Birkhofer Wins Prestigious World 100 At Eldora Speedway For Second Time With Dominant Performance

Pockets $50,000 Top Prize 10 Years After Memorable First Victory In DIRTcar UMP-Sanctioned Event

By Kevin Kovac, WoO LMS P.R. Director

ROSSBURG, OH – Sept. 8, 2012 – Ten years later, Brian Birkhofer is back on top of the world.

A decade after capturing the prestigious DIRTcar UMP-sanctioned World 100 at Eldora Speedway for the first time, the superstar driver from Muscatine, Iowa, returned to the spotlight on Saturday night with a dominant march to victory in dirt Late Model racing’s biggest event.

Birkhofer’s triumph was worth $50,000, including a $5,000 bonus added to the first-place prize on Saturday by Mark Larson of Rock Rivers Arms in Colona, Ill.

“Who would’ve thought 10 years ago I won and here we are again,” said Birkhofer, who became the seventh driver to win the World 100 at least twice in the race’s 42-year history. “It feels good to get back in Victory Lane. I’m in awe that I have my name on this (World 100) shirt a second time and I have a new globe (trophy) to put right by my big TV tomorrow night when I watch the (Pittsburgh) Steelers.”

Birkhofer, 40, inherited the lead on lap 35 when Don O’Neal of Martinsville, Ind., retired with driveline problems and never looked back. He built an edge of over a straightaway before three late caution flags tightened the field and shrank his winning margin to a more modest 2.570 seconds over Scott Bloomquist of Mooresburg, Tenn. – the same driver who finished second to Birkhofer in the 2002 World 100.

Brad Neat of Dunnville, Ky., finished third, charging forward from the 23rd starting spot to tally a career-best performance in his seventh World 100 A-Main start. World of Outlaws Late Model Series points leader Darrell Lanigan of Union, Ky., quietly advanced from the 11th starting spot to place fourth and 16th-starter Jason Feger of Bloomington, Ill., used a late burst to register a career-best World 100 finish of fifth.

Saturday’s race was a stark contrast to Birkhofer’s unforgettable first World 100 win, which he secured on a slicker, slower track surface with a dramatic last-corner pass of Bloomquist that brought the packed house down.

Patience wasn’t a virtue this around for Birkhofer, who steered his MB Customs car from the eighth starting spot to fourth by lap 32 and vaulted up to second following the race’s first caution flag that same circuit. Billy Moyer of Batesville, Ark., was the cause of the caution when he slowed while running second place due to brake woes.

“How I used to approach this place is, you wait till 20 (laps) to go and then go for it,” said Birkhofer. “But now you hustle all the time. It’s all about racing hard. I’m not saying I’m comfortable doing it, but I guess we got it done tonight.

“The racetrack’s different than what it was 10 years ago. It’s definitely faster, and I’ve had to bring my level up a little bit different. When Earl (Baltes) had it back in the day, it would get about 19 seconds and it just don’t get that slow anymore – so ol’ Brian has to get up on the wheel more. I realized, if I’m gonna win here again, I gotta get aggressive.”

Birkhofer slipped into the lead without having to battle O’Neal, who simply fell off the pace and ceded the top spot on lap 35. The mechanical trouble ended what appeared to be a very formidable bid for victory by O’Neal, who started fifth and passed polesitter Chad Simpson of Mt. Vernon, Iowa, for the lead on lap 33.

In fact, Birkhofer even acknowledged that O’Neal, 48, would have been difficult to overtake.

“Don O’Neal might have had the best race car, but he broke,” said Birkhofer. “It might have been a gift, but I’ll take it any day.”

Birkhofer never went into conservation mode the remainder of the distance, however. He stayed on the gas so thoroughly that Bloomquist, who slipped by Simpson for second on a lap-53 restart, fell a straightaway behind the leader by lap 60 and only was drawn close by a caution flag on lap 91 and two more on lap 93.

Birkhofer was more than ready for a showdown with Bloomquist, whose presence brought back memories of Birkhofer’s ’02 World 100 success.

“I seen the caution come out and I seen ‘zero’ (Bloomquist) in second,” said Birkhofer. “I went down the backstretch (under caution) and I’m warming my tires up, and I actually looked up in turn three at the crowd and I thought, Man they’re getting ready to see something here. It’s been 10 years since me and this guy battled.

“I think it was great for the crowd. They got to see restarts and us battling it out. I don’t think you can have a better ending.”

Especially since Birkhofer maintained full control on the restarts, of course.

“I actually felt pretty good,” said Birkhofer, who car carried an engine built by ProPower’s Bill Schlieper. “We had a restart and I looked over at my guy on the frontstretch and he kind of gave me that sign like I was pulling (away) after a lap. But with Scott it only takes one mistake and he’s by you.

“I gave him what room I needed to give him (on the restarts), and I said, ‘Brian, sail that baby in there.’ I just didn’t want to give Scott that clear run into (turn) three to slide me back.”

Birkhofer’s triumph came in his 12th World 100 A-Main start since he broke into the field for the first time in 1998. He’s only finished outside the top 10 three times, but a 26th-place finish in 2010 and a DNQ last year had him feeling uncertain about his abilities at Eldora.

“I actually contemplated not coming back here for just a year or two till I could come back and compete better,” said Birkhofer, who joined Bloomquist, Moyer, Donnie Moran, Jimmy Owens, Jeff Purvis and Larry Moore as a repeat winner of the World 100. “We didn’t even make the race last year, so it feels good to get back on top here.

“Who’s to say who would’ve won this if Don O’Neal don’t break, but we’ll take it.”

Bloomquist settled for his unprecedented eighth runner-up finish in 23 World 100 A-Main starts. He has also three wins and a total of 15 top-five finishes in the event, which he has failed to qualify for just twice since 1988.

Neat, 32, was the unlikeliest of third-place finishers. He qualified 90th-fastest because he smacked the outside wall during his time-trial lap and had to run a Qualifying Feature (which he won), and then he rallied to transfer to the World 100 by finishing second in a B-Main.

By the midway point of the 100-lapper Neat sat just outside the top 10. He was up to seventh when a caution flag flew on lap 91, and two laps later he surged to third on a restart.

Neat, who had never finished better than 12th in the World 100, crossed the finish line just over a half-second behind Bloomquist.

Both Lanigan, 42, and Feger, 34, cracked the top five in the final laps. Lanigan sat sixth and Feger was 10th on lap 91.

Lanigan remained winless in 19 career World 100 starts, tying Freddy Smith for the most appearances without a victory. He appeared to be in prime position to snap the losing streak when the qualifying invert put him on the pole of the fifth heat race, setting him up to earn the outside pole for the A-Main with a victory.

But a turn-three run-in with a lapped car cost Lanigan the lead midway through his heat and he never recovered.

In a race slowed by six caution flags, contenders who joined Moyer and O’Neal in falling by the wayside included first-time World 100 starter Simpson, who led laps 3-32 and sat third until moments before a broken rearend eliminated him on lap 92; Jimmy Mars of Menomonie, Wis., who gave up fourth place to mechanical trouble on lap 92; and Chris Madden of Gray Court, S.C., who raced in the top 10 for most of the distance before retiring on lap 93.

Steve Francis of Ashland, Ky., finished sixth after running in the top five for most of the race’s second half. Brandon Sheppard of New Berlin, Ill., relinquished his 24th-place starting spot when he pitted on the race’s pace lap to bolt on a softer tire but charged through the pack to finish seventh in his second World 100 start, and Eddie Carrier Jr. of Salt Rock, W.Va., was the last driver on the lead lap at the finish in eighth. Fast-time provisional-starter Shannon Babb of Moweaqua, Ill., and World 100 rookie Michael Chilton of Salvisa, Ky., both finished one lap down in ninth and 10th, respectively.

Dale McDowell of Chickamauga, Ga., was fastest in Saturday afternoon’s time trials, turning a lap of 15.797 seconds to earn a $1,000 bonus from CM Graphics.

Time Trials were pushed to Saturday afternoon – and reduced to a single lap – after rain struck Eldora on Friday night 45 cars into the 123-car qualifying session. All results from Friday were wiped out and qualifying restarted from scratch on Saturday.

Winners of the 15-lap heats were Chilton, O’Neal, Moyer, Bloomquist, Tyler Reddick of DuQuoin, Ill., and Simpson. The 20-lap B-Mains were captured by Shane Clanton of Fayetteville, Ga., and Ryan Unzicker of El Paso, Ill., whose spin into the backstretch wall on lap 53 of the World 100 was the race’s hardest crash.

Reddick, 16, became the youngest driver ever to start the World 100. He started from the outside pole and led laps 1-2 before retiring on lap 41 and finishing 24th.

New to the World 100 program this year was a pair of five-lap ‘Scrambles’ for drivers failing to earn transfer positions in the B-Mains. Jacob Hawkins of Fairmont, W.Va., and Dennis Erb Jr. of Carpentersville, Ill., earned $1,000 for their victories.

