Saturday night was The Lead Shed night which featured Rusty Schlenk fending off a late race charge from Matt Miller to earn his third UMP Late Model feature win of the year at Oakshade Raceway.
Schlenk started on the pole of The Lead Shed UMP Late Model feature and immediately took the lead, but on the second lap he slipped up high in turns three and four and Casey Noonan pounced to take the top spot away. Schlenk fought back and reclaimed the point by the completion of lap three and then began to pull away. The only caution of the 25-lap came out on lap ten after Brad Wade spun. Matt Miller restarted second, but the McClure, Ohio driver was able to pull away once again. A few laps later, Miller began to chip away at Schlenk’s lead and caught him with five laps to go. The two drivers battled each other while battling lapped traffic at the same time. Miller was able to pull up alongside Schlenk a couple times in the closing laps, but got caught behind a pair of lapped cars on the final lap that forced him to settle for a second place finish behind Schlenk.
The Lead Shed AmeriGas UMP Sportsman feature was a bit of a mess. Multiple caution flags, and even a couple red flags kept the field from establishing any kind of rhythm. Brandon Gregory from Swanton, Ohio, started on the pole and lead the entire distance of the race despite the multiple restarts. The first caution flag flew on lap five for a spin and then it was about a caution a lap and a red flag for a fire that erupted on Dan Shaffer’s car while under a caution. Finally after a few more on track altercations, the 20 minute time limit had expired which called for a green-white-checkered finish, but the caution flag flew again as the white flag was about to fly which then resulted in a green and white together, one-lap shoot out in which Gregory held off Rusty Smith for his first win of the season. Mathew Chapman finished third and Mike Jessen took fourth after starting 12th. Chris Williams finished fifth.
The Lead Shed Hot Rod Welding & Engineering Bomber A Main produced one of the most exciting finishes of the night. Terry Rushlow led the majority of the race, but things heated up in the final two laps. Current Bomber point leader Jeff Foks Jr. had been pressuring Rushlow for much of the race and finally got by for the lead with two laps to go. Jackson, Michigan’s Chris Henry followed Foks past Rushlow for second and then Foks and Rushlow duked it out, racing side by side on the final lap for a photo finish with Henry declared the winner. It was his fifth consecutive Bomber A Main win. Rushlow ended up finishing third with Cody Houston and Rich Riffe rounding out the rest of the top five finishers.
Nathan Goodman from Wauseon, Ohio, started on the pole of The Lead Shed Compact feature race and went on to pick up his first victory of the season. In fact the top three finishers finished in the positions they started in with Carter Murday second and Matt Brazeau third. Joe Elliot pick up one position to finish fourth and Aaron Van Pelt slipped back one to end up fifth.
Curt Dickie drove to the front of The Lead Shed Hot Rod Welding & Engineering Bomber B Main for his first feature win of the year. The Lyons, Ohio driver started eighth. Dave McMannamy started on the pole and held on to finish second with Haley Dippman ending up third. Joe Nickloy and Scott Hammer drove from deep in the field to finish fourth and fifth respectively.
The racing season moves into August with the Evergreen FFA/Alumni Night featuring a full racing program of UMP Late Models, AmeriGas UMP Sportsman, Hot Rod Welding & Engineering Bombers and Compacts. Gates open at 4pm, hot laps at six and the racing action starts at 7pm sharp!
Zack Dohm definitely made the six-hour trek from Cross Lanes, West Virginia, a worthwhile one, winning a combined $15,000 at Oakshade Raceway over the weekend by sweeping both DIRTcar Summer Nationals events including the $10,000 to win 20th Annual Birthday Race on Saturday night.
