- June 18-19 - I-30 Speedway by Sam Holbrooks


Ashley Sweeps O'Reilly Weekend in Little Rock

By Bryan Wimberley

LITTLE ROCK, Ark. - June 18-19. Earning his first series victory in nearly two years and his first-ever series victory at I-30 Speedway, polesitter David Ashley of Zachary, La., edged Allen Tippen in Friday’s opener of a weekend doubleheader on the O’Reilly Southern United Professional Racing (SUPR) tour, then secured Saturday night's win to complete a weekend sweep at the capitol city track..

Ashley led Friday's 25-lapper in its entirety to collect $1,250 for his 38th career series win, but his first since Aug. 31, 2008. Tippen, of Minden, La., was second with Gary Christian of Broken Bow, Okla., in third. Series points leader Rob Litton of Alexandria, stretched his lead with a fourth-place finish and Jody Prince of Sibley, La., was fifth.

Ashley raced to an early lead at the drop of the green with Christian, Tippen and Litton following close behind. Tippen took second from Christian on the fourth lap, two circuits before the race’s lone yellow appeared for Kyle Beard of Trumann, Ark., who lost control on the frontstretch.

On the restart, Ashley bolted out to a seven-length lead on Tippen, who chased Ashley in the low groove while Christian tried the high side midway through the race.

After Ashley got a little breathing room amid traffic, Tippen was just a few lengths back on lap 23 as the top three distanced themselves from Litton. But Ashley kept his pursuers at bay in the final laps.

June 19 Recap

Returning to I-30 Speedway on Saturday, polesitter Ashley completed his series sweep at I-30 Speedway on Saturday, driving away from Kevin Sitton in the final laps for a $2,500 victory on the O'Reilly SUPR tour.

Ashley, who led every lap of the Friday and Saturday features, negotiated lapped traffic better than the sixth-starting Sitton late in Saturday’s 50-lapper, helping him the checkers four seconds head of the runner-up. Current SUPR points leader Rob Litton of Alexandria, La., took third, followed by Jeff Chanler of Minden, La., and Kyle Cummings of Sibley, La.

Ashley’s first career SUPR victories at I-30 increased his overall career victory total to 39 on the Louisiana-based series.

In a near carbon-copy of the opening night feature, everybody was chasing Ashley’s No. 14 from the green flag on. He led Litton, Chanler, Jon Mitchell and Cummings on the first lap while Sitton raced around Cummings and into the top five early in the race.

After the race’s only two cautions -- for the lost wheel of Lee Davis (lap seven) and for a slowing Clay Fisher on the frontstretch (lap 14) -- Sitton continued his march to the front, taking third from Chanler on lap 17 and starting a duel with Litton for second. The pair made the duel three-wide with a lapped car on lap 24, and after contact that pushed sheetmetal onto Litton’s right-rear tire, Sitton took the spot and tried to chase down Ashley.

The frontrunners negotiated heavy traffic for several laps with Sitton pulling within a length of Ashley on lap 41. But that was as close as the Texas could get to grabbing the lead. Ashley took the checkers more than three seconds ahead at the quarter-mile oval.

SERIES NOTES: Ashley's GRT Race Car is powered by Wall 2 Wall Performance Engines and sponsored by B&K Underground Directional Boring, J&J Motorsports, X-Treme Graphics, Serco, Ohlins Shocks and Hawk Performance. ... Ashley’s back-to-back victories were his first on the SUPR tour since 2006. ... Next up for O’Reilly SUPR is July 2-3 events at Lone Star Speedway in Kilgore, Texas, and Champion Park Speedway in Minden, La.

O’REILLY SUPR @ I-30 (JUNE 18): (1) David Ashley, (2) Allen Tippen, (3) Gary Christian, (4) Rob Litton, (5) Jody Prince, (6) Kevin Sitton, (7) Chris Holley, (8) Kyle Cummings, (9) Lee Davis, (10) Shane Harris, (11) Ronny Adams, (12) Alex Ashley, (13) Terry Henson, (14) Jon Kirby, (15) Jeff Chanler, (16) Josh Danzy, (17) Dewaine Hottinger, (18) Darin Patrick, (19) Jon Mitchell, (20) Kyle Beard, (21) Paul Joyner. Scratched: Wesley Crutchfield, Jason Botsford. Heat race winners (among 23 cars): Prince, D. Ashley, Christian.

O’REILLY SUPR @ I-30 (JUNE 19): (1) David Ashley, (2) Kevin Sitton, (3) Rob Litton, (4) Jeff Chanler, (5) Kyle Cummings, (6) Allen Tippen, (7) Jon Mitchell, (8) Ronny Adams, (9) Shane Harris, (10) Alex Ashley, (11) Darin Patrick, (12) Jody Prince, (13) Gary Christian, (14) Jon Kirby, (15) Chris Holley, (16) Josh Danzy, (17) Dustin Hyde, (18) Eddie Provence, (19) Paul Joyner, (20) Mark McWilliams, (21) Clay Fisher, (22) Lee Davis, (23) Wesley Crutchfield. Heat race winners (among 23 cars): Litton, Mitchell, Chanler.

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Updated 11/17/10

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