Victors in Saturday afternoon’s trio of 20-lap Qualifying Features were Scott Creel of Laurel, Miss., Matt Miller of Whitehouse, Ohio, and Brad Neat.

For more information on DIRTcar Racing, visit www.dirtcar.com.

World 100 A-Main Results (Finish/Start/Driver/Lap Completed/Earnings):

1. (8) Brian Birkhofer/100 $50,000
2. (3) Scott Bloomquist/100 $15,000
3. (23) Brad Neat/100 $10,000
4. (11) Darrell Lanigan/100 $7,500
5. (16) Jason Feger/100 $6,000
6. (14) Steve Francis/100 $5,000
7. (24) Brandon Sheppard/100 $4,000
8. (10) Eddie Carrier Jr./100 $3,500
9. (20) Shannon Babb/99 $3,000
10. (6) Michael Chilton/99 $2,500
11. (7) Brian Shirley/99 $2,250
12. (9) J.R. Hotovy/98 $2,000
13. (28) Jerry Bowersock/97 $1,900
14. (17) Chris Madden/93 $1,800
15. (12) Jimmy Mars/92 $1,750
16. (25) Andrew Reaume/92 $1,725
17. (1) Chad Simpson/91 $1,700
18. (27) Greg Johnson/88 $1,675
19. (13) Billy Moyer Jr./64 $1,650
20. (30) Wayne Chinn/60 $1,645
21. (22) Ryan Unzicker/52 $1,640
22. (4) Billy Moyer/47 $1,635
23. (19) Dale McDowell/46 $1,630
24. (2) Tyler Reddick/41 $1,625
25. (15) Jeep VanWormer/40 $1,620
26. (18) Rick Eckert/39 $1,615
27. (5) Don O’Neal/34 $1,610
28. (29) Dan Schlieper/31 $1,605
29. (26) Bub McCool/21 $1,600
30. (21) Shane Clanton/17 $1,600

Heat 1 Finish (15 laps – Top 3 Transfer to A-Main/4-11 to B-Main): 1. Michael Chilton, 2. Brian Shirley, 3. Billy Moyer Jr., 4. Frankie Heckenast Jr., 5. Andrew Reaume, 6. Tim Rivers, 7. Shannon Thornsberry, 8. Greg Johnson, 9. Scott Schmitt, 10. Rich Neiser, 11. Dale McDowell, 12. Brian Rickman, 13. John Mason, 14. Chub Frank, 15. Kyle Logue, 16. Scott Creel, 17. Ken Hahn, 18. Gary Major, 19. Anthony Adams

Heat 2 Finish (15 laps – Top 3 Transfer to A-Main/4-11 to B-Main): 1. Don O’Neal, 2. Brian Birkhofer, 3. Steve Francis, 4. Matt Miller, 5. Duane Chamberlain, 6. Dan Schlieper, 7. Dillon Wood, 8. Dustin Linville, 9. Shane Cottle, 10. Jacob Hawkins, 11. Dustin Neat, 12. Dusty Moore, 13. Kevin Mack, 14. Steve Casebolt, 15. Chad Smith, 16. Terry Wolfenbarger, 17. Shane Allen, 18. Chris Ross

Heat 3 Finish (15 laps – Top 3 Transfer to A-Main/4-11 to B-Main): 1. Billy Moyer, 2. J.R. Hotovy, 3. Jeep VanWormer, 4. R.J. Conley, 5. Jay Johnson, 6. Brian Ruhlman, 7. Shane Clanton, 8. Rick Rickman, 9. Brad Neat, 10. Terry Casey, 11. Mike Spatola, 12. Vic Hill, 13. Michael Asberry, 14. Danny Hatcher, 15. Jarred Breeding, 16. Tom Ramey, 17. D.J. Wells, 18. Jeff Babcock, 19. Shannon Babb

Heat 4 Finish (15 laps – Top 3 Transfer to A-Main/4-11 to B-Main): 1. Scott Bloomquist, 2. Eddie Carrier Jr., 3. Jason Feger, 4. Ryan Unzicker, 5. Jerry Bowersock, 6. Jimmy Owens, 7. Jason Montgomery, 8. Morgan Bagley, 9. Jon Hodgkiss, 10. Justin Coulter, 11. Steve Lance Jr., 12. Justin Chance, 13. Jackie Boggs, 14. Don Gordon, 15. Earl Pearson Jr., 16. Stephen Breeding, 17. Ryan VanderVeen, 18. Adam Hutson

Heat 5 Finish (15 laps – Top 3 Transfer to A-Main/4-11 to B-Main): 1. Tyler Reddick, 2. Darrell Lanigan, 3. Chris Madden, 4. Brandon Sheppard, 5. Jon Henry, 6. Dennis Erb Jr., 7. Chad Ruhlman, 8. Wayne Chinn, 9. Jonathan Davenport, 10. Jacob Grizzle, 11. Robby Hensley, 12. Josh McGuire, 13. Clint Smith, 14. Austin Hubbard, 15. Klint Byars, 16. Nick Latham, 17. Tommy Carlton, 18. Jim Gingery, 19. Shawn Martin, 20. Brandon Fouts

Heat 6 Finish (15 laps – Top 3 Transfer to A-Main/4-11 to B-Main): 1. Chad Simpson, 2. Jimmy Mars, 3. Rick Eckert, 4. Bub McCool, 5. Scott James, 6. Terry Phillips, 7. Ray Cook, 8. Curtis Roberts, 9. John Blankenship, 10. Donnie Moran, 11. Jerry Rice, 12. Riley Hickman, 13. Kent Robinson, 14. Tim Lance, 15. Larry Greer, 16. Russ Frohnapfel, 17. John Mayes Jr.

B-Main 1 Finish (20 laps – Top 5 Transfer to A-Main): 1. Shane Clanton, 2. Brad Neat, 3. Andrew Reaume, 4. Greg Johnson, 5. Dan Schlieper, 6. Jacob Hawkins, 7. Dustin Linville, 8. Dillon Wood, 9. Brian Ruhlman, 10. Shannon Thornsberry, 11. Dusty Moore, 12. Tim Rivers, 13. Mike Spatola, 14. Brian Rickman, 15. Rich Neiser, 16. Rick Rickman, 17. R.J. Conley, 18. Scott Schmitt, 19. Duane Chamberlain, 20. Frankie Heckenast Jr., 21. Shane Cottle

B-Main Scramble 1 Finish (5 laps): 1. Jacob Hawkins, 2. Brian Ruhlman, 3. Dillon Wood, 4. Dusty Moore, 5. Mike Spatola, 6. Tim Rivers, 7. Rick Rickman, 8. Brian Rickman, 9. Rich Neiser, 10. Dustin Linville, 11. Shannon Thornsberry

B-Main 2 Finish (20 laps – Top 5 Transfer to A-Main): 1. Ryan Unzicker, 2. Brandon Sheppard, 3. Bub McCool, 4. Jerry Bowersock, 5. Wayne Chinn, 6. Ray Cook, 7. Dennis Erb Jr., 8. Morgan Bagley, 9. Chad Ruhlman, 10. Jimmy Owens, 11. John Blankenship, 12. Jacob Grizzle, 13. Jason Montgomery, 14. Donnie Moran, 15. Curtis Roberts, 16. Steve Lance Jr., 17. Jon Hodgkiss, 18. Justin Coulter, 19. Robby Hensley, 20. Jerry Rice, 21. Scott James, 22. Jon Henry, 23. Terry Phillips, 24. Jonathan Davenport

B-Main Scramble 2 Finish (5 laps): 1. Dennis Erb Jr., 2. Chad Ruhlman, 3. Jimmy Owens, 4. Morgan Bagley, 5. John Blankenship, 6. Jason Montgomery, 7. Jacob Grizzle, 8. Donnie Moran, 9. Steve Lance Jr., 10. Curtis Roberts, 11. Jon Hodgkiss, 12. Justin Coulter, 13. Robby Hensley, 14. Ray Cook

Results of World 100 Time Trials (Rank/Car No./Driver/Hometown/Lap Time): 1. 17M-Dale McDowell/Chickamauga, GA 15.797; 2. 71-Don O’Neal/Martinsville, IN 15.858; 3. 18-Shannon Babb/Moweaqua, IL 15.882; 4. 4b-Jackie Boggs/Grayson, KY 15.899; 5. 44M-Chris Madden/Gray Court, SC 15.912; 6. 24-Rick Eckert/York, PA 15.926; 7. 3s-Brian Shirley/Chatham, IL 15.960; 8. 15b-Brian Birkhofer/Muscatine, IA 16.010; 9. 21-Billy Moyer/Batesville, AR 16.056; 10. 25-Jason Feger/Bloomington, IL 16.083; 11. 41M-Josh McGuire/Grayson, KY 16.099; 12. 28M-Jimmy Mars/Menomonie, WI 16.115; 13. 72-John Mason/Millersburg, OH 16.116; 14. C9-Steve Casebolt/Richmond, IN 16.120; 15. 18W-D.J. Wells/Wooton, KY 16.142; 16. 23V-Ryan VanderVeen/Six Lakes, MI 16.157; 17. 15H-Jon Henry/Ada, OH 16.174; 18. 9R-Curtis Roberts/Coleman, MI 16.199; 19. 97-Michael Chilton/Salvisa, KY 16.225; 20. 15-Steve Francis/Ashland, KY 16.236

