MIDDLEBOURNE, WV (September 1, 2007)-Eddie Carrier Jr. of Salt Rock, WV Wins the 39th Annual “Hillbilly 100” on Saturday Night at Tyler County Speedway taking home $25,000 for capturing the Lucas Oil Late Model Dirt Series sanctioned event. The event which has been contested since 1967 is the oldest dirt late model race in the country and drew 84 competitors to Tyler County and Carrier was the man standing in victory circle at the end of the night. Carrier had to hold off challenges from Doug Horton over the last half of the race, but Horton’s tire blew on the final lap allowing 23rd place starter Scott James nip him at the finish line. Earl Pearson Jr. finished fourth to maintain his series points lead with two-time Hillbilly 100 winner, Freddy Smith finishing fifth.
The 2007 Tyler County track champion, Paul Wilmoth Jr. and Carrier drew the front row starting spots among the six heat race winners. Carrier bolted to the lead at the start on the 100 lap affair as a caution on the second lap would slow the field as Tim Dohm spun in turn number four. On the restart the second caution came out for slowing Terry English who was running fourth at the time as he took his car pit side and was done for the night.
Carrier stayed in front on the restart with pressure from Wilmoth and Steve Casebolt. Carrier started to pick up traffic by the tenth circuit as Wilmoth and Casebolt closed right on the rear of Carrier as the trio raced through traffic.
The race really got interesting as the cars completed the 14th circuit and there was contact between Wilmoth and Casebolt heading into turn number one with both cars stopping on the track. This jumbled up the top five with only Carrier maintaining his spot in the running order on the restart as the incident moved Earl Pearson Jr. into second followed by Steve Shaver, Steve Weigle and Doug Horton.
On the restart the race went ten caution free laps until a multi car pileup ensued on lap 24 with Carrier still showing the way. On this restart Shaver got by Pearson to move into second as the 1998 Hillbilly 100 winner was gaining ground on the leader, Carrier. Meanwhile, Horton was on the charge as well as he passed Weigle, the 2006 Tyler County Speedway Late Model Champion for fourth.
But Carrier opened up a good lead over Shaver and Pearson after those two went at it for second. Horton then caught up to and passed Pearson on lap 34 as he was applying the heat on Shaver who had fallen six car lengths behind Carrier.
Keith Barbara slowed with a flat tire on lap 41 bringing out caution number five. The restart was to Horton’s benefit because he got by Shaver to take over the second spot. This portion of the race began several laps of intense racing with no cautions as Horton was staying close to Carrier and had closed to right on his bumper by the halfway mark of the race. Scott James, who had to take a series provisional and started 23rd on the grid, was making his way through the field as he was up to fourth around Pearson by the 50 lap mark. Joining James in his march to the front was Dohm, who had to go to tail after bringing out the first caution and Casebolt, who was involved with Wilmoth in the lap 14 incident. Both Dohm and Casebolt were in the top ten with 50 laps to go in the race.
The race went caution-free until lap 70 as Carrier and Horton were in traffic as Mark Banal slowed on the race track bringing out caution number six of the event. The restart saw Horton stay glued to the back of Carrier’s car but as he was trying to find a groove to get by Carrier, Shaver and James were dueling for the third spot.
Weigle slowed on lap 80 with a flat tire and that once again set up a nose to tail restart with Carrier still the top car. With seven laps of green flag racing between the eighth caution on lap 87, Horton was still all over Carrier for the lead, but Carrier was doing his job as he was giving Horton plenty of room, but Horton could not get enough momentum to get by Carrier.
With ten laps to go Horton was still within striking distance of Carrier, but just as Carrier moved into some more lapped traffic the ninth caution came out. This set up a hotly contested finish that saw the final caution wave on lap 97 for Shaver. With three laps to go, the green came back out as Carrier stretched the lead to two lengths over Horton and James, who was third.
As the trio took the white flag Horton and James were right there but Carrier showed his skill in maintaining the same line he had run for most of the last half of the race as he went to cross the finish line first for the biggest win of his career. Horton blew a tire coming off of turn four on the final lap and James slipped underneath him to take the second spot. Horton limped across the line in third with Pearson and Freddy Smith completing the top five. It was the best finish of the season for Smith in Lucas Oil Late Model Dirt Series competition.
