WILD LoneStar Season Opener Kicked Off 2016 Season
Kilgore TX (2/15/16) by DarinShort.com. Even the bright sunshine of the day couldn't compare to the depth of the racing stars that shined at LoneStar Speedway (LSS) during the Sprint Smackdown on Saturday February 13th.
As dismal the general 2015 weather was for racing, it was great to get a reprieve from the precip, and the temps at race time were in the low 60's. A phenomenal field of 27 Sprint Cars, 31 high-powered Modifieds, 33 Factory Stocks and 28 Limited Modifieds participated, plus four FWD 4-Cylinders were added to the mix in this recently announced division.
The 'stage 3' LSS track reconfiguration project has recently concluded, which essentially added one more groove to the already-wide high-banks; allowing for lots of 2, 3 and even 4 wide racing throughout the night on the extremely fast track.
As with every LoneStar event, results are posted at our SpeedNet link - which is live on race night as well, so you can see lineups and live finishes throughout the racing program.
Bookmark this link on your smart device so you can retrieve it on any LSS race night, at:
The headliner for this event was the LoneStar Sprint Smackdown, featuring the National, Regional and State points kick-off for the RaceSaver® IMCA Sprint Cars.
The best way to describe the action on the racetrack during the feature race, would be displayed by video.
By clicking: youtu.be/_KXemtbg_TM you can watch the first non-stop 15 laps...but they would not be without incident, as at end of the first lap, Martin Edwards would momentarily lose traction, perform a 360 - in front of 22 other cars - and keep going while everyone scattered...and several laps into the race, Marcus Thomas briefly took the lead from Chad Wilson in lap traffic, and then Martin Edwards battled all the way back from his spin to pull into 2nd place (all without a caution!)...only to get crossed up from a slowing lap car. Excellent racing action at the LoneStar Sprint Smackdown!
After the event's sole caution on lap 15, Chad would bring home his 2nd LoneStar Sprint Smackdown title in as many years by taking the checkers first in the 25-lapper, even after tagging the wall on the backstretch during the race...followed closely by a very strong performance from 6th place starter Marcus Thomas. Junior Jenkins would run a flawless 25 laps to finish a strong 3rd with his right rear pushing a mere inches from the wall in corner 2 on many occasions.
Suprise Smackdown entrant, Tim Crawley, would have a colorful night aboard the John James owned #4j based out of Iowa Park, Texas. After starting in the 5th row of his heat, Tim would pick off one car after the other, coming home first. However the victory was short lived, as his car would end up a bit light on the scales, relegating him to start last in B-feature #2, where he would advance to the feature race by finishing 3rd.
In the feature race, Tim would line up 18th directly behind the 2015 apparent winner, Logan Scherb (who also was a bit light on the scales after the feature last year). The pair of Scherb and Crawley were 1/2 lap down to the leaders much of the first 15 laps while they methodically picked off one car after another.
At the lap 15 caution, it would allow the two to close the gap on the front pack of cars, and late in the race, Scherb made his charge into 2nd place in the closing laps, only to lose traction coming out of corner two, performing a 360, while Crawley and others scattered behind. No caution came out as the race continued, and Crawley would eventually finish 4th, thereby passing a total of 27 cars during the event. Scherb would recover to finish 6th.
To watch the final 10 laps, please click the following link:
In the companion Modified feature race, well, sometimes a division just has a rough go of it. After thrilling heat races, the feature would be plagued by cautions and Chris Henigan would come home with the $1,200 winner's share. Max Eddie Thomas would come from 5th to finish second while 9th place starter, veteran Kenny Gaddis, would come home in a solid 3rd place run after a long absence from LoneStar Speedway.
A scary moment in the Factory Stock feature sent driver Alex Williams, #6, to the hospital. He was reported to have since been released from the hospital, and will be very sore for a while but the good news is he will be okay. 5th place starter Johnny Reed would take home the win in his very sharp #38S.
Second row starter Jason Ingalls would take home $600 for winning the Limited Modified feature, followed by Kevin Simpson and Kelly Lockey.
The next event up at LoneStar Speedway will be held on Saturday, March 5th, with the running of the Elite Non-Winged Sprint Car Series; plus Modifieds, Factory Stocks, Limited Modifieds and FWD 4-Cylinders will fill out the 5-division racing card. Event details will be posted soon at www.LoneStarSpeedway.com and at all racing news outlets.
There is also an open practice/registration slated for Sunday, February 28th from Noon-4pm.
Thanks to everyone that came out to support this event - and thanks most of all to Mother Nature for finally giving us a break so we could get in a race without weather worries.
411- on Facebook, if you go to 'LoneStar Speedway Fan Page' you can access dozens of pictures that were posted from the event.