA
By Jay Vaquer
Phenix City, ALA - May 5, 2007 - Late Model driver Larry Harrod
demonstrated to his peers and fans at East Alabama Motor Speedway that
striving to be first has many rewards. Not only was he the first to
arrive at the track, and the first to buy racing fuel, but he had such a
positive attitude towards his entire racing experience that he exuded
victory. When it came time to qualify Harrod blistered the track with a
16.08 second lap to win the pole for the main event. When the green
dropped on the feature Harrod wasted no time in blasting out to a lead
from our current Late Model track champion Tod Darda. Dewayne Johnson had
to begin the feature dead last as the result of a track rule which states
if you are disqualified from an event, which happened to Johnson a couple
of weeks ago, then you must start from the rear in the next race you run.
Johnson began his run to the front like the Devil himself was chasing
him. While most drivers ahead of him followed the preferred groove where
Harrod was still pulling away from the pack, Johnson created his unique
line. Coming down the backstretch Johnson would stay of the outermost
edge of the track. When he reached turn four he would dive to the apron
and get even with the car ahead of him. They would drag race down the
front stretch and when Johnson hit turn one he would again dive to the
apron and this time pass the car beside him and come out of turn two with
his opponent’s position. On lap six Johnson came out of turn four so much
faster than Gordy Scarborough that he inadvertently executed a picture
perfect Earnhardt bump and run knocking Scarborough out of positioning
and speeding away. Danny Herrington lost the handle on lap 6 going off
the back to bring out the caution. On this restart Jeff Culpepper jumped
up next to Dana Eiland while Eiland was trying to get around Mickey
Benton running in fourth. While Harrod ran away with the lead the racing
in the middle of the field was very exciting. Johnson provided most of
the action with his quest to the front. He executed his strategy on Jeff
Culpepper next. Pulling alongside from the apron dive in turn three to
making a clean pass in turn 2 on lap 11. Harrington suffered a flat and
went to the pits as Johnson put it on Dana Eiland next passing the famous
K-9 on lap 13 and reeling in Mickey Benton just ahead. Suddenly Jeff
Culpepper lost power and coasted to the pits. Larry Harrod continued to
pull away from Tod Darda and was leading the second place car by nearly a
full straightaway. Johnson finally ran up on his match when he tried to
pass Mickey Benton. Benton had that momentum thing down and would rocket
off the corners where Johnson could not make the pass. The white flag was
out and Harrod did his thing, which is take the checkers and finish
first. Tod Darda finished second, Jerry Summers third, Mickey Benton
fourth, Dewayne Johnson fifth, Dana Eiland sixth, Gordy Scarborough
seventh, Scott Land eighth, Jeff Culpepper ninth, and Danny Herrington
rounded out the top ten in tenth.
By: Tim George
Super Street racing was wide open once again . Danny Stroud was back in victory lane.Stroud won his heat race earning a front row starting position in the feature event. After a brief encounter with Pat Wall Stroud stretched his lead all the way to the checkered flag. Danny Stroud won his second feature event of the season. Pat Wall finished second and Roderick Dykes earned the third finishing position.
Calvin Pike was up front in the Modified Division this weekend. Pike has risen through the ranks at the East Alabama Motor Speedway over the years. Pike has been a successful driver in just about every division. This week he added a Modified feature win to his list of accomplishments. Calvin Pike won his first ever Open Wheel Modified feature event Saturday night, Brandon Pijenburg was second and Nick Biddle finished third.
Pony Stock Four Cylinder action filled the air with excitement again this week. Adam Rodriguez brought his ford Mustang from the back to the front, Bill Taylor led the first ten laps. Looking as if he would be the sure winner of the feature. Rodriguez hacked off car after car until Taylor was the only car left in front of him, Rodriguez sported enormous power as he drafted on Taylor. Taylor soon succumbed to pressure and reverted to second. The final laps of the race were set into motion with Adam Rodriguez picking up the win. Bill Taylor finished second and Bryan Price barely edged out Ray Fowler for third.
Hobby stock racing has taken on a new twist at East Alabama, The once dominant Richie Stephens has twice taken a back seat to Montana Dudley. Stephens and Dudley were scheduled to start on the front row of the main event. As the green flag flew Stephens anticipated the start and officials yellow flagged the start of the race and penalized Stephens starting him in row two. Stephens desperately trying to gain positions on the track went high on the track ending up over the bank. Stephens restarted in the rear and moved up to second by race end. Montana Dudley was the winner and Chris Arnett finished third.
Chris Storey took a horrific ride off of the turn two bank last weekend. The car rolled several times and was determined to be a total loss. Storey was back this weekend piloting the black number three with all of his driving skills firmly in tact. Storey won his heat placing himself in row one for the feature race. Storey maintained a sufficient lead until approximately lap ten. Plagued with mechanical failure Storey faded to the rear relinquishing all his glory. John Michael moved in for the kill riding out the lead for another feature win in the Bomber Division. Trailing behind was Bobby Thomas Jr. in second and Christy Noles in third.
Johnson Wins East Alabama
By Jay Vaquer
Phenix City, ALA - May 19, 2007 - East Alabama Motor Speedway held Military Appreciation night this weekend allowing anyone with a military I.D. free entrance as support and thanks for all the military does to insure our freedom. The packed grandstands got to witness some very explosive excitement in the Late Model division as local legend Late Model Champion Dana Eiland placed his K-9 on the outside pole with speedster Dewayne Flat-Out Johnson on the pole. When the green dropped on the feature Eiland wasted no time in out powering Johnson into turn one and taking the lead. Eiland gained ground on Johnson with each passing second and Johnson was able to get away from Terrance Nowell and Jeff Mills who were also very fast. On lap 3 Gordy Scarborough lost the handle in turn 4, left the track, and brought out the yellow flag caution. On the restart Eiland demonstrated that he really was all that as again he blasted out to the lead and pulled away from the field. Larry Harrod, running in fifth, was looking for a way around Nowell but every time he dropped off the preferred line he lost momentum and could not find another line to pass. Nowell was trying to pass Mills but when Mills is hooked up, as he was, there is no passing him on an open track. Within a few laps Eiland was nearly a half track ahead of Mills in third. JR Moseley was also dropping to the inside of Daniel Goodman looking for a pass as Marvin Cook was looking for a pass on Mickey Benton on the inside but the pace was too furious and nobody could pass. The exception was Dana Eiland who passed Tejay Holland on lap 13 to put him down a lap. On lap 16 as Harrod kept pressuring Nowell suddenly Nowell blew up spewing oil on the groove and billows of smoke into the air. Jerry Summers spun off the track after catching some of the oil and the yellow flag was out again. The running order on the restart was Eiland, Johnson, Mills, Harrod, Goodman, Moseley, Benton, Cook, and Scarborough. When the green came out Eiland’s K-9 ran like a scalded dog and was way faster than anyone else on the track. Harrod was still looking inside Mills in the turns but there was nothing doing as Mills was very strong and could run away from any challenges. It was the same story with Cook trying to pass Benton, the pace was so fast you had to stay on the preferred line or go backwards. With three laps to go Eiland’s K-9 had a seizure and the back wheels locked up forcing the leader to the pits and relinquishing the lead to Johnson. On the restart some drivers decided to take a chance a jumped the cars ahead of them. Cook ran into Moseley then Moseley decided he would jump the start, knowing he was going to be penalized. But he was a man seeking adventure as he ran door to door down the front straight with Goodman. Johnson had no problem staying in the lead and there was no way Harrod could take second place from Mills. The white flag was out and Johnson being no stranger to victory, took the checkers. Jeff Mills finished second, Larry Harrod third, Jerry Summers fourth, Mickey Benton fifth, JR Moseley finished sixth after being penalized one spot for jumping, Marvin Cook seventh, Daniel Goodman eighth, Gordy Scarborough ninth, and Tejay Holland rounded out the top ten in tenth.
By Tim George
Richard Stephens launched his car from the pole position in the fifteen lap Hobby feature. Stephens motored his way forward the caution flag was displayed at approximately lap five when Rodney Gorman suffered engine failure. The track was covered with a film of oil from Gorman's car. After the smoke cleared the track Richard Stephens Jr. resumed the lead. Stephens was clearly the victor as the checkered flag was displayed. Chris Arnett initiated a protest concerning the fuel in the Rocketman entry. Officials performed tests and were able to conclude that Stephen's gas tank contained something other than the authorized fuel of the East Alabama Motor Speedway. Stephens was disqualified and stripped of the win. Chris Arnett was the official winner, Allen Flournoy finished second and Montana Dudley finished third.
The Pony Stock Division saw a familiar face in victory lane. Ray Fowler won the ten lap event. This weeks win was the second win of the season for Fowler. Brandie Gatlin looked as if she may be a contender for the top spot. Gatlin put on one of her best performances as she took on Bill Taylor lap after lap. Gatlin finished second with Bill Taylor finishing third. Bryan Price remains the points leader with three feature wins to his credit.
Brandon Pijenburg led the early stages of the ten lap Modified feature race. Pijenburg was soon overcome by the forces of Nick Biddle. Biddle made the pass and assumed the lead all the way to the checkered flag. Nick Biddle won his third feature event of the season, Scott Prins finished second and BJ Freeman finished third.
Bobby Thomas Jr. won the thirty lap Bomber Championship feature. Thomas scored his first win of the season in grand style. Thomas piloted his Monte Carlo to victory over Chase Edge finishing second and Christy Noles was third. Thomas was the seventh different driver to win a feature event in the Bomber Division this season. John Michael is the only driver with multiple wins having two wins to his credit.
The Super Street Division was hot with action this weekend. Roderick Dykes started the event on the pole position beside Steve Gaines Jr. Dykes acquired the lead as the green flag was displayed. Gaines was never able to get within striking distance of the lead. As a caution filled race wore on Dykes took the checkered flag winning the twenty lap event a full straightway ahead of Gaines. After the race Gaines protested against the fuel in Dykes car suspecting that Dykes was fueling his car with an unauthorized substance. A fuel sample was removed from the Dykes number Five. Test results proved that Dykes' fuel was within tolerance allowed by the speedway. Roderick Dykes was declared the official winner, Steve Gaines Jr. Was awarded second and Josh Weathers finished third.
ELDRIDGE JOINS EAST ALABAMA WINNERS CLUB
By Jay Vaquer
Phenix City, ALA - May 26, 2007 - The ancient Chinese believed the sound
of gun powder exploding reverberated into the spirit world and caught
their attention. East Alabama Motor Speedway held a spectacular fireworks
display this weekend to honor all the soldiers who gave their lives for
our great country. As the beautiful colors and
patterns lit up the night sky, the patriotic music reminded all the race
fans of why Memorial Day and the memory of those who made the supreme
sacrifice must never be forgotten. In the Late Model division three
drivers were able to break the 15 second barrier in qualifying. Dewayne
Flat Out Johnson set the fastest lap and won the pole with a 15.79.
Surprisingly Larry Eldridge won the outside pole beating out speedster
Larry Harrod who posted the third fastest time with a 15.99. When the
green dropped on the feature Johnson took the lead down the front
straight but some slipping and sliding in the middle of the back aborted
the start and they were lined back up for the second start. This time
Larry Eldridge blasted off the turn four corner and passed Johnson to
take the lead going into turn one. The scrambling in turn one cleared out
and as they came out of turn two the master of faster Dana Eiland had
moved into fourth. Eldridge followed by Johnson in second, Harrod in
third, and Eiland fourth began to distance themselves from the pack.
