05results_9-18.jpg

IMPERIAL, PA (September 18, 2005)-Donnie Moran of Dresden, OH inherited the lead on lap 82 after race leader Matt Miller developed a flat tire and then he went on to lead the last 18 laps of the 17th Annual "Pittsburgher 100" sanctioned by the Lucas Oil Late Model Dirt Series on Sunday Night at Pittsburgh's Pennsylvania Motor Speedway.  Moran won $22,000 for his second career Pittsburgher win.  His first came in 1991. 

Moran driving his familiar #99 MasterSbilt Monte Carlo sponsored by PBM Performance Products, Eddie's Sunoco, Sunoco Race Fuels, Balderson Dodge, Muskingum County Speedway with power under the hood from SMS Race Engines.  Brad Malcuit of Strasburg, OH finished a strong second in his Malcuit Race Engines/MOPAR/C.J. Rayburn Monte Carlo.  Third went to Gary Stuhler of Greencastle, PA in the Glen Nininger owned/Nininger's Tire and Auto Center/MasterSbilt Grand Prix. Completing the top five was 2005 PPMS Track champion, John Flinner of Zelienople, PA in the Flinner Signs and Decals/Rocket Monte Carlo and Lou Bradich of Chester, WV in the H&F Trucking/Bill Kell Racing Engines/Rocket Grand Prix.  A total of 54 cars were on hand for the event.

 Alex Ferree and Lou Bradich would make up the front row for the event as Bradich would get the early advantage over Ferree grabbing the point right from the start.  Ferree would run second with Tim Hitt, Matt Miller and Mark Banal in the top five after one lap was completed.  The first caution appeared on lap four for a slowed Jared Miley who left the race with damage to the front end of his race car.  At this time current Lucas Oil Late Model Dirt Series points leader, Don O'Neal made his first of several pit stops for an apparent water pump issue.  Bart Hartman would make his way into the top five on lap four and then get by Miller a lap later for fourth, but soon after on lap seven Hartman would develop suspension problems as he went pitside and out of the race.  Hartman was trying to become the first back to back winner in the history of the event.  With 10 laps in the books Bradich was still showing the way with Ferree in second followed by two time Pittsburgher 100 winner, Tim Hitt, Miller and Steve Casebolt, Jr.  The race would run green until lap 14 when debris was spotted on the racing surface and the yellow came out. 

Two drivers on the move early in the race were 2005 Pittsburgh's Pennsylvania Motor Speedway track champion, John Flinner and Jackie Boggs.  Flinner and Boggs who started 15th and 16th respectfully in the stout field were up to fourth and fifth in the running order after 16 laps were recorded.  Miller would make a move for second on lap 17 passing Ferree for the runner-up slot.  A yellow came out for Tim Hitt on lap 18 and at this time O'Neal would leave the race for good calling it a night.  On the restart Ferree would head for the point going from third to first in just one lap around the big half mile track.  Ferree then started to pull away from the pack of cars behind him that would see Bradich and Miller duel side by side for second.  Boggs then went to third on lap 23 putting Bradich to fourth with Flinner in fifth.  As the cars completed lap 30 Ferree was leading the race with Miller tracking him down.  Boggs then reached Miller and started to battle with him for position. Flinner would slide by Bradich for fourth on lap 31.  Up front action was heating up as Ferree would see his lead shrink as Miller and Boggs had caught up to him.  Ferree would slip up out of the groove on lap 35 allowing Miller to get by for the lead.  On lap 43 Boggs would go to second with Ferree falling to third.  As the cars headed towards the 50 laps fuel break Miller and Boggs were in charge of the field now.  At the halfway mark the running order was Miller, Boggs, Ferree, Davey Johnson and Flinner. 

Over the last 50 laps of the race Miller looked to be the man to beat despite having Boggs all over him.  Donnie Moran was headed to the front.  Moran, who started 17th was up to third by lap 55 and went by Ferree on the outside to take over third place.  Ferree would slow and exit the race on lap 64 after a strong effort.  With 30 laps to go it was now a three car battle for the lead with Miller, Boggs and Moran putting on a show.  Moran would pull alongside Boggs on several occasions but could not pass him for second.  Boggs then slowed with a flat tire on lap 75 as he would head pitside for a tire change.  With 25 laps left it was Miller, Moran, Malcuit, Gary Stuhler and Casebolt in the top five.  Boggs would come back out and last two laps until his car went up in smoke causing another caution flag.  Miller and Moran were racing hard and clean for the lead until Miller developed a flat tire slowing on lap 82 while leading.  Miller would bring out the caution as he pitted for a tire change.  On lap 83 Casebolt would get a little sideways in turn four with cars scrambling to get by.  Ed Ferree would stop on the main straight bringing out the caution.  After Miller had the flat Moran was now the car to beat.  His two main competitors at the end were Malcuit and Stuhler. 

