Billy Moyer uses the cushion to reel in leader Ray Cook to ultimately take the lead on a
lap 20 restart. (Mike
Recurring Dream: Moyer Grabs
DLM Racing's Biggest Payday Again
ROSSBURG, Oh. - June 13. Billy Moyer, the Late Model "Dream's" most senior racer among a field of 26 of
America's top dirt Late Model competitors, showed why he is also, even still, arguably the most talented
individual to ever hold the steering wheel of one of the beasts. The Iowa-born veteran took the lead
from Ray Cook on lap 20, then chopped the field into pieces in Sunday's rain-delayed race to lay claim to
another big piece for his expansive trophy room in Batesville, Arkansas.
With a heat win and a pole position start for the 16th installment of the $100,000 to win event, Moyer laid the
groundwork for a race into second position behind outside front row starter Cook. While Moyer was spying on Cook,
several others back in the field were making plenty of noise of their own. While Jonathan Davenport, Steve Francis,
and Dan Schlieper were holding their own inside the top five, fast qualifier Tim McCreadie, Steve Casebolt, and
Scott Bloomquist were engaged in a scrappy duel for sixth through eighth positions. Shane Clanton soon became a
part of the mix.
As for Moyer's "elder" status?
“We were talking about him being a senior citizen earlier, but that experience paid off. He got a good run on me
on the restart and got us with a slide down there,” Cook said later after aking his wall-scarred machine to second
Ray Cook and #25 Shane
Clanton bump and run in the fight for second. Cook regained the spot and held it after a strong Clanton run
ended in mechanical trouble. (Mike
Early minor cautions prevented Cook from having to visit the rear of the field, but it mattered little, as a
slowing Brian Shirley brought out the lap 20 caution, and Moyer threw a "slide job" on Cook on the restart that
would give him the lead for good. As Moyer began to get away, Cook suddenly had his hands full with Davenport, but
the popular North Carolina ace got some respite from a lap 57 caution. By then, Clanton had bettered Bloomquist and
sat in fifth.
With the new start, Clanton blew around the outside of Casebolt to take fourth, and Casebolt was suddenly caught
up in a lap 58 collision with Davenport and John Blankenship. Casebolt, a "World 100" winner here, was done for the
day after Davenport bounced off the wall and into the passing Clanton before crashing into the fifth running
Casebolt. Casebolt's car sustained heavy damage while Blankenship was able to continue.
20th starting Dale McDowell takes the highway to a strong third place finish, while 16th
starter Josh Richards ($1) remained steady to post a sixth place at
Clanton turned up the heat on the restart and stole second from Cook, with some contact between the two
before Clanton pulled away and went after the leader Moyer, even getting close enough to get a peek underneath the
#21 on lap 65. With what appeared to be a comfortable second in hand, however, Clanton suddenly dropped off the
pace with a broken shock absorber bolt underneath the car, likely a result of a rough racing surface up top and
Clanton's high-flying charge virtually against the wall at times.
|Tim McCreadie (left) survived a round with the
wall after advancing from 13th to fifth in just eight laps, but then retired with an overheating
engine. A high attrition rate helped Chris Madden (right) climb from rear of the field to
fourth at the finish. (Shawn Crose photo)
With Clanton added to a growing list of flailing frontrunners, Scott Bloomquist held down third behind Cook at
that point, but Bloomquist himself was next to be bitten as a flat tire sent him pitside for a new tire and a new
starting spot at the rear of the dwindling lead lap. Though Bloomquist was able to return to fifth place in the
closing laps, passing Josh Richards, it was too little too late as Moyer kept very much to himself and drove across
the line unchallenged, followed by Cook, Dale McDowell, Chris Madden, and Bloomquist.
Richards took sixth place, while the showstopper was seventh finishing Don O'Neal. Only through a twist of fate
was O'Neal able to tag the rear of the field, after fast time provisional Tony Stewart, forced to leave the track
to compete in a NASCAR event, elected to the give the spare starting spot to the seventh place finisher in the
B-Main, rather than the next fast qualifier in line
Jonathan Davenport ran as high as third early on before getting into a tangle with Steve
Casebolt and John Blankenship.
who did not transfer from the preliminaries. Under those rules, that person would have been Iowan Chad Simpson,
the sixth fastest qualifier amojng 104 entries.
O'Neal took the bone with a vengeance after becoming one of few drivers to have ever transferred from the
C-Main, to the B-Main, and on to the main event. Starting dead last in the 26-car field, the Martinsville, Indiana
driver stayed as the last car on the lead lap to ultimately reach seventh place.
Jeep Van Wormer was the race's lone fast time provisional. The second provisional
belonged to the departing track owner Tony Stewart, who elected to take seven drivers out of the
B-Main instead of the traditional six. That made #71 Don O'Neal the big
Dream XVI: 1. Billy Moyer, 2. Ray Cook,
3. Dale McDowell, 4. Chris Madden, 5. Scott Bloomquist, 6. Josh Richards, 7. Don O'Neal, 8. John
Blankenship, 9. Jeep Van Wormer (prov.), 10. Dan Schlieper, 11. Jonathan Davenport; 12. Brad Neat; 13.
Shane Clanton; 14. Steve Casebolt; 15. Tim McCreadie; 16. Darrell Lanigan; 17. Brandon Kinzer; 18. Mike
Marlar; 19. Brady Smith; 20. Brian Birkhofer; 21. Steve Francis; 22. Dennis Erb Jr.; 23. Bub Mccool;
24. Jimmy Owens; 25. Brian Shirley; 26. Casey Roberts. (Qualifying & Heat Race
C-Main winner: Doug Drown; B-Main: McDowell
Mike Ruefer photo