Lavon Sparks was looking inside track Champion Tod Darda but nothing
doing there as Darda was too strong to get around. On lap 5 Johnson came
to a stop in turn 4 and brought out the caution flag. Unfortunately
Johnson went to the pits with a mechanical failure for an early DNF. When
the green came back out Eldridge was firmly in control even though Harrod
was right on him and looking for a pass in the turns. Mike Parkerson brought
out the yellow and also retired to the pits for an early
DNF. On this restart Sparks jumped Darda before the flag stand so when
Jack Mills lost power and brought the yellow back out Sparks was sent
back behind Darda for the restart. Harrod was trying hard to get the lead
and was going door to door in the turns but Eldridge managed to keep the
lead. Lap thirteen proved unlucky for Glenn Brewer as he lost power and
coasted into the pits calling it a night. Power loss seemed to be an
epidemic as Steve Gaines was the next victim dropping out on lap 15. On
the restart Harrod was looking like he was going to take the lead but
Eldridge had the power and driving skills to hold him back. Jeff
Culpepper and been struggling with an over steering condition all night
and after a spin in turn two he called it quits and went to the pits. On
the restart Mickey Benton got alongside Eiland’s K-9, looking for a pass
but that is a hard nut to crack as Eiland gets passed once in a blue moon
if he has no mechanical problems. The battle between Benton and Eiland
slowed down the pack behind them and allowed Eldridge and Harrod to run
way out front and take the white flag nearly a straightaway ahead of
Eiland and the pack. Eldridge took the checkers in his first ever Late
Model win to become a member of the exclusive EAMS super fast Late Model
winners circle. Larry Harrod finished second, Dana Eiland third, Mickey
Benton fourth, Jerry Summers fifth, Tod Darda sixth, Lavon Sparks
seventh, Marvin Cook eighth, Gordy Scarborough ninth, and Leon Watson JR
rounded out the top ten in tenth.
By Tim George:
The Modified feature earned Nick Biddle his third feature win of the season. Biddle broke off into the lead from the onset. Stacy Mashburn pursued Biddle as he trailed in second. Scott Prins took his car off the bank on lap three. Randy Register ended up facing backwards on lap thirteen as he spun in turn four Nick Biddle was the first to the checkers and the win. Stacy Mashburn finished second and former feature winner Calvin Pike finished third.
The Pony Stocks were next on the schedule Newcomer Randy Brown led the start of the event with Brandie Gatlin in second. Gatlin took control of the lead on lap four. Brown left the track and settled into the pit area. Gatlin led Adam Rodriguez moved up to second. Gatllin's lead was short lived Rodriguez swept by Gatlin on lap six. Gatlin contacted Rodriguez causing a pile-up on the straightway. Gatlin left the track with a flat tire. Rodriguez restarted up front with Bill Taylor in second. Bryan Price tried to remove Taylor from the third spot on lap eleven. Price struck Taylor causing a massive pile-up just prior to turn one. Both cars were damaged and subsequently able to finish the race. Adam Rodriguez scored his forth pony feature win, Jake Jacobs was second and Brandy Stephens finished third.
Fifteen cars started the fifteen lap Ben Thomas Racing Hobby feature event. Richard Stephens Jr. Led the first ten laps holding Mikey Mount to second position. Stephens suffered a big disappointment as his car left the side of the track on lap ten. The caution flag flew and the race was halted. The restart placed Mount in the lead and Stephens on the tail. Mount rode out the remainder of the race just ahead of last weeks winner Chris Arnett. Arnett finished second. Allen McConnell finished in third place. Mikey Mount became the fourth different winner of the season in the Hobby division.
Christy Noles captured a flag to flag victory in the Bomber division. Noles held off the hard charging John Michael lap after lap until victory was achieved. Michael tried every surface of the track attempting to take the lead from Noles. Christy Noles won her second feature race of the season Christy Noles and John Michael are the only drivers in the division with multiple feature wins. Chase Edge finished third and is still pursuing his first feature win at East Alabama.
Steve Gaines Jr. And Roderick Dykes started up front in the Mc Donald's Super Street twenty-five lap feature. Gaines gained the advantage coming off of the start. Gaines led Dykes for sixteen laps. Dykes ended up over the side of the bank with the assistance of Josh Weathers. Gaines held on to the lead with his tires fading fast. Relief came for Gaines on lap twenty-three. Paul Wallets and Josh Weathers got together causing a caution flag to be displayed. Gaines was able to hold on to the lead for two more laps. Steve Gaines Jr., achieved a flag to flag victory over Roger Arnett finishing second and Roderick Dykes finishing third.
RICKY CULPEPPER WINS EAST ALABAMA
By Jay Vaquer
Phenix City, ALA - June 9, 2007 - The Late Model field at East Alabama
Motor Speedway is full of past champions and well equipped talented
newcomers. However, the odds of a teenage rookie taking a win are slim to
none. This weekend Ricky Culpepper beat those odds when he took the
checkers and gave the fans a glimpse of the future. Last week's feature
winner, Larry Eldridge, won the pole for the feature and Ricky Culpepper
turned in the second fastest time to earn the outside pole position.
After last week’s rainout Billy Thomas added more clay and re-shaped the
3/8’s mile high banked clay oval reducing the pitch in the turns. A
practice was held during the week and Culpepper came to work the bugs out
of his new engine and set up. Culpepper was quick to learn the changes in
the track which proved to be a valuable lesson when the green flag
dropped on the feature. Eldridge fired in turn 4 and blasted out to the
lead distancing himself from Culpepper in second. The local legend Dana
Eiland was going door to door with past Late Model Champion Jeff Mills
for some early excitement when all of the sudden Eldridge flew off the
track in turn 2. The last time Eldridge raced on the track the steeper
banking allowed for more speed at the top and as he turned on the after
burners hitting high 15 second laps early on cold tires, he lost it,
relinquishing the lead to Culpepper. After a brief caution the green flag
was back out and Culpepper pushed it to the limits with speedster Larry
Harrod shadowing his every move. They were just getting started when
Lavon Sparks and Leon Watson JR spun off turn 2 for another caution. When
the green came out again Culpepper decided to escape the threat from
Harrod and ran several car lengths ahead while maintaining total control.
On lap 8 Sparks began smoking and led the parade to the pits. Larry
Eldridge was next to enter the pits for an early DNF and then Jerry
Summers came in calling it quits on lap 10. On lap 11 another talented
young driver Matt Woodson entered the pits with a mechanical failure.
Dana Eiland was sparring with #00 Fun Carts of Opelika Monte Carlo of
Shane Thompson while Jeff Mills, hooked up and running strong, was
lurking in the shadows waiting for an opportunity to pass them both.
Marvin Cook seemed to have finally hit on the right set up and was
running a very solid race in third, several car lengths behind Harrod yet
the same distance ahead of Thompson. Lap 18 was a let down for the K-9
fans as Dana Eiland’s Warrior lost power and coasted into the pits while
Culpepper was putting Jimbo Eiland a lap down. Cook closed the gap with
Harrod but there was no way to get around him. Gordy Scarborough and
Mickey Benton closed in on Watson but again, at these speeds the only
passing going on was the leaders who were now putting Woodson and Joey
McCoy down a lap. The white flag came out and Culpepper sprinted, nearly
half a straightaway ahead of Harrod, to take the double checkers of
flagman Chad Wallace and add another win in following his father, Jeff
Culpepper‘s, footsteps to becoming a respected EAMS Late Model champion.
Larry Harrod finished second, Marvin Cook third, Shane Thompson fourth,
Jeff Mills fifth, Leon Watson JR sixth, Mickey Benton seventh, Gordy
Scarborough eighth, Joey McCoy ninth, and Steve Gaines SR rounded out the
top ten in tenth.
By Tim George:
Danny Stroud and Keith Phillips Started on the front row of the Super Street Feature event. Stroud took the lead and Phillips found himself over the bank between turns one and two. The caution flag dominated the event. Steve Gaines Jr. was stuck in the mud in an unrelated incident and was able to restart. Russ Ogletree took his turn going over the bank on lap four. Steve Gaines Jr. moved into third passing Roderick Dykes on lap sixteen. Pat Wall had a mishap on lap fourteen, sending himself over the bank as well. The white flag was in the air as Wall went over the side. The race was restarted again. Danny Stroud rode it out to the checkers taking the win. Chad Schrimpshire picked up second and Steve Gaines JR. was third.
A confident Calvin Pike hauled in his second Modified feature win Saturday night. Pike took the wind out of the sails of Nick Biddle. Biddle chased Pike lap after lap and was unable to overcome the power of the H&H Racing entry of Pike. Calvin Pike took the checkers with Nick Biddle right on his tail in second place. Stacey Mashurn took home third.
The Pony Stock division found a new winner this weekend in the fifteen lap feature event. Bill Taylor led up to lap four. Jake Jacobs motored his way into the top spot. Bryan Price did everything in his power to attain win number four. Price was plagued with trouble as the race went on. Jacobs, Price, and Adam Rodriguez shot it out in that order until the end. Jake Jacobs earned the win. Brian Price finished second and Adam Rodriguez was third.
The ever changing once dominated Hobby division took on yet another twist this weekend. The topic was the thirty lap, one thousand dollar to win feature event. Chris Arnett started on the pole and took the lead. Mikey Mount worked on Arnett with a infectious desire for the lead. Richard Stephens Jr. rounded out the caboose of the train ripping Stephens front bumper off on the back of Mount's Monte Carlo. Arnett was sure to win until lap eighteen, Mount was able to maneuver around Arnett for the lead. A caution flag was displayed, Mount was back at work again. Mount passed Arnett for the second time and the win. Mikey Mount won his first feature event of the season. Montana Dudley was second and Richard Stephens Jr. finished third.
Heat winner and pole sitter Jeff Elliott shocked East Alabama fans as he came to grips with his first feature victory of the season. Elliot went neck to neck, lap after lap with Chris Storey. Storey dropped off the pace and John Michael applied the pressure. Michael pursued Elliott on the high side, and on the lowside of the track. When the final laps unfolded, Elliott came out the winner. Jeff Elliott added his name to the list of winners in the Bomber division. John Michael Finished second and Chase Edge was third.
Eiland Iconic at East Alabama
By Jay Vaquer
Phenix City, ALA - June 16, 2007 - The O’Reilly Auto Parts sponsored
United Sprint Car Series rolled into East Alabama Motor Speedway for a
special Father’s Day presentation. The near capacity filled grandstands
witnessed a fearless 16 year old win the main event. Derrick Hagar from
Arkansas was the only driver to run on the precarious high side of the
track to overtake the leaders and win his first ever Outlaw Sprint Car
series feature in this 30 lap event. In the Late Model event local legend
Dana Eiland once again asserted why he is the quintessential dirt track
Late Model Champion. Eiland set the fast time qualifying to win the pole.
