Back To Basics, Back To Victory Lane For Chub Frank At Muskingum County Speedway
By Kevin Kovac, WoO LMS P.R. Director
ZANESVILLE, OH – Aug. 20, 2009 – Chub Frank went back to basics.
And as a result, the veteran from Bear Lake, Pa., went back to Victory Lane on the World of Outlaws Late Model Series.
Driving a 2005-vintage Rocket car borrowed from Pennsylvania racer Chad Valone, Frank ended a 62-race winless streak on the national tour with a flag-to-flag triumph in Thursday night’s caution-free ‘Pepsi 40’ at Muskingum County Speedway.
Frank’s $7,600 triumph in a rescheduled event that was threatened all night by rain also snapped the four-race win streak of Watertown, N.Y.’s Tim Fuller, whose third-place finish left him tied with Rick Eckert of York, Pa., for the WoO LMS modern-era consecutive win record.
Ironically, Frank said he got his groove back thanks to a big assist from Fuller.
“Fuller has helped me a lot,” remarked Frank, who recorded his first WoO LMS win since May 18, 2008, at Lincoln (Ill.) Speedway. “He’s basically the one who said I should go back to the old stuff, run something I know and feel comfortable in. I’m glad I listened to him.”
Seeking an answer for his frustrating season-long slump, Frank, 47, decided on Monday afternoon to call Valone, who had an ’05 Rocket sitting in his shop. Valone agreed to loan the car to Frank, who spent the next three days assembling the machine and re-skinning it with his familiar No. 1* and sponsors, including Corry Rubber, Hino Toyota and Lake Shore Paving.
“I just had to do something different,” said Frank, who entered Thursday’s program ranked eighth in the WoO LMS points standings with just three top-five finishes in 30 events. “We weren’t getting it done with the new stuff (2009 cars) – it ain’t that the new stuff is bad, we just were struggling with it. I had to go back to something I knew.”
Frank hit paydirt his first night out with the car, roaring off the outside pole to lead the entire A-Main. He built as much as a three-second advantage before crossing the finish line a modest 0.962 of a second in front of Ashland, Ky.’s Steve Francis, who regained the WoO LMS points lead with his sixth runner-up placing in the last eight events driving the Beitler Motorsports Rocket.
Fuller settled for third in the Gypsum Express Rocket after starting seventh. Eighth-starter Bart Hartman of Zanesville, Ohio, was just a couple car lengths behind Fuller in fourth with his Rocket, and polesitter Steve Shaver of Vienna, W.Va., hung on to finish fifth in a Rocket after running second for the race’s first 28 laps.
“It feels great to get back into Victory Lane,” said Frank, who registered his 15th career win on the WoO LMS. “It’s been a long time. We needed this more than anyone can believe.”
Francis, 41, never seriously challenged Frank after finally overtaking Shaver for second on lap 28. He drew within 0.8 of a second of Frank with five laps remaining but couldn’t get closer.
“I think I had just as good a car as Chub, but by the time we got up there to second late in the race it was hard to pass,” said Francis, who started sixth. “We also kinda killed our right-rear tire trying to get by Shaver, and then when I started closing on Chub I tried to drive harder because I knew the race had to be about over and I ended up losing ground.”
Grabbing the points lead back from Josh Richards of Shinnston, W.Va., who finished a quiet eighth, seemed to be little consolation for Francis. He was frustrated to once again play the bridesmaid, which stretched his winless streak to 17 races since he scored his fifth victory of 2009 on May 31 at Tyler County Speedway in Middlebourne, W.Va.
The 41-year-old Fuller, meanwhile, gracefully accepted his streak-busting third-place finish. He couldn’t pull off any late-race dramatics after reaching third on lap 32 with a neat turn-two split of Shaver and Eddie Carrier Jr. of Salt Rock, W.Va., who finished sixth and earned the $500 ‘Bonus Bucks’ cash for being the highest-finishing driver who has never won a WoO LMS A-Main and isn’t ranked among the top 12 in the points standings.
“It was good while it lasted,” Fuller said of his streak. “I wouldn’t change a thing. It was one of the biggest accomplishments of my career.
