posted September 22, 2001 08:13 AM
UDTRA CHAMPIONSHIP BATTLE TAKES UP THE FRONT ROW AT GAFFNEY
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
GAFFNEY, SC - The top two drivers in the battle for the 2001 United Dirt
Track Racing Association Pro DirtCar Series championship battle will start
from the front row on Saturday night for the 100-lap $20,000-to-win main
event at Cherokee Speedway.
On Friday night, Steve Francis of Ashland, KY drove his Valvoline/Mopar
Performance Rocket/Stanton Intrepid to victory in the JE Pistons 1st 12-lap
Borla Performance Heat Race to earn the pole position for Sunday's big show
and the $100 Bonus Award.
UDTRA point leader Rick Eckert of York, PA won the 2nd heat in the Raye
Rocket/Cornett Mustang to earn the outside front row starting spot. With
six races left in the season, Eckert leads Francis in the UDTRA Pro DirtCar
Series points chase by 13 points.
Ronnie Johnson of Chattanooga, TN won the Scott Performance Wire 3rd heat
race to earn the inside second row starting spot and the $50 Bonus Award.
Francis battled side-by-side with fast qualifier and 1st heat polesitter
Wendell Wallace of Batesville, AR for the first three laps of the race
before taking charge. Wallace finished second in the JFR Graphics/Monday
Motorsports GRT/Russell Baker Grand Prix.
Wallace had the fastest qualifying lap around ½-mile high-banked clay oval
among the 37 entrants with a lap in 19.160 seconds for an average speed
93.946 miles per hour. Wallace starts the main event from the outside of
The third spot in the first heat went to the defending and four-time UDTRA
Champion Scott Bloomquist of Mooresburg, TN in the Miller Brothers Coal
Warrior/Custom Mustang. Bloomquist is third in points, 106 points behind
Eckert, and will start his quest for his fourth straight UDTRA victory from
the inside of row four.
Rounding out the top six transfer spots were Ricky Weeks of Rutherfordton,
NC, Wesley Hood of Cowpens, SC, and Petey Ivey of Union, SC.
Eckert out-dueled the 1999 UDTRA Champion Dale McDowell of Rossville, GA
win the second heat. McDowell finished second in the Larry Shaw Race Cars
Rocket/Hatfield Grand Prix. A pair of National Dirt Late Model Hall of
Famers battled for the third spot.
Second-quick qualifier Mike Duvall of Cowpens, SC rode the high line to
third spot in the second heat, with 1996 UDTRA Champion Freddy Smith of
Knoxville, TN taking fourth. Smith shadowed Duvall on the inside throughout
the race. Chris Madden of Laurens, SC and UDTRA Rookie of the Year point
leader Joe Izzo of Chicago, IL rounded out the top six transfer spots.
Johnson put on a show on how to perfectly execute a slide job pass around
Cherokee Speedway to take the lead from Earl Pearson Jr. of Jacksonville,
in the third heat. Johnson dove to the inside in turn one to dive under
Pearson, and then slid up in front of Pearson coming off the second turn
take the lead.
After taking the lead, Johnson packed his bags, turned in the key, and
checked out on the field in the J&J Steel Barry Wright/Clements Grand Prix.
Tim Headen of Martin, GA finished second followed by Dan Schlieper of
Pewaukee, WI, Ray Cook of Brasstown, NC, Pearson, and Dennis Franklin of
Drivers that finished seventh on back in the three heat races will return
Sunday to race for the 19th through 22nd starting spots in the 12-lap
Renegade Transporter and Polaris ATVs Consolation Races. The top two
finishers in each event will transfer to the big show.
On Saturday, the pit gate opens at 1 p.m., the grandstand gate opens at
p.m. and hot laps are scheduled for 7:30 p.m. On Saturday afternoon from
p.m. to 6 p.m. there will be a UDTRA Drivers Autograph Session on Souvenir
The Sleep Inn in Gaffney, SC will be the UDTRA Official Host Hotel for the
Cherokee Speedway event. Located at exit 90 on I-85, just minutes from
track, the Sleep Inn is offering UDTRA fans and competitors a special
discount rate of $52 per night. The Sleep Inn is a Gold Award facility
offers a Deluxe Continental Breakfast and Business Center to their guests.