Last week’s winner, Ricky Culpepper, won the outside pole position with
the second fastest lap. When the green dropped on the feature Eiland took
the lead right from the start and began to pull away from the field
immediately. Daniel Goodman lost it coming off turn 2 to bring out the
first yellow flag caution. As he came right back on the track the green
came back on the next lap and again Eiland pulled out, but this time
Culpepper was right behind him. Larry Harrod, running third suddenly
slowed in turn two and as track Champion Tod Darda and Larry Eldridge
checked up they nearly collided. Darda took advantage of the situation
and passed Eldridge to move into fourth. Leon Watson JR and Marvin Cook
were engaged in a fierce battle over ninth and provided door to door
excitement. Lap 13 was unlucky for Goodman as he coasted into the pits
with an appearent mechanical failure. Eiland was now in lap traffic and
he and Culpepper put Matt Woodson down a lap while running a straightaway
ahead of Harrod in third. On lap 17 Watson retired to the pits as did
Cook and Marc Gooden. A caution was called on lap 19 for debris in turn
one. During this caution Harrod suffered a cut down tire and went to the
pits giving up his third place position. The leaders now were Eiland,
Culpepper, Darda, Eldridge, and Shane Thompson as the sprint to the white
flag was on. Mike Parkerson looked pretty sporty in his new TNT as he
tried to pass Jerry Summers but time ran out as Dana Eiland held back
Culpepper to claim yet another victory. Hundreds of fans stood to cheer
and applaud as Eiland took the checkers wire to wire. Ricky Culpepper
finished second, Tod Darda third, Larry Eldridge fourth, Shane Thompson
fifth, Jerry Summers sixth, Mike Parkerson seventh, Larry Harrod eighth,
Matt Woodson ninth, and Marc Gooden rounded out the top ten in tenth.
By Tim George:
Roderick Dykes and Steve Gaines Jr went into the weekend faced off in a tie for the points lead in the super street division. Dykes started the twenty lap feature on the pole with Pat Wall alongside. Dykes took the green flag and was never challenged for the lead. Dykes led the entire race with a huge gap between second place finisher Pat Wall. Roderick Dykes secured the feature win and the points lead. Steve Gaines Jr finished a very distant third place.
Last week's bomber winner Jeff Elliott started on the pole of the twelve lap Bomber feature event, Jeff's son Trevor Elliott started at his side on the front row. Jeff motored away on a slow start, Trevor fell in right behind. Mikey Burt lost his motor on lap eight requiring a caution flag. Mark Vinyard sailed his car over the side on the back stretch on lap ten as the white flag was in the air. With two to go on the restart Jeff Elliott held off his son for the win. As a result of a post race inspection Jeff Elliott was disqualified for having too much valve spring pressure. Trevor Elliott inherited the win giving him his first ever feature win. Christy Noles finished second and Chase Edge was third.
Adam Rodriguez took on Bill Taylor on the front row of the Pony Stock feature. Rodriguez ran away with the event earning his fifth feature win of the season. Rodriguez is the winningest driver in the Pony Division. Jake Jacobs finished second and Bryan Price finished third. Bryan Price is the current points champion. Jake Jacobs is second, Scotty Prins is third and feature winner Adam Rodriguez is fourth. This weeks win could boost Rodriguez within striking distance of Price for a shot at the points title.
Richard Stephens Jr was back in Victory Lane in the Hobby Division. Stephens once dominated the Hobby Division has been winless since April twenty-eighth. Stephens started on the pole and led every lap. Stephens has been able to maintain the points lead throughout the season. Montana Dudley finished second and is also second in the points standings. Prior to the start of the event Stephens held only a ten point lead over Dudley. Jerry Luke finished third in the feature. Luke is currently ninth in the point standings.
EILAND SMOKES FASTRAK at EAST ALABAMA
By Jay Vaquer
Phenix City, ALA - June 23, 2007 - East Alabama Motor Speedway hosted the
second appearance of the FASTRAK Racing Series this Saturday night. A
sizeable crowd filled the grandstands to witness our local drivers
compete against these full time professionals. Phenix City's William
Thomas has been traveling with the Series this year and is their current
point leader. Thomas set the fastest time during qualifying which would
have placed him on the pole for the feature except for a Series rule
which inverts the order of the top six by having some kids draw numbered
tennis balls for the drivers and the number on the ball dictates where
the driver will start. So Thomas moved from the pole to the fifth
starting position. Jody Knowles moved from fifth to the pole for the
feature. When the green flag dropped Knowles fired the began losing
power. By the time he reached turn one most of the full field had passed
him and local rookie Richie Stephens found himself in the lead. Barking
at his heels was the famous K-9 of legendary champion Dana Eiland. By lap
6 they were putting a lap on Michael Spanky Barnett. Ty Lowe lost power
on the backstretch and brought out the lap 10 caution. Shane Thompson,
driving Larry Harrod's # 27, retired to the pits overheating giving up
his fifth place position. On this restart Dana Eiland made one of his
patented moves to go door to door with Stephens then manhandle the rookie
out of position in turn three and four coming out of turn four with the
lead as the legions of Eiland fans stood to cheer the boldness of the
consummate professional. Thomas took the cue from Eiland and pulled along
side Frankie Beard running door to door all the way around the 3/8ths
mile high banked clay oval and made the pass on the inside of turn three
on lap 17. Barnett broke on lap 17 and brought out a yellow flag. On this
restart Thomas began working on Stacy Roberts going door to door. Bert
Tomkins moved to the inside of Ricky Culpepper but found out he was a
tough cookie and there would be no passing tonight. Bill Peters had
better luck with getting ahead of JJ Nye. While Thomas and Roberts were
fighting hard over position Mike Parkerson ran into trouble and got the
right side sheet metal ripped off the chassis bringing out the lap 22
caution. On the restart the top five were, Eiland, Stephens, Roberts,
Thomas, and David McCoy. When the green dropped Stephens tried to make a
move on the K-9 but Eiland quickly dismissed him and got out to a
cushioned lead. Jordy Nipper and Bert Tompkins were locked in a fierce
battle when Anthony Meadows came up and took ninth position from Nipper
on lap 26. On lap 27 Thomas and Roberts entered turn three door to door.
When they got to turn four they were touching and began a spin to the
inside. Roberts kept turning left hoping Thomas would spin out however
Thomas did not budge an inch and instead ran right over the top of
Roberts front clip. Roberts came to a stop and brought out the yellow.
Roberts drove up on Thomas after the flag and tried to intimidate him but
Thomas held his poise and position as Roberts was sent to the rear for
the restart. Now the order was Eiland, Stephens, Thomas, McCoy, Larry
Eldridge, Ricky Culpepper, Tompkins, and Meadows. Again Stephens tried to
put it on the leader but Eiland has heard it all and escaped again to a
cushioned lead. The top three, Eiland, Stephens and Thomas pulled away
from the rest of the field. Stephens would drive deep into turn one but
could not get off the corner to pose a serious threat to Eiland's lead.
Thomas seemed content to wait for Eiland and Stephens to get tangled then
he would take the lead since they were over a straightaway ahead of McCoy
in fourth. Roberts called it a day on lap 36 going to the pits. Meadows
passed Thompkins as Ricky Culpepper had to relinquish sixth spot and
enter the pits due to a mechanical failure. JJ Nye went over the top of
turn one to bring out the last caution. When the green came back Stephens
tried one last time to push Eiland out of shape going into turn one but
the pro has the reflexes of a cat and quickly corrected the K-9 to set
sail for the checkers and chalk up another victory in his illustrious
career. Richie Stephens finished second demonstrating he can hang with
the big boys. William Thomas finished third and remained the points
leader for the FASTRAK Late Model Series. David McCoy finished fourth,
Larry Eldridge fifth, Anthony Meadows sixth, Bert Tomkins seventh, Jordy
Nipper eighth, John Llewellyn ninth, and Lee Cooper rounded out the top
ten in tenth.
By Tim George:
In the Super Street feature after many caution flags flew, the twenty lap feature finally got under way. Chad Schrimpshire lead every lap picking up his first ever victory at East Alabama. Schrimpshire was back after a long break from driving under the orders of his Doctor. Fully recovered and better than ever, Chad won over the always hard charging Danny Stroud in second and Roger Arnett came in third.
The fifteen lap Bomber Feature was filled with excitement as Christy Noles and Shelby Amos set the pace on the front row. Shelby Amos led the race up to lap eight when Jeff Elliott took the lead. Elliot took the checkered flag and the win but Elliott was once again disqualified in the post race inspection. The valve springs in Elliot's car still were not within the standards of the Speedway Inspectors. Chase Edge was crowned the official winner, Christy Noles was second and Trevor Elliott finished third.
Ricky Culpepper and Calvin Pike squared off the front row of the fifteen lap Modified Feature. Pike went forward with a passion. Culpepper lost valuable ground as the race played it's course. Pike looked like a sure winner leading every lap up to the white flag. Pike dropped way off the pace leaving the lead to the hard charging Stacy Mashburn. The final lap gave Stacy Mashburn his first win of the season. Nick Biddle was second, and Randy Renfroe finished third.
Absent from the ranks of the twenty lap Hobby Feature was Dana Brittingham. Dana passed away unexpectedly earlier this week. Tribute was paid to Brittingham as the race simulated his presence by leaving an open spot on the pole for him. Montana Dudley led the race up to lap five when Richie Stephens took over the lead. Richie Stephens scored his second win in two weeks. Montana Dudley was second, and Chris Arnett took home third.
Bill Taylor led the first nine laps of the fifteen lap Pony Feature. Taylor steamed ahead in the caution filled event. Jake Jacobs came from the rear to challenge Taylor for the lead. Jacobs sped away from the pack. Taylor lost power on lap nine and Bryan Price moved up to second. Jake Jacobs was the winner, wrapping up a two in a row winning streak, Scooter Rivera was second, and Ray Fowler finished third.
NOWELL WINS EAST ALABAMA
By Jay Vaquer
Phenix City, ALA - June 30, 2007 - After the day long threat of severe weather racing went on as
usual at East Alabama Motor Speedway. The threats did deter some teams and fans but not one drop of rain fell. In the
Late Model division Dewayne Johnson showed up and as expected set the fast time qualifying to earn the pole. When the
green flag dropped on the feature, another speedster, Terrance Nowell, outran Johnson to turn one to come out of turn
two with the lead. Johnson was able to pull even with Nowell in turn three but Nowell was on the high side with momentum
and was able to stay out front. Todd Mitchell was able to pass Gordy Scarborough then uncharacteristically, Dana Eiland’s
#K-9 suddenly lost power. He coasted around to a stop to bring out the lap 4 yellow flag caution. The restart order was
Nowell, Johnson, Jerry Summers, Matt Woodson who was finally hooked back up and running strong, and Larry Harrod rounded
out the top five. On the restart Woodson wasted no time in making a move on Summers to get the third position. Summers was
not taking it easily and fought back pulling inside Woodson to provide some real excitement for the fans. While these two
warriors put on a great show Scarborough suddenly found himself into the wall bringing out the lap 15 caution. On the
restart Mitchell’s brand new engine blew up and he coasted to the pits. Summers decided to put the same move on Woodson
that Woodson had put on him to move into third. When Summers got inside in turn one he skated high in turn two and
Woodson blasted into space flying off the top of turn two. Woodson was sent to the rear for the restart taking him out
of contention for the lead. When the green came out Nowell was clearly the fastest car on the track as he pulled away
from Johnson and the rest of the field. On lap 21 Scarborough, who had been battling his own demons in his set up,
took that wild ride off the top of the high banked clay oval in turn two to bring out his third caution of the night
which disqualified him from further participation in this event. The white flag came out and there was no catching
Nowell as he powered his way to the checkers wire to wire. Dewayne Johnson finished second, Jerry Summers third,
Larry Harrod fourth, and JC Duboise rounded out the top five in fifth.
