HAGERSTOWN, MD (August 1, 2009) – Brad Neat of Dunnville, KY captured the biggest win of his racing career on Saturday Night at Hagerstown Speedway. The 29-year-old took his second Lucas Oil Late Model Dirt Series win of 2009 by narrowly edging out Earl Pearson Jr. of Jacksonville, FL at the finish line. Jimmy Owens of Newport, TN finished third followed by Steve Francis of Ashland, KY and Jason Covert of York Haven, PA.
Neat and Pearson made up the front row for the 50 lap main event. At the drop of the green, Neat took the lead ahead of Pearson, Owens, Francis, and Covert. Neat built a hefty lead over Pearson as the two drivers entered traffic by lap 15. The top five running order remained the same; Owens was hounding Pearson for second by lap 18, and a circuit later he passed Pearson for second as the top three raced their way through lapped cars.
Just as the race was developing into a close contest between the top three of Neat, Owens, and Pearson; the first caution came out for Jack Pencil with 23 laps complete. Pencil suffered heavy damage to his race car, when he slammed into the outside guardrail in turn number three.
On the restart, Neat still held the point with Owens and Pearson lined up side-by-side behind him. Another yellow came out; this time for points leader Scott Bloomquist who ended up sideways coming off of turn four as he received contact with at least two other cars. Bloomquist went pit-side for repairs and rejoined the field on the tail end for the restart.
Neat pulled out to a quick three car length advantage over Owens. Owens found his line, and regained his momentum, closing right on the rear decklid of Neat’s machine. With 20 laps to go, Owens was still pressuring Neat for the lead with Pearson lurking in the wings. Francis and Covert were trying to close the gap on the race leaders. With ten laps to go, Neat re-entered lapped traffic as the top three ran nose to tail.
Owens then had heat from Pearson with six laps to go. Neat began pulling away from the duo as they battle for position. Pearson made the pass on Owens for second on lap 47. He then set his sights on the leader, Neat. Pearson closed to within a car length as the two took the white flag.
On the final lap, Pearson tried the inside line off of turn number four, but Neat held his line and went on to pick up the biggest paycheck of his career by one car length over Pearson to earn the $10,000 first place prize. Neat’s previous career win was a $7,500 victory at Duck River Speedway earlier this year.
In the Lucas Oil Victory Lane for the second time this season; Neat was grateful for the victory which came in a MasterSbilt Race Car Chassis that was just on its second race. “First off I want to thank God for giving me this opportunity to race and thanks to Red Buck Cigars, they just came on board as a sponsor and my crew, they work their butts of every day. Those guys (Pearson and Owens) they are just a great group of guys, and to beat them is special, they are two of the best in the business, thanks to MasterSbilt Race Cars this is just my second race with this car, we just picked it up last week thanks to Tader and Keith Masters and all my sponsors, Russ Bradford is here from Sunoco Race Fuels, thanks to him and to the fans for coming out tonight,” said the driver who graduated from the University of Kentucky in Lexington, KY with a business degree.
Neat’s number 41 is also sponsored by T&T Energy, NWN Distributing, Tarter and Roberts Insurance, B&B Motorsports, Tri-County Wood, Tarter Gate, Hoosier Tires, Begley Properties and is powered by a Cornett Racing Engines.
Finishing second was Pearson in the Bobby Labonte Racing/Larry Wallace Racing Engines/MasterSbilt Race Cars entry as he closed to within 165 points of championship points leader, Scott Bloomquist who finished 16th.
Third went to Owens in the Mike Reece/Reece Monuments/Bloomquist Race Cars Ford Fusion. Francis took home fourth in the Reliable Painting/Cornett Racing Engines/Rocket GTO. Covert took fifth in the Barry Klinedinst Racing/Red Wing Shoes/Rocket Monte Carlo SS.
Completing the top ten were Austin Hubbard of Seaford, DE; Ronnie DeHaven, Jr. of Winchester, VA; Rick Eckert of York, PA; Josh Richards of Shinnston, WV; and Steve Casebolt of Richmond, IN.
To find out more about the Lucas Oil Late Model Dirt Series, log on to www.lucasdirt.com or call the series office at (951) 532-2503.
