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Author Topic:   BALZANO TAKES FIRST CAREER UDTRA WIN ON FAMILIAR GROUND AT K-C RACEWAY
jammin
Dirt Administrator

Total posts: 3279
posted May 06, 2001 08:56 AM UIN: 16262997
BALZANO TAKES FIRST CAREER UDTRA WIN ON FAMILIAR GROUND AT K-C RACEWAY


CHILLICOTHE, OH - Mike Balzano of Parkersburg, WV took his first career
United Dirt Track Racing Association Pro DirtCar Series victory on Saturday
night in the 50-lap main event at K-C Raceway after a late-race duel with
Davey Johnson of Greensburg, PA.

Balzano wove his Eddie's Auto Parts Rocket/Russell Baker Monte Carlo through
lapped traffic while being challenged by Johnson in the Rocket Chassis
Rocket/Draime Monte Carlo during the closing laps. Balzano was the 12th
different winner in the first 14 events of the UDTRA Pro DirtCar season.

"I was running well on the top, and when I had to go low, I knew Davey
was
there because that's where he likes to run this place," Balzano said. "Once
I got around lapped traffic, I could get back to the groove where I worked
best, and I didn't see Davey after that."

Balzano may not have seen Johnson, but he was there right on his back
bumper right to the checkered flag. Johnson had to settle for second, with
third going to UDTRA point leader Rick Eckert of York, PA in the Raye Vest
Rocket/Cornett Mustang. Eckert now holds a 106 point lead over Steve
Francis of Ashland, KY.

Jimmy Mars of Elk Mound, WI finished fourth in the Parker Store
Mastersbilt/Pro Power Monte Carlo, and Steve Shaver of Parkersburg, WV was
fifth in the Simonton Windows/Poske's Performance Monte Carlo. Ray Cook
of
Brasstown, NC brought his English Mountain Spring Water/Easy Care
GRT/Cornett Taurus home in the sixth spot.

Francis finished seventh in the Valvoline/Mopar Performance Rocket/Stanton
Dodge, his 13th top ten finish in the first 14 2001 UDTRA Pro DirtCar Series
events. The 1999 UDTRA Champion Dale McDowell of Rossville, GA led a
three-way tie for the JE Pistons Hard Charger of the Race Award with an
eighth-place finish after starting 16th.

The 1997 UDTRA Champion Billy Moyer of Batesville, AR changed car makes
for
a ninth-place showing in the Petroff Towing/J&J Steel Rayburn/Clements
Taurus. Defending and four-time UDTRA Champion Scott Bloomquist of
Mooresburg, TN was the second driver sharing the JE Pistons Hard Charger
Award rounding out the top ten after starting his Miller Brothers Coal
Warrior/Custom Mustang in the 18th position.

The 1996 UDTRA Champion Freddy Smith of Knoxville, TN started his
Christenberry Trucking and Farms GRT/Custom Monte Carlo from the 23rd spot
and finished 15th to be the third driver to earn the JE Pistons Hard Charger
Award.

The race was slowed by just two caution flags, and all 24 cars that started
the race, finished the event with 21 cars on the lead lap, and three cars
only one lap down.

The start of the race was a mad dash as outside front row starter Jackie
Boggs of Grayson, KY took the lead in his McDonalds Swartz/T&H Monte Carlo
followed by fourth starting Shannon Babb of Decatur, IL, third starting
Balzano, polesitter R.J. Conley of Wheelersburg, OH in the Conley Trucking
Rocket/Draime Grand Prix, and fifth starting Johnson.

Before the race, Boggs, who was the Friday night UDTRA winner in
Prestonsburg, KY, knew his chances of winning two in a row would be told
in
the opening laps of the race.

"I hope we've picked the tire compound we need for the race," Boggs said.
"I'll know in the first ten laps if it is the right one."

With Boggs out front, Balzano moved up to second on lap seven, and
challenged Boggs for the point on lap nine. For the first ten laps, Boggs
ran the outside line of the 3/8-mile high-banked clay oval, while Balzano
took the high line. On lap 11, Boggs went inside, and Balzano tried the
outside.

While Balzano rode the outside, Johnson had moved up to third on lap 12,
and
was challenging Balzano for second spot. For three laps, Boggs, Balzano
and
Johnson battled three-wide for the lead.