21. 93-Jay Johnson/W. Burlington, IA 16.286; 22. 0-Scott Bloomquist/Mooresburg, TN 16.303; 23. 29-Darrell Lanigan/Union, KY 16.310; 24. 25s-Chad Simpson/Mt. Vernon, IA 16.322; 25. 1*-Chub Frank/Bear Lake, PA 16.345; 26. 20c-Duane Chamberlain/Richmond, IN 16.355; 27. 13-J.R. Hotovy/Hartford, MI 16.356; 28. 44P-Earl Pearson Jr./Jacksonville, FL 16.371; 29. 1s-Brandon Sheppard/New Berlin, IL 16.382; 30. 53-Ray Cook/Brasstown, NC 16.397; 31. 99Jr.-Frankie Heckenast Jr./Orland Park, IL 16.414; 32. D8-Dustin Linville/Lancaster, KY 16.452; 33. 1V-Vic Hill/Morristown, TN 16.457; 34. 28c-Eddie Carrier Jr./Salt Rock, WV 16.464; 35. 11-Tyler Reddick/DuQuoin, IL 16.484; 36. 75P-Terry Phillips/Springfield, MO 16.502; 37. 21Jr-Billy Moyer Jr./Batesville, AR 16.532; 38. 19-Chad Smith/Miamisburg, OH 16.542; 39. 71c-R.J. Conley/Wheelersburg, OH 16.543; 40. 20JR/Jerry Bowersock/Wapakoneta, OH 16.549

41. 1WC-Wayne Chinn/Bradford, OH 16.551; 42. 57J-Bub McCool/Vicksburg, MS 16.552; 43. 24H-Greg Johnson/Bedford, IN 16.568; 44. 1W-Dillon Wood/New Smyrna Beach, FL 16.591; 45. 1J-Jeff Babcock/Wayne, OH 16.597; 46. 24U-Ryan Unzicker/El Paso, IL 16.620; 47. 99G-Jacob Grizzle/Blairsville, GA 16.642; 48. 48-Tim Lance/Brimfield, IL 16.643; 49. 17-Shannon Thornsberry/Martin, KY 16.652; 50. 23s-Dan Schlieper/Sullivan, WI 16.668; 51. 86-Rick Rickman/Columbus, MS 16.669; 52. 14M-Morgan Bagley/Longview, TX 16.683; 53. 5K-Klint Byars/Calhoun City, MS 16.689; 54. 23-John Blankenship/Williamson, WV 16.694; 55. 10s-Scott Schmitt/Tonica, IL 16.701; 56. 25N-Dustin Neat/Dunnville, KY 16.703; 57. 42-Terry Casey/New London, WI 16.738; 58. 2-Justin Chance/Lexington, OH 16.776; 59. 44s-Clint Smith/Senoia, GA 16.781; 60. 1B-Jerry Rice/Verona, KY 16.788

61. 88-Andrew Reaume/Blenheim, ONT 16.799; 62. 18R-Chris Ross/Charing Cross, ONT 16.812; 63. 55-Jeep VanWormer/Pinconning, MI 16.825; 64. 20-Jimmy Owens/Newport, TN 16.879; 65. 28-Dennis Erb Jr./Carpentersville, IL 16.893; 66. 99-Donnie Moran/Dresden, OH 16.898. 67. 90-Brian Rickman/Columbus, MS 16.943; 68; 31s-Shane Cottle/Kokomo, IN 16.991; 69. 89-Mike Spatola/Manhattan, IL 17.027; 70. 5BX-Stephen Breeding/Isom, KY 17.055; 71. 21H-Robby Hensley/Walton, KY 17.104; 72. 7R-Kent Robinson/Bloomington, IN 17.131; 73. 87-Rich Neiser/Fruitport, MI 17.133; 74. 75-Dusty Moore/Swanton, OH 17.140; 75. 49-Brian Ruhlman/Clarklake, MI 17.159; 76. 21M-Jason Montgomery/Jackson, OH 17.189; 77. 25H-Austin Hubbard/Seaford, DE 17.247; 78. R1-Riley Hickman/Ooltewah, TN 17.254; 79. 46-Tim Rivers/Salem, IN 17.290; 80. 20H-Jacob Hawkins/Fairmont, WV 17.337

81. 25-Shane Clanton/Fayetteville, GA 17.345; 82. 69-Jon Hodgkiss/Kennedy Twp., PA 17.386; 83. 48R-Chad Ruhlman/Bemus Point, NY 17.457; 84. 81-Scott James/Lawrenceburg, IN 17.496; 85. 75A-Anthony Adams/Pinetop, KY 17.545; 86. 26-Bill Lewis/Warren, IN 17.659; 87. 34-Ky Harper/Holland, OH 17.789; 88. 555-Justin Coulter/Learnington, ONT 17.821; 89. 81F-Brandon Fouts/Kite, KY 17.825; 90. 41-Brad Neat/Dunnville, KY 17.855; 91. 92-Brandon Perkins 17.872; 92. 3-Matt Miller/Whitehouse, OH 17.887; 93. 6-Danny Hatcher/Campbellsville, KY 17.920; 94. 11R-James Rice/Verona, KY 17.922; 95. 14-Terry Wolfenbarger/Clinton, TN 17.279; 96. 5b-Mike Marlar/Winfield, TN 18.297; 97. 25L-Steve Lance Jr./Cuba, IL 18.369; 98. 15d-Jonathan Davenport/Blairsville, GA 18.422; 99. 25x-Jarred Breeding/Isom, KY 18.476; 100. 27-Ken Hahn/Gibsonburg, OH 18.660

101. 31-Nick Latham/Winchester, OH 18.672; 102. 69M-John Mayes Jr./Clyde, OH 18.686; 103. 31c-Scott Creel/Laurel, MS 18.740; 104. 16-Shane Allen/Washington, IL 18.855; 105. 45-Russ Frohnapfel/Columbus, OH 18.870; 106. 33-Don Gordon/Chatham, ONT 19.288; 107. 17c-Tommy Carlton/Lawrenceburg, KY 19.310; 108. 360-Michael Asberry/Crossville, TN 19.576; 109. 86c-Scott Clifford/New Lothrop, MI 19.691; 110. 03-Jim Gingery/Bucyrus, OH 19.909; 111. 11x-Tom Ramey/New Paris, OH 20.203; 112. 25b-Gary Major/Monroe, OH 20.424; 113. 27M-Shawn Martin/Maysville, KY 21.697; 114. 9G-Larry Greer/Bowling Green, KY N/T; 115. 11A-Adam Hutson/Cincinnati, OH N/T; 116. 4c-Ernie Cordier/Brodhead, KY N/T; 117. 11W-Jeff Watson/Campbellsville, KY N/T; 118. 21K-Kyle Logue/Cisco, IL N/T; 119. 21R-Kevin Mack/Defiance, OH N/T; 120. 1N-Casey Noonan/Toledo, OH N/T; 121. 1-Josh Richards/Shinnston, WV N/T; 122. 5-Jared Landers/Batesville, AR N/T; 123. 10-Leon Henderson/Laurel, MS N/T

Qualifying Feature No. 1 Finish (20 laps): 1. Scott Creel, 2. Justin Coulter, 3. Kyle Logue, 4. Steve Lance Jr., 5. Ken Hahn, 6. Don Gordon, 7. Gary Major, 8. Brandon Perkins, 9. James Rice, 10. Scott Clifford, 11. Anthony Adams (DNS) Adam Hutson, Josh Richards

Qualifying Feature No. 2 Finish (20 laps): 1. Matt Miller, 2. Jonathan Davenport, 3. Kevin Mack, 4. Nick Latham, 5. Terry Wolfenbarger, 6. Tommy Carlton, 7. Shane Allen, 8. Jim Gingery, 9. Jared Landers, 10. Shawn Martin, 11. Bill Lewis (DNS) Brandon Fouts, Ernie Cordier

Qualifying Feature No. 3 Finish (20 laps): 1. Brad Neat, 2. Larry Greer, 3. Jarred Breeding, 4. John Mayes Jr., 5. Danny Hatcher, 6. Ky Harper, 7. Russ Frohnapfel, 8. Michael Asberry, 9. Tom Ramey (DNS) Casey Noonan, Jeff Watson, Mike Marlar

090812 EldoraLive

LIVE UPDATES 9/8: 42nd Annual DIRTcar-Sanctioned World 100 At Eldora Speedway

ROSSBURG, OH – Sept. 8, 2012 – The most prestigious event in dirt Late Model racing — the World 100 at Eldora Speedway — is underway. Rain washed out last night’s scheduled qualifying session, so time trials were reset for this afternoon and heats, B-Mains and the 42nd annual, $45,000-to-win 100-lapper will run as scheduled this evening.

