Following a completed show on Thursday then a rain-out on Friday, the Lucas Oil Late Model Dirt Series took to the track on Saturday night for the second feature to be contested at Port Royal Speedway this weekend. At the end of the evening it was Kyle Larson who took the checkered flag away from the Port Royal, PA track. The Elk Grove, CA driver earned $15,000 for his victory.
Brandon Sheppard was quickest in Group A qualifying with a lap of 19.135 seconds around the half-mile clay oval to top Hudson O’Neal, Jonathan Davenport, Tim McCreadie and Stormy Scott.
Kyle Larson was fastest in Group B time-trials and overall with a lap of 19.430 seconds to beat out Kyle Bronson, Gregg Satterlee, Shane Clanton and Trever Feathers.
Brandon Sheppard earned the pole for the feature by winning the first heat race of the night over Tim McCreadie and Tanner English while Hudson O’Neal topped Devin Moran and Stormy Scott in the second preliminary.
Kyle Strickler was victorious in the third heat as he beat out Jonathan Davenport and Josh Richards.
Kyle Larson would start the feature from the outside of the front row by taking the fourth heat over Shane Clanton and Mason Zeigler then Kyle Bronson beat out Earl Pearson Jr and Chris Ferguson in the fifth preliminary.
Gregg Satterlee won the sixth and final heat of the night over Jimmy Owens and Bobby Pierce.
Rick Eckert and Trent Ivey won the two B-main races used to set the remainder of the starting lineup.
Prior to the start of the feature, Owens was penalized because of a violation related to his rear deck height, which was measured as cars rolled out to line up for the race. The series points leader was forced to start at the rear of the field.
At the start of the 50-lap feature it was Larson who took the early lead with Sheppard, Bronson, O’Neal and Satterlee trailing. O’Neal moved around Bronson for third on lap 2. Shortly afterward, the top-5 began to run in single-file formation as they pulled away from the pack.
Further back, Strickler, Pearson and Clanton waged war over positions 6-8 just before a lap 10 caution came out for a spin involving Colton Flinner.
On the restart, O’Neal took second away from Sheppard while Satterlee moved up to fourth. On lap 12, Strickler took fifth from Bronson. Later, Sheppard would regain the runner-up spot from O’Neal and set off in pursuit of Larson.
Sheppard closed in on Larson and challenged for the race lead on lap 22. However, a yellow flag waved on lap 23 when the car of series defending champion Davenport lost a drive shaft.
O’Neal took second back away from Sheppard on the lap 23 restart but a yellow flag waved one lap later for the stalled car of Bobby Pierce again brought the pace back down.
O’Neal and Sheppard continued to exchange second on multiple restarts until O’Neal slowed with a flat tire on lap 30. Satterlee and Ferguson began to rumble as they moved to third and fourth respectively just past the halfway mark.
Larson pulled away to a lead of a straightaway by lap 33 as the race remained under green flag conditions. But Sheppard closed in on the race leader as the laps began to dwindle with slower traffic becoming a factor.
The top-4 of Larson, Sheppard, Satterlee and Ferguson tightened up as they continued to pick their way through slower cars. But in the end, it was the former NASCAR star and Sprint Car ace who would sail under the checkered flag for the victory in only his second Late Model start.
Feature Finish: 1. Kyle Larson, 2. Brandon Sheppard, 3. Gregg Satterlee, 4. Chris Ferguson, 5. Tim McCreadie, 6. Earl Pearson Jr., 7. Jimmy Owens, 8. Kyle Strickler, 9. Mason Zeigler, 10. Rick Eckert, 11. Josh Richards, 12. Tanner English, 13. Stormy Scott, 14. Hudson O’Neal, 15. Shane Clanton, 16. Kyle Bronson, 17. Tyler Erb, 18. Tyler Bruening, 19. Trent Ivey, 20. Devin Moran, 21. Billy Moyer Jr., 22. Jason Covert, 23. Bobby Pierce, 24. Jonathan Davenport, 25. Colton Flinner