Boggs got the answer to his tire selection on lap 15, as he slowed with
a
shredded right-rear tire, and Johnson went by Balzano and Boggs to take
the
lead. Balzano got a break when the caution flag came out for Boggs, and
when the cars lined up for the restart the way they were running on the
last
completed lap, Balzano was in the lead followed by Johnson, Babb, Eckert,
and Mars.

By lap 20 after the restart, Balzano and Johnson had pulled away from Babb
and Eckert, who were battling side-by-side for third spot. On lap 28, Babb
took a wild ride off the second turn banking into the darkness outside K-C
Raceway. Babb couldn't get back on the track during caution because the
backstretch banking outside the track is too steep. Babb had to take the
scenic route.

"I had to get on the road outside the track that leads to the pit gate,"
Babb said. "I was hoping they wouldn't charge me a second time to go
through the pit gate." Babb was able to continue in the Car City Co.
Rayburn/Dickens Monte Carlo.

After the restart for Babb's caution flag, it wasn't until lap 36 that
Balzano and Johnson caught up to the cars on the tail of the lead lap.
When
Balzano had to go to the inside groove to lap cars, Johnson could close
in,
but didn't have enough room to challenge for the lead.

Johnson had another opportunity to get inside Balzano in lapped traffic
on
lap 45. Johnson got under Balzano, but Balzano cleared the traffic before
Johnson could get past, and then got back in his groove to collect the
$10,000 top prize.

Balzano also won the third heat race to collect the $100 JE Pistons Bonus
Award. R.J. Conley was the fast qualifier among the 42 entrants with a
lap
in 13.800 seconds for an average speed of 97.826 miles per hour. Conley
also won the first heat and the $50 Scott Performance Wire Bonus Award.
Boggs won the second 12-lap Borla Performance Heat Race, and Babb won the
fourth heat.

Donnie Moran of Dresden, OH won the Renegade Transporters 1st 12-lap
Consolation Race in the McCullough Motorsports Rayburn/Pro Power Grand Prix.
Bloomquist won the Polaris ATVs 2nd 12-lap Consolation Race.

The next three events for the UDTRA Pro DirtCar Series will be a part of
the
Great Plains Tour. The tour begins on May 15 at West Liberty Raceway in
West Liberty, IA for a 50-lap $10,000-to-win main event. The next stop
is
the Dakota State Fairgrounds Speedway in Huron, SD on May 18-19 for a
100-lap $20,000-to-win main event.

The UDTRA Great Plains Tour winds up in Lincoln, NE on May 22 at Eagle
Raceway for a 50-lap $10,000-to-win main event.

OFFICIAL RESULTS OF ROUND 14 AT K-C RACEWAY, CHILLICOTHE, OH ON 5/5/01:

POS STRT CAR # DRIVER HOMETOWN CAR LAPS $ WON
1. 3 E1 Mike Balzano Parkersburg, WV Chev. 50 $10,100
2. 5 1j Davey Johnson Greensburg, PA Chev. 50 $6,000
3. 8 24 Rick Eckert York, PA Ford 50 $3,600
4. 6 28m Jimmy Mars Elk Mound, WI Chev. 50 $3,100
5. 10 30 Steve Shaver Parkersburg, WV Chev. 50 $2,000
6. 8 53 Ray Cook Brasstown, NC Ford 50 $2,400
7. 12 15 Steve Francis Ashland, KY Dodge 50 $2,200
8. 16 17m Dale McDowell Rossville, GA Pont. 50 $2,000
9. 14 21 Billy Moyer Batesville, AR Ford 50 $1,800
10. 18 0 Scott Bloomquist Mooresburg, TN Ford 50 $2,050
11. 13 114 Randle Chupp Mooresville, NC Chev. 50 $1,000
12. 9 71o Don O'Neal Martinsville, IN Chev. 50 $950
13. 19 s9 Dan Schlieper Pewaukee, WI Chev. 50 $1,500
14. 11 71d Delmas Conley Wheelersburg, OH Chev. 50 $875
15. 23 00 Freddy Smith Knoxville, TN Chev. 50 $1,450
16. 1 71c R.J. Conley Wheelersburg, OH Pont. 50 $875
17. 22 7 Matt Miller Toledo, OH Pont. 50 $800
18. 15 32 Bob Pierce Oakwood, IL Chev. 50 $750
19. 21 26 Steve Boley West Liberty, IA Ford 50 $700
20. 17 99 Donnie Moran Dresden, OH Pont. 50 $700
21. 2 4b Jackie Boggs Grayson, KY Chev. 50 $700
22. 20 6m Wendell Wallace Batesville, AR Pont. 49 $1,300
23. 24 166 Joe Izzo LaSalle, IL Chev. 49 $700
24. 4 18 Shannon Babb Decatur, IL Chev. 49 $700