By Tim George:
Flyin Bryan Price Knocked out another Feature win in the Pony division. Bill Taylor led the early laps of the race. Price eventually moved in for the kill. Taylor dropped back one spot. Price then commanded the race from the front. Price has been stricken with bad finishes for weeks previous. This week's win keeps price on top of the points standings, as he is the current points leader. Bill Taylor finished second and Adam Rodriguez was third.
Danny Stroud pulled out a flag to flag victory in the Super Street division. Stroud won his fourth feature event of the season. Roderick Dykes put massive pressure on Stroud throughout the entire race. Dykes could never muster enough momentum to maneuver around Stroud for the lead position. Dykes was forced to settle for second place. Joey Eiland was the third place finisher.
Allen McConnell and Robert Jackson paced the front row of the twenty lap Hobby feature,
McConnell led the first six laps of the race. Montana Dudley put the move on McConnell passing him in turn two. With Dudley in the lead Richard Stephens made his way around McConnell on lap nine putting Stephens into second place. Montana Dudley went on to win his third feature win of the season. Stephens was never able to get within striking sistance of Dudley, Stephens finished second. Allen McConnell finished third.
After two Modified heat races Randy Register and Stacey Mashburn squared off for the feature event. Former champion Rusty Harmon was back in action. Starting about midway in the line up. Harmon suffered difficulties and was unable to finish the race. Ricky Culpepper captured the lead taking on all comers. Culpepper was never shaken by the competition as he collected the checkered flag and another feature win in the Modified division. Randy Register was second and Stacey Mashburn finished third.
Jeff Elliott and Christy Noles fought it out for the first spot in the Bomber division. Noles was the leader on lap one. Noles led continuously Elliott made contact with Noles on lap ten sending Noles into a spin. Noles restarted in front and Elliott was sent to the tail.. The race contained many more spins from the back of the pack involving caution flags, Christy Noles maintained the lead and won the fifteen lap event. Chase Edge finished second and Jeff Elliott made his way back up to third.
ELDRIDGE TOPS TOP TRACKS at EAST ALABAMA
By Jay Vaquer
Phenix City, ALA - July 3, 2007 - In commemoration of America’s
Independence Day, East Alabama Motor Speedway threw a big party. A
gigantic fireworks display awed the filled grandstands as did the
demolition derby, the exciting 6 divisions of dirt track racing and for
the feature event the Top Tracks Challenge Series Late Model contenders
came to town to do battle with our own illustrious Late Model Crate
competitors. The locals were very proud to see the top five qualifiers
were home town boys. The living legend, the Master of Faster, Dana Eiland
set fast time to earn the pole for the feature with a super fast 16.03.
William Thomas was second fastest, then Shane Thompson, Larry Eldridge,
and Anthony Meadows rounded out the top five starters in the full field
of 24 cars. When the green dropped on the feature Eiland and Thomas
entered turn one wide open and neither one cracked the throttle. As they
came out of turn two Thomas took the lead and began driving away from the
K-9 and the rest of the field. Eiland’s K-9 soon was as far ahead of
Eldridge, who had slipped ahead of Thompson on the start, and was in
third. On lap 6 Richie Stephens passed Keith Edge and Thomas began
lapping the rear of the field passing Richard Yeoman and Michael Brewer.
Eiland was having a harder time snaking his way through the lap traffic
as for some reason those guys in the back want to race with the leaders
and hold them up instead of just moving over. Just as the K-9 squeezed by
Richard Thomas, Richard Thomas seemed to have a flat and went off the
track in turn two to bring out the lap 13 caution. Jerry Fowler also went
to the pits with a flat during this caution. The restart order was,
William Thomas, Dana Eiland, Larry Eldridge, Jake Knowles, the #00 of
Jeff Smith, the # 00 of Shane Thompson, Anthony Meadows, and the #00 of
Richie Stephens. When the green came out Stephens drove deep into the
corner of turn one and passed Meadows in turn two. Our leader Thomas was
still driving like the devil was chasing him and set blistering lap
speeds in the low 16’s to pull away from the K-9 in second place. Ricky
Culpepper suffered a flat left rear and coasted to a stop in turn four to
bring out the lap 18 caution. On this restart Thomas blasted his # 22 JW
Miller Land and Timber Scorpion Chassis Chevy back into an insurmountable
lead. Eiland put the whip to his K-9, who gave it all it had and then
erupted into a dense cloud of heavy smoke as it blew up down the front
straightaway with just two laps to go. While Thomas circulated during
this caution as the track officials cleared the debris from the track,
the K-9 struck back at the leader from the grave. Thomas ran over some
debris and flatted his right rear tire. Thomas elected to stay on the
track and take the green restart on this flat. As the white flag flew
Thomas tried desperately to maintain the lead but there was no way to
hold back the hungry pack who smelled blood. Larry Eldridge, a local
driver, took the checkers and all was right with the world. Jeff Smith
finished second, Jake Knowles third, Shane Thompson brought his # 00 Fun
Carts of Opelika Scorpion Chassis Monte Carlo in fourth, Richie Stephens
drove a remarkable race and finished fifth. William Thomas managed to
cross the line sixth, Anthony Meadows seventh, Chuck Padgett eighth,
Lamar Haygood ninth and Keith Edge rounded out the top ten in tenth.
The fireworks on the track this Tuesday night were almost as hot as the fireworks in the sky. The Independence Day races in the Hobby, Bomber, Pony Stock, Super Street, and Modified gave the race fans a show of what dirt track racing "Southern Style" is all about!
The Hobby drivers in the front of the pack shared more than a few bumps during the heat races. Mikey Mount's #31 and out-of-towner Daniel Brewer's #d22 led the pack of racers away for their feature event. Richie Stephens who started on the second row tried to pounce into the lead early. However, Richie's #00 car slid high and gave the lead to Mount. Mount held off Stephens for the remainder of the laps to bring home the checkers. Stephens was second, Chris Arnett charged his way into third, Montana Dudley crossed the line in forth, Robert Jackson rounded out the top five. Sixth thru Ninth place official finishers included #d22 Daniel Brewer, #2 John Greene, #39 Colby Conway, and #20 Lee Capps.
In the Bomber division Christy Noles' #16 Camaro looked glued down to the high banks. She now holds the honors as the winningest Bomber driver of 2007. John Michael tried throughout the feature to get around Noles; however, Michael's #294 was running it's best in the same line as Noles. To the cheers of thousands Noles crossed the finish line with a "thumbs-up" out the driver's window. At the end of the event Christy spoke with Tuesday's pit announcer Bobby Thomas Jr. Noles thanked her crew, and she especially thanked the fans for supporting dirt track racing. John Michael was second, Jeff Elliot and Trevor Elliot showed that the same last name means little on the track, as they battled each other for third and fourth. Shelby Amos showed that you can't keep a good man down, racing into the top five at the finish. Just a week earlier he rolled the Columbus Cottonmouths #75 off of turn two. #22x David Dark took sixth, #18 Chase Edge finished seventh, #48 Brandon Freeman took home eighth.
The Pony Stocks proved once again that half the cylinders does not mean half the action. Bill Taylor in the #T55 led the first half of the event until #28 Terry McCraine passed Taylor taking his first victory lap in 2007 at the East Alabama Motor Speedway. Jake Jacobs #1 rode in McCraine's draft to finish second. Bill Taylor was third and lady driver Brandy Gatlin gave the women something to be proud of once again, as she drove a clean race to take home fourth. Also finishing in the top ten were #17 Bryan Price, #B1 BJ Freeman, #15 Jacob Brittingham (driving in honor of his father), #22 Scotty Prins, #4 Lee Durrough, and #00 Brandy Stephens.
Rodgerick Dykes showed why he is the Super Street champion so far in 2007. This Tuesday night he qualified with the 2nd fastest time and took the lead from start to finish in the main event. Dykes' #5 crossed the finish line to the cheers of a packed Independence Day crowd. Pat Wall was second and Joey Eiland continued to show strength by finishing in the top three. Steve Gaines Jr.'s #50jr finished fourth. Rodger Arnett kept the #7 Super Street in the stable once again this week. Flying an unfamiliar #G400, Arnett held off the competition to take home a top five finish. #22 Danny Stroud was officially scored in sixth with #117 Montie Vaughn, #72 Chad Scrimpshire, #26 Josh Marchman, and #18 Kevin Reynolds following.
The Modified class was a display of power and control. #55 Nick Biddle, #M33 Stacy Mashburn, and #7 Ricky Culpepper thrilled the crowd with a three-way battle for the lead throughout their feature. Biddle remained out in front and took his place in victory lane. Mashburn was second, Culpepper was third , #25 Calvin Pike held off all competition for the forth place spot, #29 Randy Register finished fifth, #44 Scott Prins crossed the line sixth, and #B1 MB Freeman and #10 Doug Morris rounded out the official finish.
The "smash'em crash'em" Demo Derby capped off a night of action in style. In a field of competitors that included several full-size 1970s cars (including a hearse!), one of the smallest cars present took home the trophy and the cash. The winning Ford was totally missing it's front tire at the finish! One of the entries called the "Beer Car" brought out cheers from crowd, as it's giant beer bottle on the roof rocked with every hit. The next demo at East Alabama Motor Speedway is scheduled for the Labor Day Championships just a few weeks away.
DARDA BACK IN VICTORY LANE at EAST ALABAMA
By Jay Vaquer
Phenix City, ALA - July 14, 2007 - East Alabama Motor Speedway paid
tribute to our fighting men and women at Fort Benning, GA by holding
military appreciation night. All soldiers were admitted free of charge
and a gala fireworks display was presented in their honor. In the Late
Model division, our current track champion, Tod Darda from LaGrange, GA
seemed to be back in form as he began the feature from the pole. Sitting
on the outside pole was crowd favorite Dana Eiland in his super fast #K-9.
When the green flag dropped Eiland had a slight advantage entering
turn one and emerged from turn two with the lead. The K-9 went to work
right away and began distancing himself from the pack. Mickey Benton made
a quick move to take third from Larry Harrod on the start and Harrod was
all over the back of Benton pulling even in the turns , racing clean, but
not able to make the pass. By lap 5 Dana Eiland was a straightaway ahead
of Darda and still pouring it on when Craig Grice went off the back to
bring out the first yellow flag caution. On the restart Eiland
demonstrated the superiority of his K-9 by steadily pulling away from the
pack. Harrod was still determined to get back into second but former Late
Model champion Mickey Benton knew all the tricks to keep his position and
kept the hard charging Harrod at bay. Jerry Summers seemed to have an
edge on Jeff Mills and tried to pass on the inside but Mills, also a
former Late Model track champion was running strong and there is no way
to pass Mills when his #15 is hooked up. Marc Gooden was having a
mechanical problem and could not get up to speed as he circulated slowly
on the inside. On lap 16 Grice blew up and retired to the pits. When
Eiland’s K-9 was coming out of turn one, second place Darda was just
exiting turn four. Eiland was in a class of his own as he thrilled his
many fans with his awesome display of power and prowess. Stacy Roberts
suddenly passed Jerry Summers on lap 20. Eiland was lapping the back of
the field when he was forced above his normal line in turn one and hit a
dip in the racing surface. The rear of the K-9 went airborne spinning the
back tires so fast that when he came back down to earth the gears in the
rear end snapped and for the second race in a row the K-9 took a DNF only
a few laps from the checkers. Darda gladly stepped into the lead and
powered his way to checkers reminding everyone that he is the track
champ. Mickey Benton finished second, Larry Harrod third, Stacy Roberts
fourth, and Jeff Mills rounded out the top five in fifth.