Last year’s Birthday Race winner, Kent Robinson, started on the pole and led the first 10 laps of the 60-lap Birthday Race main event. Zack Dohm made a charge to the front to the inside of Robinson on lap 11 and never looked back. Dohm ran numerous laps behind Jon Henry who was running at the tail of the lead lap cars trying not to get lapped. This kept Robinson and Frank Heckenast Jr. in a tight pack behind Dohm. Robinson made a bid for the lead on lap 35 by sticking his nose to the inside of Dohm, but Dohm was able to fend off the challenge. Finally, after what seemed like an eternity, Henry slipped up from the bottom and allowed Dohm and the rest of the front runners to get by. Shortly thereafter, Henry abruptly slowed in turn two which brought out the caution flag on lap 46. With clear track ahead, Dohm went on to add his name to the elite list of Oakshade Birthday Race winners with Robinson settling for the runner up position. Heckenast Jr. finished third and the 2018 DIRTcar Summer Nationals champion, Brian Shirley from Chatham, Illinois, ended up fourth. Ryan Unzicker wound up finishing fifth.
Mike McKinney out of Plainfield, Illinois, started on the pole of the Summit Racing Modified Nationals feature event and led the entire 25-lap distance. Last year’s winner, Brian Ruhlman positioned himself into second early with Friday night’s winner, Taylor Cook, running third. A caution flag on lap 21 slowed the field a final time, but McKinney had the field covered and went on to take the checkered flag with Ruhlman and Cook finishing second and third. Bobby Stremme ended up fourth with Brad Eitniear finishing fifth. NASCAR Camping World Truck driver Matt Crafton could only muster a seventh place finish just behind Josh Scott.
Cory Gumm started in the second row of the compact feature event and immediately got to the front at the drop of the green flag. Several drivers running in the top five including Eric Carr and Ken Watts had issues that brought out cautions and sent them to the tail of the field for the restarts. Waldron, Michigan’s Brogan Rehklau took advantage of a restart after an early caution to get by Gumm for the race lead and went on to pick up the feature win over Gumm. Joe Elliot finished third after starting 10th and Matt Brazeau climbed up through the field to end up fourth after starting 12th.
The final leg of the Oakshade/Attica Late Model Challenge Series takes place this weekend at Attica Raceway Park on Friday night and then wrapping up Saturday at Oakshade Raceway. Steve Kester has a slim 3 point lead over Ryan Missler and Devin Shiels is only three back from him so it will be a tight battle going into the final two nights of competition. In addition to the UMP Late Models, the AmeriGas UMP Sportsman and Hot Rod Welding & Engineering Bombers will be back in action at Oakshade Raceway on Saturday night along with compacts. Gates open at 4pm, hot laps start at 6pm and racing at 7pm
The DIRTcar Summer Nationals rolled into town for the first of two great nights of racing at Oakshade Raceway Friday evening which saw Zack Dohm capture the 40-lap late model feature win and Taylor Cook repeated his performance from one year ago with the modified win.
It was Rusty Schlenk and Matt Miller duking it out early in the $5,000 to win late model feature with Miller taking command by lap three. Australian Paul Stubber spun just after going a lap down on lap 14 causing the second and third place cars to take evasive action. Once back under green, Schlenk closed back up on Miller and recaptured the lead on lap 25 with Zack Dohm following him into second. Dohm got to the inside of Schlenk and took the lead on lap 29. the Cross Lanes, West Virginia driver went on to lead the final 11 laps and pick up the victory in his first ever visit to Oakshade Raceway. Schlenk held off Summer Nationals point leader Brian Shirley to finish second. Frank Heckenast Jr. and Billy Moyer were the rest of the top five finishers.
Bobby Stremme started off the 25-lap modified feature strong and opened up a big lead. A couple of cautions on lap nine tightened up the field with Stanley, North Carolina’s Taylor Cook restarting in second. It didn’t take long for the third generation driver to get by Stremme for the lead. Cook went on to take the checkered flag just as he did a year ago in the Friday Summit Racing Modified Nationals feature event at Oakshade Raceway. Stremme held on to finish second followed by Jamie Lomax, Zachary Schroeder and Collin Thirlby.
Racing action heats up even more Saturday with the $10,000 to win 20th Annual Birthday Race/DIRTcar Summer Nationals finale and the Summit Modified Nationals plus Compacts. Gates open at 10am and the pits will be open for everyone until 4pm. After 4pm a pit pass will be required to remain pit side. Hot laps and qualifying will begin at 6pm with racing starting at 7:30pm.