ENTRIES: 42
PROVISIONALS: Smith (2) and Izzo (3)
LEAD CHANGES: 1
LAP LEADERS: Boggs, 1-14; Balzano, 15-50
LAPS LED: Balzano, 36; Boggs, 14
JE PISTONS HARD CHARGER AWARD: McDowell (Started 16th and Finished 8th),
Bloomquist (Started 18th and Finished 10th), and Smith (Started 23rd and
Finished 15th)
UDTRA SHOOTOUT INVITEES: D. Conley, Pierce, Bart Hartman, John Mason, Greg
Johnson, and Jeep Van Wormer (Promoter's Choice)

QUALIFYING:

POS CAR # DRIVER HOMETOWN CHASSIS CAR MAKE 1ST LAP 2ND LAP TIME SPEED
1 71c R.J. Conley Wheelersburg, OH Rocket Grand Prix 13.800 15.311 13.800
97.826
2 28m Jimmy Mars Elk Mound, WI Mastersbilt Monte Carlo 14.330 13.952 13.952
96.760
3 00k Randy Korte Highland, IL Larry Shaw Monte Carlo 14.045 13.975 13.975
96.601
4 18 Shannon Babb Decatur, IL Rayburn Monte Carlo 13.980 14.183 13.980
96.567
5 71r Rod Conley Wheelersburg, OH Rocket Monte Carlo 14.006 14.139 14.006
96.387
6 21 Billy Moyer Batesville, AR Rayburn Taurus 14.015 14.133 14.015 96.325
7 71 Delmas Conley Wheelersburg, OH Rocket Monte Carlo 14.023 14.192 14.023
96.270
8 15 Steve Francis Ashland, KY Rocket Dodge 14.054 14.774 14.054 96.058
9 1j Davey Johnson Greensburg, PA Rocket Monte Carlo 14.058 14.156 14.058
96.031
10 4b Jackie Boggs Grayson, KY Swartz Monte Carlo 14.161 14.090 14.090
95.813
11 E1 Mike Balzano Parkersburg, WV Rocket Monte Carlo 14.133 14.090 14.090
95.813
12 24 Rick Eckert York, PA Rocket Mustang 14.095 14.129 14.095 95.779
13 99 Donnie Moran Dresden, OH Rayburn Monte Carlo 14.122 14.227 14.122
95.596
14 30 Steve Shaver Parkersburg, WV Rocket Monte Carlo 14.312 14.156 14.156
95.366
15 6m Wendell Wallace Batesville, AR GRT Grand Prix 14.336 14.177 14.177
95.225
16 0 Scott Bloomquist Mooresburg, TN Warrior Mustang 14.495 14.188 14.188
95.151
17 71o Don O'Neal Martinsville, IN Rocket Monte Carlo 14.208 14.548 14.208
95.017
18 s9 Dan Schlieper Pewaukee, WI Rayburn Monte Carlo 14.249 14.805 14.249
94.743
19 53 Ray Cook Brasstown, NC GRT Mustang 14.257 14.299 14.257 94.690
20 17m Dale McDowell Rossville, GA Larry Shaw Grand Prix 14.265 14.451
14.265 94.637
21 114 Randle Chupp Mooresville, NC Rocket Monte Carlo 14.282 14.400 14.282
94.525
22 4j Greg Johnson Franklin, IN Rayburn Monte Carlo 14.299 14.470 14.299
94.412
23 a1 Duke Whiseant Texarkana, AR Rocket Grand Prix 14.506 14.311 14.311
94.333
24 7 Matt Miller Toledo, OH Rocket Grand Prix 14.517 14.311 14.311 94.333
25 07 Todd Nuding Holland, OH GRT Grand Prix 14.424 14.338 14.338 94.155
26 26 Steve Boley West Liberty, IA Mastersbilt Mustang 14.343 14.444 14.343
94.123
27 32p Bob Pierce Oakwood, IL Rayburn Monte Carlo 14.363 14.597 14.363
93.992
28 11h Bart Hartman Zanesville, OH GRT Monte Carlo 14.429 14.535 14.429
93.562
29 15b Brian Birkhofer Muscatine, IA Rocket Grand Prix 14.454 14.904 14.454
93.400
30 9f Mark Frazier Chillicothe, OH Boss Monte Carlo 14.736 14.490 14.490
93.168
31 10 Larry Bond Guysville, OH Bullit Grand Prix 14.800 14.581 14.581 92.586
32 00 Freddy Smith Knoxville, TN GRT Monte Carlo 14.720 14.594 14.594 92.504
33 55v Jeep Van Wormer Pinconning, MI Warrior Mustang 14.619 14.781 14.619
92.346
34 12 Rick Aukland Zanesville, OH Mastersbilt Grand Prix 14.637 15.395
14.637 92.232
35 33 Aaron Scott Newark, OH GRT Monte Carlo 15.229 14.726 14.726 91.675
36 28r Bill Reed Knoxville, TN Fast Monte Carlo 14.796 15.005 14.796 91.241
37 166 Joe Izzo LaSalle, IL GRT Monte Carlo 15.062 16.415 15.062 89.630
38 8up Jeff Hooser Chillicothe, OH Rocket Grand Prix 15.495 16.528 15.495
87.125
39 1a Audie Swartz Munford, OH Swartz Monte Carlo 14.376 14.491 DQ DQ
40 72b Emmett Beelar Chillicothe, OH Mastersbilt Intrepid 14.588 14.528
DQ
DQ
41 72 John Mason Millersburg, OH Rocket Monte Carlo 14.347 14.578 DQ DQ
42 18s Charlie Swartz Rush, KY Swartz Monte Carlo NT NT NT NT