For live updates of today’s action at Eldora — including special emphasis on the seven World of Outlaws Late Model Series regulars in competition (Darrell Lanigan, Rick Eckert, Shane Clanton, Chub Frank, Clint Smith, Bub McCool and Kent Robinson) — click the ‘Full Story’ link below. Be sure to refresh your browser periodically to see the latest information.

Yellow fever

11:58 p.m. – Brian Birkhofer pulls away over final seven laps to win his second World 100, beating Bloomquist to finish line by three-quarters of a straightaway.

Brad Neat made a great rally after running a Qualifying Feature today, finishing third after bursting into the top five following the lap-93 restart. Darrell Lanigan settled for fourth and Jason Feger surged forward late to place fifth.

World 100 Finish: 1. Brian Birkhofer, 2. Scott Bloomquist, 3. Brad Neat, 4. Darrell Lanigan, 5. Jason Feger, 6. Steve Francis, 7. Brandon Sheppard, 8. Eddie Carrier Jr., 9. Shannon Babb, 10. Michael Chilton, 11. Brian Shirley, 12. J.R. Hotovy, 13. Jerry Bowersock, 14. Chris Madden, 15. Jimmy Mars, 16. Andrew Reaume, 17. Chad Simpson, 18. Greg Johnson, 19. Billy Moyer Jr., 20. Wayne Chinn, 21. Ryan Unzicker, 22. Billy Moyer, 23. Dale McDowell, 24. Tyler Reddick, 25. Jeep VanWormer, 26. Rick Eckert, 27. Don O’Neal, 28. Dan Schlieper, 29. Bub McCool, 30. Shane Clanton

Last shot for Bloomer?

11:47 p.m. – A caution flag flies on lap 91 for Greg Johnson, wiping out Birkhofer’s straightaway lead. Bloomquist is ready for a final bid, with Simpson third, Mars fourth and Francis fifth.

Dominant Birky

11:40 p.m. – Birkhofer is just running away with the World 100, leading Bloomquist by over a straightaway at lap 80. Simpson still holds third, followed by Mars, Francis, Lanigan, Brad Neat, Feger, Sheppard, Chris Madden and Carrier.

Unzicker wrecks

11:32 p.m. – Ryan Unzicker spun into the backstretch wall on lap 53, bringing out the race’s third caution flag.

Birkhofer had built a near straightaway lead over fellow Iowan Chad Simpson before the caution. Simpson, meanwhile, continued running one of the best races of his career, maintaining a solid edge over third-place Bloomquist. Francis holds fourth and Mars is fifth.

Rounding out the top 10 is Carrier, Lanigan, Sheppard, Feger and Shirley.

Big turn of events

11:25 p.m. – The second caution flag is out on lap 41 for Rick Eckert, who stopped on the inside of the backstretch, but the big story is what happened a few circuits ago.

Don O’Neal surged into the lead on a lap-32 restart, passing Chad Simpson to assume command as lap 33 was scored. But one circuit later O’Neal suddenly slowed and drove right into the pit area under green, handing the top spot to Brian Birkhofer on lap 35.

Now Birkhofer, the 2002 World 100 winner, leads Chad Simpson, Scott Bloomquist, Steve Francis, Jimmy Mars, Brian Shirley, Eddie Carrier Jr., Darrell Lanigan, Jason Feger and Shannon Babb.

Trouble for Moyer

11:20 p.m. – Second-place Billy Moyer slowed on lap 32, relinquishing second and pitting. He hasn’t yet returned as the field prepares to restart.

Chad Simpson leads Don O’Neal, Scott Bloomquist, Brian Birkhofer, Steve Francis, Brian Shirley, Darrell Lanigan, Eddie Carrier Jr., Jimmy Mars and Tyler Reddick.

Impressive Iowan

11:15 p.m. – With no caution flags slowing the pace so far, Chad Simpson continues to show the way, turning heads in his first-ever World 100 A-Main start. At lap 30 he leads Billy Moyer by about a quarter-straightaway.

Don O’Neal is third, followed by Scott Bloomquist, Brian Birkhofer, Steve Francis, Brian Shirley, Darrell Lanigan, Eddie Carrier Jr. and Jimmy Mars.

Underway

11:10 p.m. – Ten laps into the World 100, Chad Simpson leads Billy Moyer, Tyler Reddick, Scott Bloomquist and Don O’Neal. Simpson took the lead from Reddick on lap three.

All lined up

10:45 p.m. – The 30 cars ready to start the World 100 are now in a single-file line on the homestretch awaiting their drivers, who are walking across the stage one-by-one as they are introduced to the enormous crowd.

Field notables

10:25 p.m. – There are seven first-time starters in tonight’s World 100, led by 16-year-old Tyler Reddick, who will start from the outside pole as he becomes the youngest starter in the history of the prestigious event.

Other first-timers include Chad Simpson (who will start from the pole alongside Reddick — with dirt Late Model legends Scott Bloomquist and Billy Moyer starting side-by-side directly behind!), Michael Chilton, J.R. Hotovy, Billy Moyer Jr., Ryan Unzicker and Andrew Reaume.

Also notable: Reaume becomes the first Canadian driver to take the green flag in the World 100, and Unzicker is…the first driver to start the World 100 with a last name starting with the letter ‘u.’

Final preparations

10:15 p.m. – The 30 teams that will participate in the World 100 are making their critical set-up and tire-compound choices in the pit area. The five-minute horn for cars to report to the staging area has been sounded and driver introductions will soon begin.

World 100 Starting Lineup:

Row 1: Chad Simpson/Tyler Reddick
Row 2: Scott Bloomquist/Billy Moyer
Row 3: Don O’Neal/Michael Chilton
Row 4: Brian Shirley/Brian Birkhofer
Row 5: J.R. Hotovy/Eddie Carrier Jr.
Row 6: Darrell Lanigan/Jimmy Mars
Row 7: Billy Moyer Jr./Steve Francis
Row 8: Jeep VanWormer/Jason Feger
Row 9: Chris Madden/Rick Eckert
Row 10: Dale McDowell/Shannon Babb
Row 11: Shane Clanton/Ryan Unzicker
Row 12: Brad Neat/Brandon Sheppard
Row 13: Andrew Reaume/Bub McCool
Row 14: Greg Johnson/Jerry Bowersock
Row 15: Dan Schlieper/Wayne Chinn

Unzicker cruises

9:55 p.m. – Defending DIRTcar UMP national champion Ryan Unzicker cruised to victory in the second 20-lap B-Main, crossing the finish line ahead of fellow transfers Brandon Sheppard, Bub McCool, Jerry Bowersock and Wayne Chinn.

Scott James suffered a crushing defeat, slowing with mechanical trouble on lap nine while running second.

Defending World 100 champion Jimmy Owens fell short of this year’s starting field after another rough race. He was in contention for a transfer spot when he got caught up behind Jon Henry, whose car didn’t fire on a lap-seven restart, and was forced pitside with a flat tire. The Tennessee driver returned but finished 10th.

Owens saw his streak of eight consecutive World 100 starts come to an end. He had finished the race in the top five the last five years in a row.

John Blankenship, who finished second in June’s Dream, was swept up in the multi-car homestretch tangle that occurred when Henry didn’t get up to speed on the lap-seven restart. He continued despite nosepiece damage but didn’t qualify.

Dennis Erb Jr. missed the World 100 by two spots but came back to win the five-lap ‘Scramble,’ earning $1,000 to salvage a weekend that began with a blown motor on Friday.

B-Main 2 Finish (20 laps – Top 5 Transfer to A-Main): 1. Ryan Unzicker, 2. Brandon Sheppard, 3. Bub McCool, 4. Jerry Bowersock, 5. Wayne Chinn, 6. Ray Cook, 7. Dennis Erb Jr., 8. Morgan Bagley, 9. Chad Ruhlman, 10. Jimmy Owens, 11. John Blankenship, 12. Jacob Grizzle, 13. Jason Montgomery, 14. Donnie Moran, 15. Curtis Roberts, 16. Steve Lance Jr., 17. Jon Hodgkiss, 18. Justin Coulter, 19. Robby Hensley, 20. Jerry Rice, 21. Scott James, 22. Jon Henry, 23. Terry Phillips, 24. Jonathan Davenport

B-Main Scramble 2 Finish (5 laps): 1. Dennis Erb Jr., 2. Chad Ruhlman, 3. Jimmy Owens, 4. Morgan Bagley, 5. John Blankenship, 6. Jason Montgomery, 7. Jacob Grizzle, 8. Donnie Moran, 9. Steve Lance Jr., 10. Curtis Roberts, 11. Jon Hodgkiss, 12. Justin Coulter, 13. Robby Hensley, 14. Ray Cook

Clanton coming back

9:15 p.m. – Shane Clanton still has a long way to go, but at least he has a chance to duplicate his victory in June’s Dream after winning the first 20-lap B-Main to crack the World 100 starting lineup. His hopes seemed dim after he hit the wall during time trials, saddling him with a 14th-place start in his heat.

