latemodelamerica.com - June 4 - Tazewell Speedway
LateModelAmerica.com by Sam Holbrooks

 
 

Brad Neat - Steve Casebolt

Brad Neat got plenty of pressure from #c9 Steve Casebolt at Tazewell Speedway. (Allen Earl)

Neat Turns Back Casebolt For Third Career Lucas Win at Tazewell; First With Labonte Team

Lucas Oil Series PR

TAZEWELL, Tenn. - June 4. Taking the lead on lap 17, Brad Neat of Dunnville, Ky. held on for nearly 60 laps to score his first Lucas Oil Late Model Dirt Series win of 2010 in the "Toyota Knoxville 75" Friday at Tazewell Speedway.  Steve Casebolt of Richmond, Ind. tried valiantly to get by Neat, but he had to settle for second. Series points’ leader, Scott Bloomquist held the third spot.


Steve Casebolt kept #0 Scott Bloomquist at bay to take second at Tazewell.

(Michael Moats)

Rodney Kiker and Casebolt made up the front row of the $10,000 to win race. Kiker started off quickly, grabbing the point on the opening lap as Neat, who started third, moved into second ahead of Casebolt, Ogle, and Bloomquist. Kiker looked very good in the early laps of the race, holding a three-length lead until he started to hit heavy traffic by lap 12. In traffic, Neat and Casebolt both overtook Kiker by lap 19. 

Kiker then began to fade even more as Ogle passed him on lap 20 for third before first caution flew on lap 24 for Mike Marlar’s flat tire. On the restart, Neat led the field to green, with Casebolt and Ogle lined up side-by-side for the restart, but the restart saw Ogle lose a spot to Bloomquist.  


Kentucky's Brad Neat after a big Lucas Series win at Tazewell (Tenn.) Speedway.

(Michael Moats)

Casebolt kept the heat on Neat for several more laps until lap 41, when he was able to pull alongside Neat momentarily. Neat was up to the challenge as he beat Casebolt to line to continue in the lead.  The top five of Neat, Casebolt, Bloomquist, Ogle, and O’Neal were all running on the same straightaway as Neat started to get into heavy traffic once again.  With 25 laps remaining, Casebolt was all over Neat, trying both low and high on the race track to get by, but Neat held his line as he fought off the repeated challenges. 

The second and final caution came out for Kiker’s flat tire on lap 54. Neat led the restart to the green and quickly opened up a four car-length advantage until, in traffic, Casebolt picked up the pace and closed right onto Neat’s deck. Bloomquist closed on Casebolt as well, but Neat held off the duo’s efforts and went on to record his first Lucas Oil Late Model Dirt Series win of the year and his first while driving for car owner, Bobby Labonte. 

Brad Neat gets by #25 Rodney Kiker after the first few laps of the 75-lapper at Tazewell.
(Michael Moats)

In Lucas Oil Victory Lane for the first time since Hagerstown (MD) Speedway, last August, Neat first congratulated his crew for sticking it out with him in what has been an up and down season.  “Man, I’ve got to thank this crew of mine, they did a fabulous job tonight and they have done so all year. We haven’t had the results we would have liked to this season, but it feels good to win here at Tazewell, it’s always been a tough place for anyone to win at,” said the 30-year-old University of Kentucky graduate. 

“We had a pretty good year last year and we were looking forward to this year after teaming up with Bobby (Labonte) and Earl (Pearson Jr.)  We've struggled at times and hopefully this will turn around our season. It just helps everyone’s morale on the team when you run good like this.”

Neat’s MasterSbilt Cadillac is powered by Cornett Racing Engines and sponsored by Red Buck Cigars/Lucas Oil Products/T&T Energy/Sunoco Race Fuels, PRC and Hoosier Racing Tires.  

Last week's "Show-Me 100" winner Ray Cook chats with Lucas Series Director Richie Lewis. Cook was less stellar this weekend, with a mid-pack finish.

(Michael Moats)

Casebolt, who’s primary car suffered mechanical issues in his pit before hot laps, brought out a back-up for time trials and won his heat race to earn the outside front row starting spot, finished a close second in the Bob Harris owned/Dixie Chopper/Rocket GTO.  Taking third and maintaining his points lead was Bloomquist, with Ogle fourth and O’Neal, who started 12th before coming home fifth.

Tazewell Speedway Lucas Oil Series "Toyota Knoxille 75" - June 4th
1. Brad Neat
, 2. Steve Casebolt, 3. Scott Bloomquist, 4. Billy Ogle, Jr., 5. Don O'Neal, 6. Vic Hill, 7. Jimmy Owens, 8. John Blankenship, 9. Dan Schlieper, 10. Dale McDowell, 11. Ray Cook, 12. Steve Smith, 13. Earl Pearson, Jr., 14. Chris Wall, 15. Rick Rogers, 16. Eric Wells, 17. Tim Isenberg (prov.), 18. Rodney Kiker, 19. Tommy Kerr, 20. Shane Clanton, 21. Mike Marlar, 22. Tyler Reddick (prov.), 23. Michael Smith, 24. Mike Weeks

(Heat winners - 31 entries): Kiker, Neat, Casebolt, Ogle. B-Main: Weeks

Michael Moats photo

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