Richards Ends Month-Long Victory Drought With Runaway Victory In Ohio-Pennsylvania Speedweek Finale At Eriez Speedway

By Kevin Kovac, WoO LMS P.R. Director

HAMMETT, PA – Aug. 1, 2010 – Josh Richards of Shinnston, W.Va., snapped a month-long victory drought on the World of Outlaws Late Model Series, romping to a convincing win in Sunday night’s 50-lap ‘Ohio-Pennsylvania Speedweek’ finale at Eriez Speedway.

The national tour’s defending champion and current points leader authored one of the season’s most dominating performances, running away from the field after passing Gregg Satterlee of Rochester Mills, Pa., for the lead on lap 11. He had little trouble negotiating lapped traffic on his way to a winning margin of 8.039 seconds – roughly half a lap – over distant runner-up Ron Davies of Erie, Pa.

It was the series-leading sixth win of 2010 for Richards, who had been winless since capturing the first Firecracker 100 preliminary A-Main on June 24 at Lernerville Speedway in Sarver, Pa. He pocketed $10,675 for his flawless effort in a race that ran caution-free – the second consecutive WoO LMS event to go non-stop from start-to-finish.

“It was an awesome night,” said Richards, who registered his 26th career win on the WoO LMS. “We’ve had a fast car this whole trip but had some bad redraws (for A-Main starting spots), so tonight we finally started up front (the pole position) and really got to show what we had. The car was just phenomenal.”

Richards, 22, was outgunned for the top spot at the initial green flag by Satterlee, but once he worked his Seubert Calf Ranches Rocket machine into the lead he was never threatened. He lapped up to the 13th-place finisher and took the checkered flag just a few car lengths behind the back of a tight pack of cars that were all within striking distance of fourth place.

“I knew we were pretty good because of the way we could move around in the lapped cars,” said Richards, who also won at Eriez when the tour visited Bobby Rohrer’s facility for the first time in 2007. “But I didn’t know how far ahead we were.

“I got up under Clint (Smith) to try to lap him with a couple laps to go and afterward I asked him where he finished,” he added. “He said he was like ninth (actually 11th), and I was like, ‘Wow!’ I knew we passed a few cars, but I didn’t know we had gotten that far up through the pack.”

Davies, 52, might have been the only driver who appeared capable of making Richards sweat after he swept into second place on lap 20 and cut into Richards’s edge over the next six laps, but his struggles to dispose of lapped cars left him well behind the leader. He settled for a career-best WoO LMS finish and earned the $500 ‘Bonus Bucks’ cash for being the highest-finishing driver who hasn’t won a series A-Main and wasn’t ranked among the top 12 in the points standings.

The red-hot Darrell Lanigan of Union, Ky., finished third after starting sixth, extending his unprecedented streak of consecutive top-three finishes to nine. He won three of the five Ohio-Pennsylvania events and ended the swing second in the WoO LMS points standings, 28 points behind Richards.

Chris Hackett of Erie, Pa., a regular at the one-third-mile oval, recorded a career-best WoO LMS finish of fourth after starting 11th and making a late-race surge into the top five, and 10th-starter Rick Eckert of York, Pa., placed fifth after Satterlee ceded the position on the final lap by sliding high off turn two and tumbling all the way to 12th in the final rundown.

Richards said following the race that the end of his rare 12-race losing streak in WoO LMS competition came with some help from the same source of good fortune that Lanigan hailed for his turnaround. His left wrist sported several lucky Silly Bandz that he received from the young son of Lanigan’s fiancée, Erin.

Lanigan, of course, credited his improved luck to wearing the Silly Bandz that his fiancee’s boy, Gavin, gave to him before heading off to Ohio-Pennsylvania Speedweek. The 2008 champion didn’t know that Gavin also gave Richards a few of the colorful rubber bracelets when he attended Saturday night’s event at Muskingum County Speedway in Zanesville, Ohio.