Lucas Oil Late Model Dirt SeriesRace Summary Saturday Night, August 1st, 2009 Hagerstown Speedway – Hagerstown, MD
PRC Fast Time: Earl Pearson Jr. / 18.249 seconds
Hawk Brake First Heat (10 Laps-Top 4 Advance): Brad Neat, Jason Covert, Jack Pencil, Steve Casebolt, John Blankenship, Nick Dickson, Jamie Lathroum, Les Hare, Roy Deese Jr., Devin Friese, Michael Walker, Dan Schlieper
Hawk Brake Second Heat (10 Laps-Top 4 Advance): Jimmy Owens, Austin Hubbard, Ronnie DeHaven Jr., DJ Myers, Dale McDowell, Josh Richards, Mike Lupfer, J.T. Spence, Brian Booze, Bob Dunn, Freddy Smith, Al Cheney
AFCO Racing Products Third Heat (10 Laps-Top 4 Advance): Earl Pearson Jr., Don O’Neal, Ray Cook, Jim Yoder, Kirk Ryan Jr., Vic Coffey, Tommy Armel, David Breazeale, Al Shawver Jr., Eric Jacobsen, Walker Arthur, Booper Bare
Tiger Rear Ends Fourth Heat (10 Laps-Top 4 Advance): Steve Francis, Rick Eckert, Scott Bloomquist, Tyler Armstrong, Gary Stuhler, Jeremy Miller, Daniel Stone, Frank Plessinger, Marvin Winters, Larry Baer, Doug Legum, Bryan Wright-DNS
Mason Racin’ Rebel Shock Dyno First B-Main (12 Laps-Top 3 Advance): John Blankenship, Josh Richards, Dale McDowell, Nick Dickson, J.T. Spence, Les Hare, Jamie Lathroum, Mike Lupfer, Devin Friese, Roy Deese Jr., Bob Dunn, Michael Walker, Freddy Smith, Brian Booze, Al Cheney, Dan Schlieper-DNS
Wiles Drive Shafts Second B-Main (12 Laps-Top 3 Advance): Gary Stuhler, Krik Ryan, Vic Coffey, Jeremy Miller, Dan Stone, Marvin Winters, Frank Plessinger, Al Shawver Jr., Tommy Armel, Walker Arthur, Eric Jacobsen, David Breazeale, Doug Legum, Larry Baer, Booper Bare-DNS, Bryan Wright-DNS
Feature Finish (50 Laps): Brad Neat, Earl Pearson Jr., Jimmy Owens, Steve Francis, Jason Covert, Austin Hubbard, Ronnie DeHaven Jr., Rick Eckert, Josh Richards, Steve Casebolt, Don O’Neal, Ray Cook, DJ Myers, John Blankenship, Dale McDowell, Scott Bloomquist, Jim Yoder, Eric Jacobsen, David Breazeale, Gary Stuhler, Roy Deese Jr., Jack Pencil, Tyler Armstrong, Dan Schlieper, Kirk Ryan Jr., Vic Coffey
Finish (Start) Car Number Driver Name
1. (1) #41N Brad Neat 2. (2) #44 Earl Pearson Jr. 3. (3) #20 Jimmy Owens 4. (4) #19 Steve Francis 5. (5) #43A Jason Covert 6. (7) #11A Austin Hubbard 7. (11) #1D Ronnie DeHaven Jr. 8. (8) #24 Rick Eckert 9. (19) #25 Josh Richards 10. (13) #c9 Steve Casebolt 11. (6) #71 Don O’Neal 12. (10) #53 Ray Cook 13. (15) #70J DJ Myers 14. (17) #23 John Blankenship 15. (21) #17M Dale McDowell 16. (12) #0 Scott Bloomquist 17. (14) #27 Jim Yoder 18. (21) #5 Eric Jacobsen 19. (26) #54 David Breazeale 20. (18) #7 Gary Stuhler 21. (25) #05 Roy Deese Jr. 22. (9) #14 Jack Pencil 23. (16) #84 Tyler Armstrong 24. (24) #s9 Dan Schlieper 25. (20) #5K Krik Ryan Jr. 26. (22) #32c Vic Coffey
Entries: 47 Caution Flags: Lap 23 (Jack Pencil); Lap 23 [restart] (Scott Bloomquist, Jim Yoder) Lap Leaders: Brad Neat (Laps 1-50) Lucas Oil Late Model Dirt Series Provisionals: Eric Jacobsen, Dan Schlieper Emergency Provisional: David Breazeale PBM/Erson Cams Hard Charger of the Race: Josh Richards Allstar Performance Performer of the Race: Brad Neat K&N Filters Clean Pass of the Race: Earl Pearson Jr. Quarter Master Rookie of the Race: John Blankenship Comp Cams Engine Builder of the Race: Cornett Racing Engines Time of the Race: 30 minutes 59 seconds
2009 Lucas Oil Championship Points Standings
1. Scott Bloomquist (Mooresburg, TN) 4915 2. Earl Pearson Jr. (Jacksonville, FL) 4750 3. Jimmy Owens (Newport, TN) 4695 4. Dale McDowell (Chickamauga, GA) 4675 5. Don O’Neal (Martinsville, IN) 4490 6. Ray Cook (Brasstown, NC) 4370 7. Steve Casebolt (Richmond, IN) 4300 8. Brad Neat (Dunnville, KY) 4060 9. Eric Jacobsen (Seacliffe Beach, CA) 3825 10. John Blankenship (Williamson, WV) 3680 11. Dan Schlieper (Sullivan, WI) 3570 12. David Breazeale (Four Corners, MS) 3360 13. Freddy Smith (Seymour, TN) 3005 15. Michael Walker (Franklin, TN) 2420
2009 Quarter Master Rookie of the Year Points Standings
1. John Blankenship (Williamson, WV) 3680 2. David Breazeale (Four Corners, MS) 3360 3. Michael Walker (Franklin, TN) 2420 4. Jeep VanWormer (Pinnconning, MI) 1590