After briefly losing his lead to Jonathan Davenport, Chris Madden returned to the point and
grabbed Friday's "Mountain Mayhem Shootout" at Volunteer Speedway. (Michael Moats)
Madden Pulls the Trigger at Volunteer "Mountain Mayhem
By Robert Walden, track
BULLS GAP, Tenn. - May 6. With Volunteer Speedway and Wythe
Raceway in Rural Retreat, Va., teaming-up for a two-night battle along the Interstate 81 corridor in the
Volunteer State and the Commonwealth of Virginia, presenting "Border Wars - Mountain Mayhem Shootout" for Super
Late Models paying $5,000-to-win each round, Chris Madden of Gray Court, S.C., gunned the field down Friday at
A 30-car field of Late Model competitors representing eight states were present for
qualifying, and a tacky, hooked-up racing surface allowed Madden to put a buzz in the crowd on a chilly night in
East Tennessee as he toured the high banks at 12.222-seconds (118.404 mph) to earn the pole position for the
50-lap main event, with Jonathan Davenport second quickest. One of the fastest fields here in some
time saw the last starting car of Mark Douglas in the lineup with a time of 12.835.
Madden jumped into the lead with Mike Marlar settling into second followed by
Davenport and Ty Dillon. John Blankenship got around Steve Smith for fifth on lap three, and
Davenport wrestled second from Marlar on lap eight. Both Blankenship and Smith got around Ty Dillon for
fourth and fifth on lap nine.
Racing into the first turn on lap 26, with NASCAR Camping World Truck Series competitor Austin
Dillon directly in front of Madden, Madden went to the inside of Dillon while Davenport carried momentum off the
high-side to pull outside of Dillon down the backstretch, making it three-wide. Entering the third turn
Davenport grabbed the lead and Madden began pursuit.
With Davenport showing the way out front negotiating lapped traffic, Madden got a strong
run on the bottom off the fourth turn on lap 30 and pulled alongside Davenport. Exiting turn two, Madden pulled
ahead of Davenport to take a lead he would never relinquish.
Caution waved on lap 35 when the third-running Marlar came to a stop with a broken j-bar and
driveshaft, bringing a disappointing end to his strong run.
Madden was all alone out front for the "Delaware Restart", with Davenport and Blankenship
side-by-side behind him. As the field raced into the first turn, Davenport got into the outside guardrail,
putting him in the pits for the remainder of the race.
With both Davenport and Marlar parked, the 35-year-old Madden rolled to the $5,000 victory
over Blankenship, with Smith turning in a fine performance to finish third. followed by Ray Cook and Steve
"We had a really great race car tonight, this place was really hooked up and fast," said
Madden in the pits. Jonathan (Davenport) and I really had a good battle going on, it was a heckuva' race and I
want to thank him for racing me clean."
Making his first-ever start at Volunteer Speedway, teenager Mack McCarter grabbed the early
lead over pole-sitter Dale Ball, Jerry Broyles, Weston Gantte and Jake Eaton in the Fastrak Racing
Series-sanctioned Crate Late Model feature. McCarter rode out front until getting sideways on
lap eight when a tire started going flat, with Ball and comrades-in-arms all shooting past.
After assuming the lead, Ball, of Johnson City, rode his mount to second victory of the season. Ball was
trailed at the finish by Broyles, Andy Ogle, Gantte and Eaton.
Volunteer Speedway "Mountain
1) Chris Madden, 2) John
Blankenship, 3) Steve Smith, 4) Ray Cook, 5) Steve Casebolt, 6) Chad Ogle, 7) Jimmy Owens, 8) Ty
Dillon, 9) Eric Wells, 10) Tommy Kerr, 11) Vic Hill, 12) Chris Brown, 13) Brian Reese, 14) Austin
Dillon, 15) Jonathan Davenport, 16) Mike Marlar, 17) Randy Weaver, 18) Billy Ogle, Jr., 19) Mike Gault,
20) Scott Creel, 21) Mark Vineyard, 22) Kerry Jones, 23) Zack Mitchell, 24) Mark
Fast Time (30 entries): Madden (12.222); B-Main winner: Weaver