To make reservations call (864) 487-5337 and be sure to ask for the UDTRA
special discount rate.
For race day and ticket information call (864) 489-1969. Cherokee Speedway
is located south of I-85 at exit 96.
QUALIFYING AND HEAT RACE RESULTS OF ROUND 38 AT CHEROKEE SPEEDWAY IN
GAFFNEY, SC ON 9/21/01:
POS CAR # DRIVER HOMETOWN CHASSIS CAR MAKE 1ST LAP 2ND LAP TIME SPEED
1 6m Wendell Wallace Batesville, AR GRT Grand Prix 19.185 19.160 19.160
2 F1 Mike Duvall Cowpens, SC GRT Monte Carlo 19.260 19.181 19.181 93.843
3 5J Ronnie Johnson Chattanooga, TN Barry Wright Grand Prix 19.387 19.195
4 15 Steve Francis Ashland, KY Rocket Dodge 19.533 19.227 19.227 93.618
5 24 Rick Eckert York, PA Rocket Mustang 19.553 19.249 19.249 93.511
6 1 Earl Pearson Jr. Jacksonville, FL Rocket Mustang 19.638 19.343 19.343
7 0 Scott Bloomquist Mooresburg, TN Warrior Mustang 19.345 20.162 19.345
8 17m Dale McDowell Rossville, GA Larry Shaw Grand Prix 19.682 19.371 19.371
9 2F Dennis Franklin Gaffney, SC GRT Grand Prix 19.664 19.467 19.467 92.464
10 1w Ricky Weeks Rutherfordton, NC GRT Grand Prix 19.491 19.551 19.491
11 c5 Chris Madden Laurens, SC Rocket Monte Carlo 19.511 19.991 19.511
12 2x Tim Headen Martin, GA Barry Wright Mustang 19.631 19.538 19.538 92.128
13 88 Petey Ivey Union, SC GRT Monte Carlo 19.661 19.606 19.606 91.809
14 00 Freddy Smith Knoxville, TN GRT Monte Carlo 20.005 19.613 19.613 91.776
15 s9 Dan Schlieper Pewaukee, WI Mastersbilt Monte Carlo 19.773 19.627
16 57 Wesley Hood Cowpens, SC GRT Grand Prix 19.885 19.637 19.637 91.664
17 166 Joe Izzo Chicago, IL GRT Monte Carlo NT 19.709 19.709 91.329
18 20 Ronnie Sewell Shelby, NC GRT Monte Carlo 19.909 19.753 19.753 91.125
19 6 Billy Hicks Mount Airy, NC GRT Monte Carlo 20.094 19.830 19.830 90.772
20 15m Jimmy McCormick Dobson, NC GRT Mustang 19.911 19.892 19.892 90.489
21 42s Doug Sanders Gastonia, NC TnT Grand Prix 20.033 19.897 19.897 90.466
22 114 Randle Chupp Mooresville, NC Rocket Monte Carlo 19.968 19.904 19.904
23 70 Jeff Smith Dallas, NC GRT Grand Prix 20.069 19.931 19.931 90.312
24 53 Ray Cook Brasstown, NC GRT Taurus 20.141 19.958 19.958 90.189
25 00k Randy Korte Highland, IL Larry Shaw Monte Carlo 19.981 19.976 19.976
26 h7 Phil Hall Mount Airy, NC Larry Shaw Grand Prix 20.148 20.901 20.148
27 1c Mike Chilton Mt. Airy, NC GRT Grand Prix 20.307 20.201 20.201 89.104
28 95 Bill Godowns Jr. Louisville, GA Newman Monte Carlo 20.234 NT 20.234
29 24p Dabs Potts Highlands, NC GRT Monte Carlo 20.398 20.368 20.368 88.374
30 72 Steve Phillips Gaffney, SC GRT Grand Prix 20.604 20.505 20.505 87.783
31 2m Winky McGee Pilot Mountain, NC Rocket Monte Carlo 20.948 20.655 20.655
32 1b Danny Breuer Mooresville, NC Rocket Monte Carlo 21.015 20.703 20.703
33 R8 Kurt Owens Newport, TN GRT Monte Carlo 21.074 20.832 20.832 86.406
34 23 Jimmy Mac Gastonia, NC Mastersbilt Monte Carlo 21.415 20.983 20.983
35 T1 Tony Farris Charlotte, NC GRT Grand Prix 21.414 21.178 21.178 84.994
36 0d Derrick Cook Charlotte, NC Cook Monte Carlo 23.176 22.628 22.628
37 32b Larry Blankenship Mooresville, NC Warrior Mustang 24.046 NT 24.046
BORLA PERFORMANCE 12-LAP HEAT RACES (Top 6 Finishers Transfer To Main
JE PISTONS 1ST HEAT: 1. Francis; 2. Wallace; 3. Bloomquist; 4. Weeks;
Hood; 6. Ivey; 7. Hicks; 8. Chupp; 9. Korte; 10. Mac; 11. McGee; 12.
