- Aug.4 - Shawano Speedway by Sam Holbrooks


Billy Moyer at Shawano Speedway World of Outlaws

Billy Moyer after his 16th win of the season, this time in World of Outlaws action at Shawano, Wis. (Kevin Kovac/WoO LMS photo)

World of Outlaws: Twenty-One Years Later, Moyer Sweeps Series Return To Shawano

Kevin Kovac

SHAWANO, Wis. - Aug. 4. Billy Moyer was perfect in Wednesday's blockbuster World of Outlaws Late Model Series event at Shawano Speedway.

Twenty-one years after falling short of victory in the national tour's only previous appearance at the half-mile fairgrounds oval, the three-time WoO LMS champion from Batesville, Ark., capped a sweep of the evening's action with a convincing win in the 50-lap A-Main.

"To come out and set a track record (in time trials), win the heat and win the main, you can't do no better than that,"”said the 52-year-old Moyer, who dominated the first incarnation of the WoO LMS (1988-89) run under late WoO Sprint Car Series founder Ted Johnson, but experienced a rare finish outside the top five in the tour's stop on June 5, 1989, at Shawano. "That's a storybook deal right there".”

Billy Moyer - Shawano Speedway World of Outlaws

Billy Moyer (Cory Stivason photo)

Moyer, who started second in his Victory Circle car, outran polesitter Brady Smith of Solon Springs, Wis., to turn one at the initial green flag and never relinquished the lead. He raced unchallenged for the entire distance, beating Smith to the finish line by a margin of 4.991 seconds - nearly a full straightaway - in a race that was slowed by a single caution flag on lap 23.

Smith, 33, held off repeated challenges from fourth-starter Jimmy Mars of Menomonie, Wis., to secure the runner-up payoff. Mars settled for third, followed by defending WoO LMS champion Josh Richards and Shane Clanton. Richards slipped by Clanton for fourth with an outside move off turn four on lap 41 but didn't have enough time to catch Smith and Mars.

Moyer, who won a DIRTcar Summer Nationals event at Shawano in 2002, pushed his WoO LMS alltime-best career win total to 37 with his runaway triumph. He has registered 15 of his victories since 2004, when the tour was restarted under the World Racing Group banner following a 15-year hiatus.

"It was a lot fun there tonight,"”said Moyer, who earned $10,225 for his second win in nine WoO LMS starts this season. "When the car's working that good it's always a lot more fun than when you gotta' work your butt off to get to the end.

"There were little flaws (in the car) there at times - it can always be better - but it got the job done. I'm real happy with the car and (Clements) engine combination we have right now".”

With Moyer racing alone at the head of the pack, he had only a brief moment of trepidation while lapping WoO LMS rookie Austin Hubbard of Seaford, Del., on lap 44. The two cars got close enough in turn one to make Moyer's heart skip a beat.

"He changed his line just about the time I got behind him,"”Moyer said of Hubbard. "It wasn't a big deal. It seemed like my tires were a little bit better cold and the longer we ran we equaled out, so I didn't want to waste any time there (lapping Hubbard) because I felt like the tires were fading. I forced the issue a little bit to get going".”

Both Smith and Mars, 38, hailed Moyer's performance. They spent the race in a personal battle for second place - and the honor of their home state's fans.

"We didn't have nothing for Billy,"”said Smith, who had never before raced at Shawano. "He was just better than we were. I couldn't keep up with him".

"Jimmy and I raced our butts off for second and we're just glad we held him off. I just tried to hold my line, be smooth and not make a mistake".”

Mars, who won the last WoO LMS event held in Wisconsin on July 8 at Superior Speedway, thought he might have had a faster car than Smith, but simply couldn't find a way to sneak by his Badger State rival.

"I would've liked to have gotten into second and seen if we had anything for (Moyer),"”said Mars. "But Brady did a good job. We had a couple shots there, but he did what he needed to do to hold me off".”

Smith's second runner-up finish of the 2010 WoO LMS left him one spot short of a heartwarming victory. He was in search of a win for Reed Leupke of Bonduel, Wis., a four-year-old fan who is battling leukemia. Leupke attended Wednesday's race with his parents and picked the pole position in the pre-feature draw for Smith, who earlier this year gave Leupke a tour of his race shop.

Brian Birkhofer of Musatine, Iowa, started and finished sixth after his mid-race attempts to overtake Richards were rebuffed. Tim McCreadie made a solid charge from the 16th starting spot to place seventh after finding a unique line around the tricky track that allowed him to pick up four spots during the race's second half.

The race's lone caution flag, on lap 23, was put out after Clint Smith of Senoia, Ga., slowed with oil-pressure problems in his new engine. He retired to the pit area, finishing 22nd.

Moyer established a new track record during the 32-car Ohlins Shocks Time Trials session, lapping the big track in 19.630 seconds to overtake the standard of 19.800 seconds, held since 2003 by Darren Miller. It was Moyer's first fast-time on the tour this season.

World of Outlaws - Shawano Speedway
1) Billy Moyer, 2) Brady Smith, 3) Jimmy Mars, 4) Josh Richards, 5) Shane Clanton, 6) Brian Birkhofer, 7) Tim McCreadie, 8) Darrell Lanigan, 9) Steve Francis, 10) Tim Fuller, 11) Rick Eckert, 12) Nick Anvelink, 13) Chub Frank, 14) Terry Anvelink, 15) Don O'Neal, 16) Dennis Erb Jr., 17) Austin Hubbard, 18) A.J. Diemel, 19) Jill George (rov.), 20) Chris Oertel, 21) Brent Robinson (prov.), 22) Clint Smith, 23) Ronny Lee Hollingsworth, 24) Russell King
Fast Time (32 entries): Moyer (19.630 secs.); Heat winners: Moyer, Richards, B. Smith, Mars; B-Main winners: Diemel, Frank.

Mike Ruefer photo

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Updated 11/17/10

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