In victory lane Carrier was overcome with emotion in explaining what had just happened as he collected $25,000 for himself and car owner, Carl Grover of Ona, WV. “You know I’ve raced a long time and I’ve worked hard at it, I maybe from Kentucky, but I’m from West Virginia now and it sure feels good to win this race,” said the 36 year old driver who moved to West Virginia in 2003 to drive for Grover Motorsports. “My dad kept showing me under caution that someone was right behind me, so I just wanted to run the same groove on the track and hit my marks and when they came on the RaceCeiver and said we had seven laps to go, I just hammered it down and I wasn’t going to give up the lead easily.”
Carrier, who was the 2002 O’Reilly Battle of the Bluegrass Series Champion and the 2007 World of Outlaws Rookie of the Year, was especially grateful to his car owner and his crew. “I really want to thank Carl Grover for giving me a chance to drive his car and I can’t thank my crew enough, my dad (Eddie Sr.), Victor and my wife, Jamie, she puts up with alot of stuff, but she has always supported me in racing and I appreciate that. It’s an honor to win such a prestigious race as the Hillbilly 100 because of all the great names that have won this race and the tradition the race holds.”
Carrier’s black number 28 Rocket Chassis Ford Fusion is sponsored by Engines Inc. of Ohio, Railway Equipment Inc./Blue Ridge Machinery Tools/Hess, Stewart and Campbell, Poske’s Performance Parts and VP Racing Fuels. The car is powered by a Grover Ford Racing Engine.
James finished second in the Powell Motorsports/Jay Dickens Racing Engines/Rocket GTO and closed to within 195 of the points lead. Horton in the Bobby Lake Motorsports/Cornett Race Engines/Rocket GTO was third followed by Earl Pearson Jr. in the Bobby Labonte Racing/LifeLong Locks/MasterSbilt Dodge Charger with the Hall of Famer Freddy Smith taking fifth in his White Oaks Motorsports/Dale Meers Racing Engines/Warrior Monte Carlo.
Completing the top ten were Steve Casebolt, Donnie Moran, Steve Weigle, Butch McGill and Steve Shaver.
In preliminary action Rick Williams topped the 84 car field with a lap of 12.815 seconds taking the LifeLong Locks Fast Time Award. Steve Casebolt, Terry English, Eddie Carrier Jr., Steve Weigle, Doug Horton and Paul Wilmoth Jr. won the Hawk Brake and Quarter Master sponsored heat races. The four Mason Racin’ Rebel Shock Dyno and Penske Shocks sponsored B-mains were won by Donnie Dotson, Mike Benedum, Charlie George and Butch McGill. Scott James grabbed the Edelbrock Hard Charger of the Race after coming from the 23rd starting spot to place second.
The next Lucas Oil Late Model Dirt Series event will take place on Saturday, September 15 at the West Virginia Motor Speedway in Mineral Wells, WV with the Annual “Race Fest” paying $20,000 to win.
Lucas Oil Late Model Dirt Series
Tyler County Speedway - Middlebourne, WV
Saturday Night, September 1, 2007
LifeLong Locks Fast Qualifier: Rick Williams 12.815 seconds
Hawk Brake First Heat (10 Laps-Top 3 Advance): Steve Casebolt, Mark Banal, Joe Loudin, Brad Hutson, Rick Williams, Sonny Conley, Rick Lucas, Jason Witherite, Dan Shrigley, K.C. Burdette, Jr. Payne, Brad Clark
Quarter Master Second Heat (10 Laps-Top 3 Advance): terry English, Earl Pearson Jr., Greg Baumberger, Mike Benedum, Booper Bare, Tony Musolino, Dusty Hamrick, Michael Davis, Joel Prosser, Buck Rine, Chad Todd, Paul Baker, Scott Peltz, Scott Alan
