By Kevin Kovac, WoO LMS P.R. Director
Fuller Breaks Thorugh In Front Of Family & Friends At Can-Am Motorsports Park
By Kevin Kovac, WoO LMS P.R. Director
LAFARGEVILLE, NY – June 15, 2010 – Tim Fuller found the perfect track to shake him out of his season-long doldrums.
With a huge contingent of his family members, friends and longtime fans looking on, Fuller rolled to his first World of Outlaws Late Model Series victory of 2010 in Tuesday night’s F.X. Caprara Car Companies 50 at his old stomping grounds, Can-Am Motorsports Park.
A resident of nearby Watertown, N.Y., who was a DIRTcar 358-Modified regular at the half-mile oval early in his career, Fuller thrilled the packed house with a nearly flawless performance. He qualified second-fastest in time trials, won a heat race and blasted off the outside pole starting spot in the A-Main to lead the entire 50-lap distance without facing a single serious challenge.
Fuller, 42, crossed the finish line a commanding 3.273 seconds ahead of another hometown hero from Watertown, 2006 WoO LMS champion Tim McCreadie, providing a storybook ending to the national tour’s second annual event at Can-Am.
“You’re not gonna win in a better place this,” said Fuller, who earned $10,500 for his 11th career triumph on the WoO LMS. “Winning my first race of the year here in front of this crowd, all these people who know me – you can’t beat it.
“And then Timmy (McCreadie) finishing second – I like when that kind of cool stuff happens. It keeps people interested and coming back for the next one.”
Fuller dominated the opening event of the WoO LMS ‘Great Northern Tour,’ outgunning last year’s Outlaw winner at Can-Am, Rick Eckert of York, Pa., for the lead at the initial green flag and never looked back. He easily handled the restarts that followed four caution flags for minor incidents and was barely slowed by lapped traffic as he sailed around the sprawling track in his Gypsum Express Rocket car.
The 36-year-old McCreadie, who started sixth, guided the Sweeteners Plus Rocket up to second place before the halfway mark. But he couldn’t stay with Fuller’s fleet No. 19 after overtaking Darrell Lanigan of Union, Ky., for the runner-up spot on a lap-19 restart.
McCreadie settled for a solid bridesmaid finish at Can-Am for the second straight year, ending the race over three seconds ahead of third-place Lanigan, who started fifth in his three-race-old Rocket car.
Defending WoO LMS champion and current points leader Josh Richards of Shinnston, W.Va., started and finished fourth in the Seubert Calf Ranches Rocket – after falling as far back as sixth – and ninth-starter Shane Clanton of Locust Grove, Ga., used the outside groove during the race’s late stages to secure a fifth-place finish despite being hampered by a stumbling carburetor.
“That’s all we had,” said McCreadie, who ended the night trailing Richards by 42 points in the WoO LMS standings. “I gave it all I could, but we just had nothing for Fuller. I was just ditch-digging (running the inside lane) all night – that’s all I could do to save my car.
“Fuller and those guys did a heck of a job. I followed that red-and-yellow car all night long (including to the finish line of the second heat).
“We have nothing to hang our heads about,” he concluded. “If definitely would’ve felt better to win, but we had a good night. This is our hometown and I’m sure the fans are happy no matter who wins as long as we’re both up here (on the homestretch following the race).”
Fuller’s victory snapped him out of a 19-race winless streak on the WoO LMS dating back to the final three events of the 2009 season. Immediately before that he had enjoyed an amazing stretch of seven wins in 11 races – including a tour record-tying four consecutive wins last summer – that made his failure to reach Victory Lane until Tuesday night one of the mysteries of the ’10 season.
“We’ve sucked all year,” admitted Fuller, whose victory represented just his third top-five finish in 17 A-Mains this season. “We don’t even deserve to be fifth in points right now, but we’ve finished every race and that’s a tribute to the crew (led by Mike ‘Smoke’ Countryman).”
What was the key to Fuller’s slump-busting triumph?
“We time-trialed well and won the heat,” said Fuller, who used a motor from the Gypsum Express team’s new in-house engine program. “You gotta time-trial well – that’s all there is to it. Don’t get me wrong, the car was great, but I probably wasn’t gonna come from 15th (to win).
“We’re good in the black-slick (track conditions) like there was tonight – just look at what we’ve done starting in the back of these packs and coming up through this year. Tonight we finally had a good starting position and we were able to capitalize on it.
