latemodelamerica.com - Mar. 25 - Ocala Speedway
LateModelAmerica.com by Sam Holbrooks

 
 

Darrell Lanigan CF - Ocala Speedway

Darrell Lanigan claims Friday's World of Outlaws win at Ocala (Fla.) Speedway. (Rick Warren)

World of Outlaws: Lanigan Returns of WoO Victory Lane at Ocala

Darrell Lanigan after his second straight World of Outlaws win at Ocala. (R.E. Wing)
Kevin Kovac

OCALA, Fla. - March 25.  Darrell Lanigan has really taken a liking to Ocala Speedway.

The 40-year-old star from Union, Ky., emerged victorious for the second time in as many career starts at the egg-shaped track, capturing Friday's World of Outlaws Late Model Series "Sunshine 50".’

"Our car runs pretty good here,"”said the modest Lanigan, who won the tour's inaugural event at Ocala almost exactly one year ago. "We definitely like coming to this place."

Continuing his torrid comeback in the wake of missing last month's WoO LMS season opener at Volusia Speedway Park due to a medical issue, Lanigan scored his second A-Main triumph in a row. He pocketed $10,675 just six days after earning over $20,000 for winning the "Cash Cow 100"’at Columbus (Miss.) Speedway.

Jonathan Davenport - Josh Richards - Ocala Speedway

Jonathan Davenport (#49) started on the pole and settled into second behind Lanigan before #1 Josh Richards took that spot from him on a lap 18 restart. Davenport maintained third at the wire. (Rick Warren)

Lanigan, who started fifth, steered his self-owned Rocket car into third place by the second lap. The 2008 WoO LMS champion drove underneath Josh Richards for second on lap 13 and made the same move to overtake race-long pacesetter Jonathan Davenport of Blairsville, Ga., for the lead on lap 18.

The remainder of the distance belonged to Lanigan, who kept Richards at arm's length and survived a lap 49 caution flag that necessitated a green-white-checkered conclusion.

Richards, who started third, settled for a season-best finish of second. He nearly passed Davenport for the lead on lap 12 but skirted high in turns one and two the following circuit, losing the runner-up spot to Lanigan.

Rick Eckert - Ocala Speedway

Rick Eckert improved on a fairly dismal early season with sixth place at Ocala. (Rick Warren)

Davenport, who started from the pole position, relinquished second to Richards on a lap 18 restart but held on to place third over Jason Feger and Chub Frank.

Local favorite Tyler Ivey joined the World of Outlaws forces at a familiar Ocala Speedway, but was unable to go the distance. (Rick Warren) 
Lanigan maintained a half to full second edge over Richards throughout the green-flag run stretching from lap 18 to 49. He had just taken the white flag when the race's third and final caution flag flew after Billy Moyer of Batesville, Ark., spun out of eighth place in a chain-reaction scramble caused by the slowing car of Seaford, Del.'s Austin Hubbard, who was struck by a flat right-rear tire while holding fifth place.

Richards, 23, was unable to offer a challenge on the ensuing two-lap sprint to the finish. He acknowledged that he had effectively allowed his opportunity to reach Victory Lane for the first time in 2011 slip through his fingers when his bid to unseat Davenport fell short early in the distance.

Chub Frank - Shane Clanton - Ocala Speedway

A struggling Chub Frank got some respite with a fifth place finish at Ocala. Frank races under #25 Shane Clanton, who picked up seventh place. (Rick Warren) 

Jason Feger - Tim McCreadie - Ocala Speedway

Tim McCreadie confers with Jason Feger (right) before Feger put in a strong fourth place showing at Ocala. (Rick Warren)

"When I was up beside of Davenport (on lap 12) he did what he had to do – he got wide and tried to run me out a little,"”said Richards, who has won the last two WoO LMS championships. "When we slipped up (in turns one and two), Darrell got by. That was our shot right there. I knew from then on that there wouldn't be much passing and Darrell was good, so it would be tough to get back by him."

"I took a chance. I probably should've waited because Davenport was softer on tires, but you never know. I knew the bottom was getting rubbered up and I knew we had tire at the beginning, so I figured if we were gonna' make a move I probably should try it. It didn't work out this time, but we still had a good car and it was a good night for us."”

Richards vaulted from fifth to second in the WoO LMS points standings with his performance, closing within two points of Moyer, who remained the leader despite tumbling to 20th in the finish. Lanigan, meanwhile, cracked the top 10 for the first time this season, reaching ninth place.

Ivedent Lloyd - Tim McCreadie - Ocala Speedway

Area favorite Ivedent Lloyd challenges #39 Tim McCreadie en route to eighth place at Ocala. (Rick Warren)

Darrell Lanigan - Ocala VL1 

Darrell Lanigan claimed Friday's World of Outlaws win at Ocala (Fla.) Speedway(R.E. Wing)

Both of the A-Main's early cautions involved Chip Brindle of Chatsworth, Ga., a crate Late Model standout making his first-ever WoO LMS start. He spun in turn four on lap five as part of a tangle that included Jill George of Cedar Falls, Iowa, who ran a backup car after a B-Main accident forced her to use a provisional to start the headliner, and 2011 Rookie of the Year contender Brian Reese of Sharpsburg, Ga. The upstart spun again on lap 18.

March 25 - World of Outlaws - Ocala Speedway
1) Darrell Lanigan, 2) Josh Richards, 3) Jonathan Davenport, 4) Jason Feger, 5) Chub Frank, 6) Rick Eckert, 7) Shane Clanton, 8) Ivedent Lloyd, Jr., 9) Steve Francis, 10) Tim McCreadie, 11) Vic Coffey, 12) Brent Robinson, 13) Pat Doar, 14) Ron Davies, 15) Tim Fuller, 16) Clint Smith, 17) John Lobb, 18) Brian Reese (prov.), 19) Austin Hubbard, 20) Billy Moyer, 21) Jill George (prov.), 22) Tyler Ivey, 23) Chip Brindle, 24) David Breazeale.
Fast Time (28 entries): Hubbard (14.873 secs. - NTR); Heat winners: Hubbard, Lanigan, Davenport; B-Main winner: Robinson

Mike Ruefer photo



 

 

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