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BURLINGTON, IA (May 13, 2011) – With his homestate fans on their feet and cheering, Brian Birkhofer of Muscatine, IA ended the four-race win streak of Scott Bloomquist. He captured the 50-lap $10,000 to win Lucas Oil Late Model Dirt Series event on Friday Night at 34 Raceway. Bloomquist rebounded from a poor start to finish second, but was several car lengths behind the winner at the finish. Steve Francis of Ashland, KY finished third followed by Jimmy Owens of Newport, TN and John Blankenship of Williamson, WV.   “Man, to win this race in front of my homestate crowd is just awesome! I know they had to be cold up there, and to win for Johnny Johnson, he put so much into this place, it’s a great facility, I just can’t say enough for what that man did for me and the sport of late model racing,” said the 39-year-old Birkhofer, who was joined by his sons Cruz and Creed in Lucas Oil Victory Lane.   Brad Neat outgunned fellow Kentuckian Steve Francis to take the lead at the start. Francis, who was debuting a new MasterSbilt Race Car vaulted to the point a lap later. Francis held the top spot for two circuits, when Birkhofer, who had started fourth, eased into the lead.   Birkhofer’s stay at the top of the scoring pylon was short-lived as Francis blasted back by to regain the lead on lap seven. The first of two caution flags came out for Billy Moyer, who spun in turn two. The second came out for Tyler Reddick on the backstretch on lap 23.

After the caution for Moyer, Francis looked solid as he built a seven-to-eight car length advantage over Birkhofer with 15 laps scored. Birkhofer made up quite a bit of ground in a short period of time, cutting Francis’ lead to a car length by lap 21, a lap later he was around Francis to take the lead for good.

Birkhofer then pulled out to a straightaway lead over Francis with 20 laps remaining and a few laps later he had picked up the tail end of the field to begin lapping cars for the first time in the race. Bloomquist powered by Francis in the top groove on lap 34, but by then Birkhofer was well out in front. Bloomquist cut the lead down as the two took the white flag, but Birkhofer held a several car lengths lead at the finish.

“Thanks to all my sponsors, we had a great car tonight. Anytime you beat that Zero car you’ve done something. I have so much respect for him. I didn’t know if I could catch Francis there for a while, but our car came into it. I am down on crew help here lately, but thanks to everyone who pitched in tonight, and we will go get ‘em at La Salle tomorrow night.   It was Birkhofer’s 12th career Lucas Oil Late Model Dirt Series victory came aboard his J&J Steel, Zens Flooring, ASi Racewear, VP Fuels, Pro Power Engines, MB Customs Chevrolet.  Bloomquist, who was attempting a series-record fifth consecutive race, settled for second in his Base Racing Fuels, Bloomquist Race Cars Ford. Francis in his Valvoline, Estes Racing Engines, MasterSbilt Race Car placed third to move to fifth in the series points.

Completing the top ten were Chris Simpson of Oxford, IA; Shannon Babb of Moweaqua, IL; Brad Neat of Dunnville, KY; Mike Marlar of Winfield, TN; and Scott James of Lawrenceburg, IN.

In preliminary action Francis was the Red Buck Cigar Fast Qualifier among the 37 entrants with a lap of 14.954 seconds. Heat race winners were Francis, Bloomquist, Neat, and Birkhofer. The B-mains went to Dale McDowell and Jared Landers.

The next Lucas Oil Late Model Dirt Series event will be on Saturday Night, May 14 for the Spring Shootout at La Salle Speedway in La Salle, IL paying $10,000 to win. For more information, go to www.lasallespeedway.com. For the latest breaking news on the Lucas Oil Late Model Dirt Series, log onto www.lucasdirt.com or call the series’ office at (951) 532-2503. Lucas Oil Late Model Dirt SeriesRace SummaryFriday Night, May 13th, 201134 Raceway – W. Burlington, IA

Red Buck Cigars Fast Time:  Steve Francis / 14.954 seconds (Group A and Overall)                                                      Brad Neat / 15.086 seconds (Group B) Wiles Driveshafts First Heat (10 Laps- Top 4 Advance): Steve Francis, Jimmy Owens, Scott James, Billy Moyer, Chad Simpson, Don O’Neal, Dennis Erb Jr., Dan Schlieper, Mark Burgtorf, Jay Johnson Wiles Driveshafts Second Heat (10 Laps- Top 4 Advance): Scott Bloomquist, Chris Simpson, Shannon Babb, Bub McCool, Dale McDowell, Tyler Reddick, Frank Heckenast Jr., Jeremiah Hurst, Jon Rogers Sweet Manufacturing Third Heat (10 Laps- Top 4 Advance): Brad neat, John Blankenship, Earl Pearson Jr., Mike Marlar, Jason Feger, Steve Casebolt, Kent Robinson, Tyler Bruening, Denny Woodworth   HAWK Brakes Fourth Heat (10 Laps- Top 4 Advance): Brian Birkhofer, Eric Wells, Jeep VanWormer, Ray Cook, Jared Landers, Darren Miller, Chris Wall, Jason Utter, Tim Isenberg   JRi Shocks First B-Main (12 Laps- Top 3 Advance): Dale McDowell, Chad Simpson, Don O’Neal, Tyler Reddick, Dennis Erb Jr., Frank Heckensast Jr., Mark Burgtorf, Dan Schlieper, Jeremiah Hurst, Jay Johnson, Jon Rogers   Wrisco Aluminum Second B-Main (12 Laps- Top 3 Advance): Jared Landers, Jason Feger, Darren Miller, Chris Wall, Steve Casebolt, Kent Robinson, Tim Isenberg, Tyler Bruening, Jason Utter, Denny Woodworth Feature Finish (50 Laps): Brian Birkhofer, Scott Bloomquist, Steve Francis, Jimmy Owens, John Blankenship, Chris Simpson, Shannon Babb, Brad Neat, Mike Marlar, Scott James, Bub McCool, Jason Feger, Chris Wall, Dennis Erb, Jr., Don O'Neal, Jared Landers, Jeep VanWormer, Dale McDowell, Earl Pearson, Jr., Darren Miller, Ray Cook, Chad Simpson, Eric Wells, Tyler Reddick, Frank Heckenast, Jr., Billy Moyer