“I hope we’re back on track now,” he added. “I hope this isn’t just a product of the conditions, a freak thing. I think we’re rolling, but I guess we’ll see in the races coming up.”
Chub Frank of Bear Lake, Pa., advanced from the 13th starting spot to finish sixth despite being hampered by a bent right-front spindle from a mid-race altercation. Seventh-place Vic Coffey of Caledonia, N.Y., earned the $500 WoO LMS Bonus Bucks cash for being the highest-finishing driver who hasn’t won a tour A-Main and isn’t ranked among the top 12 in the points standings, while Dan Stone of Thompson, Pa., placed eighth and Eckert faded steadily throughout the distance to finish ninth. Russell King of Bristolville, Ohio, was one lap down in 10th place, matching his best finish of the season.
Rookie Austin Hubbard of Seaford, Del., finished two laps down in 11th place after a broken rearend caused him to slow while running fourth and ultimately stop between turns three and four with the checkered flag flying. The mechanical malfunction topped off a night that began with the 18-year-old having his time-trial lap disallowed because his Beitler Motorsports car weighed in light at the scales.
Clint Smith of Senoia, Ga., brought out one of the race’s four caution flags when he saw his promising run end due to an expired engine on lap 18. He was running third at the time.
Richards was quickest in the 25-car Ohlins Shocks Time Trials session, earning his first WoO LMS fast-time honor of 2010 with a lap of 19.240 seconds.
Heat winners were Clint Smith, Fuller and Eckert, and Larry Wight of Baldwinsville, N.Y., captured the B-Main.
The WoO LMS ‘Great Northern Tour’ continues on Thurs., June 17, with a first-ever visit to Merrittville Speedway in Thorold, Ont.
For more information on the WoO LMS, visit www.worldofoutlaws.com.
Results of WoO Late Model Series ‘F.X. Caprara Car Companies 50’ (Finishing Position/Start/Driver/Laps Completed/Money Won):
1. (2) Tim Fuller/50 $10,500
2. (6) Tim McCreadie/50 $5,775
3. (5) Darrell Lanigan/50 $3,600
4. (4) Josh Richards/50 $3,150
5. (9) Shane Clanton/50 $2,500
6. (13) Chub Frank/50 $2,200
7. (12) Vic Coffey/50 $1,900
8. (15) Dan Stone/50 $1,300
9. (1) Rick Eckert/50 $1,700
10. (7) Russell King/49 $1,600
11. (10) Austin Hubbard/48 $1,800
12. (18) Peter Mantha Jr./48 $1,000
13. (8) Steve Francis/48 $1,550
14. (19) Larry Wight/48 $950
15. (16) Greg Oakes/48 $850
16. (21) April Farmer/48 $800
17. (17) Greg Belyea/48 $770
18. (14) Dale Caswell/48 $750
19. (20) Michael Trapp/46 $730
20. (22) Jordan Keruskie/20 $700
21. (23) Jill George/18 $700
22. (3) Clint Smith/17 $1,225
23. (11) Ron Davies/16 $700
24. (24) Mark Webb/0 $700
* Earnings include Winners Circle program and cash contingency award bonuses
Time of Race: 29 Mins., 07.092 Secs.
Margin of Victory: 3.273 Secs.