“I think we were good enough to win if we had the starting position in our favor, but I have no complaints. I’m glad to see Chub get a win. He really needed one.”
Carrier settled for sixth after his last-lap bid to pass Shaver fell short. Defending WoO LMS champion Darrell Lanigan of Union, Ky., placed seventh, followed by the 11th-starting Richards, Jeep VanWormer of Pinconning, Mich., who slipped backward from the fourth starting spot, and fifth-starter Doug Dodd of Cambridge, Ohio, a multi-time winner this season at Muskingum County.
A field numbering 41 cars assembled for the event, including five drivers not on hand when the program was postponed on July 23. Nine entered drivers did not return, but they received WoO LMS non-qualifier points because they signed in on the original date.
Another postponement appeared to be a distinct possibility when a line of thunderstorms closed in on the area late in the afternoon, but only a short period of light rain fell, causing a slight delay in the start of hot laps. More storms began to threaten the track during heat action, but once again only light precipitation fell and officials kept the program moving in rapid-fire fashion to beat the weather.
“Ronnie Moran and his staff deserve plenty of credit for getting the show in tonight,” said WoO LMS director Tim Christman. “Ronnie is a classic old-school promoter who will do everything necessary to beat the elements. All the racers and fans appreciate the effort.”
Hartman was fastest in Ohlins Shocks Time Trials at his hometown track. The 2004 WoO LMS regular turned a lap of 16.191 seconds.
Heat winners were Hartman, Shaver, Dodd and Francis. The B-Mains were captured by Brady Smith of Solon Springs, Wis., and Jordan Bland of Campbellsville, Ky., who went on to earn the $250 Rookie of the Race bonus with his 18th-place finish in the Pepsi 40.
Devin Moran of Dresden, Ohio – the teenage son of dirt Late Model legend Donnie Moran and grandson of Muskingum County owner Ronnie Moran – qualified through a heat race in his first career WoO LMS start. He became the second 14-year-old in WoO LMS history to start an A-Main, joining 2009 Rookie of the Year contender Tyler Reddick of Corning, Calif.
The younger Moran went on a lead-lap finish of 16th in the A-Main – six spots better than his father, who qualified through a B-Main and finished one lap down in 22nd.
The WoO LMS remains in Ohio for two more days of action at K-C Raceway in Alma, which hosts the $20,000-to-win ‘Buckeye 100’ on Fri., Aug. 21 (time trials and heat races) and Sat., Aug. 22 (B-Mains and the 100-lap A-Main). The tour’s busy weekend of rescheduled events concludes on Sun., Aug. 23, with a visit to Eriez Speedway in Hammett, Pa.
For more information on the WoO LMS, visit www.worldofoutlaws.com.
Results of WoO Late Model Series ‘Pepsi 40’ (Finishing Position/Start/Driver/Laps Completed/Money Won):
1. (2) Chub Frank/40 $7,600
2. (6) Steve Francis/40 $3,600
3. (7) Tim Fuller/40 $2,500
4. (8) Bart Hartman/40 $1,750
5. (1) Steve Shaver/40 $1,550
6. (3) Eddie Carrier Jr./40 $1,800
7. (10) Darrell Lanigan/40 $1,800
8. (11) Josh Richards/40 $1,600
9. (4) Jeep VanWormer/40 $1,000
10. (5) Doug Dodd/40 $1,000
11. (13) Austin Hubbard/40 $850
12. (9) Tony Knowles/40 $800
13. (19) Brandon Kinzer/40 $750
14. (12) Gregg Satterlee/40 $740
15. (16) Clint Smith/40 $1,210
16. (14) Devin Moran/40 $680
17. (17) Brady Smith/40 $1,150
18. (18) Jordan Bland/40 $1,280
19. (23) Rick Eckert/40 $1,120
20. (22) Russell King/40 $1,110
21. (24) Shane Clanton/40 $1,100
22. (20) Donnie Moran/39 $600
23. (15) Doug Drown/39 $600
24. (21) Zach Dohm/39 $600
25. (25) Cody Parker/39 $600
* Earnings include Winners Circle program and cash contingency award bonuses
Time of Race: 11 Mins., 43.664 Secs.