BORLA PERFORMANCE 12-LAP HEAT RACES (Top 4 Finishers Transfer To Main
Event):

SCOTT PERFORMANCE WIRE 1ST HEAT: 1. R.J. Conley; 2. D. Johnson; 3. O'Neal;
4. Chupp; 5. Moran; 6. Rod Conley; 7. Birkhofer; 8.Van Wormer; 9. Izzo;
10.
Nuding;11. C. Swartz.

2ND HEAT: 1. Boggs; 2. Mars; 3. Shaver; 4. Moyer; 5. Schlieper; 6. Boley;
7. Aukland; 8. G. Johnson; 9. Frazier; 10. Hooser.

JE PISTONS 3RD HEAT: 1. Balzano; 2. Cook; 3. D. Conley; 4. Pierce; 5.
Wallace; 6. Miller; 7. Scott; 8. Bond; 9. Mason; 10. Korte; 11. A. Swartz.

4TH HEAT: 1. Babb; 2. Eckert; 3. Francis; 4. McDowell; 5. Bloomquist;
6.
Hartman; 7. Smith; 8. Whiseant; 9. Reed; 10. Beeler.

CONSOLATION RACES (12-Laps, Top 3 Finishers Transfer To Main Event):

RENEGADE TRANSPORTERS 1ST CONSY: 1. Moran; 2. Schlieper; 3. Boley; 4.
Aukland; 5. Birkhofer; 6. Rod Conley; 7. G. Johnson; 8. Izzo; 9. Hooser;
10.
Nuding; 11. Frazier; 12. Van Wormer.

POLARIS ATVs 2ND CONSY: 1. Bloomquist; 2. Wallace; 3. Miller; 4. Smith;
5.
Hartman; 6. Mason; 7. Scott; 8. Whiseant; 9. Reed; 10. Beeler; 11. Korte.

UDTRA POINT STANDINGS THROUGH 5/5/01:
1. Rick Eckert - 2205
2. Steve Francis - 2099
3. Billy Moyer - 1857
4. Scott Bloomquist - 1802
5. Dan Schlieper - 1781
6. Jimmy Mars - 1769
7. Wendell Wallace - 1737
8. Dale McDowell - 1699
9. Ray Cook - 1692
10. Freddy Smith - 1650
11. Joe Izzo - 1464
12. Steve Shaver - 1437
13. Randy Korte - 1411
14. Terry English - 1398
15. Shannon Babb - 1389
16. Chub Frank - 1319
17. Davey Johnson - 1273
18. Randle Chupp - 1169
19. Marshall Green - 1120
20. Earl Pearson Jr. - 1080

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