Yellow Flags: 4 (Laps 0, 18, 19, 28)
Lap Leaders: Fuller (1-50)
Provisional Starters: George, Webb
Rookie of the Race: Hubbard ($250)
WoO LMS ‘Bonus Bucks’ Winner: Coffey ($500)
Ohlins Shocks Time Trial Results (Position/No./Driver/Hometown/Best Lap):
1. 1-Josh Richards/Shinnston, WV 19.240
2. 19-Tim Fuller/Watertown, NY 19.333
3. 24-Rick Eckert/York, PA 19.417
4. 44-Clint Smith/Senoia, GA 19.433
5. 15-Steve Francis/Ashland, KY 19.507
6. 29-Darrell Lanigan/Union, KY 19.824
7. 1*-Chub Frank/Bear Lake, PA 20.014
8. 39-Tim McCreadie/Watertown, NY 20.043
9. 21d-Dan Stone/Thompson, PA 20.121
10. 56-Russell King/Bristolville, OH 20.159
11. 71d-Ron Davies/Erie, PA 20.312
12. 25-Shane Clanton/Locust Grove, GA 20.338
13. 14-April Farmer/Livingston, TN 20.396
14. 25B-Greg Belyea/Frankford, ONT 20.476
15. 1cfr-Peter Mantha Jr./Gatineau, QUE 20.479
16. 22x-Greg Oakes/Franklinville, NY 20.511
17. R19-Dale Caswell/Central Square, NY 20.666
18. 18J-Jordan Keruskie/Brownville, NY 20.767
19. 99L-Larry Wight/Baldwinsville, NY 20.922
20. 70-Michael Trapp/Gouverneur, NY 21.250
21. 36c-Mark Webb/Brownville, NY 21.319
22. 22-Jill George/Cedar Falls, IA 21.463
23. 24J-Jon Rohacevich/Prattsville, NY N/T
24. 32c-Vic Coffey/Caledonia, NY 19.464 (DQ – light)
25. 19H-Austin Hubbard/Seaford, DE 19.962 (DQ – light)
Heat No. 1 (10 laps – Top 6 Transfer): C. Smith, Richards, King, Hubbard, Frank, Oakes, Wight, Farmer, George
Heat No. 2 (10 laps – Top 6 Transfer): Fuller, McCreadie, Francis, Davies, Caswell, Belyea, Trapp, Rohacevich
Heat No. 3 (10 laps – Top 6 Transfer): Eckert, Lanigan, Clanton, Coffey, Stone, Mantha, Keruskie, Webb
B-Main No. 1 (12 laps – Top 4 Transfer): Wight, Trapp, Farmer, Keruskie, Webb, George, Rohacevich
World of Outlaws Late Model Series Contingency Award Winners:
Arizona Sports Shirts ($50 product certificate): Jill George
Armor All (one case of product to highest-finishing non-WoO team in A-Main w/decal): Vic Coffey
Eibach Springs (one free spring): Larry Wight
MSD Ignition ($75 cash award): Tim McCreadie
MSD Ignition ($25 cash award): Clint Smith
Ohlins Pole Award ($50 cash award to fastest qualifier w/decal): Josh Richards
Pink Carburetors ($100 product certificate): Rick Eckert/Jill George
Quartermaster ($100 product certificate): Tim McCreadie
Quartermaster ($50 product certificate): Shane Clanton
Quartermaster ($25 product certificate): Jill George
R2C Performance ($100 cash): Tim McCreadie
STP ($50 cash award): Larry Wight
VP Racing Fuels ‘Nice Jugs Award’ (two five-gallon plastic fuel jugs to fastest qualifier who does not make the A-Main if decal is displayed): Jon Rohacevich
Wrisco Aluminum (three sheets of aluminum to A-Main winner w/decal): Tim Fuller
2010 World of Outlaws Late Model Series Point Standings as of June 15 – 17 A-Mains completed (rank/driver/points/deficit to leader):
1. Josh Richards 2376 (-0)
2. Tim McCreadie 2334 (-42)
3. Darrell Lanigan 2326 (-50)
4. Steve Francis 2256 (-120)
5. Tim Fuller 2250 (-126)
6. Austin Hubbard 2212 (-164)
7. Rick Eckert 2164 (-212)
8. Shane Clanton 2158 (-218)
9. Chub Frank 2148 (-228)
10. Clint Smith 2064 (-312)
11. Brady Smith 2020 (-356)
12. Russell King 1942 (-434)
13. Brent Robinson 1716 (-660)
14. Jill George 1318 (-1058)
15. Vic Coffey 924 (-1452)
FOLLOW THE ACTION ON TWITTER: Fans can now keep up-to-date with the World of Outlaws Late Model Series online and through text messages on cell phones via Twitter, the internet’s fast-growing social-networking and micro-blogging website. Updates are provided to Twitter ‘followers’ of the WoO LMS throughout each race night, and fans also receive breaking news and interesting notes from the tour.
To sign-up as a WoO LMS ‘follower’ on Twitter to receive updates anywhere at anytime, visit http://twitter.com/WoOLateModels.
LISTEN ONLINE: If fans can’t get to a track to see the World of Outlaws Late Model Series, they can experience the excitement of the nation’s premier tour live on DIRTvision.com through the DIRT Radio Network.
To listen to the free audio broadcasts, log on to www.dirtvision.com and click on the DIRT Radio Network logo.
Listeners will need Windows Media Player 9 or higher to listen to the DIRT Radio Network. For technical support or questions, e-mail [email protected]