By Tim George:
The Rocketman, Richie Stephens, was back in Victory Lane after a long absence from a feature win. Stephens started on the rear as Allen McConnell led the race. Stephens moved up consistently bringing along Montana Dudley as he went. Stephens and Dudley both over took McConnell. Stephens took the lead from McConnell and won the race. Montana Dudley was second and Allen McConnell ended up in third.
Danny Stroud scored a flag to flag victory in the Super Street Division. Stroud was the fast qualifier of the fourteen competitors. Stroud sat on the pole with Rodgerick Dykes at his side. Stroud gained the advantage from the green flag taking the lead. Dykes perused throughout the race and never over came the forces that Stroud was leaving behind. Danny Stroud took the checkered flag and the win on the final lap, Rodgerick finished second and Josh Weathers was third.
Stacy Mashburn has moved up through the ranks in the Modified division. Mashburn had been very consistent at attaining a second place finish. After finally breaking the second place barrier, Mashburn pulled off a first place finish a few weeks ago. Mashburn was back in Victory Lane this week with his second win of the season. Stacy Mashburn was the feature winner this week with Ricky Culpepper taking second and Calvin Pike finishing up third.
Jeff Elliott scored another feature win in the Bomber division this weekend. Elliott has five feature wins, however; two were stricken from the record because of technical difficulties during post inspection. Elliott took on all comers holding off John Michael and Grady Holmes. Holmes and Michael were both in contention for the lead at on time or another. Elliott could not be unseated from the top spot. Jeff Elliott took the checkered flag in first place. Grady Holmes was second and John Michael finished third.
Flyin Bryan Price seemed to be untouchable in the Pony Stock feature event. Price led every lap with a comfortable margin between his competitors. Price flew by the white flag and the table turned drastically on Price as he lost control of his Mustang with one half lap left in the race. Chris Miller had been chasing Price throughout the event. Miller rode out the half lap to victory. Miller's win was short lived. He was disqualified by technical officials. The official win was awarded to Bill Taylor. This was Taylor's first win of the season. Brandie Gatlin was second and Chance Renfroe finished third.
THOMAS COLLECTS STORM PAY at EAST ALABAMA
By Jay Vaquer
Phenix City, ALA- July 21, 2007 - The StormPay.Com Late Model Series
brought their high energy group to East Alabama Motor Speedway this
Saturday night. 41 highly competitive Late Model teams vied for the 24
car 50 lap $3000 to win feature event. Phenix City's own William Thomas
turned out to be the star of the show as he placed his # 22 JW Miller
Land and Timber Scorpion chassis on the pole with the fastest qualifying
lap at 15.90 seconds. On the outside pole was David Gentry of Lewisburg,
TN. When the green dropped on the feature it took three false starts to
finally get them rolling single file and Thomas was quick to assume the
lead. Larry Harrod caught Jay Blair and Dana Eiland blocked behind
traffic and moved up two spots from starting thirteenth. David Gentry and
Frank Ingram battled over second place giving the fans some real
excitement. On lap 7 Thomas was putting Chad Wallace down a lap when Jay
Blair, from Angie, LA spun out in turn 4 losing his right rear wheel to
bring out the caution. Bobby Eiland entered the pits during this caution
with a broken shock. The green came back out and Gentry was determined to
take the lead from Thomas as he drove deep into the corners to get on the
inside but Thomas on the preferred line escaped the attack and began
gaining ground from the field. Jeff Fields passed Terrance Nowell to move
into fourth as Wallace rolled into the pits at lap 18. Thomas suddenly
came up on heavy lap traffic which allowed Gentry and Ingram to catch up.
They double teamed Thomas, Gentry on the high side and Ingram on the
inside while Thomas had to deal with Mathew Turner who was running slow
right in the groove. Turner decided to race Thomas instead of moving over
to let the leader pass. It was a tense situation until Thomas finally
shot by running way off his line. Nowell came flying up as Turner decided
to move off the groove and nailed him in the rear which caused Turner to
lose power and coast to a stop to bring out the lap 21 caution. On the
restart Thomas put the pedal to the metal to escape the constant attacks
from Gentry. Nowell was working hard to take fourth place from Fields and
Dana Eiland was looking for a way around Jody Knowles when Harrod cut
down a tire and slowed traffic in the groove. Most drivers would have
stopped on the track to bring out the caution then gone to the pits to
change their tire where they would have been given two courtesy laps to
change it and get back on the track. Harrod however is a true sportsman
and a gentleman and decided to get out of everybody's way, go to the
pits, go down a couple laps, then rejoin the field. In the front, Thomas
has to race another lap car as Jim Till tries to match speed with Thomas,
which only slows Thomas down and allows Gentry and Ingram to catch up.
Fortunately for Thomas, Eldridge got spun around by Stacey Roberts in
turn one to bring out a caution and reset the starting field. On the
restart Dana Eiland passed Jody Knowles to move into seventh at lap 38.
Chris Tays from Corinth, MS got tangled with Eldridge in turn one for the
lap 40 caution. After the restart, five laps later the scene would repeat
itself as Eldridge and Tays got tangled again, this time in turn four and
they collected Harrod in the crash. This set up a shootout to the
checkers. As Thomas took the lead Ingram moved in on Gentry and the
battle over second allowed Thomas to run unabated to the checkers and
claim his first ever StormPay victory. David Gentry came in second, Frank
Ingram finished third but was found light at the scales and
disqualified. Terrance Nowell was awarded third, Derrick Rainey fourth,
Frankie Beard fifth, Dana Eiland sixth, Jody Knowles seventh, Chip
Brindle eighth, Stacey Roberts ninth, and Bill Flowers rounded out the
top ten in tenth.
By Tim George:
Adam Rodriquez was back in victory lane this Saturday in the pony stock division.
Rodriquez piloted his four cylinder mustang into the top spot for the sixth time this season.
Rodriquez has the most feature wins in his class. Rodriquez ranks fourth in the point
standings. Bryan Price finished second and is still the points leader.
Third went to Brandie Gatlin.
Herbie Donath came out of nowhere to win his first feature event of the season in the
modified division. Donath acquired a ride from a friend and ended up in Victory Lane.
This marked the first win of the season for Donath in the modified division. Donath
has competed in various divisions and has been winless until now. Brandon Pijnenburg
was second and Randy Register was third. Stacy Mashburn is the point leader in the
Modified division at this time.
Grady Holmes was back in Victory Lane scoring his second win of the season in the bomber
division. Holmes brought his Monte Carlo from mid pack to the front. After a fierce
battle with Christy Noles, Holmes moved into the lead. So far no driver has dominated
the division. The points lead has shifted throughout the season. Currently Chase Edge
holds the points lead. Christy Noles was second and Chase Edge was third.
Montana Dudley put another star on his crown. Dudley was victorious in the hobby
feature event. Dudley took the lead from Allen McConnell and stretched it out.
The Rocketman, Richie Stephens, tried desperately to claim the lead. Stephens did
manage to take second from McConnell and had to go to the pits for a flat tire after
returning to the race Stephens was able to get to third place. Chris Arnett was second
and Stephens third. Stephens still leads the points in the hobby division at present.
Points leader, Rodgerick Dykes stepped up to the plate once again. Dykes achieved a
flag to flag victory in the super street Feature event. Dykes faced stiff competition
from Sam Moore, Danny Stroud and other strong runners. When it was all said and done,
Rodgerick Dykes carried the checkered flag followed by Sam Moore and Steven Gaines, Jr.
CULPEPPER WINS EAST ALABAMA
By Jay Vaquer
Phenix City, ALA - July 28, 2007 - The Late Model division at East
Alabama Motor Speedway held an exciting feature this weekend. Ricky
Culpepper set fast time qualifying to earn the pole position for the
feature. On the outside pole was newcomer Phil Pitman. When the green
dropped on the main event there was some pushing and shoving going on
with the leaders and the start was aborted. On the next start Pitman
muscled his way past Culpepper to take the lead for the first lap then
Jeff Mills got bumped off the back straight to bring out the caution.
Mills was sent to the rear for the restart and when the green dropped
Mills decided it better just to pull into the pits than race upset with
misfortune, being the victim of bad luck and a big black doughnut on his
side panel. Dewayne “Flat Out”
Johnson began to attack Culpepper seeking the second spot which allowed
Pitman to get a huge lead on the field. Another ghost car, the number 21
of the late Jerry Summers was very much in the hunt since it was piloted
by the expert skills of Scotty Knowles. Knowles and Gordy Scarborough put
on the excitement in the middle of the field. Surprisingly Johnson
started overheating and pulled into the pits on lap 8 relinquishing third
to Larry Harrod. Harrod wasted no time in complicating Culpepper’s life
with constant attacks for second place. On lap 12 Mickey Benton running fourth sat back watching Harrod
go after Culpepper. Marvin Cook was behind Benton but could not catch him
to pose a threat to his position. Pitman was lapping Marty Beckwith and
clearly was overpowering the field when the white flag came out. Pitman
took the checkers but not the win. In post race inspection the legality
of Pitman’s motor was challenged and Pitman refused to tear down his
engine resulting in his disqualification. Ricky Culpepper was awarded the
win and rightfully so considering all the work they put into their race
car to be fast and legal. Larry Harrod came in second, Mickey Benton
third, Marvin Cook fourth, and Scotty Knowels rounded out the top five in
By Tim George:
Danny Stroud turned in fast qualifying time in the Super Street Division. Stroud turned a seventeen thirty-three landing him on the pole for the twenty lap feature event. Stroud took on Rodgerick Dykes on the outside. Dykes and Steve Gains Jr. chased Stroud the entire race. The trio left the competitors about a half a track behind. None were able to shake the lead from Stroud. Danny Stroud earned his sixth feature win of the season. Rodgerick Dykes finished second and Steve Gaines Jr. was third.
Montana Dudley squared off with Richard Stephens Jr. on the front row of the fifteen lap Hobby Feature. Dudley led the early stages of the race. Stephens eventually captured the lead. Richard Stephens Jr. chalked up another feature win to his credit, Montana Dudley finished second and Allen McConnell was third.
Trevor Elliot started his evening with a bang. Trevor sat on the pole of the seventeen lap Bomber Feature. Trevor led up to about the halfway point and things were looking good for awhile. Trevor's lead was growing. John Michael and Trevor's father, Jeff Elliott worked their way from the back of the pack to the lead position as Trevor took a ride off the side of the track. Jeff Elliott stayed in the front for another feature win, John Michael finished second, Trevor Elliott was third but was disqualified in the post race inspection, Christy Noles was officially awarded the third finishing spot.