With 10 circuits to go Moran held a six car length advantage over Malcuit.  Malcuit tried to cut down Moran's lead in the final circuits but Moran was just too strong and would take the checkers first followed by Malcuit, Stuhler, Flinner and Bradich.

"We are very happy to get this win," said Moran in victory circle after being interviewed by Army Armstrong for the ESPN2 telecast which will be shown at a date and time to be announced.  "What can I say, Keith and Tader Masters build a great car, my crew worked hard all weekend getting this car right and we just took our time at the start and the car was working real well and we just kept passing cars."  "That was a tough break for Matt, he was running well, I was just hoping that my tires would hold up and I don't know how many more laps I could have lasted, but we did." 

Completing the top ten were 25th starting, Freddy Smith, Steve Casebolt, Jr., Davey Johnson and Earl Pearson, Jr.  By virtue of Pearson's 10th place finish and O'Neal DNF there is just a 65 point lead for O'Neal heading into this weekend's racing action at West Virginia Motor Speedway. 

The next Lucas Oil Late Model Dirt Series events will be on Saturday and Sunday, September 24 and 25 at the West Virginia Motor Speedway in Mineral Wells, WV.  On Saturday there will be a complete show with a $7000 first place prize up for grabs and Sunday's event will also see a complete show and $10,000 to win to top off the West Virginia Hall of Fame Weekend.  

Race Summary 

Lucas Oil Late Model Dirt Series 

Pittsburgh's Pennsylvania Motor Speedway - Imperial, PA 

Saturday and Sunday, September 17 & 18 

Fast Qualifier:  Don O'Neal 18.903 seconds 

First Heat:  Alex Ferree, Don O'Neal, Earl Pearson, Jr., John Mason, Bill Cunningham, Keith Berner, Keith Rodriguez, Jon Hodgkiss, Larry Moran 

Second Heat:  Matt Miller, Steve Casebolt, Jr., Lynn Geisler, Gary Stuhler, Bob Close, Rick Aukland, Mike Johnson, Scott Gunn, Freddy Smith 

Third Heat:  Mark Banal, Brad Malcuit, John Flinner, Steve Baker, Brian Ruhlman, Rich Apolito, Keith Barbara, Todd Andrews, Jim Lepro 

Fourth Heat:  Bart Hartman, Jeep VanWormer, Jackie Boggs, Tim Dohm, Brent Rhebergen, Rodney Sweitzer, D.J. Miller, Tony Musolino, Mark Moats 

Fifth Heat:  Tim Hitt, Ed Ferree, Donnie Moran, Lance Elson, Dave Hess, Danny Rich, Chad Ruhlman, Ben Miley, Dave Wade 

Sixth Heat:  Lou Bradich, Jared Miley, Davey Johnson, Scot James, Al Atallah, Jim Kutas, George Kowatic, Rick Biggs, Tim Gould 

First B-Main:  Gary Stuhler, Steve Baker, John Mason, Bill Cunningham, Bob Close, Brian Ruhlman, Keith Berner, Keith Barbara, Mike Johnson, Rick Aukland, Freddy Smith, Rich Apolito, Scott Gunn, Jon Hodgkiss, Keith Rodriguez, Jim Lepro, Larry Moran 

Second B-Main:  Scott James, Tim Dohm, Lance Elson, Brent Rhebergen, Al Atallah, Dave Hess, D.J. Miller, Tony Musolino, Rodney Sweitzer, Chad Ruhlman, Danny Rich, Jim Kutas, Dave Wade, Rick Briggs, Ben Miley, Tim Gould 

17th Annual "Pittsburgher 100" Finish:  Donnie Moran, Brad Malcuit, Gary Stuhler John Flinner, Lou Bradich, Freddy Smith, Steve Casebolt, Jr., Scott James, Davey Johnson, Earl Pearson, Jr., Ed Ferree, Steve Baker, Jeep VanWormer, Matt Miller, Tim Dohm, Lance Elson, Jackie Boggs, John Mason, Alex Ferree, Lynn Geisler, Tim Hitt, Rick Aukland, Scott Gunn, Don O'Neal, Mark Banal, Bart Hartman, Dave Wade, Jared Miley  

Race Statistics: 

Entries:  54

Cautions:  10

Red Flags:  0

Lap Leaders:  Lou Bradich 1-18, Alex Ferree 19-34 Matt Miller 35-82, Donnie Moran 83-100

Weld Wheels Hard Charger of the Race:  Freddy Smith (Started 25th and finished 6th) advanced 19 positions

Lucas Oil Late Model Dirt Series Rookie of the Race:  Scott James

Lucas Oil Late Model Dirt Series Provisionals:  Freddy Smith and Rick Aukland

Track Provisionals:  Dave Wade and Scott Gunn

Live Timing

Newsletter Sign-up

* Required