“Darrell was up there at the (A-Main) draw and he said, ‘I feel like you’re gonna get the eight and I’m gonna get the pole,'” commented Richards. “I’m like, ‘OK.’ Well, I picked the pole and he got a six, and he was, like, shaking his head.

“Then I showed him those Bandz,” Richards continued with a smile on his face, “and he was trying to rip ’em off me.”

Lanigan, 40, playfully tried to keep the suddenly in-demand lucky charm to himself, but he understood that Richards’s performance was more than a product of good fortune.

“Josh was in a class of his own tonight,” said Lanigan, who ran fifth for most of the distance before slipping by Tim Fuller of Watertown, N.Y., for fourth on lap 41 and Satterlee for third on lap 42. “I’m just happy to get a third. I said if we can come out of here with a top five we’d be doing real good, because I haven’t been real good up at this track.”

Davies, meanwhile, does have a strong track record at Eriez and proved his knowledge of the bullring against the World of Outlaws stars. He fell from the third starting spot to fifth early in the A-Main, but he picked up the pace with his MasterSbilt by Mars car and drove by Fuller, Lanigan and Satterlee in a three-lap span to reach second on lap 20.

“My tires finally fired when we got by Darrell and those guys, and I thought, Well, maybe we got a shot at winning this thing,” said Davies. “But lapped traffic was a factor – the lapped cars just weren’t getting out of the way. We dinged up some quarter-panels trying to get past them.

“If we had gotten some cautions, I think it would’ve been a good race. I think we had a shot at it if we had a clear racetrack. We were pretty good in one and two; we were slipping a little bit in three and four, but I could see we were catching (Richards) at one point (before entering lapped traffic).”

Despite falling short of an upset win, Davies wore a big smile after the race. It was definitely the highlight of his otherwise quiet 2010 season. Between works commitments and the left thumb injury he suffered in late June (he cut tendons and is still not fully healed), he’s made less than a dozen starts this year.

“Congrats to Kid Rocket and those guys. They’re a great team,” said Davies, whose daughter, Michelle, is dating WoO LMS regular Shane Clanton of Fayetteville, Ga. “I’m just a little guy here, but we had a lot of fun. We run second – that’s almost like a win for us.

“These guys race for a living and I race for a hobby, so it’s great to go race with them because they’re all clean racers. I raced three nights with them this weekend and I had a great time.”

Steve Francis of Ashland, Ky., finished sixth, missing out on a top-five finish by less a car length after being in the middle of a wild late-race scrum for fourth place and back. Tim McCreadie of Watertown, N.Y., who started eighth, cracked the top five on lap 45 but was shuffled back to seventh at the finish, while Fuller settled for eighth after running in the top five for virtually the entire distance. Clanton advanced from the 15th starting spot to finish ninth and Eriez standout Mike Knight of Ripley, N.Y., rounded out the top 10, salvaging a night that began with him spinning into the infield during time trials due to a broken steering shaft.

Ron Davies earned his first career WoO LMS fast-time honor with a lap of 15.586 seconds during Ohlins Shocks Time Trials.

Heat winners were Ron Davies, Lanigan, Rick ‘Boom’ Briggs of Bear Lake, Pa., and Satterlee. The B-Mains were captured by Scott Johnson of Wattsburg, Pa., and Chub Frank of Bear Lake, Pa.

The WoO LMS will have two days off before returning to action in the Upper Midwest on Wednesday night (Aug. 4) for a date at Shawano (Wis.) Speedway. The tour will remain in the Badger State for the 23rd annual USA Nationals presented by United States Steel Corporation on Aug. 5-7 at Cedar Lake Speedway in New Richmond, Wis., a $50,000-to-win spectacular that is sanctioned by the WoO LMS for the first time since 2005.

For more information on the WoO LMS, visit www.worldofoutlaws.com.