The Modified Division started their feature event. Brandon Pijenburg and Nick Biddle fought for a feature win. Biddle made his way to the front first. Rain set in before the race was complete. The race was halted without a winner. The event will be rescheduled along with Pony Stock Feature.
COLLINS WINS NLMS at EAST ALABAMA
By Jay Vaquer
Phenix City, ALA - August 4, 2007 - Of all the Late Model series teams
who appear at East Alabama Motor Speedway none is more exciting than Ray
Miller's National Late Model Series. Over 30 highly skilled professional
teams came Saturday night to compete with our local Late Model drivers
who faired well against the professionals. In fast time qualifying Mark
Whitener earned the pole with Johnny Collins on the outside. The second
row had our local legend Dana Eiland on the inside and local speedster
Dewayne "Flat Out" Johnson on the outside. On the third row local rookie
William Thomas qualified sixth with his JW Miller Land and Timber
Scorpion Chassis Monte Carlo equipped with a crate engine since his
Sportsman motor expired the night before at Penton Speedway where he went
from 19th to seventh with five laps to go. When the green flag dropped on
the feature event, Johnny Collins, who is the current NLMS points leader,
wasted no time in asserting his dominance. He outran Whitener to turn one
and immediately began to distance himself from the full field of 25 cars.
Johnson was looking inside Whitener to take over third place and Thomas
was looking to the outside of Eiland to take his place. When Thomas
dropped off the preferred line Steve Jones tried to pass him. On lap four
the leaders decided to stay in the blackened groove, hold on to what they
had, and try to catch Collins who was really pouring it on. Mike
Parkerson suddenly went off the track to bring out the lap nine caution.
On the restart Johnson caught Whitener not paying attention in turn three
and quickly made a clean pass to move into second place. Clay Bedenbaugh
from Lake City, Florida, was one of the only cars to pass during the
qualifying heat races and make the feature, he got into the side of Skip
Panell and bent his front suspension throwing his right front wheel way
out of alignment. Bedenbaugh was forced into the pits for an early DNF.
On the restart it was Collins, Johnson, Whitener, Eiland, Thomas, Jones,
our current Late Model champion Tod Darda, former EAMS Late Model
Champion JR Moseley, and Ben Faircloth rounding out the top ten. On this
restart Moseley muscled his Barry Wright chassis past Darda in turn 2 to
move into seventh. In the front Collins was running away from Johnson and
the pack. To every ones' surprise on lap 15 Whitener pulled into the pits
running hot and relinquishing third place to Dana Eiland. Alex Vickers
lost the handle and went off turn four to bring out the next yellow flag
caution. Whitener rejoined the field at the end for the restart.
Faircloth got even with Darda and they battled door to door around the
track. On lap 19 Tyler Ivey went off turn three for the next caution. On
this restart Thomas got even with Eiland and passed for third place. To
the dismay of his legends of fans the K-9 of Eiland began smoking heavily
and coasted to a stop. Eiland had to go to the pits and take an
unfortunate DNF. On lap 21 Ricky Culpepper who started 19th had worked
his way up to 12th and had a run going on. Steve Jones put the pedal to
the metal and managed to pass Thomas to take over the third position.
Alex Vickers spun out on top of turn one to bring out a caution as
Brandon Dewitt rolled into the pits. On this restart Steve Jones again
put the pedal down trying to pass Johnson but instead his motor erupted
and forced Jones into the pits and out of the competition which put
Thomas back in third. Faircloth was stalking Moseley looking for a pass
into fourth while Collins gets over a straightaway ahead of second place
Johnson on lap 33. On lap 35 Jordy Nipper lost power and Vickers got into
Bucky Gregory to bring out a caution. On the restart bad luck caught up
with JR Moseley as he broke right when he fired. This set up a green,
white, checkered finish. Faircloth was trying everything to shake Thomas
out of third but the rookie had all the correct responses to keep his
position. Collins was clearly the best of class as he took the checkers
in a most domineering fashion. Dewayne Johnson finished second, William
Thomas showed that having the most horsepower is not always the solution
to a good run as he finished third with his GM Crate engine. Ben
Faircloth finished fourth, Tod Darda fifth, Terry Lumley sixth. Russell
Brown seventh, Brad Comer eighth, Ricky Culpepper ninth, and Bucky
Gregory rounded out the top ten in tenth.
By Tim George:
Rodgerick Dykes sat on the pole with Steve Gaines Jr. alongside in the twenty lap Super Street feature. Gaines was ahead as soon as the green flag fell. Dykes tried vigorously to unseat Gaines from the lead. Lap after lap Dykes tried the inside groove, Dykes tried the outside groove, Gaines would not give an inch. Gaines resisted twenty laps of extreme pressure from Dykes. Gaines took the checkered flag just ahead of Dykes. Steve Gaines Jr. won his third feature of the season, Rodgerick Dykes was second and Josh Weathers finished third.
Richard Stephens Jr. won the fifteen lap hobby feature. Stephens is the points leader in the hobby division. Stephens scored his tenth win of the season. Allen McConnell and Montana Dudley fought it out the entire race for the second spot. Dudley was never able to overtake McConnell in spite of his best effort. Allen McConnell finished second and Montana Dudley finished third.
Scott Prins and points leader Stacy Mashburn set the pace for the ten lap Modified feature event. Herbie Donath came from outside row two into the lead to dominate the event. Donath placed himself out front and remained there to race end. Herbie Donath captured his second Modified feature victory of the season. Kelly Leonard finished second and Nick Biddle was third.
Points leader Bryan Price started on the pole in the ten lap Pony Stock feature event. Bill Taylor filled the outside of the front row. Price gained the lead over Taylor and never wavered throughout the entire race. Brandie Gatlin maneuvered her was from row three to second. Taylor faded to fourth. When the checkered flag was displayed Bryan Price laid claim to his fifth feature win of the season Brandie Gatlin officially finished second and Bryan Prins was third.
Chase Edge won his second feature event of the season this weekend. Edge is the current points leader in the division. In an action filled twelve lap race, Edge maintained his composure through many cautions and restarts. Robbie Burt, Christy Noles, John Michael, and Trevor Elliott all fought feverously for the second spot. Burt finished second and was later disqualified. Christy Noles officially finished second, and John Michael was officially third.
EILAND SPANKS MONKEY at EAST ALABAMA
By Jay Vaquer
Phenix City, ALA - August 11, 2007 - When East Alabama Motor Speedway's
most prolific Late Model driver, Dana Eiland, showed up to do battle this
Saturday night he had a stuffed monkey attached to the rear spoiler of
his famous #K-9 Andy's Auto Parts Swartz Chassis Monte Carlo. Dana's crew
chief Mike Harris explained that for the past several weeks they have had
a bad streak of bad luck on the track. Locked up rear end, blown motors,
flat tires, etc., and now it was time to get that monkey off their backs
and get back in Victory Lane. When the green flag dropped on the Late
Model feature, Dewayne "Flat out" Johnson, who is always extremely fast,
went straight to the front with Eiland, and his monkey, right behind him
in second. Marty Beckwith, Efren Holbrook, and Richard Mills circulated
slowly on the apron while everybody else was busy trying to keep pace
with Johnson and Eiland. Dirt track specialist Billy Thomas is currently
involved in resurfacing the 3/8ths mile high banked oval with new clay.
The projected 4 week project began this week and turns one and two had
new clay while the rest of the track was like it has been. This created a
unique set of obstacles for the drivers. Turns one and two were soft and
uneven while turns three and four were hard and blacked over. Johnson
took the apron through turns one and two and drove the preferred groove
the rest of the track. Eiland took the more treacherous high side through
turns one and two. The drivers who chose to run the groove through one
and two bounced vigorously and lost body parts. On lap 6 Holbrook went to
the pits then on lap 10 Ricky Culpepper went to the pits. By lap 12
Johnson was nearly a straightaway ahead of second place Eiland and was
putting a lap on Mickey Benton who was trailing body parts from being
forced into the rough of turns 1 and 2. On lap 15 a yellow flag was
thrown for debris in turn one as the attrition rate rose. The top of the
restart order was Johnson, Eiland, Larry Harrod, Jeff Mills, Mickey
Benton. Jeff Mills made the move of the race as he pulled a trick out of
his past Late Model Champion hat and put a clean and swift pass on Larry
Harrod to power into third. Harrod came right back and got door to door
with Mills but being on the inside could not get around Mills' #15 Snap
On Tools BTR Chassis Monte Carlo. Johnson continued to run the apron
through 1 and 2 while Eiland and Mills took the high side. Suddenly the
white flag was out and there were no changes in the running order as
Johnson took the checkers. However, when Johnson crossed the scales he
was 5 pounds light and disqualified by the tech man. This knocked that
monkey off Eiland's spoiler and gave the victory to the persistent K-9
team. Jeff Mills finished second, Larry Harrod third, and Dewayne Johnson
finished fourth since he had lapped the field up to that point, and
Mickey Benton finished fifth.
By Tim George:
John Michael drew the pole for the seventeen lap Bomber Feature. Trevor Elliot made up the outside of row one. Elliott was first to lead when the green flag came out. John Michael fell way off the pace. Jeff Elliott made his way up challenging his son for the lead. Trevor Elliott held on to the lead as Jeff Elliott remained in hot pursuit of him. Trevor Elliott was the winner as the checkers fell on lap seventeen. Jeff Elliott finished a strong second and Chase Edge was third.
Richie Stephens racked up another win in the Hobby Division. Stephens started on row one with Ricky Hedley. Stephens took on a field of fourteen cars. Montana Dudley made his way through the pack to challenge Stephens for the lead. Richie Stephens won the fifteen lap event. Montana Dudley finished second and Ricky Hedley was third.
Nick Biddle and Ricky Culpepper both scored feature wins in the Modified Division. Nick Biddle won the rescheduled rain out feature. Ricky Culpepper finished second and Randy Register was third. The tables turned for Biddle and Culpepper in the regularly scheduled feature. This time Ricky Culpepper was the winner and Nick Biddle finished second. Brandon Pijenburg was third.
Danny Stroud set fast qualifying time in the Super Street Division. Stroud earned the pole for the twenty lap feature. Stroud started side by side with Rodgerick Dykes. Stroud was first to lead. John Capps III came from row two to take the lead from Stroud. Capps' lead was firm but short lived. Stroud reclaimed the lead and brought in the win. Danny Stroud finished well in front of second place winner, John Capps III, and Paul Walters in third.
Jake Jacobs won two in a row this weekend. Jacobs won the rescheduled Pony Feature that was cancelled because of rain a couple of weeks ago. Jacobs returned later in the same evening to win his heat race. Jacobs was in front when the checkered flag came out in the Pony Feature number two. It was definitely a clean sweep for Jacobs. All total Jake Jacobs scored three first place finishes in one night of racing. Bill Taylor finished second and a battered and bruised Bryan Price was third.
