Moyer wins World of Outlaws Showdown
Billy Moyer opened the 2008 racing season at Lernerville Speedway with a bang.
Tuesday night, Moyer grabbed the lead from Shane Clanton on lap five and held on the rest of the way to win the 50-lap World of Outlaws Late Model Showdown in Sarvertown and claim the $10,000 winner’s purse.
The victory is Moyer’s first at Lernerville since April 29, 2005. Clanton, of Locust Grove, Ga., finished second, almost two seconds behind Moyer. Chub Frank of Bear Lake started 10th and worked his way through the field and finished third followed by Steve Francis of Ashland, Ky., in fourth and Rick Eckert of York rounded out the top-five.
By the sound of it, Moyer was using last night’s race as a testing session for June’s Firecracker 100. The victory is Moyer’s fourth of the six World of Outlaws features this season.
“We tweaked the car this week,” Moyer said. “It’s a big tire game out there so I tried to leave something if I really needed to push later in the race. We really wanted to come here and get some numbers and get ready for the big race this summer.”
“At one point, I thought I had a shot but it took about eight or 10 laps for my tires to come in,” Clanton said. “I thought maybe we’d have a chance once we got to lapped traffic, but it never happened.”
Dave Hess Jr. was the top finishing local driver. Hess, from Waterford, finished 13th. Matt Lux of Franklin was 15th. Gary Lyle of Hyde Park finished 19th and defending track champion Alex Ferree pulled off early and finished 21st.
“The car was great tonight,” Hess said. “It’s a brand new ’08 Rocket. I had a terrible time in trials and I changed everything around after that. It’s just nice to come out with these guys. We really learned a lot tonight and I’m really happy to come away with the finish we did.”
Frank has won two WoO features at Lernerville but yesterday he didn’t press for the lead.
“It was four wide on the first lap and I knew I had to get out of there or it was going to get ugly,” Frank said. “For the first night, the track was very good.”
Qualifying went off without a hitch, and it was Francis who came away with a fast time of 15.433 seconds. Francis was well off the track’s Late Model record of 15.092 seconds set by Darrell Lanigan April 29, 2005.
Other qualifiers of note include Allan Dellinger who was second fastest with a time of 15.571. Shannon Babb, who won last year’s April race at Lernerville, was third in qualifying with a 15.608. The top Lernerville regular was Lux who was sixth fastest with a 15.698.
Most of the 50-car field did quite well in qualifying. Gary Lyle of Hyde Park was 40th in qualifying, less than a second off of the pace set by Francis. Lyle was 0.977 of a second behind Francis.
Billy Moyer pressured Francis for much of the first heat and made a move for the lead heading into the final turn of the 10th and final lap. Moyer passed Francis on the outside and beat him to the checkered flag. The top four drivers from each heat advanced to the feature.
In the second heat, it was Lux who held off a challenge from Eckert to take the checkered flag. Frank finished third followed by David Scott in the fourth and final transfer spot. The second heat had a bit of drama on the start, when Joe Isabell rolled his car entering turn three. Isabell was ok and in the feature he switched cars and finished 24th.
Shane Clanton held off a spirited challenge from Doug Horton to win the third heat. Timmy Fuller was third followed by Babb in fourth. Vic Coffey took the checkered flag in the fourth and final heat.
Coffey was followed by Josh Richards in second, Mike Balzano in third and Jeep Van Wormer in fourth.
The top three in the two B-Mains transferred to the feature. In heat one, Hess held off Clint Smith for the top spot. Mike Knight finished third, followed by Ferree in fourth. Ferree finished less than two-tenths of a second out of the transfer spot, but he, along with Lyle, were awarded the two provisionals for the track by virtue of last season’s points.