Feature Finish – 50 Laps

FINISH START CAR # DRIVER NAME HOMETOWN
1 4 15b Brian Birkhofer Muscatine, IA
2 3 0 Scott Bloomquist Mooresburg, TN
3 1 15 Steve Francis Ashland, KY
4 5 20 Jimmy Owens Newport, TN
5 6 23 John Blankenship Williamson, WV
6 7 32x Chris Simpson Oxford, IA
7 11 18 Shannon Babb Mowequa, IL
8 2 41n Brad Neat Dunnville, KY
9 14 36 Mike Marlar Winfield, TN
10 9 81 Scott James Lawrenceburg, IN
11 15 57J Bub McCool Vicksburg, MS
12 20 25f Jason Feger Bloomington, IL
13 25 71w Chris Wall Springfield, LA
14 23 28e Dennis Erb, Jr. Carpentersville, IL
15 21 71 Don O'Neal Martinsville, IN
16 18 777 Jared Landers Batesville, AR
17 12 55 Jeep VanWormer Pinconning, MI
18 17 17m Dale McDowell Chickamauga, GA
19 10 44 Earl Pearson, Jr. Jacksonville, FL
20 22 32d Darren Miller Milledgeville, IL
21 16 53 Ray Cook Brasstown, NC
22 19 25c Chad Simpson Mt. Vernon, IA
23 8 18e Eric Wells Hazard, KY
24 24 11t Tyler Reddick Corning, CA
25 26 99jr Frank Heckenast, Jr. Frankfort, IL
26 13 21 Billy Moyer Batesville, AR

 

Race Statistics

Entrants: 37

Lap Leaders: Brad Neat (Lap 1); Steve Francis (Laps 2-5); Brian Birkhofer (Lap 6); Steve Francis (Lap 7-21); Brian Birkhofer (Laps 22-50)

Caution Flags: Lap 7 (Billy Moyer); Lap 23 (Tyler Reddick)

Lucas Oil Late Model Dirt Series Provisionals: Dennis Erb Jr.; Tyler Reddick

Lucas Oil Late Model Dirt Series Emergency Provisionals: Chris Wall; Frank Heckenast Jr.

PBM/Erson Cams Hard Charger of the Race: Chris Wall (Started 25th; Finished 13th; Advanced 12 positions)

Allstar Performer of the Race: John Blankenship

K&N Filters Clean Pass of the Race: Brian Birkhofer

Quarter Master Rookie of the Race: Bub McCool

COMP Cams Engine Builder of the Race: Roush-Yates Race Engines

Outerwears Challenger of the Race: Jason Feger

Dominator Race Products Hard Luck Award: Billy Moyer

DirtonDirt.com Crew Chief of the Race: Derrick Reese (Steve Francis)

Time of Race: 25 minutes 37 seconds

Lucas Oil Championship Point Standings:

POS CAR # DRIVER NAME HOMETOWN POINTS
1 0 Scott Bloomquist Mooresburg, TN 1440
2 20 Jimmy Owens Newport, TN 1300
3 71 Don O'Neal Martinsville, IN 1265
4 44 Earl Pearson, Jr. Jacksonville, FL 1115
5 15 Steve Francis Ashland, KY 1100
6 36 Mike Marlar Winfield, TN 1080
7 17m Dale McDowell Chickamauga, GA 1065
8 57J Bub McCool Vicksburg, MS 1045
8 28e Dennis Erb, Jr. Carpentersville, IL 1045
10 41n Brad Neat Dunnville, KY 1040
11 777 Jared Landers Batesville, AR 1010
12 53 Ray Cook Brasstown, NC 955
12 11t Tyler Reddick Corning, CA 955
14 71w Chris Wall Springfield, LA 930
15 23 John Blankenship Williamson, WV 910
16 18e Eric Wells Hazard, KY 895
17 99jr Frank Heckenast, Jr. Frankfort, IL 860
18 9t Tim Isenberg Marshfield, WI 790
19 c9 Steve Casebolt Richmond, IN 760

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