JOHNSON JUSTIFIES SPEED at EAST ALABAMA
By Jay Vaquer
Phenix City, ALA - August 18, 2007 - In the Late Model division Dewayne
Johnson was denied a victory at East Alabama Motor Speedway last week for
being five pounds light. This week Dewayne came back, added a little more
weight and accomplished the same feat. First he set fast time in
qualifying to earn the pole position for the feature. When the green flag
dropped on the main event he immediately powered away from Larry Harrod
in second. Ricky Culpepper also got a jump on Jody Knowles, who was
trying to pass Tod Darda for third, and moved into fourth. Knowles came
right back and passed Culpepper on lap 2 to regain his position. Philip
Pittman tried to pass Culpepper but he was outclassed as Culpepper had
more speed off the corners and an overall superior set-up. Marvin Cook
passed Scotty Knowles on lap 7 while Jody Knowles was putting on the
excitement in his battle with Tod Darda going door to door on the inside
of turn 4. Suddenly Marvin Cook lost power and began circulating slowly
on the apron.. On lap 12 Larry Eldridge passed Shane Thompson with Scotty
Knowles in tow. Then unlucky lap 13 came up and first into the pits was
Marvin Cook followed by Pittman. Meanwhile, back in the front, Dewayne
"Flat Out" Johnson was trying to break the land speed record as he lapped
Scotty Knowles and Shane Thompson. Johnson was so fast that he gained
ground on second place Harrod with each passing lap. Johnson was entering
turn one while Harrod was just coming out of turn three as he put the
sixth place car of Larry Eldridge down a lap. Scotty Knowles entered the
pits followed by Thompson as it seemed Johnson was driving in some
parallel universe where time and space were warped. Suddenly the white
flag was out and Johnson powered to the checkers in his own world.
Johnson's statement was undeniable, he could have added 50 pounds and
still had the same result, the man was plain fast. Larry Harrod finished
second, Tod Darda third, Jody Knowles fourth, and Ricky Culpepper rounded
out the top five in fifth.
By Tim George:
Rodgerick Dykes set fast qualifying time in the Super Street Division. Dykes, had the pole starting position in the thirty lap Championship feature event. Danny Stroud qualified for the outside pole starting position. Stroud motored his way to the front at the drop of the green flag leaving Dykes behind. The caution flag flew before one lap could be completed. The race was restarted and Stroud once again ran away with the start. Dykes maintained second for many laps. Dykes slowed and began losing positions eventually finishing fifth. Josh Weathers, Lynn Robbins and Joey Eiland all fought for the front changing positions as they went. Danny Stroud was the official winner, Joey Eiland finished second and Josh Weathers came in third.
Brandie Gatlin was an unstoppable force in the Pony Division. Gatlin won the ten lap feature event, putting her in victory lane for the first time ever. Gatlin also won her heat race earlier in the evening. Gatlin took on the best drivers that the Pony Division has to offer. Gatlin finished with a huge lead over second place finisher, Scotty Prins. Bill Taylor finished third.
Current points leader, Stacy Mashburn, pulled off a feature win in one of the closest Modified Features ever. It was ten laps of white knuckles for Mashburn. Mashburn started up front with Calvin Pike along side. Mashburn took the lead. Brandon Pijenburg and Calvin Pike fought each other for second while simultaneously trying to take the lead from Mashburn. Nick Biddle came from the last row to the front to try for a shot at the lead. Soon it was Biddle, Pijenburg and Pike fighting it out for second. The trio stayed right on the back bumper of Mashburn until the final inch of the race. Nick Biddle finished second and Brandon Pijenburg was third.
Montana Dudley and Jeremy Nevels were the pole sitters in the fifteen lap Hobby Feature. Dudley led the first laps of the race. Richie Stephens came from row two to the lead early on. The lead was short lived for Stephens as Dudley came right back to the front. Dudley developed a nice lead coming by the flag stand on lap eight heading for another victory. Dudley went into turn one, lost a tire, and rolled the number fifty-five. After the dust settled, Dudley was found to be physically intact. The car was towed off the track with severe damages. Richie Stephens completed the final laps of the event as the leader. Stephens earned another feature win, Mikey Mount was second, and Adam Brown finished third.
John Michael was the winner of the seventeen lap Bomber Feature. Michael came from outside row two to claim the lead. Pole sitter, Shelby Amos, chased Michael to the bitter end trying to pass him, with no success. Amos ended up with a close second finish. Trevor Elliott finished third behind Shelby Amos.
INGRAM TOP TRACKS TOP CAT at EAST ALABAMA
By Jay Vaquer
Phenix City, ALA - September 2, 2007 - Labor Day celebrations at East
Alabama Motor Speedway were nothing short of spectacular this year. The
colossal fireworks display and the demolition derby were only surpassed
by the extraordinary Top Tracks Crate Late Model feature event. Since
their earlier appearance this year, the Top Tracks series has grown by
leaps and bounds as this time they brought several big names in National
dirt track racing such as Mike " The Head Man " Head, Jake Knowles,
Frankie Beard, and Frank Ingram. Some of our local drivers were up to the
challenge and made their presence felt among the stars. When the green
flag dropped on the main event a melee in turn one took 4 cars out of the
competition. The second start had a pile up in turn 4 as the attrition
mounted claiming local speedster Larry Eldridge as an early DNF victim
with a bent front suspension. Frank Ingram, from the pole, led the first
lap in the books. Then something happened that caught the fans by
surprise. Frankie Beard drove under the leader through turns three and
four to take the lead on lap 2. Jake Knowles sifted into third and local
Late Model legend Dana Eiland was right behind in fourth. As the
excitement level grew all around the track it became obvious that Billy
Thomas' labor to resurface the track had come to fruition. Cars were
running in multi-grooves from the top to the apron. Three wide through
the corners was no problem as the wide smooth 3/8 mile oval with new clay
gave traction and speed anywhere you chose to run your line. Ingram was
running door to door with Beard in a battle for the lead. Mike Head was
working on Ricky Culpepper on his run to the front. Suddenly Jake Knowles
passed Ingram for second spot in turn three. Ingram pushed high and
Eiland was quick to take advantage and shoot around to move into third.
Jake Knowles found a super fast line on the apron and drove right past
Beard to take the lead. Eiland dropped to the apron and followed Knowles
to move into second place. There was so much movement and passing going
on that it was impossible to keep up with all the action. On lap 13 Jake
Knowles was putting JJ Nye down a lap and then ran into serious lap
traffic. The cars in the back were also very fast and they did not roll
over and play dead to allow the leaders to pass. While Knowles was
plotting a course around the lap traffic Eiland pulled up door to door to
challenge for the lead. As they were both on the inside grooves coming
out of turn 2, the lap traffic was in the center groove with Kenny
Gaither high and Bob Gibby low. Ingram came out of turn 2 and put the
pedal to the metal taking the cushion at the very top of the track to
blast by all 4 cars and reclaim the lead before hitting turn 3. Ingram
had no intentions of letting this lead slip away as he powered his way
around the lap traffic putting Marvin Cook and Ricky Culpepper down on
lap 25. Ingram now had 5 cars between himself and second place Jake
Knowles. On lap 28 Nye spun in turn 4 to bring out the yellow flag and
set up a 2 lap shoot out to the checkers. As Ingram took the white flag
Eiland tried to pass Jake Knowles for second. Eiland over steered and
went high in turn four, which allowed Beard to pass underneath and take
third place. The hometown hero was not to be denied as on the final lap
while Ingram took the checkers Eiland dove to the apron and shot by Beard
to finish third while hundreds of fans stood and applauded what was
without a doubt the most exciting race of the season. Kudos to Billy
Thomas for bringing back multi-groove racing with multiple lead changes.
Forget Eldora, East Bay, and Atomic Speedways, EAMS is now the premier
dirt track facility in the Nation. The top three passed the post race
inspection and the official finish was Frank Ingram first, Jake Knowles
second, Dana Eiland third, Frankie Beard fourth, Mike Head fifth, Chuck
Padgett sixth, Jody Knowles seventh, Lamar Haygood eighth, Chris Coggin
ninth, and Larry Harrod rounded out the top ten in tenth.
Thomas Wins State Rules Race at EAMS
By Jay Vaquer
Phenix City, ALA , September 15, 2007 - In preparation for the 2007
Alabama State Championships at East Alabama Motor Speedway, a practice
race was held for all divisions this Saturday night. In the Late Model
Crate race rookie Richie Stephens surprised everyone by winning the pole
in fast time qualifying turning in a 15.57, nearly a half second faster
than anyone else. When the green flag dropped on the feature Stephens led
the first lap with William Thomas in his shadow. Jeff Mills and Terrance
Nowell battled over third spot, which Mills retained. The pace was very
fast on the new track surface and there were no changes in the running
order then on lap 5 Ricky Williams spun on his own to bring out the
yellow flag caution. On this restart Stephens entered turn one wide open
then pushed high in turn two. That was all it took for William Thomas to
jump all over him and take the lead down the backstretch and the fat lady
started singing. Thomas was running wide open on a smooth line and pulled
away from the field. Rusty Harmon stepped up and put a quick pass on
Nowell to move into fourth. Williams then spun out again in the exact
same spot to bring out his second caution. On this restart Nowell raced
door to door with Harmon looking to get that spot back. Then Stephens
pushed high again in turn 2 and Mills quickly moved into second. When
they came back around Mills was on the high groove and Stephens was on
the inside entering turn one. In turn two Stephens pushed high again and
this time he nearly knocked Mills off the track, then took back second
spot. Mills decided Stephens needed to learn that this was not the Hobby
class and you do not bounce off racecars for position, so he corrected
his line and went after him. Mills caught him in turn four and suddenly
they were spinning around. Unfortunate for Nowell, he had no where to go
except into the crash and tore the front end off his car, sending him to
the pits for a DNF. Stephens tried to resume racing when the green came
out but started going backwards as everybody passed. Stephens then went
to the pits for a DNF and a hard lesson learned. Thomas was able to run
away from Mills and maintain the lead by several carlengths. By lap 23
Thomas was putting Williams down a lap and zeroing in on Matt Woodson who
was running a strong sixth place. Suddenly the white flag was out and
Thomas had no problem asserting his dominance as he took the checkers.
Jeff Mills finished second, Rusty Harmon third, Larry Harrod fourth,
Devon Jones fifth, Matt Woodson sixth, Ricky Williams seventh, and Steven
Gaines JR rounded out the top 8 in eighth.
By Tim George:
Grady Holmes brought out his new Bomber car this weekend. Holmes scored a feature win during his first time driving the car. Jottie Burgamy finished second in the twelve lap event, and Tim Bosley finished third.
Alton Weed put up a fierce battle against Doug Sellers for the lead in the twelve lap Four Cylinder feature event. Weed held off Sellers lap after lap. Weed's car developed a smoking problem causing him to leave the race early. Doug Sellers inherited the lead unchallenged. Doug Sellers won the event, Bill Taylor was second and Bobby Duell finished third.
Jerry Luke earned the pole starting position in the fifteen lap Hobby Feature. Richie Stephens started along side Luke on the front row. Stephens and Luke battled it out for the entire race. Stephens maintained the lead throughout. Richie Stephens was the winner, Jerry Luke was second, and Joey Eiland came in third.
Chad Scrimpshire scored a flag to flag victory in the twenty Super Street feature. Scrimpshire felt little resistance from Russ Ogletree. Olgetree was the second place finisher. Jimbo Eiland finished third.
Ricky Culpepper found himself in Victory Lane one more time this season. Culpepper won the twelve lap feature. Kelly Leonard was second and Modified season champion, Stacy Mashburn, finished third.