Results of WoO Late Model Series at Eriez Speedway (Finishing Position/Start/Driver/Laps Completed/Money Won):

1. (1) Josh Richards/50 $10,675
2. (3) Ron Davies/50 $5,550
3. (6) Darrell Lanigan/50 $3,600
4. (11) Chris Hackett/50 $2,500
5. (10) Rick Eckert/50 $2,500
6. (9) Steve Francis/50 $2,300
7. (8) Tim McCreadie/50 $2,000
8. (4) Tim Fuller/50 $1,800
9. (15) Shane Clanton/50 $1,700
10. (13) Mike Knight/50 $1,100
11. (16) Clint Smith/50 $1,550
12. (2) Gregg Satterlee/50 $1,000
13. (17) Scott Johnson/49 $950
14. (7) Robbie Blair/49 $900
15. (12) Russell King/49 $1,350
16. (23) Austin Hubbard/49 $1,550
17. (5) Rick ‘Boom’ Briggs/49 $770
18. (21) Dave Hess Jr./49 $750
19. (18) Chub Frank/49 $1,230
20. (19) John Lobb/49 $750
21. (25) Jason Morell/48 $700
22. (22) Andy Boozel/21 $700
23. (14) Dutch Davies/17 $700
24. (24) Brent Robinson/16 $1,225
25. (20) Vic Coffey/15 $700

* Earnings include Winners Circle program and cash contingency award bonuses

Time of Race: 14 Mins., 22.070 Secs.
Margin of Victory: 8.039 Secs.
Yellow Flags: None
Lap Leaders: Satterlee (1-10); Richards (11-50)
Provisional Starters: Hubbard, Robinson (WoO); Morell (track)
Rookie of the Race: Hubbard ($250)
WoO LMS ‘Bonus Bucks’ Winner: Davies ($500)

Ohlins Shocks Time Trial Results (Position/No./Driver/Hometown/Best Lap):

1. 71d-Ron Davies/Erie, PA 15.586
2. won11-Robbie Blair/Titusville, PA 15.595
3. 1*-Chub Frank/Bear Lake, PA 15.670
4. B22-Bump Hedman/Sugar Grove, PA 15.674
5. 1-Josh Richards/Shinnston, WV 15.718
6. 29-Darrell Lanigan/Union, KY 15.722
7. 99B-Rick ‘Boom’ Briggs/Bear Lake, PA 15.733
8. 22s-Gregg Satterlee/Rochester Mills, PA 15.734
9. 3-Brent Robinson/Smithfield, VA 15.749
10. 24-Rick Eckert/York, PA 15.752
11. 19-Tim Fuller/Watertown, NY 15.761
12. 56-Russell King/Bristolville, OH 15.780
13. 11-Tyler Reddick/Corning, CA 15.828
14. 26G-Dutch Davies/Warren, PA 15.867
15. 19H-Austin Hubbard/Seaford, DE 15.897
16. 39-Tim McCreadie/Watertown, NY 15.932
17. 15-Steve Francis/Ashland, KY 15.944
18. 1L-John Lobb/Frewsburg, NY 15.976
19. 25-Shane Clanton/Fayetteville, GA 15.987
20. 44-Clint Smith/Senoia, GA 16.069
21. 14B-Dick Barton/Ashville, NY 16.085
22. 22-Jill George/Cedar Falls, IA 16.086
23. 32c-Vic Coffey/Caledonia, NY 16.110
24. 22B-Darrell Bossard/Centerville, PA 16.152
25. 2J-Scott Johnson/Wattsburg, PA 16.154
26. 8-Jason Morell/Northeast, PA 16.192
27. 33-Chris Hackett/Erie, PA 16.220
28. 03-Doug Eck/Corry, PA 16.237
29. 44H-Dave Hess Jr./Waterford, PA 16.262
30. 53-John Volpe/Lakeland, NY 16.371
31. 76-Andy Kania/Waterford, PA 16.413
32. 28L-Randy Lobb/Jamestown, NY 16.450
33. 55H-David Lyon/Corry, PA 16.467
34. 16*-Dereck Frank/Jamestown, NY 16.559
35. 12B-Andy Boozel/Clymer, NY 16.581
36. 07-Kevin Decker/Erie, PA 17.124
37. 9k-Mike Knight/Ripley, NY 17.169
38. 9-Scott Gurdak/Bear Lake, PA N/T

