Competition at the LC Speedway
Scott Pulley cuts Lawson’s lead with victory.
While much of the championship picture has come into focus for the 2019 Laurens County Speedway season, there remains one division championship that is still up for grabs.
Scott Pulley won the main event in the Thunder Bomber Division Saturday night at LCS by .285 seconds over Chris Lyons, helping to cut into the lead of Dan Lawson in the process.
Lawson, who finished fourth, saw his lead over Pulley cut to an estimated 55 points with just this Saturday’s season finale left to be contested. With the race featuring double points, it is quite possible that a Pulley victory, coupled with a poor performance by Lawson, could still flip the division championship from Lawson to Pulley.
Dylan Chappell, who had entered the night trailing Lawson by 114 points in his quest for a repeat championship in the division, was eliminated with a seventh-place finish.
Pulley won his heat race and started the main event on the pole, next to Clay Crowder. The race’s first attempt at a start was wiped out due to a caution, but when it started again Crowder pulled past Pulley for the lead. Crowder continued to hold the lead through a host of cautions before spinning out on lap 10. Pulley contacted Crowder right before the caution came out, but Pulley was not cited with Crowder for the caution. If Pulley had been cited, it likely would’ve ended his hopes for a division championship.
Instead the decision left Pulley in first place, having to fight off Lyons for the top spot. Lyons put forth a strong effort in the final laps, but it was not enough to grab the victory from Pulley by the time the checkered flag flew.
Lyons finished second and Hayden Adkins finished third.
SECA 604 Crate: Brad Rachels started the night needing to avoid disaster to clinch the division championship, but when second-place driver Danny Howell did not race it allowed Rachels to clinch the title – all before he finished second in the main event.
Bryan Mullis won the main event over Rachels, with Mac Huey finishing third.
In the main event Mullis found his way past Rachels on the start and managed to hold on to a comfortable lead, building the margin to more than 2 seconds through six laps. Rachels was able to slightly trim into the margin within the next two laps, but Rachels did not get any closer to the top spot as Mullis again pulled away and won by 3.586 seconds.
Limited: Nick Deitz won the main event in the Limited Division, with Josh Richeson second and Kevin Godwin finishing third.
Frank Coates, who has already clinched the division championship, had his night end inauspiciously when he was disqualified on the 15th lap after an intentional crash with Richeson leaving turn 4. The two had been battling for second place before the incident took place, and the ruling later came down that Coates had intentionally crashed – forcing the DQ. Deano Long, who had also been trying to get into a battle for second, was also disqualified during the caution after a member of his team came onto the track.
As for the remainder of the race Deitz took the lead at the start and managed to hold on from wire to wire. His final challenge came on lap 18 after a caution flag brought the race to a brief hold, but Deitz was able to use a good restart to re-establish the lead on Richeson and pull away for the victory.
FWD: Travis Jamieson, who has also clinched the division title, won the Front-Wheel Drive main event. Seth Smith was second and Cody Paige was third.
Jamieson and Smith, who had battled in the point standings most of the season, did so again in the main event as Jamieson jumped to first and had to deal with a hard-charging Smith at the start. Jamieson was able to later pull away from Smith and open a safer lead, and as the laps went by Jamieson appeared to have the race in hand.
Victory, though, had to wait an extra two laps after a caution came out on what was supposed to be the final lap. The caution featured a car spinning in turn 4 and blocking the track, making it necessary to halt the race and bring out a green-white-checkered finish. The extra two laps only delayed the inevitable, though, as Jamieson held on for the victory.
602 Crate: Larry Timms won the main event with Colby Cannon second and Shun Thomas third. Division champion Colt Smith finished sixth.
Larry Timms took the lead from the start of the main event and was able to open a healthy lead early on, but the most exciting moment of the race was when Tommy Smith crashed on the third lap and brought out the red flag. Smith, during his crash on the front stretch, rode the wall on the outside of the front stretch near the catch fence in front of the grandstand. Smith was soon able to get his car fully on the track to prevent a disastrous crash, finishing ninth in the race standings.
When the race resumed Colt Smith tagged the wall and faltered back for a time before he, too, spun out to end his hopes at winning the race. Timms had no such trouble at the front of the field and eventually took home the top spot.
4-Cylinder: Phillip Wilson, the division champion for 2019, won the main event. Wayne Powell was second and D.J. Caraway was third.
The race featured eight cautions and necessitated two green-white-checkered finishes. The first attempt at a green-white-checkered finish was negated on a caution that ultimately disqualified Larry Teal in the process. When the second attempt took place Wilson was able to pull away and won by more than a second over Powell to win the race after qualifying seventh overall after taking fourth place in his heat race. Wilson moved to the front of the field after the first two cautions negated two attempted starts and helped shuffle Wilson forward through the starting grid.