NOWELL ALABAMA STATE CHAMPION
By Jay Vaquer
Phenix City, ALA - September 30, 2007 - East Alabama Motor Speedway held
the 29th Annual Alabama State races over a 4-day period this weekend.
Thousands of race teams and fans were treated to beautiful weather,
exciting races, and historical record breaking events. For the first time
ever the same driver set fast time qualifying in all three Late Model
divisions. William Thomas placed his #22 JW Miller Land and Timber Ben
Thomas Racing Vic Hill engine Pontiac GTO at the
top of the Super Late Model division with a record 14.57 in the daytime.
Then William set fast time for the Late Model Crate division and right
afterwards set fast time for the Late Model Sportsman event, which he
eventually won to claim his first Alabama State title.
In the 100 lap $7,000 to win Super Late Model event, after heat races
Terrance Nowell was on the inside pole with Casey Roberts on the outside.
When the green flag dropped Roberts took the lead with Nowell right
behind. Frank Ingram completed the lead trio as they pulled away from
Randle Chupp in 4th. Jeff Weber passed Jeff Smith on lap 5 as Frank
Ingram moved into 2nd on lap 6. William Thomas starting 16th was on a run
to the front as he passed Stacy Holmes for position. Chupp moved up and
challenged Nowell for 3rd and made the pass. By lap 12 the leaders were
putting Glenn Brewer a lap down and hitting thick lap traffic. Ingram and
Chupp were now sparring over the lead and on lap 15 Chupp took the lead
and starting pulling away from Ingram. Jeff Smith suddenly lost power and
came to a full stop at the top of turn 4 to bring out a yellow flag
caution on lap 18. During this caution Glenn Brewer and Wesley Duboise
went to the pits. When the green was back out Holmes, Dennis Hale and
Eathan Hunter were three wide all the way around the high- banked clay
oval, which was in remarkably great shape after 4 days of racing and
remained intact and dust free. Royce Bray was charging hard and collided
with Lee Sutton to bring out the next caution. The drivers were having a
hard time lining back up for the East Alabama double file restart. The
green flag was back out and Randle Chupp from Troutman, NC led the full
field of 24 cars around and began pulling away from Ingram in second and
Sutton in third. Sam Ruff started smoking heavily and Sutton cut down a
tire to bring out the lap 28 caution. The restart order was Chupp,
Nowell, Ingram, Roberts, Royce Bray, Mike Head, James Roulette, Dennis
Hale, the incumbent champion "The Chattanooga Flash" Ronnie Johnson,
followed by multi-winner " The Cat Daddy" Clint Smith rounding out the
top ten. During this caution William Thomas was forced into the pits with
a flat right rear and rejoined the field at the rear for the green flag
restart. Just as Bray passed Ingram Ricky Culpepper went off turn 3 to
bring the yellow back out. On the restart Head, Hale and local legend
Dana Eiland run three wide for some very exciting competition. By lap 43
William Thomas had worked his way back up and was challenging Eiland for
10th spot. The Flash and Ricky Williams also provided some very exciting
racing as they fought over the 14th spot. Devin Jones spun and collected
Ricky Williams in turn 4 to bring out the lap 53 caution. During this
caution Dana Eiland went to the pits with a front suspension problem. On
this restart they got 4 wide going into turn one and the attrition began
to mount as Hale spun to avoid serious damage but unfortunate for William
Thomas he went straight into Sutton and suffered terminal damage. Thomas was towed
to the pits for an early DNF during this red
flag melee. Stacy Holmes was also towed to the pits. The Cat Daddy went
to the pits and had to restart at the rear of the cars on the lead lap.
Dana Eiland rejoined the field for the green flag restart. On lap 56 we
had yet another lead change as Nowell blasted by Chupp. The Head Man Mike
Head powered around Royce Bray as Weber and Roulette enter the pits. Dana
Eiland got a fender on The Cat Daddy as the legend of local fans were on
their feet cheering at lap 70. The Flash had to enter the pits as did
Culpepper on lap 77. Nowell, Ingram and Chupp were breaking away from the
pack with no lap cars in sight when Riley Hickman hooked Clint Smith
sending them both off turn one. This ended Cat Daddy's famous from last
to first bid for the checkers as he went to the pits for a DNF. The green
was back out as Nowell was very strong and fast and maintained the lead.
Royce Bray lost his motor and went to the pits as Chupp got a sudden
burst of speed to pass Ingram and move back into second. Eiland put a
move on Hale to move past him and was in sixth. As the leaders hit heavy
lap traffic they were pulling away from Roberts who was desperately
trying to keep up with them. Roberts came out of turn 4 and began
bouncing off the lap cars like a pinball in his wild charge to the front.
However, he met his match when he caught up with Randle Chupp. Roberts
tried to force Chupp off his line but Chupp stayed right where he was
which put Roberts into the outside turn one retaining wall. Roberts was
launched like the space shuttle off turn one in a horrific crash. When
the rescue workers freed him from his demolished vehicle he came out
swinging. Track announcer Clint Stanton tried to lighten up the
unpleasant situation by saying he came to a fight and a race broke out.
The track officials gained control and we were back to racing. Riley
Hickman was in third when his left rear hub broke off sending his tire
and wheel down the front straight. During this caution the race director
decided that all the cars would be allowed to refuel since they had been
on the track for over 2 hours and we were going to have a six-lap shoot
out to the checkers. When the green came out Nowell took the lead with
Chupp ready to take the lead. Mike Head mustered the power to take the
sixth place away from Dennis Hale then the white flag was out and
Terrance Nowell from Phenix City took the checkers to become the new
Alabama State Super Late Model Champion. Randle Chupp took second, Frank
Ingram third, Dana Eiland fourth, Ronnie Johnson fifth, Mike Head sixth,
Riley Hickman seventh, Dennis Hale eighth, Ricky Williams ninth, and
young rookie Ricky Culpepper rounded out the top ten with a respectable
top ten finish.
MADDEN 33rd NATIONAL 100 CHAMPION
By Jay Vaquer
Phenix City, ALA - November 4, 2007 - East Alabama Motor Speedway held its 33rd Annual National 100 over
the 3 day weekend. Thousands of race teams and fans delighted in the mild fall weather enjoying the best
dirt track events in the South. Ronnie Johnson, the Chattanooga Flash struck twice winning the Late Model
Crate division and the Late Model Sportsman division. In both races William Thomas came in second. Out
of 8 divisions the Super Late Model division was the main event with a 100 lap $30,000 to win feature.
Chris Madden of Gaffney, SC turned in the fastest qualifying time and was the only driver to break
into the 14 second lap world with an incredible 14.91 to win the pole for the feature. Incumbent Champion Dale
McDowell of Chickamauga, GA was the second fastest and earned the outside pole. When the green flag dropped
on the feature Madden and McDowell sprinted into turn one with McDowell getting a little high and ended up
going over the turn 2 embankment for a yellow flag and a restart. This time the leaders stayed door to door but
Madden ended up finishing the first lap in first place. Travis Pennington and Randle Chupp provided early excitement
as the battled over third. Chupp finally prevailed as he moved into third on lap 4. By lap 6 Madden was lapping
the rear of the full 24 car field putting Michael Page
in the All Pink Inside #18 GTO and John Blankenship from Williamson, WV down a lap. Chupp was very fast as he passed McDowell to take second place and challenge Madden for the lead. Debris brought out the lap 8 caution. The restart order was Madden, Chupp, McDowell, Jimmy Owens, Pennington, Dennis Erb, Dewayne “Flat Out” Johnson, James Ward, Vic “The Thrill” Hill and Stacy Holmes rounding out the top ten. 8 time champion Scott Bloomquist raceed at Lowes in Charlotte and arrived early Sunday morning to enter the consolation race and make the feature event starting in the rear. By this caution he was already in 11th place. The Phenix City Assassin Terrance Nowell pulled intothe pits just before the green came back. Madden and Chupp quickly pulled away from McDowell and Owens.
Bloomquist seemed to pass at will as he had no problem moving up through the field. The Master of Faster Dana Eiland suddenly had a flat and spun in turn 4 to bring out the yellow. Blankenship also entered the pits. On this restart McDowell seemed to have broken a suspension part as he went off the turn one bank and went straight to his pit for an early and unfortunate DNF. When the green came back Bloomquist was suddenly sparring with Dewayne Johnson over 4th place. Dennis Erb suddenly got passed by his own left rear tire as it broke off and headed off turn one for the lap 13 caution. To the disappointment of hundreds of local fans, Dana Eiland went to the pits during this caution with a mechanical failure putting his bid for the win at rest. On this restart, the Newport Nightmare Jimmy Owens showed his hand as he muscled the lead from Madden.
Madden came back and the fans got to witness the beginning of multiple lead changes. Jason McBride got a flat left rear and came through turn four doing doughnuts for the lap 15 caution. Green was back and now Bloomquist was sparring with Dewayne Johnson for fourth as Vic Hill got into the mix. Johnson went off the track but came right back on and kept going. Blankenship, Larry Boutwell, and Dillon Wood all went to the pits on lap 22. Bloomquist fired his afterburners down the backstretch and just blew the doors off Owens and moved into second place. Bloomquist could run the apron through turns 3 and 4 without cracking the throttle.
Owens and Hill got together in a squeeze play in turn 4 for the lap 34 caution. Owens was having a nightmare as his super fast Bloomquist Racecar required a push to the pits ending his first bout with the high banks of East Alabama. On this restart Bloomquist accomplished the remarkable by coming from last to first as he blew by Madden to take the lead. Bloomer really poured it on running a full straightaway ahead of second place Madden. William Thomas was avoiding disaster and driving a solid race as he broke into the top ten. Ricky Williams cut down his left rear bringing out a caution. At the lap 41 restart there were 14 cars left in the competition with the last three being lap cars. On the green Stacy Holmes ran downhill for extra momentum to shoot by Madden and take second place. Dewayne Johnson had his rear spoiler dragging on the ground and retired to the pits. The Bloomquist cars, with their polished aluminum rear spoilers reminiscent of aircraft technology, were like team Ferrari- very sleek, super fast, and in the lead. On lap 56 Pennington, Page, and Williams went to the pits. Bloomquist, Holmes, and Madden seemed to orbit the field in their own world, raising the bar for the competition. Dennis Franklin broke onto the scene taking fourth spot away from Dennis Erb.
Bloomquist suddenly changed his line and began running at the very top of the track. Perhaps it was some strategy to keep his tires cool since no one was running up there. Smith suddenly had a flat and brought out the lap 82 caution. On this restart Erb got a jump on Franklin and took his spot. Then Madden drove under Bloomquist to retake the lead. Thomas and Vic Hill were fighting over sixth and the veteran The Thrill Hill lived up to his nickname as he thrilled the crowd maintaining his sixth place.
Holmes pulled out the stops and put it on Erb as he took over the fifth spot. As Chris Madden stretched out to run several car lengths ahead of Bloomquist, Franklin slipped by Bloomquist before he even knew he was there and took over second place. The white flag was out and Madden rocketed to the checkers the claim the victory and the spoils, which include the big feather in his hat, the 33rd National 100 Champion.
Dennis Franklin finished second, Scott Bloomquist third, James Ward fourth, Stacy Holmes fifth, Vic Hill sixth, William Thomas seventh, Brady Smith eighth, Dennis Erb ninth, and Travis Pennington rounded out the top ten in tenth.