2ND HEAT: 1. Eckert; 2. McDowell; 3. Duvall; 4. F. Smith; 5. Madden; 6.
Izzo; 7. J. Smith; 8. Godowns; 9. Phillips; 10. Breuer; 11. Farris; 12.
SCOTT PERFORMANCE WIRE 3RD HEAT: 1. Johnson; 2. Headen; 3. Schlieper; 4.
Cook; 5. Pearson; 6. Franklin; 7. Sewell; 8. Sanders; 9. Potts; 10. Owens;
11. D. Cook; 12. Hall.
"ELITE 18" STARTING LINE-UP FOR 100-LAP $20,000-TO-WIN MAIN EVENT:
(Car #, Driver, Hometown, Sponsor, Chassis/Engine Builder, Car Make)
15 - Steve Francis, Ashland, KY, Valvoline/Mopar Performance Rocket/Stanton
24 - Rick Eckert, York, PA, Raye Vest Rocket/Cornett Mustang
5 - Ronnie Johnson, Chattanooga, TN, J&J Steel Barry Wright/Clements Grand
6m - Wendell Wallace, Batesville, AR, JFR Graphics/Monday Mtrsprts GRT/R.
Baker Grand Prix
17m - Dale McDowell, Rossville, GA, Larry Shaw Race Cars Rocket/Hatfield
2x - Tim Headen, Martin, GA, Swift Supply Barry Wright/Fowler Mustang
0 - Scott Bloomquist, Mooresburg, TN, Miller Brothers Coal Warrior/Custom
F1 - Mike Duvall, Cowpens, SC, Duvall's Driving School GRT/Clements Monte
s9 - Dan Schlieper, Pewaukee, WI, Perf. Roofing Systems Mastersbilt/Pro
Power Monte Carlo
1w - Ricky Weeks, Rutherfordton, NC, Starrette Trucking GRT/Clements Monte
00 - Freddy Smith, Knoxville, TN, Christenberry Trucking & Farms GRT/Custom
53 - Ray Cook, Brasstown, NC, English Mountain Spring Water GRT/Cornett
57 - Wesley Hood, Cowpens, SC, Larry Hood GRT/Clements Monte Carlo
c5 - Chris Madden, Laurens, SC, Cushman Paint & Body Rocket/HRS Grand Prix
1p - Earl Pearson Jr., Jacksonville, FL, Dunn-Benson Ford Rocket/Eatmon
88 - Petey Ivey, Union, SC, Bantam Chef/Foothills 4x4 GRT/Clements Grand
166 - Joe Izzo, Chicago, IL, Jeff's Engine Masters GRT/Pro Power Monte Carlo
2f - Dennis Franklin, Gaffney, SC, Hamrick's GRT/Clements Grand Prix
CONSOLATION RACE LINE-UPS (12 Laps - Top 2 Finishers Transfer To Main
RENEGADE TRANSPORTERS 1ST CONSY:
6 Billy Hicks - 20 Ronnie Sewell
95 Bill Godowns - 00k Randy Korte
24p Dabs Potts - 1b Dan Breuer
2m Winky McGee - 0d Derrick Cook
15m Jimmy McCormick - 32 Larry Blankenship
POLARIS ATVs 2ND CONSY:
70 Jeff Smith - 114 Randle Chupp
42 Doug Sanders - 72 Steve Phillips
23 Jimmy Mac - R8 Kurt Owens
T1 Tony Farris - 1c Mike Chilton
h7 Phil Hall