Heat No. 1 (10 laps – Top 4 Transfer): R. Davies, Richards, Francis, Knight, Robinson, S. Johnson, Hess, Reddick, Lyon, Barton

Heat No. 2 (10 laps – Top 4 Transfer): Lanigan, Blair, Eckert, D. Davies, J. Lobb, Morell, D. Frank, Volpe, George

Heat No. 3 (10 laps – Top 4 Transfer): Briggs, Fuller, Hackett, Clanton, C. Frank, Boozel, Hubbard, Coffey, Kania

Heat No. 4 (10 laps – Top 4 Transfer): Satterlee, McCreadie, King, C. Smith, R. Lobb, Hedman, Eck, Bossard, Decker

B-Main No. 1 (12 laps – Top 3 Transfer): S. Johnson, J. Lobb, Hess, Volpe, Morell, Lyon, D. Frank, George, Reddick, Robinson (DNS) Barton, Gurdak

B-Main No. 2 (12 laps – Top 3 Transfer): C. Frank, Coffey, Boozel, Hedman, Kania, Decker, Bossard, R. Lobb, Eck (DNS) Hubbard

World of Outlaws Late Model Series Contingency Award Winners:

Arizona Sports Shirts ($50 product certificate): David Lyon, Andy Kania
Armor All (one case of product to highest-finishing non-WoO team in A-Main w/decal): Gregg Satterlee
Eibach Springs (one free spring): David Lyon, Andy Kania
MSD Ignition ($75 cash award): Josh Richards
MSD Ignition ($25 cash award): Brent Robinson
Ohlins Pole Award ($50 cash award to fastest qualifier w/decal): Ron Davies
Pink Carburetors ($100 product certificate): None
Pink Carburetors ($50 product certificate): None
Quartermaster ($100 product certificate): Ron Davies
Quartermaster ($50 product certificate): Rick Eckert
Quartermaster ($25 product certificate): Rick ‘Boom’ Briggs
R2C Performance ($100 certificat): Ron Davies
STP ($50 cash award): John Lobb
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): Tyler Reddick
Wrisco Aluminum (three sheets of aluminum to A-Main winner w/decal): Ron Davies

2010 World of Outlaws Late Model Series Point Standings as of Aug. 1 – 33 A-Mains completed (rank/driver/points/deficit to leader):

1. Josh Richards 4452
2. Darrell Lanigan 4424 (-28)
3. Tim McCreadie 4410 (-42)
4. Steve Francis 4280 (-172)
5. Shane Clanton 4194 (-258)
6. Austin Hubbard 4166 (-286)
7. Rick Eckert 4148 (-304)
8. Tim Fuller 4110 (-342)
9. Chub Frank 4000 (-452)
10. Clint Smith 3960 (-492)
11. Russell King 3720 (-732)
12. Brent Robinson 3362 (-1090)
13. Brady Smith 2786 (-1666)
14. Jill George 2498 (-1954)
15. Brian Birkhofer 1566 (-2886)

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]

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), Hoosier Racing Tires (Official Racing Tires), STP (Official Fuel Treatment), SuperClean (Official Cleaner-Degreaser), VP Racing (Official Racing Fuel), DirtonDirt.com (Hard Charger Award) and Chizmark Larson Insurance; in addition to contingency sponsors Eibach Springs, MSD Ignition, Ohlins Shocks, Pink Carburetors, Pro Power Engines, Quartermaster, Rocket Chassis, R2C Performance and Wrisco Aluminum.