DeGRAFF – Shady Bowl Speedway played host to the first leg of the Ohio 300 on Saturday night.
The series consists of four 75-lap features for the Dave Nagel Excavating LLC late models. Three of the events will be held at Shady Bowl with one also scheduled at Kil-Kare Speedway in Xenia. The features will each pay $3,000 to win, with an overall point fund.
The 75-lap feature saw 22 cars take the green flag to start what seemed to be an enduro as the event saw numerous spins and minor crashes. Brandon Oakley set a torrid pace as he took the lead on lap one. Oakley had a rear window full of Jim Lewis Jr. as the race wore on. Mike Stacy, Don Mahaffey Jr., Josh Smith and Billy Hutson had a furious battle with Lewis for the runner-up spot. Mahaffey actually got by Oakley, only to see a yellow come out putting Oakley back in the lead. It soon became apparent the Oakley car wasn’t handling well as he picked up a push. On lap 39 Lewis took advantage of that push and passed Oakley on the inside on the back straight.
Lewis, of South Charleston, settled into the lead with Josh Smith in tow. Smith tried everything he had but could only watch as Lewis in his Victory Machine-backed car took the checkered. The win was well deserved by the family-owned racing team, as they had struggled all last season. Smith ended up second, followed by Hutson, Chad Pendleton and Stacy. Stacy carried the checkered for the dash, with Hutson and Jamie Sites taking heat wins. Ryan Fleming set fast time with a 13.681 lap. Fleming had a steering issue on the parade lap that knocked him out of the event.
The Harrod Septic Solutions Compacts were also in action, as they competed in the first Annual Justin Dreer Memorial. Dreer, from Piqua, was huge supporter of the racers from Piqua. He tragically lost his life in a motorcycle accident last year. A full field of 24 compacts took the green flag to start the 53-lap feature. Steve Duty, a second generation Shady Bowl driver, led the first nine counters, then Nick Barrett got by him. Barrett’s time out front was short lived, as he was black- flagged for running under his qualifying time. On the restart Duty once again took the point. On lap 20 Piqua driver Corey Plunkett took the lead in his Corey’s Custom Cavalier. Barrett, forced to start at the rear of the field after being black- flagged, was coming to the front passing two to three cars per lap.
Plunkett, however, had built too big of a lead as Barrett ran out of laps before he was about to battle Plunkett for the lead. Plunkett picked up $2,300 for his feature win. Bobby Terry, Jimmy McElfresh and Nick Hall rounded out the top five. McElfresh set fast time with a lap time of 16.812. The dash win went to Alec Young, with heat honors going to Billy Hall and Keven Baggett. Tony Heath was the winner of the “B” main.
The Bullet Liners of Dayton Thunder Cars took to the oval next. Hunter Hicks led the first lap of the feature before giving way to Buck Purtee of DeGraff. Purtee dominated the rest of the way in his Bryce Realty Monte Carlo. Bob Coppock, Landon Jones, Robert Roush and Brandon Helton finished second through fifth. Tim Hines won the dash, with Corey Plunkett taking the heat win. Purtee set fast time with a 15.365.
The Frazier and Parsons Designs FOMOCO Cruisers finished out the night’s action. Zach Beaty-Lakins dominated as he set fast time in 17.233 and won the 10-lap feature in his Accel Automotive and Tire Crown Vic. Sam Marquis, Bobbie Joe Parsons, Carlos Williams and Fred Triplett followed.
This Saturday, the Kenyon Midgets make their Shady Bowl debut. The Dave Nagel Excavating Late Models, the Harrod Septic Solutions Compacts, the Bullet Liners of Dayton Thundercars and the Frazier and Parsons Designs FOMOCO Cruisers will also be in action.
Racing will start on Saturday at 6:30 p.m.