Margin of Victory: 0.962 Secs.
Yellow Flags: None
Lap Leaders: Frank (1-40)
Provisional Starters: Eckert, Clanton (WoO); Parker (track)
Rookie of the Race: Bland ($250)
WoO LMS ‘Bonus Bucks’ Winner: Carrier ($500)
Integra Shocks Crew Chief of the Race: Brandon Bilskie (Frank)
Ohlins Shocks Time Trial Results (Position/No./Driver/Hometown/Best Lap):
1. 75-Bart Hartman/Zanesville, OH 16.191
2. 30-Steve Shaver/Vienna, WV 16.256
3. 1-Josh Richards/Shinnston, WV 16.292
4. 19-Steve Francis/Ashland, KY 16.316
5. 17T-Zach Dohm/Cross Lanes, WV 16.364
6. 29-Darrell Lanigan/Union, KY 16.375
7. 12d-Doug Dodd/Cambridge, OH 16.379
8. 22-Gregg Satterlee/Rochester Mills, PA 16.447
9. 1*-Chub Frank/Bear Lake, PA 16.449
10. 28-Eddie Carrier Jr./Salt Rock, WV 16.456
11. 12x-Doug Drown/Wooster, OH 16.464
12. 44-Clint Smith/Senoia, GA 16.466
13. 26-Tony Knowles/Tyrone, GA 16.471
14. 99d-Devin Moran/Dresden, OH 16.476
15. 12A-Rick Aukland/Zanesville, OH 16.495
16. 55-Jeep VanWormer/Pinconning, MI 16.504
17. 37-Jared Hawkins/Fairmont, WV 16.520
18. 11R-Tyler Reddick/Corning, CA 16.527
19. 11B-Kyle Bates/Kimbolton, OH 16.537
20. 43d-Don Shrigley/Pataskala, OH 16.543
21. 24-Rick Eckert/York, PA 16.544
22. 18K-Brandon Kinzer/Allen, KY 16.550
23. 19T-Tim Fuller/Watertown, NY 16.556
24. 12-Jordan Bland/Campbellsville, KY 16.563
25. 11A-Austin Hubbard/Seaford, DE 16.605
26. 12H-Weston Hutchinson/New Concord, OH 16.608
27. 11H-Rick Combs/Bethel, OH 16.623
28. 56-Russell King/Bristolville, OH 16.706
29. 25-Shane Clanton/Locust Grove, GA 16.733
30. 63-Cody Parker/Zanesville, OH 16.744
31. 33M-Bob Moskey/St. Clairsville, OH 16.762
32. 33b-Steve Bigley/Guysville, OH 16.783
33. 2-Brady Smith/Solon Springs, WI 16.803
34. 18c-Chris Carpenter/Parkersburg, WV 16.811
35. 3-Brent Robinson/Smithfield, VA 16.857
36. 59-Tracy Fritter/Zanesville, OH 16.865
37. 21W-Bryan Casey/Coshocton, OH 16.876
38. 83-Steve Prince/Newark, OH 17.119
39. 18-Dustin Hapka/Grand Forks, ND 17.219
40. 99-Donnie Moran/Dresden, OH 18.345
41. 88d-Eric Dixon/Newark, OH 19.956
Drivers entered on July 23 who did not return: Craig Vosbergen, Steve Casebolt, Mike Knight, Robbie Blair, Jason Montgomery, Jill George, Tim Dohm, Russ Frohnopfel, Rick ‘Boom’ Briggs
Heat No. 1 (10 laps – Top 4 Transfer): Hartman, Frank, Knowles, Hubbard, B. Smith, Z. Dohm, Casey, Dixon, Clanton, Eckert, Hawkins
Heat No. 2 (10 laps – Top 4 Transfer): Shaver, Carrier, Lanigan, Devin Moran, Kinzer, Parker, Hutchinson, Carpenter, Prince, Reddick
Heat No. 3 (10 laps – Top 4 Transfer): Dodd, Fuller, Richards, Drown, Robinson, Aukland, Bates, Combs, Moskey, Hapka
Heat No. 4 (10 laps – Top 4 Transfer): Francis, VanWormer, Satterlee, C. Smith, Bland, King, Donnie Moran, Bigley, Fritter, Shrigley
B-Main No. 1 (12 laps – Top 3 Transfer): B. Smith, Kinzer, Z. Dohm, Parker, Carpenter, Hutchinson, Eckert, Clanton, Casey, Reddick, Dixon, Prince (DNS) Hawkins
B-Main No. 2 (12 laps – Top 3 Transfer): Bland, Donnie Moran, King, Bigley, Moskey, Fritter, Hapka, Combs, Robinson (DNS) Aukland, Bates, Shrigley
World of Outlaws Late Model Series Contingency Award Winners:
* Arizona Sport Shirts ($50 product certificate to fifth-place finisher in B-Mains): Chris Carpenter, Bob Moskey
* Champ Pans ($50 product certificate to ‘Bonus Bucks’ winner w/decal): Eddie Carrier Jr.