Clanton, who started seventh, followed R.J. Conley past race-long pacesetter Andrew Reaume on lap 15 and moments later inherited the lead when Conley slowed and pulled into the pit area. The Georgian then beat Brad Neat to the finish line.

Also transferring to the World 100 was Reaume, Greg Johnson and 2003 race winner Dan Schlieper, who is making his first dirt Late Model start of the season.

Matt Miller’s bid to make the World 100 field after winning a Qualifying Feature ended moments after the green flag flew. The outside polesitter fell off the face exiting turn two and was hit in the rearend at least once while trying to limp to the pit area on the inside of the track.

West Virginia’s Jacob Hawkins, meanwhile, won the 5-lap ‘Scramble’ for drivers who failed to qualify in the first B-Main. He pocketed $1,000 for his efforts.

B-Main 1 Finish (20 laps – Top 5 Transfer to A-Main): 1. Shane Clanton, 2. Brad Neat, 3. Andrew Reaume, 4. Greg Johnson, 5. Dan Schlieper, 6. Jacob Hawkins, 7. Dustin Linville, 8. Dillon Wood, 9. Brian Ruhlman, 10. Shannon Thornsberry, 11. Dusty Moore, 12. Tim Rivers, 13. Mike Spatola, 14. Brian Rickman, 15. Rich Neiser, 16. Rick Rickman, 17. R.J. Conley, 18. Scott Schmitt, 19. Duane Chamberlain, 20. Frankie Heckenast Jr., 21. Shane Cottle

B-Main Scramble 1 Finish (5 laps): 1. Jacob Hawkins, 2. Brian Ruhlman, 3. Dillon Wood, 4. Dusty Moore, 5. Mike Spatola, 6. Tim Rivers, 7. Rick Rickman, 8. Brian Rickman, 9. Rich Neiser, 10. Dustin Linville, 11. Shannon Thornsberry

Last-chance races

8:50 p.m. – Tonight’s pair of 20-lap B-Mains are beginning to line up on pit road. The top-five finishers in each event will move on to the World 100; the remainder of the field will reassemble after the checkered flag and run a five-lap ‘scramble’ for a $1,000 top prize.

B-Main No. 1 Lineup:

Row 1: Frankie Heckenast Jr./Matt Miller
Row 2: R.J. Conley/Andrew Reaume
Row 3: Duane Chamberlain/Jay Johnson
Row 4: Tim Rivers/Dan Schlieper
Row 5: Brian Ruhlman/Shannon Thornsberry
Row 6: Dillon Wood/Shane Clanton
Row 7: Greg Johnson/Dustin Linville
Row 8: Rick Rickman/Scott Schmitt
Row 9: Shane Cottle/Brad Neat
Row 10: Rich Neiser/Jacob Hawkins
Row 11: Terry Casey/Dale McDowell
Row 12: Dustin Neat/Mike Spatola

 

B-Main No. 2 Lineup:

 

Row 1: Ryan Unzicker/Brandon Sheppard
Row 2: Bub McCool/Jerry Bowersock
Row 3: Jon Henry/Scott James
Row 4: Jimmy Owens/Dennis Erb Jr.
Row 5: Terry Phillips/Jason Montgomery
Row 6: Chad Ruhlman/Ray Cook
Row 7: Morgan Bagley/Wayne Chinn
Row 8: Curtis Roberts/Jon Hodgkiss
Row 9: Jonathan Davenport/John Blankenship
Row 10: Justin Coulter/Jacob Grizzle
Row 11: Donnie Moran/Steve Lance Jr.
Row 12: Robby Hensley/Jerry Rice

Simpson shines

8:40 p.m. – Iowa’s Chad Simpson was flawless in the sixth heat, leading from start-to-finish to crack the World 100 starting lineup for the first time in his career. He beat a pair of veterans — and former Dream victors — in Jimmy Mars and Rick Eckert.

WoO LMS rookie Bub McCool placed fourth in Chad Stapleton’s machine, while his fellow first-year Outlaw traveler, Kent Robinson, finished 13th and saw his night come to an end.

Heat 6 Finish (15 laps – Top 3 Transfer to A-Main/4-11 to B-Main): 1. Chad Simpson, 2. Jimmy Mars, 3. Rick Eckert, 4. Bub McCool, 5. Scott James, 6. Terry Phillips, 7. Ray Cook, 8. Curtis Roberts, 9. John Blankenship, 10. Donnie Moran, 11. Jerry Rice, 12. Riley Hickman, 13. Kent Robinson, 14. Tim Lance, 15. Larry Greer, 16. Russ Frohnapfel, 17. John Mayes Jr.

Teenager steals the checkered flag

8:30 p.m. – The fifth heat appeared to have Darrell Lanigan’s name written all over it – until a lapped car entered the picture and shook things up dramatically.

Lanigan was leading the prelim on lap eight when he had to get on the brakes hard in turn three to avoid the slower car driven by Shawn Martin. When Lanigan lost momentum, teenager Tyler Reddick and Ohioan Jon Henry dived low and surged by him.

Reddick, 16, then held on to capture the heat by several car lengths over Lanigan – and in the process become the youngest driver in history to qualify for the World 100.

Lanigan settled for a disappointing runner-up finish and Chris Madden placed third. Henry was second on a lap-10 restart but tumbled to fifth.

WoO LMS regular Clint Smith was never a factor, finishing 13th and failing to transfer to a B-Main.

Heat 5 Finish (15 laps – Top 3 Transfer to A-Main/4-11 to B-Main): 1. Tyler Reddick, 2. Darrell Lanigan, 3. Chris Madden, 4. Brandon Sheppard, 5. Jon Henry, 6. Dennis Erb Jr., 7. Chad Ruhlman, 8. Wayne Chinn, 9. Jonathan Davenport, 10. Jacob Grizzle, 11. Robby Hensley, 12. Josh McGuire, 13. Clint Smith, 14. Austin Hubbard, 15. Klint Byars, 16. Nick Latham, 17. Tommy Carlton, 18. Jim Gingery, 19. Shawn Martin, 20. Brandon Fouts

Bloomer shows way

8:15 p.m. – Scott Bloomquist turned back a late-race challenge from Jackie Boggs and survived a restart with two laps remaining to win the fourth heat. Eddie Carrier Jr., who finished second in last year’s World 100, hustled forward from the sixth starting spot to place second and Jason Feger slipped by Boggs following the final restart to take the last transfer spot.

Boggs saw his World 100 hopes come to a crushing end. After nearly overtaking Bloomquist for the lead in lapped traffic on lap 12, he was third when a caution flag flew on lap 13. When the race restarted he failed to make a pass on Carrier for second stick and then slapped the wall between turns three and four immediately after he was passed by Feger – a fence-banger that caused Boggs to slow and finish out of even a B-Main transfer spot.

Defending World 100 champion Jimmy Owens ran into trouble on lap 13 when a flat right-front tire forced him to pit. He had not managed to climb into a transfer spot after starting 11th, but he made a furious rally over the final two circuits to finish sixth and put himself in contention to qualify through a B-Main.

Heat 4 Finish (15 laps – Top 3 Transfer to A-Main/4-11 to B-Main): 1. Scott Bloomquist, 2. Eddie Carrier Jr., 3. Jason Feger, 4. Ryan Unzicker, 5. Jerry Bowersock, 6. Jimmy Owens, 7. Jason Montgomery, 8. Morgan Bagley, 9. Jon Hodgkiss, 10. Justin Coulter, 11. Steve Lance Jr., 12. Justin Chance, 13. Jackie Boggs, 14. Don Gordon, 15. Earl Pearson Jr., 16. Stephen Breeding, 17. Ryan VanderVeen, 18. Adam Hutson

So smooth

7:55 p.m. – Billy Moyer dominated the third heat, blasting into the lead from the third starting spot at the initial green and never looking back. He crossed the finish line well ahead of Michigan’s J.R. Hotovy, who will start the World 100 for the first time, and Jeep VanWormer, who made an impressive charge forward from the 11th starting spot to transfer.

With Billy Moyer Jr. making the World 100 cut through the first heat, the Moyers will become the second father-and-son to start a World 100. Johnny Johnson and his son Jay, who finished fifth in Heat 3, started the 1990 and ’93 World 100s.

Dream winner Shane Clanton was able to climb from the 14th starting spot to a seventh-place finish.