Hawk Brake Third Heat (10 Laps-Top 3 Advance): Eddie Carrier Jr., Keith Barbara, Corey Conley, Donnie Dotson, Dan Schlieper, Donnie Moran, George Lee, Chris Carpenter, Richard Frazier, Scott James, Marshall Wiblin, Dwight Henry, Robbie Scott
Quarter Master Fourth Heat (10 Laps-Top 3 Advance): Steve Weigle, Steve Shaver, John Gill, Charlie George, Rickey Conley, Justin Rattliff, D Jay Miller, Kevin Layne, Matt Flesher, Glynn Booth, Darrin McDonald, Dannie Ruza, Justin Powell
Hawk Brake Fifth Heat (10 Laps-Top 3 Advance): Doug Horton, Freddy Smith, Chris Garnes, Butch McGill, Damon Eller, Clint Coffman, Larry Smith, Brian Rush, Nick Corbitt, Danny Wilson, Tony Roush, Zack Dohm
Quarter Master Sixth Heat (10 Laps-Top 3 Advance): Paul Wilmoth Jr., Tim Dohm, Chuck Harper, Jared Hawkins, Dan Morrison, Steve Wilmoth, Billy Drake, Tracie Sampson, Greg Buckland, Rod Gibson, Kris Southern, Roy Roush, Freddie Carpenter
Mason Racin’ Rebel Shock Dyno First B-Main (12 Laps-Winner Advances): Donnie Dotson, Booper Bare, Chris Carpenter, Brad Hutson, Sonny Conley, Dwight Henry, Joel Prosser, K.C. Burdette, Brad Clark, Chad Todd, Donnie Moran, Scott James, Dusty Hamrick, Jason Witherite
Penske Shocks Second B-Main (12 Laps-Winner Advances): Mike Benedum, Rick Williams, Michael Davis, Dan Schlieper, Scott Peltz, George Lee, Richard Frazier, Buck Rine, Dan Shrigley, Tony Musolino, Rick Lucas
Mason Racin’ Rebel Shock Dyno Third B-Main (12 Laps-Winner Advances): Charlie George, Justin Rattliff, Jared Hawkins, Tracie Sampson, Dannie Ruze, Damon Eller, Larry Smith, Kevin Layne, Glynn Booth, Steve Wilmoth, Tyler Carpenter, Rod Gibson, Nick Corbitt
Penske Shocks Fourth B-Main (12 Laps-Winner Advances): Butch McGill, Billy Drake, Rickey Conley, Dan Morrison, Matt Flesher, Darrin McDonald, Justin Powell, Freddie carpenter, Clint Coffman, D Jay Miller, Greg Buckland, Brian Rush, Danny Wilson, Kris Southern
Lucas Oil Late Model Dirt Series 39th Annual Hillbilly 100 Finish: Eddie Carrier Jr., Scott James, Doug Horton, Earl Pearson Jr., Freddy Smith, Steve Casebolt, Donnie Moran, Steve Weigle, Butch McGill, Steve Shaver, Joe Loudin, Greg Baumberger, Sonny Conley, Tim Dohm, Mark Banal, Mike Benedum, Scott Peltz, Charlie George, Chuck Harper, Corey Conley, Donnie Dotson, John Gill, Keith Barbara, Paul Wilmoth Jr., Terry English, Chris Garnes
Yellow Flags: 10
Lap Leaders: Eddie Carrier Jr. 1-100
Edelbrock Hard Charger of the Race: Scott James (Started 23rd and Finished 2nd-Advanced 21 Positions)
K&N Clean Pass of the Race: Steve Casebolt
Allstar Performance Performer of the Race: Freddy Smith
COMP Cams Rookie of the Race: None Awarded
Lucas Oil Late Model Dirt Series Provisionals: Scott James and Donnie Moran
Track Provisionals: Sonny Conley and Scott Peltz
Time of Race: 62 minutes
Current Lucas Oil Late Model Dirt Series Championship Points Standings (After September 1, 2007)
1) Earl Pearson, Jr. (Jacksonville, FL)-5325
2) Scott James (Lawrenceburg, IN)-5130
3) Steve Casebolt (Richmond, IN)-4990
4) Terry English (Benton, KY)-4560
5) Donnie Moran (Dresden, OH)-4575
6) Justin Rattliff (Campbellsville, KY)-4355
7) Billy Drake (Bloomington, IL)-4290
8) Dan Schlieper (Sullivan, WI)-4165
9) Damon Eller (Crumpler, NC)-3720
10) Freddy Smith (Seymour, TN)-3505
Current COMP Cams Rookie of the Year Points Standings (After September 1, 2007)
1) Justin Rattliff (Campbellsville, KY)-4355
2) Damon Eller (Crumpler, NC)-3720
3) Brad Neat (Dunnville, KY)-2885