* Crane Cams ($100 cash award to A-Main winner w/decal): Chub Frank
* Crane Cams ($100 cash award to 10th-place finisher in A-Main w/decal): Doug Dodd
* Crane Cams ($100 product certificate to Heat 3 winner w/decal): Doug Dodd
* Eibach Springs (one free spring to each B-Main winner w/decal): Brady Smith, Jordan Bland
* Fusion Energy ($50 cash award to Heat 2 winner w/decal): Steve Shaver
* Ohlins Shocks ($50 cash award to fast qualifier w/decal): Bart Hartman
* Quarter-Master ($100 product certificate to A-Main winner w/decal): Chub Frank
* Quarter-Master ($50 product certificate to fifth-place finisher in A-Main w/decal): Steve Shaver
* Quarter-Master ($25 product certificate to 15th-place finisher in A-Main w/decal): Clint Smith
* Super Clean ‘Start of the Race’ (one case of product): Chub Frank
* VP Racing Fuels ‘Nice Jugs Award’ (two free VP five-gallon containers to fastest qualifier who does not make the A-Main if decal is displayed): Rick Aukland
* Wrisco Aluminum (three sheets of aluminum to A-Main winner w/decal): Chub Frank
2009 World of Outlaws Late Model Series Point Standings as of Aug. 20 – 31 A-Mains completed (rank/driver/points/deficit to leader):
1. Steve Francis 4229 (-0)
2. Josh Richards 4223 (-6)
3. Darrell Lanigan 4191 (-38)
4. Tim Fuller 4089 (-140)
5. Rick Eckert 4063 (-166)
6. Shane Clanton 4021 (-208)
7. Chub Frank 3963 (-266)
8. Brady Smith 3958 (-271)
9. Clint Smith 3809 (-420)
10. Russell King 3363 (-866)
11. Jordan Bland 3359 (-870)
12. Brent Robinson 3161 (-1068)
13. Dustin Hapka 2935 (-1294)
14. Tyler Reddick 2726 (-1503)
15. Vic Coffey 2501 (-1728)
16. Austin Hubbard 2204 (-2025)
17. Matt Lux 1530 (-2699)
18. Shannon Babb 1470 (-2759)
19. Gregg Satterlee 1326 (-2903)
20. Dan Stone 1213 (-3016)
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 the 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]
The World of Outlaws Late Model Series is brought to fans across the country by many important sponsors and partners, including Arizona Sport Shirts (Official Apparel Company), Armor All (Official Car Care Products), Crane Cams (Official Valvetrain), Hoosier Racing Tires (Official Racing Tires), Fusion Energy Boost (Official Energy Boost), SuperClean (Official Cleaner-Degreaser) and VP Racing (Official Racing Fuel); in addition to contingency sponsors Champ Pans, Eibach Springs, Hoosier Tires, Integra Shocks, Jake’s Custom Golf Carts, Ohlins Shocks, Racing Electronics, Quarter Master and Wrisco Aluminum; Crane Cams Engine Builder’s Challenge participants Cornett Racing Engines, Custom Race Engines and Pro Power Racing Engines; and Chassis Builder Challenge participants Rocket Chassis and Team Zero by Bloomquist.