posted July 27, 2002 08:57 AM
O'REILLY AUTO PARTS MID-AMERICA RACING SERIES
Friday, July 26, 2002
By Larry Olson; Mountain Home, AR
LOCUST GROVE AR. Terry Phillips came from deep in the field en route to winning his third O'Reilly Auto Parts Mid-America Racing Series win of the 2002 season. Phillips qualified for the feature after finishing third in the Last Chance race. That put Phillips in the 19th starting position. Phillips made his way to the front, taking the lead from Leslie Essary on the 28th lap. Phillips collected $3,000 for his win.
Joey Mack, the Kuntz & Co. Rookie point leader going into the event, grabbed his first career pole, sharing the front row with Steve Rushin. Mack's stay at the front was short lived however, as he looped his car in turn two on the opening lap bringing out the caution flag.
Donnie Barnhart inherited the pole for the restart, but Wendell Wallace made the move past Barnhart for the lead in turn four on the opening lap. Leslie Essary used the high side to drive to second, around Barnhart in turn two on the second lap. Wallace and Phillips pulled to a 10 carlength lead over the field by lap 5. The pair were dueling side by side on lap eight, and Essary used the bottom of the track to take the top spot coming out of turn four on lap nine.
Dewaine Hottinger took over the fifth spot on lap 10, while out front Essary was facing traffic by lap 12. Essary and Wallace stayed nose to tail as the pair worked traffic. Terry Phillips made his way to fifth spot on lap 16. Essary and Wallace were side by side on lap 17, as they faced three slower cars.
Phillips worked past Rushin for fourth in turn four on lap 20. Essary finally was able to clear traffic by lap 23, and was able to open a five carlength advantage over Wallace. Hottinger got by Rushin for 5th on lap 25, then Phillips moved around Barnhart, taking third in turn two on the next circuit.
Essary and Wallace were looking to battle for the lead again, when the caution came out for Billy Moyer who had experienced a broken shock, and had stopped in turn four. The doublewide restart put Phillips to the outside of Wallace behind Essary. Phillips grabbed second immediately, then drove by Essary for the lead coming out of turn four.
Phillips wasted little time opening a 10 carlength lead over Essary by lap 30. Dewaine Hottinger improved to fourth, past Barnhart in turn four on lap 31. Phillips stayed at the very top of the track, and had expanded his lead to 15 carlengths by lap 35.
Terry Phillips came home with the win, with Leslie Essary, Wendell Wallace, Dewaine Hottinger, and Bill Frye making up the top five. Donnie Barnhart, Kenny Merchant, Duke Whiseant, Jeff Taylor, and Stacy Taylor rounded out the top ten.
Top Qualifier: Joey Mack
Hard Charger: Terry Phillips
Provisionals: David Gibson, Mike Bowers
Lap Leaders: Wendell Wallace 1-8, Leslie Essary, 9-27, Terry Phillips 28-40
A Feature (40 Laps)
1) Terry Phillips, GRT/Hatfield/Monte Carlo; $3,000
2) Leslie Essary, GRT/Mike's/Grand Prix; $2,000
3) Wendell Wallace, GRT/Gaerte/Grand Prix; $1,250
4) Dewaine Hottinger, GRT/Kuntz/Grand Prix; $1,100
5) Bill Frye, GRT/Kuntz/Mustang; $1,000
6) Donnie Barnhart, GRT/Kuntz/Grand Prix; $750
7) Kenny Merchant, Warrior/Craft/Mustang; $700
8) Duke Whiseant, Rocket/****ens/Grand Prix; $675
9) Jeff Taylor, Shaw-Rocket/Kuntz/Taurus; $650
10) Stacy Taylor, GRT/****ens/Monte Carlo; $625
11) Steve Rushin, GRT/Hatfield/Monte Carlo; $600
12) Jeff Floyd, GRT/Kuntz/Grand Prix; $575
13) Mike Bowers, GRT/Hatfield/Monte Carlo; $550
14) David Gibson, GRT/Hatfield/Monte Carlo; $525
15) Johnny Johnson, Larry Shaw/Cornett/Mustang; $500
16) Shane Harris, GRT/Stanton/Intrepid; $500
17) Jerry Buck, GRT/Hatfield/Monte Carlo; $500
18) Gary Stolba, GRT/Hatfield/Monte Carlo; $500
19) Joey Mack, GRT/Kuntz/Mustang; $500
20) Billy Moyer, MasterSbilt/****ens/Monte Carlo; $500
21) Raymond Merrill, GRT/Kuntz/Grand Prix; $500
22) Shane Diamant, GRT/Cabot/Grand Prix; $500
1st Heat (12 Laps) 1) Leslie Essary, Crane MO 2) Donnie Barnhart, North Little Rock AR 3) Duke Whiseant, Texarkana AR 4) Johnny Johnson, West Burlington IA 5) Gary Stolba, Willow Springs MO 6) Peyton Taylor, Batesville AR 7) Jason Snodgrass, Mountain Home AR 8) Andy May, Newport AR
2nd Heat 1) Joey Mack, Benton MO 2) Jerry Buck, Paragould AR 3) Bill Frye, Greenbriar AR 4) Billy Moyer, Batesville AR 5) Mike Bowers, North Little Rock AR 6) Terry Phillips, Springfield MO 7) Kenny Merchant, Ruston LA 8) Scott Riggs, Bloomfield MO
3rd Heat 1) Wendell Wallace, Batesville AR 2) Shane Harris, Sheridan AR 3) Stacy Taylor, Jacksonville AR 4) Jeff Taylor, Batesville AR 5) Jeff Floyd, Walnut Ridge AR 6) Justin Fulton, Muskogee OK 7) Brian Richie, Newark AR
4th Heat 1) Steve Rushin, Poplar Bluff MO 2) Raymond Merrill, Sallisaw OK 3) Dewaine Hottinger, Russellville AR 4) Gregg Herron, Little Rock AR 5) Shane Diamant, North Little Rock AR 6) David Gibson, Ash Flat AR (scratch; Jerrell Harper)
Last Chance Qualifier (15 Laps, four transfer) 1) Jeff Floyd 2) Kenny Merchant 3) Terry Phillips 4) Shane Diamant 5) Peyton Taylor 6) Justin Fulton 7) Mike Bowers 8) Brian Richie 9) Andy May 10) Jason Snodgrass 11) Scott Gibbs 12) Gregg Herron 13) David Gibson (scratch; Jerrell Harper)