Shannon Babb was shuffled backward on the opening lap and never recovered. The day’s third-fastest qualifier opted to pull off and take his fast-time provisional, which he was assured after second-fastest time-trialer Don O’Neal won Heat 2.

Heat 3 Finish (15 laps – Top 3 Transfer to A-Main/4-11 to B-Main): 1. Billy Moyer, 2. J.R. Hotovy, 3. Jeep VanWormer, 4. R.J. Conley, 5. Jay Johnson, 6. Brian Ruhlman, 7. Shane Clanton, 8. Rick Rickman, 9. Brad Neat, 10. Terry Casey, 11. Mike Spatola, 12. Vic Hill, 13. Michael Asberry, 14. Danny Hatcher, 15. Jarred Breeding, 16. Tom Ramey, 17. D.J. Wells, 18. Jeff Babcock, 19. Shannon Babb

The Real Deal

7:45 p.m. – Don O’Neal proved he’s ready to add a World 100 victory to his resume, bursting forward from the fourth starting spot to win the second heat. He outdistanced Brian Birkhofer and Steve Francis.

Matt Miller, who started 15th after winning a Qualifying Feature earlier today, advanced all the way to fourth but fell just short of transferring.

Second-starter Steve Casebolt, a former Dream winner, saw his hopes end on lap nine when he scraped the turn four wall following contact with Birkhofer, who slid up the track while battling with Casebolt for second. Casebolt slowed and brought out a caution flag on lap 10.

Heat 2 Finish (15 laps – Top 3 Transfer to A-Main/4-11 to B-Main): 1. Don O’Neal, 2. Brian Birkhofer, 3. Steve Francis, 4. Matt Miller, 5. Duane Chamberlain, 6. Dan Schlieper, 7. Dillon Wood, 8. Dustin Linville, 9. Shane Cottle, 10. Jacob Hawkins, 11. Dustin Neat, 12. Dusty Moore, 13. Kevin Mack, 14. Steve Casebolt, 15. Chad Smith, 16. Terry Wolfenbarger, 17. Shane Allen, 18. Chris Ross

Upset winner

7:35 p.m. – Kentucky’s Michael Chilton pulled off the first surprise of the night, leading all the way to capture the first heat. Brian Shirley tested the young ‘Revelution’ Chassis driver but had to settle for second place, while Billy Moyer Jr. grabbed the final transfer spot in his Memphis Grizzlies-themed machine.

Both Chilton and Moyer Jr. will start the World 100 for the first time, while Shirley will make his third career appearance in the A-Main.

Fast-timer Dale McDowell was an early dropout, so he’ll use his qualifying provisional to start the World 100. Greg Johnson, meanwhile, was a contender for the final transfer spot until slowing with a flat right-rear tire on lap 13.

Heat 1 Finish (15 laps – Top 3 Transfer to A-Main/4-11 to B-Main): 1. Michael Chilton, 2. Brian Shirley, 3. Billy Moyer Jr., 4. Frankie Heckenast Jr., 5. Andrew Reaume, 6. Tim Rivers, 7. Shannon Thornsberry, 8. Greg Johnson, 9. Scott Schmitt, 10. Rich Neiser, 11. Dale McDowell, 12. Brian Rickman, 13. John Mason, 14. Chub Frank, 15. Kyle Logue, 16. Scott Creel, 17. Ken Hahn, 18. Gary Major, 19. Anthony Adams

Chub…done

7:15 p.m. – Chub Frank’s bid for a transfer spot in the first heat didn’t even last one lap. After a start that saw several cars beating and banging through turns one and two, Frank ended up spinning around off the second corner and was clipped by a passing machine. Nose damage forced ‘Chubzilla’ to limp into the pit area and he’s now finished for the weekend.

Let’s go racin’!

7:05 p.m. – The World 100 opening ceremonies — which included one driver from each state represented in the field holding their state flag, the unfurling of a large American by fans and four horses running around the track with their riders displaying flags — are now complete. The cars in the first heat race have fired and racing is just moments away — with, of course, a huge crowd looking on.

An extra $5G to winner

6:55 p.m. – The first-place prize for tonight’s World 100 has grown to $50,000 — thanks to an unexpected donation from Mark Larson of Rock Rivers Arms in Colona, Ill.

In the tradition of the late J.W. Hunt — the ‘Strawberry King’ who was known to add cash to the winner’s take at Eldora and other tracks — Larson approached Eldora’s Roger Slack today with his desire to add $5,000 to the already large World 100 prize.

Scouting the Outlaws’ chances

6:40 p.m. – Not surprisingly, the WoO LMS regular whose chance for success in the World 100 seems to be shaping up best would have to be Darrell Lanigan. The runaway points leader and winner of a record 14 WoO LMS A-Mains this season, Lanigan will start from the pole position in the fifth heat race thanks to the ‘4’ invert — and if he captures that prelim, he’ll take the green flag in the 100-lapper from the prime outside pole slot.

Considering Lanigan has already made 18 career World 100 A-Main starts without a victory (he did win the $100,000 Dream in 2003), it’s pretty clear that he’s due to break through. The way things have broken so far only seem to reinforce that notion.

Defending WoO LMS champ Rick Eckert, meanwhile, was the tour’s top qualifier in time trials. The sixth-fastest lap puts him fourth in the lineup of the sixth heat — behind two drivers who have never started a World 100 A-Main (front-row starters Chad Simpson and Curtis Roberts) and Jimmy Mars, a former Dream winner who has only a single top-10 finish in nine career World 100 feature appearances (fifth in ’04).

Chub Frank, who won the World 100 in 2004, ended up being pushed out of a pole starting spot in a heat race because Chad Simpson nipped him for 24th in the time-trial order. The 50-year-old veteran will thus start fifth in the first heat.

Shane Clanton — who, with a World 100 win in 2008 and his Dream victory earlier this year, is one of just five drivers to capture both crown-jewel races — will start 14th in the third heat after slapping the wall during his time-trial lap. He must pick up at least three spots just to move on to a B-Main, so he’ll have to be on the charge if he hopes to make the World 100 starting field.

Clint Smith was a serious contender in June’s Dream 100, running in the top five before settling for sixth. He starts 10th in the fifth heat, however, so he’ll need to make some magic happen to repeat his Dream performance.

WoO LMS rookies Bub McCool and Kent Robinson will both go to the post in the sixth heat — McCool starting seventh, Robinson 12th. McCool is driving a Barry Wright car fielded by Indiana racer Chad Stapleton this weekend, while Robinson is behind the wheel of his battle-tested MasterSbilt after his brand-new machine — a car he finished putting together on Thursday night and had equipped with a brand-new engine — was sidelined by a broken rearend after just one lap of practice on Friday.

Anticipation building

5:35 p.m. – As World 100 pit-area announcers Dustin Jarrett, Ozzie Altman, Rick Eshelman and James Essex stand on the Eldora stage conducting opening ceremonies, officials have released the starting lineups for tonight’s six 15-lap heat races. The top three finishers in each prelim will advance to the World 100 and positions 4-11 will transfer to one of two 20-lap B-Mains.

World 100 Heat Race Starting Lineups

Heat 1:

Row 1: Michael Chilton/John Mason
Row 2: Brian Shirley/Dale McDowell
Row 3: Chub Frank/Frankie Heckenast Jr.
Row 4: Billy Moyer Jr./Greg Johnson
Row 5: Shannon Thornsberry/Scott Schmitt
Row 6: Andrew Reaume/Brian Rickman
Row 7: Rich Neiser/Tim Rivers
Row 8: Scott Creel/Kyle Logue
Row 9: Ken Hahn/Gary Major
Row 10: James Rice/Anthony Adams

Heat 2:

Row 1: Steve Francis/Steve Casebolt
Row 2: Brian Birkhofer/Don O’Neal
Row 3: Duane Chamberlain/Dustin Linville
Row 4: Chad Smith/Dillon Wood
Row 5: Dan Schlieper/Dustin Neat
Row 6: Chris Ross/Shane Cottle
Row 7: Dusty Moore/Jacob Hawkins
Row 8: Matt Miller/Kevin Mack
Row 9: Terry Wolfenbarger/Shane Allen
Row 10: Jared Landers/Bill Lewis

Heat 3:

Row 1: Jay Johnson/D.J. Wells
Row 2: Billy Moyer/Shannon Babb
Row 3: J.R. Hotovy/Vic Hill
Row 4: R.J. Conley/Jeff Babcock
Row 5: Rick Rickman/Terry Casey
Row 6: Jeep VanWormer/Mike Spatola
Row 7: Brian Ruhlman/Shane Clanton
Row 8: Brad Neat/Jarred Breeding
Row 9: Danny Hatcher/Michael Asberry
Row 10: Tom Ramey/Jeff Watson

Heat 4:

