latemodelamerica.com - July 10 - Magnolia Motor Speedway
LateModelAmerica.com by Sam Holbrooks

 
 
 
Earl Pearson Jr - Magnolia Motor Speedway Lucas Oil Late Model Series

Lucas Oil Series: Pearson Three Straight With Magnolia "Clash at the Mag" Win

James Essex

COLUMBUS, MS - July 10. In front of the largest crowd in the history of Magnolia Motor Speedway, Earl Pearson, Jr. of Jacksonville, Fla. won his third consecutive Lucas Oil Late Model Dirt Series main event.  He earned $20,000 by winning the “Clash at the Mag” Presented by the Columbus Convention and Visitors Bureau, on Saturday Night. Pearson took the lead on lap 30 and held off defending series champion, Scott Bloomquist for the win.

“I want to first thank all these fans for coming out here tonight, it was hot and I’m sure they saw a good show,” said the 38-year-old Pearson whose win was his 23rd in series history.  The win tonight broke a tie atop the all-time win list; Pearson now leads Bloomquist by one.

Lucas Oil Series winner Earl Pearson at Magnolia Motor Speedway

Connie Putnam

Rookie Eric Wells, bolted out to the early lead and looked strong early on as he led the first 19 laps of the race before Bloomquist took over. He held the lead until Pearson made a smooth move on the inside coming off of turn four on lap 30 to get by the reigning champion. 

Pearson built a healthy lead over what turned out to be torrid battle for second between Bloomquist, Ray Cook, and Billy Moyer.  The trio brutally fought for most of the main event. Moyer then managed to clear both Cook

Billy Moyer and Scott Bloomquist at Magnolia Motor Speedway

After a fierce battle with #0 Scott Bloomquist and Ray Cook, #21 Billy Moyer finally cleared them and grappled his way to second.  He appeared to be the only one with anything for Pearson, but he suddenly ducked off the race track with mechanical trouble with 21 to go.  (Connie Putnam) 

 and Bloomquist to solidly claim the second spot on lap 71. Moyer then started to close on the almost insurmountable lead that Pearson had built.  

After getting to within five car lengths of the leader, however, Moyer suddenly slowed on the frontstretch and pulled to the infield as he entered turn one on lap 79.  After the final restart, Bloomquist consistently challenged Pearson for the lead until the final three laps. In the waning laps Pearson was able to maneuver through traffic to maintain his lead ahead of Bloomquist. 

Tyler Reddick at Magnolia Motor Speedway

West Coast driver Tyler Reddick races local favorite Brian Rickman at Magnolia Motorsports Park.  (Connie Putnam) 

“I want to thank Johnny Stokes for the great race track he gave us tonight,” exclaimed Pearson, “you could run anywhere on the track. Eric [Wells] ran well in the beginning of the race; when Scott got around us, I knew it was going to be a tough race for the lead.” 

Cook finished third, while Dale McDowell passed Jimmy Owens on the final lap to claim fourth. 

Salute - Lucas Oil Series Late Models

Connie Putnam photo

Lucas Oil Series - Magnolia Motor Speedway - July 10
1) Earl Pearson, Jr., 2) Scott Bloomquist, 3) Ray Cook, 4) Dale McDowell, 5) Jimmy Owens, 6) Stacy Taylor, 7) Don O'Neal, 8) Dan Schlieper, 9) Terry Phillips, 10) Chris Wall, 11) Brad Neat, 12) Eric Wells, 13) Ronny Lee Hollingsworth, 14) Bub McCool, 15) David Breazeale, 16) Jason Cliburn, 17) Tyler Reddick, 18) Tim Isenberg, 19) John Blankenship, 20) Rodney Wing, 21) Billy Moyer, 22) Rick Rickman, 23) Wendell Wallace, 24) Steve Casebolt, 25) Brian Rickman

Fast Time (55 entries): Eric Wells (14.364 secs.) Heat winners: Pearson, Moyer, Bloomquist, Wells, Taylor, Owens; B-Main winner: Blankenship, B.Rickman

Rick Schwallie photo

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