Featured12_2-18.jpg   TAMPA, FL (February 18, 2012) – Steve Francis of Ashland, KY outdueled defending Lucas Oil Late Model Dirt Series National Champion, Jimmy Owens of Newport, TN in an exciting finish at East Bay Raceway Park. Francis picked up $10,000 for his win in the finale of the 36th Annual DART Winternationals. He scored his second win of the week, in doing so. The duo was followed by Don O’Neal of Martinsville, IN; Scott Bloomquist of Mooresburg, TN; and Dennis Erb Jr. of Carpentersville, IL.   Erb earned the week-long DART Winternationals Championship. He won $5,000 for his efforts.

He had to withstand Owens’ repeated efforts over the last four laps after a caution came out for Jason Riggs. On the restart Owens tried the inside of Francis several times, but Francis repelled him at each turn. Francis also won the Thursday night installment of the Winternationals. O’Neal was able to get by Bloomquist on the 60th and final lap to claim third after pitting for fresh tires on lap 27.

“I want to apologize to Donnie (Moran) for getting into him. I knew we had a good car in open air, I was trying not to make a mistake and let Scott or Jimmy get by me. We were just looking for a caution to clear the track in front of us. I can’t say enough about Barry and Lance Wright. This team got together so late in the game, we have had to work our tails off to get ready. I was racing in Australia just a few weeks ago,” said Francis, who captured his tenth career win at East Bay.   “The Barry Wright Race Cars and the Clements Engines have been great this week. We could’ve won a couple more of these without the flat tires, but we’ll never know. Luckily they all held air tonight,” said the 44-year-old driver embarking on his second year with the LOLMDS. “I want to thank VP Race Fuels, Valvoline, Nichols Plumbing, AES Racing, Jri Shocks, and Mathis Farms.”   Completing the top ten were Duke Whiseant of Texarkana, AR; Scott Creel of Franklinton, LA; Earl Pearson Jr. of Jacksonville, FL; Austin Hubbard of Seaford, DE; and Jonathan Davenport of Blairsville, GA.   In preliminary action John Blankenship took the Red Buck Cigars Fast Time award amongst the 41 entrants. Heat races were won by Donnie Moran, Randy Korte, Terry Casey, and Steve Francis. Duke Whiseant and Austin Hubbard won the B-Mains. Rookie Late Model driver, Shelby Miles captured the PRC Strawberry Dash.   The next Lucas Oil Late Model Dirt Series event will be on Saturday Night, March 24th at Brownstown Speedway in Brownstown, IN. The “Indiana Icebreaker” will pay $10,000 to win. For more information log on to www.brownstownspeedway.com.   For the latest breaking news on the Lucas Oil Late Model Dirt Series, log onto www.lucasdirt.com.   Lucas Oil Late Model Dirt Series Race Summary Saturday Night, February 18, 2012 36th Annual DART Winternationals East Bay Raceway Park – Tampa, FL   Red Buck Cigars Fast Time:  Donnie Moran / 14.440 seconds (Group A) John Blankenship / 14.398 seconds (Group B and Overall)   Wiles Driveshafts First Heat (8 Laps- Top 4 Advance): Donnie Moran, Scott Bloomquist, Don O'Neal, Jonathan Davenport, Duke Whiseant, Tyler Reddick, Mark Andersen, Danny Mitchell, Justin Rattliff, Todd Frank, Roger Hammond   U. S. Steel Second Heat (8 Laps- Top 4 Advance): Randy Korte, Jared Landers, Shannon Babb, Scott James, Jackie Nosbisch, Chris Brown, Josh McGuire, Leon Henderson, Eric Jacobsen, James O'Hara   Simpson Performance Products Third Heat (8 Laps- Top 4 Advance): Terry Casey, John Blankenship, Jimmy Owens, Chad Stapleton, Morgan Bagley, Earl Pearson, Jr., Austin Hubbard, Eric Wells, Shane Cottle, Scott Creel   HAWK Brakes Fourth Heat (8 Laps- Top 4 Advance): Steve Francis, Ray Cook, Dennis Erb, Jr., Jason Riggs, Bobby Pierce, Shelby Miles, Dillan White, Chad Hollenbeck, Travis Varnadore, Victor Lee-DNS   JRi Shocks First B-Main (10 Laps- Top 3 Advance): Duke Whiseant, Jackie Nosbisch, Tyler Reddick, Josh McGuire, Chris Brown, Mark Andersen, Justin Rattliff, Danny Mitchell, James O'Hara, Todd Frank, Roger Hammond, Leon Henderson-DNS, Eric Jacobsen-DNS   PAC Racing Springs Second B-Main (10 Laps- Top 3 Advance): Austin Hubbard, Morgan Bagley, Bobby Pierce, Dillan White, Shelby Miles, Chad Hollenbeck, Travis Varnadore, Shane Cottle, Earl Pearson, Jr.-DNS, Eric Wells-DNS, Scott CreeL-DNS, Victor Lee-DNS   PRC Strawberry Dash Presented by DirtonDirt.com (6 Laps- Winner Advances): Shelby Miles, Shane Cottle, Chris Brown, James O’Hara, Travis Varnadore, Chad Hollenbeck   Feature Finish – 60 Laps:

FINISH START CAR # DRIVER NAME HOMETOWN
1 4 15 Steve Francis Ashland, KY
2 10 20 Jimmy Owens Newport, TN
3 9 71 Don O'Neal Martinsville, IN
4 5 0 Scott Bloomquist Mooresburg, TN
5 12 28e Dennis Erb, Jr. Carpentersville, IL
6 17 A1 Duke Whiseant Texarkana, AR
7 25 31 Scott Creel Franklinton, LA
8 23 44 Earl Pearson, Jr. Jacksonville, FL
9 18 11h Austin Hubbard Seaford, DE
10 13 15d Jonathan Davenport Blairsville, GA
11 15 81 Scott James Lawrenceburg, IN
12 21 11T Tyler Reddick Corning, CA
13 3 81x Randy Korte Highland, IL
14 14 32s Chad Stapleton Edinburgh, IN
15 6 23 John Blankenship Williamson, WV
16 24 18e Eric Wells Hazard, KY
17 1 99 Donnie Moran Dresden, OH
18 22 32 Bobby Pierce Oakwood, IL
19 19 01 Jackie Nosbisch Valrico, FL
20 16 81JR Jason Riggs Harrisburg, IL
21 7 5 Jared Landers Batesville, AR
22 8 53 Ray Cook Brasstown, NC
23 20 14m Morgan Bagley Tyler, TX
24 26 76 Shelby Miles Bloomington, IN
25 2 42c Terry Casey New London, WI
26 11 18 Shannon Babb Mowequa, IL

 

Race Statistics Entrants: 41 Lap Leaders: Donnie Moran (Laps 1 – 24); Steve Francis (Laps 25 – 60) Caution Flags: Tyler Reddick (Start); Duke Whiseant (Lap 11); Austin Hubbard (Lap 27); Pile Up (Lap 27); Jonathan Davenport (Lap 37); Jason Riggs (Lap 56) Lucas Oil Late Model Dirt Series Provisionals: Earl Pearson Jr., Eric Wells DirtonDirt.com Fast Time Provisional: Scott Creel Lucas Oil Late Model Dirt Series Emergency Provisional: n/a Performance Bodies First Non-Qualifier: Shane Cottle Optima Batteries Hard Charger of the Race: Scott Creel (Started 25th; Finished 7th; Advanced 18 positions) Allstar Performer of the Race: Duke Whiseant Sunoco Race for Gas Highest Finisher: Jimmy Owens ASi Racewear Challenge Finisher: Steve Francis Quarter Master Rookie of the Race: Austin Hubbard COMP Cams Engine Builder of the Race: Roush Yates Racing Engines Ohlins Shocks Chassis Builder of the Race: Barry Wright Race Cars Sweet Mfg Crew Chief of the Race: Lance Wright Time of Race: 56 minutes 58 seconds

  DART Winternationals Point Standings:

POS CAR# DRIVER HOMETOWN POINTS
1 28e Dennis Erb, Jr. Carpentersville, IL 1265
2 15 Steve Francis Ashland, KY 1255
3 71 Don O'Neal Martinsville, IN 1210
4 81x Randy Korte Highland, IL 1125
5 53 Ray Cook Dresden, OH 1120
6 23 John Blankenship Williamson, WV 1110
7 0 Scott Bloomquist Mooresburg, TN 1095
8 42c Terry Casey New London, WI 1015
9 18e Eric Wells Hazard, KY 980
10 11T Tyler Reddick Corning, CA 970

Lucas Oil Championship Point Standings:

POS CAR # DRIVER NAME HOMETOWN POINTS
1 28e Dennis Erb, Jr. Carpentersville, IL 455
2 20 Jimmy Owens Newport, TN 420
3 15 Steve Francis Ashland, KY 415
4 81x Randy Korte Highland, IL 395
5 15d Jonathan Davenport Blairsville, GA 390
5 11T Tyler Reddick Corning, CA 390
7 11h Austin Hubbard Seaford, DE 385
8 44 Earl Pearson, Jr. Jacksonville, FL 360
8 99 Donnie Moran Dresden, OH 360
10 71 Don O'Neal Martinsville, IN 345
10 23 John Blankenship Williamson, WV 345
12 0 Scott Bloomquist Mooresburg, TN 335
12 18e Eric Wells Hazard, KY 335
14 32s Chad Stapleton Edinburgh, IN 320
14 53 Ray Cook Brasstown, NC 320
16 31 Scott Creel Franklinton, LA 315
17 81 Scott James Lawrenceburg, IN 310
18 42c Terry Casey New London, WI 300
19 5 Jared Landers Batesville, AR 275
20 18 Shannon Babb Mowequa, IL 270
21 32 Bobby Pierce Oakwood, IL 265
22 81JR Jason Riggs Harrisburg, IL 255
23 A1 Duke Whiseant Texarkana, AR 250
23 76 Shelby Miles Bloomington, IN 250
23 41 Josh McGuire Grayson, KY 250
26 14m Morgan Bagley Tyler, TX 240
27 85 Mark Andersen Blanchard, MI 235
28 54W Dillan White Crofton, KY 230
29 5J Eric Jacobsen Watsonville, CA 225
30 4-Ds Chad Hollenbeck Montrose, PA 220

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