Row 1: Scott Bloomquist/Ryan VanderVeen
Row 2: Jason Feger/Jackie Boggs
Row 3: Earl Pearson Jr./Eddie Carrier Jr.
Row 4: Jerry Bowersock/Ryan Unzicker
Row 5: Morgan Bagley/Justin Chance
Row 6: Jimmy Owens/Stephen Breeding
Row 7: Jason Montgomery/Jon Hodgkiss
Row 8: Justin Coulter/Steve Lance Jr.
Row 9: Don Gordon/Brandon Perkins
Row 10: Scott Clifford/Adam Hutson

Heat 5:

Row 1: Darrell Lanigan/Jon Henry
Row 2: Josh McGuire/Chris Madden
Row 3: Brandon Sheppard/Tyler Reddick
Row 4: Wayne Chinn/Jacob Grizzle
Row 5: Klint Byars/Clint Smith
Row 6: Dennis Erb Jr./Robby Hensley
Row 7: Austin Hubbard/Chad Ruhlman
Row 8: Jonathan Davenport/Nick Latham
Row 9: Tommy Carlton/Jim Gingery
Row 10: Shawn Martin/Brandon Fouts

Heat 6:

Row 1: Chad Simpson/Curtis Roberts
Row 2: Jimmy Mars/Rick Eckert
Row 3: Ray Cook/Terry Phillips
Row 4: Bub McCool/Tim Lance
Row 5: John Blankenship/Jerry Rice
Row 6: Donnie Moran/Kent Robinson
Row 7: Riley Hickman/Scott James
Row 8: Larry Greer/John Mayes Jr.
Row 9: Ky Harper/Russ Frohnapfel
Row 10: Mike Marlar/Casey Noonan

Brad’s blow-out

5:20 p.m. – Brad Neat of Dunnville, Ky., completely dominated the attrition-filled third 20-lap Qualifying Feature, easily capturing the $1,000 first prize. He was just a half-straightaway behind runner-up Larry Greer of Bowling Green, Ky., at the checkered flag.

Qualifying Feature No. 3 Finish (20 laps): 1. Brad Neat, 2. Larry Greer, 3. Jarred Breeding, 4. John Mayes Jr., 5. Danny Hatcher, 6. Ky Harper, 7. Russ Frohnapfel, 8. Michael Asberry, 9. Tom Ramey (DNS) Casey Noonan, Jeff Watson, Mike Marlar

Miller dominates

5 p.m. – Former Dream winner Matt Miller of Whitehouse, Ohio, hustled from third to first on the opening lap and never looked back en route to winning the second 20-lap Qualifying Feature and a $1,000 check. He outdistanced Jonathan Davenport, who got back on track after slapping the wall during time trials.

Davenport’s Clint Bowyer Racing teammate, Jared Landers, ran third until pulling off the track late in the distance.

Qualifying Feature No. 2 Finish (20 laps): 1. Matt Miller, 2. Jonathan Davenport, 3. Kevin Mack, 4. Nick Latham, 5. Terry Wolfenbarger, 6. Tommy Carlton, 7. Shane Allen, 8. Jim Gingery, 9. Jared Landers, 10. Shawn Martin, 11. Bill Lewis (DNS) Brandon Fouts, Ernie Cordier

Deep South winner

4:45 p.m. – Scott Creel of Laurel, Miss., surged forward from the seventh starting spot to win the first 20-lap Qualifying Feature. He earned a $1,000 top prize and improved his starting position in a World 100 heat.

Qualifying Feature No. 1 Finish (20 laps): 1. Scott Creel, 2. Justin Coulter, 3. Kyle Logue, 4. Steve Lance Jr., 5. Ken Hahn, 6. Don Gordon, 7. Gary Major, 8. Brandon Perkins, 9. James Rice, 10. Scott Clifford, 11. Anthony Adams (DNS) Adam Hutson, Josh Richards

Back to action

4:25 p.m. – The packer trucks have pulled off the track and the first of three 20-lap Qualifying Features has rolled out. Anthony Adams of Pinetop, Ky., and Justin Coulter of Leamington, Ont., will lead the field to the green flag.

As a result of some scratches, all competitors in the Qualifying Features will move on to the heat races. Their finishing positions will determine where they start in tonight’s heats.

Qualifying results

4:10 p.m. – As packer trucks circle the oval to put the finishing touches on the track reconditioning prior to the start of the three Qualifying Features, here’s the complete results from today’s time trials:

Results of World 100 Time Trials (Rank/Car No./Driver/Hometown/Lap Time): 1. 17M-Dale McDowell/Chickamauga, GA 15.797; 2. 71-Don O’Neal/Martinsville, IN 15.858; 3. 18-Shannon Babb/Moweaqua, IL 15.882; 4. 4b-Jackie Boggs/Grayson, KY 15.899; 5. 44M-Chris Madden/Gray Court, SC 15.912; 6. 24-Rick Eckert/York, PA 15.926; 7. 3s-Brian Shirley/Chatham, IL 15.960; 8. 15b-Brian Birkhofer/Muscatine, IA 16.010; 9. 21-Billy Moyer/Batesville, AR 16.056; 10. 25-Jason Feger/Bloomington, IL 16.083; 11. 41M-Josh McGuire/Grayson, KY 16.099; 12. 28M-Jimmy Mars/Menomonie, WI 16.115; 13. 72-John Mason/Millersburg, OH 16.116; 14. C9-Steve Casebolt/Richmond, IN 16.120; 15. 18W-D.J. Wells/Wooton, KY 16.142; 16. 23V-Ryan VanderVeen/Six Lakes, MI 16.157; 17. 15H-Jon Henry/Ada, OH 16.174; 18. 9R-Curtis Roberts/Coleman, MI 16.199; 19. 97-Michael Chilton/Salvisa, KY 16.225; 20. 15-Steve Francis/Ashland, KY 16.236

21. 93-Jay Johnson/W. Burlington, IA 16.286; 22. 0-Scott Bloomquist/Mooresburg, TN 16.303; 23. 29-Darrell Lanigan/Union, KY 16.310; 24. 25s-Chad Simpson/Mt. Vernon, IA 16.322; 25. 1*-Chub Frank/Bear Lake, PA 16.345; 26. 20c-Duane Chamberlain/Richmond, IN 16.355; 27. 13-J.R. Hotovy/Hartford, MI 16.356; 28. 44P-Earl Pearson Jr./Jacksonville, FL 16.371; 29. 1s-Brandon Sheppard/New Berlin, IL 16.382; 30. 53-Ray Cook/Brasstown, NC 16.397; 31. 99Jr.-Frankie Heckenast Jr./Orland Park, IL 16.414; 32. D8-Dustin Linville/Lancaster, KY 16.452; 33. 1V-Vic Hill/Morristown, TN 16.457; 34. 28c-Eddie Carrier Jr./Salt Rock, WV 16.464; 35. 11-Tyler Reddick/DuQuoin, IL 16.484; 36. 75P-Terry Phillips/Springfield, MO 16.502; 37. 21Jr-Billy Moyer Jr./Batesville, AR 16.532; 38. 19-Chad Smith/Miamisburg, OH 16.542; 39. 71c-R.J. Conley/Wheelersburg, OH 16.543; 40. 20JR/Jerry Bowersock/Wapakoneta, OH 16.549

41. 1WC-Wayne Chinn/Bradford, OH 16.551; 42. 57J-Bub McCool/Vicksburg, MS 16.552; 43. 24H-Greg Johnson/Bedford, IN 16.568; 44. 1W-Dillon Wood/New Smyrna Beach, FL 16.591; 45. 1J-Jeff Babcock/Wayne, OH 16.597; 46. 24U-Ryan Unzicker/El Paso, IL 16.620; 47. 99G-Jacob Grizzle/Blairsville, GA 16.642; 48. 48-Tim Lance/Brimfield, IL 16.643; 49. 17-Shannon Thornsberry/Martin, KY 16.652; 50. 23s-Dan Schlieper/Sullivan, WI 16.668; 51. 86-Rick Rickman/Columbus, MS 16.669; 52. 14M-Morgan Bagley/Longview, TX 16.683; 53. 5K-Klint Byars/Calhoun City, MS 16.689; 54. 23-John Blankenship/Williamson, WV 16.694; 55. 10s-Scott Schmitt/Tonica, IL 16.701; 56. 25N-Dustin Neat/Dunnville, KY 16.703; 57. 42-Terry Casey/New London, WI 16.738; 58. 2-Justin Chance/Lexington, OH 16.776; 59. 44s-Clint Smith/Senoia, GA 16.781; 60. 1B-Jerry Rice/Verona, KY 16.788

