By: BRODY JONES
Morgan County News
It was a satisfying race night filled with dirt and fists flying at the 3/10 mile bull-ring nestled in the heart of Morgan County known as Wartburg Speedway. Anthony White outdueled a hard-charging Mike Weeks to win the first annual “Dylan Kennedy Memorial 37” and the $4,370 first place prize that came with it while tempers flared in the Sportsman division post-race in the form of a pull-apart brawl involving Jimmie York and Chuck Freels.
To kick off the evening’s festivities, Marcus Thompson and Donnie Turpin led the Mini Stock field to the green flag with Thompson holding off a hot on his heels Donnie Turpin for the duration of the 20 lap feature to collect his first win of the season. Joe Freels was third with Dylan Duggan and Nathan Davis rounding out the top five. Sixth through tenth were Kenny Lemons, Taylon Overton, Dustin Bonham, Justin Meredith, and Walter Walsh. Brian Frost and David Singleton closed out the field as Rodney Davenport was rendered unable to start the race.
In the Sportsman class, Jaylon Shannon sat on the pole with a 13.493 lap. But the feature became a war of attrition as just five cars were left running at the end of the race. Brad Adkisson used an aggressive restart in the mid-stages of the race to muscle his way into the lead and outlast the competition for the win. Derrick Meadors had another strong second place showing with Ted Lowe third, Anthony Conley in fourth, and Gary Lively in fifth. Calvin Brown, Jaylon Shannon, and Matthew Lloyd rounded out the field. Jimmie York and Chuck Freels were disqualified after Freels confronted York in the pits and engaged in fisticuffs, resulting in an automatic disqualification for both drivers.
The much-ballyhooed $4,037 to win “Dylan Kennedy Memorial 37” Steelhead Late Model race pulled in 23 drivers from Tennessee, Georgia, and North Carolina in pursuit of one of the highest paying steelhead late model races of the year in the region. Eddie King Jr. set fast time with a 13.269 lap. But it was Anthony White who led flag to flag for the win, but Mike Weeks gave White all he could handle for the final 15 laps, outrunning White in corner entry, but on corner exit and in the straightaways, White had the better car, which proved to be the difference as White collected the spoils of victory. Weeks had to settle for second with King in third. Dan Tipton and Austin Neely rounded out the top five. Sixth through tenth were Drew Kennedy, Bryan Hendrix, Chris Marcum, Tim Damron, and Reuben Mayfield. Chris Chandler, Tom Vann, Ray Jarnigan, Greg Love, Caleb Marcum, Dakotah Knuckles, Mike Robinette, Darrick York, Michael Courtney, Wade Howerton, Dustin Stephens, Perry Delaney, and Shannon Elrod rounded out the field. An honorable mention in this race was the diligent work of the Wartburg Volunteer Fire Department when they were called to help extract Wade Howerton out of his mangled race car in an early pile-up.
Westley Lester and Sam Burgess sat on the front row of the Super Street feature, but Lester went the distance to win another feature in the Super Street class. Burgess had to settle for second with Danny Bray, Jay Young, and Kenny Bob Williams rounding out the top five. Nathan Adams, Bruce Daveport, Pat Lackey, and Eric Griffith rounded out the field with Brandon Jenkins unable to answer the bell for the feature.
In the Front Wheel Drive class, Cody Rector sat on the pole following his heat win and seemed poised for a feature win until mechanical gremlins ended his bid for victory. Jacob Sharp picked up the slack and earned the feature win with Todd Duncan, Chris Morrison, and Ryan Maston rounding out the paying positions. Carl Warfield was unable to start the feature after a nasty crash in his heat race and Rector was disqualified per track rules when he brought a second race car onto the race track to try and rejoin the race, which was a violation of track rules.
Next week will see another action-packed Saturday night of racing under the bright halogen lights of Wartburg Speedway with several points battles growing tighter than a coil spring each and every week as the drivers enter the home stretch of the 2017 Wartburg Speedway season.