Ryan Gustin entered Wednesday night’s Wieland Winternationals event at East Bay Raceway Park having never won a Lucas Oil Late Model Dirt Series but that would change by the end of the evening. Leading all but one lap, ‘The Reaper’ regained the lead quickly after briefly losing it to Kyle Bronson after a mid-race restart then had to survive multiple late-race restarts to go on to victory.
The Rocket Chassis driver from Marshalltown, Iowa earned $7,000 for his efforts on the Gibsonton, Florida track in a race shown live by FloRacing.com.
A total of 65 cars were signed in for competition
Group A Results- 1. Jensen Ford(15.001), 2. Brandon Sheppard, 3. Jonathan Davenport, 4. Ryan Gustin, 5. Kyle Bronson, 6. Devin Moran, 7. Garrett Alberson, 8. Jimmy Owens, 9. Ashton Winger, 10. Ross Bailes
Group B Results- 1. Blair Nothdurft(15.204), 2. Garrett Smith, 3. Brandon Overton, 4. Tyler Erb, 5. Ross Robinson, 6. Logan Roberson, 7. Boom Briggs, 8. Brian Shirley, 9. Kyle Beard, 10. Tanner English
Heat 1 Results: 1. Ryan Gustin, 2. Ross Bailes, 3. Earl Pearson Jr.
Heat 2 Results: 1. Kyle Bronson, 2. Brandon Sheppard, 3. Jimmy Owens
Heat 3 Results: 1. Jonathan Davenport, 2. Devin Moran, 3. Spencer Hughes
Heat 4 Results: 1. Tyler Erb, 2. Tanner English, 3. Blair Nothdurft
Heat 5 Results: 1. Garrett Smith, 2. Brian Shirley, 3. Ricky Thornton Jr.
Heat 6 Results: 1. Brandon Overton, 2. Logan Roberson, 3. Kyle Beard
B-main 1 Finish: 1. Wil Herrington, 2. Garrett Alberson
B-main 2 Finish: 1. Ashton Winger, 2. Tim McCreadie
B-main 3 Finish:1. Tyler Bruening, 2. Benji Hicks
Feature Re-cap: The 40-lap feature got underway with Gustin leading Erb, Bronson, Davenport and Smith. Bronson passed by Erb for the runner-up spot on the second circuit leaving Erb to battle with Davenport. But the action would be halted on lap 6 when Hicks crashed.
On the restart, Erb returned to second passing Bronson while Smith got by Davenport for fourth. Gustin began to slip away from his pursuers over the next several laps until lap 15 when Bailes slowed. At the time, Gustin led Bronson, Erb, Smith, Davenport, Sheppard, Overton and English.
On the lap 15 restart, Overton broke into the top-5 as Gustin continued to show the way. On lap 18, however, Davenport pushed Overton back a spot. Davenport and Overton would each pass Smith for fourth and fifth respectively.
Roberson slowed on lap 21 to bring out another yellow flag. On the restart, Bronson grabbed the race lead but Gustin would reassume the position one lap later. Bronson fell to second with Davenport, Erb and Overton trailing.
Bronson continued to harass Gustin with 15 laps remaining while Davenport closed in from third. Gustin then began to pull away as he built a lead of two seconds with 10 laps remaining. At the same time, Erb passed Davenport for third.
Bronson closed back in dramatically when Gustin began to encounter slower traffic with six laps to go. The fast closing Erb took second away from Bronson and began to close on Gustin.
Herrington and Bruening spun with two laps to go to set up a dash to the finish. Gustin had a good restart and was able to pull ahead of Erb and Bronson.
In the end, Ryan Gustin scored the victory.
Feature Results: 1. Ryan Gustin, 2. Tyler Erb, 3. Kyle Bronson, 4. Brandon Sheppard, 5. Jonathan Davenport, 6. Brandon Overton, 7. Tanner English, 8. Spencer Hughes, 9. Devin Moran, 10. Earl Pearson Jr., 11. Tim McCreadie, 12. Brian Shirley, 13. Garrett Smith, 14. Garrett Alberson, 15. Ross Robinson, 16. Jimmy Owens, 17. Kyle Beard, 18. Mike Spatola, 19. Tyler Bruening, 20. Blair Nothdurft, 21. Wil Herrington, 22. Logan Roberson, 23. Ricky Thornton Jr., 24. Ashton Winger, 25. Ross Bailes, 26. Benji Hicks
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