61. 88-Andrew Reaume/Blenheim, ONT 16.799; 62. 18R-Chris Ross/Charing Cross, ONT 16.812; 63. 55-Jeep VanWormer/Pinconning, MI 16.825; 64. 20-Jimmy Owens/Newport, TN 16.879; 65. 28-Dennis Erb Jr./Carpentersville, IL 16.893; 66. 99-Donnie Moran/Dresden, OH 16.898. 67. 90-Brian Rickman/Columbus, MS 16.943; 68; 31s-Shane Cottle/Kokomo, IN 16.991; 69. 89-Mike Spatola/Manhattan, IL 17.027; 70. 5BX-Stephen Breeding/Isom, KY 17.055; 71. 21H-Robby Hensley/Walton, KY 17.104; 72. 7R-Kent Robinson/Bloomington, IN 17.131; 73. 87-Rich Neiser/Fruitport, MI 17.133; 74. 75-Dusty Moore/Swanton, OH 17.140; 75. 49-Brian Ruhlman/Clarklake, MI 17.159; 76. 21M-Jason Montgomery/Jackson, OH 17.189; 77. 25H-Austin Hubbard/Seaford, DE 17.247; 78. R1-Riley Hickman/Ooltewah, TN 17.254; 79. 46-Tim Rivers/Salem, IN 17.290; 80. 20H-Jacob Hawkins/Fairmont, WV 17.337

81. 25-Shane Clanton/Fayetteville, GA 17.345; 82. 69-Jon Hodgkiss/Kennedy Twp., PA 17.386; 83. 48R-Chad Ruhlman/Bemus Point, NY 17.457; 84. 81-Scott James/Lawrenceburg, IN 17.496; 85. 75A-Anthony Adams/Whitesburg, KY 17.545; 86. 26-Bill Lewis/Warren, IN 17.659; 87. 34-Ky Harper/Holland, OH 17.789; 88. 555-Justin Coulter/Learnington, ONT 17.821; 89. 81F-Brandon Fouts/Kite, KY 17.825; 90. 41-Brad Neat/Dunnville, KY 17.855; 91. 92-Brandon Perkins 17.872; 92. 3-Matt Miller/Whitehouse, OH 17.887; 93. 6-Danny Hatcher/Campbellsville, KY 17.920; 94. 11R-James Rice/Verona, KY 17.922; 95. 14-Terry Wolfenbarger/Clinton, TN 17.279; 96. 5b-Mike Marlar/Winfield, TN 18.297; 97. 25L-Steve Lance Jr./Cuba, IL 18.369; 98. 15d-Jonathan Davenport/Blairsville, GA 18.422; 99. 25x-Jarred Breeding/Isom, KY 18.476; 100. 27-Ken Hahn/Gibsonburg, OH 18.660

101. 31-Nick Latham/Winchester, OH 18.672; 102. 69M-John Mayes Jr./Clyde, OH 18.686; 103. 31c-Scott Creel/Laurel, MS 18.740; 104. 16-Shane Allen/Washington, IL 18.855; 105. 45-Russ Frohnapfel/Columbus, OH 18.870; 106. 33-Don Gordon/Chatham, ONT 19.288; 107. 17c-Tommy Carlton/Lawrenceburg, KY 19.310; 108. 360-Michael Asberry/Crossville, TN 19.576; 109. 86c-Scott Clifford/New Lothrop, MI 19.691; 110. 03-Jim Gingery/Bucyrus, OH 19.909; 111. 11x-Tom Ramey/New Paris, OH 20.203; 112. 25b-Gary Major/Monroe, OH 20.424; 113. 27M-Shawn Martin/Maysville, KY 21.697; 114. 9G-Larry Greer/Bowling Green, KY N/T; 115. 11A-Adam Hutson/Cincinnati, OH N/T; 116. 4c-Earnie Cordier/Brodhead, KY N/T; 117. 11W-Jeff Watson/Campbellsville, KY N/T; 118. 21K-Kyle Logue/Cisco, IL N/T; 119. 21R-Kevin Mack/Defiance, OH N/T; 120. 1N-Casey Noonan/Toledo, OH N/T; 121. 1-Josh Richards/Shinnston, WV N/T; 122. 5-Jared Landers/Batesville, AR N/T; 123. 10-Leon Henderson/Laurel, MS N/T

Qualifying Features next

3:05 p.m. – Following some quick track reconditioning as the skies turn sunny, three 20-lap Qualifying Features for drivers timing outside the top 84 will be spun off. Each race pays $1,000 to win and offers DIRTcar UMP weekly points, and the top-12 finishers in each will advance to tonight’s heat races.

Some notable names will be in the Qualifying Features looking to improve their heat-race starting positions, including Clint Bowyer Racing teammates Jonathan Davenport and Jared Landers (both slapped the wall during time trials); former Dream winner Matt Miller; and Brad Neat.

Josh Richards is scheduled to start 13th in the first Qualifying Feature, but it appears that his 2012 World 100 assault is done in the wake of his trip into the wall during qualifying. He is already changed into street clothes and his father Mark’s Rocket Chassis house car team is preparing to load up the damaged machine, leaving the 24-year-old out of the World 100 A-Main for the just the second time since he became the race’s youngest starter ever in 2005.

Mike Marlar, who is coming off a $25,000 victory in last Sunday’s Hillbilly 100 at I-77 Raceway Park in Ripley, W.Va., is also scheduled for a fourth-place start in the third Qualifying Feature, but he has scratched from further competition. He hit the wall during his time-trial lap.

Invert: 4

2:50 p.m. – Moments ago Dale McDowell reported to the Eldora stage and spun a ‘4’ on the invert wheel, setting up an inversion of the 24 fastest qualfiers.

The inversion puts Iowa’s Chad Simpson on the pole for the first of tonight’s six 15-lap heat races. Other polesitters will be Darrell Lanigan, Scott Bloomquist, Jay Johnson, Steve Francis and Kentucky’s Michael Chilton.

It’s the Mac Daddy

2:40 p.m. – Dale McDowell ended up with fast-time honors for the World 100, topping qualifying at 15.797 seconds. The 2006 World 100 winner assured himself of starting tonight’s A-Main, which features provisional spots for the two fastest drivers from time trials who do not qualify through a heat race.

“I saw a couple guys get in the wall before me, so I tried to play it safe,” McDowell said of his qualifying run. “When I entered (the corners) I lifted at both ends, got back in the fuel and it worked out for us.”

Don O’Neal (15.858) was second-fastest, followed by Shannon Babb (15.882), Jackie Boggs (15.899), Chris Madden (15.912), Rick Eckert (15.926), Brian Shirley (15.960), Brian Birkhofer (16.010), Billy Moyer (16.056) and Jason Feger (16.083).

Complete qualifying results will be coming soon.

Bad news for Josh

2:25 p.m. – Eyeing a strong qualifying effort to put himself in position for a career-first World 100 victory during an open spot on his NASCAR Nationwide Series schedule, two-time WoO LMS champion Josh Richards went on the track moments ago ready to hammer the gas. He didn’t get a lap in, however, after sliding high and climbing the outside wall between turns three and four.

Richards rode the wall for nearly 100 feet before slamming back onto the track and limping directly into the pit area through the turn-four opening. His car sustained significant right-side damage and is currently being eyeballed at his trailer by a huge crowd of onlookers.

Good shape?

2:20 p.m. – WoO LMS record-breaker Darrell Lanigan wasn’t spectacular with his qualifying run, turning a lap of 16.310 seconds. But with less than 20 cars remaining to time he sits 23rd in the qualifying order — behind Scott Bloomquist (16.303) and in front of fellow Outlaw Chub Frank (16.345) — so he could be set up perfectly for a front-row spot in a heat if the invert wheel spins his way.

Lanigan, of course, has made 18 World 100 A-Main starts since 1991 but has yet to win the prized globe trophy, topping out with a second-place finish in 1999. The only driver who has made more World 100 feature appearances without taking home a win is Freddy Smith, with 19.

Uphill climb

2:05 p.m. – Becoming just the third driver to win both of Eldora’s crown-jewel events — the Dream and World 100 — in a single season just got more difficult for WoO LMS star Shane Clanton. After clipping the turn-one wall hard with the right-rear corner of his car during his time-trial effort, he ended up with a lap well off the pace and will be playing catch-up for the remainder of the show.

Qualifying rolling along

1:55 p.m. – After last night’s time trials were scrapped when rain struck the half-mile oval 45 racers into the 123-car session, all competitors were give another set of hot laps today beginning around 12 noon and qualifying got the green flag at 1:10 p.m.

As if World 100 time trials aren’t already pressure-packed enough, today drivers have to be even more focused. Due to time constraints, only one round of qualifying is being held — which means drivers have just one lap to establish themselves in the time-trial results.

Roughly halfway through time trials, Dale McDowell of Chickamauga, Ga., currently sits at the top of the speed chart with a lap of 15.797 seconds. Don O’Neal of Martinsville, Ind., is second (15.858), followed by Shannon Babb (15.882), Jackie Boggs of Grayson, Ky. (15.899) and Chris Madden of Gray Court, S.C. (15.912). The top WoO LMS regular is currently Rick Eckert of York, Pa., in sixth at 15.926 seconds.