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Race Report Saturday, June 13, 2015
Jun 14, 2015 - updated Jun 14th, 2015 9:56pm
Web posted by Gary Daughtrey

Hampton, Va. --

NASCAR Whelen All-American Series
at Langley Speedway - Hampton, VA
NAPA Auto Parts/Whelen Night
Race Report
Saturday, June 13, 2015

  HAMPTON, Va. (June 13) — Newcomer Josh Berry and longtime veteran Danny Edwards Jr. both picked up wins as they split the NAPA Auto Parts/Whelen Twin 65s for the ComServe/Verizon Wireless Late Model Stock Cars, the featured events of Saturday evening’s NASCAR Whelen All-American Series program at Langley Speedway.
  The starting order for the first race was determined in late afternoon qualifying and Tyler Hughes nabbed the pole, circling the .395-mile oval at 89.137 mph. Danny Edwards Jr. was second-fastest, just 5-thousandths of a second off Hughes’ pace. Berry lined up third for his first Langley start, while Greg Edwards and Connor Hall completed the top five on the 20-car grid.
  As the opening event got under way, Hughes powered out front and hauled the field into Turn 1. Berry drove underneath Edwards Jr. and eased into second at the end of the opening circuit. Edwards Jr. settled into third, followed by Hall and Greg Edwards.
  The first caution flag flew on lap 3 when Brenden “Butterbean” Queen tried to swipe fifth from Greg Edwards and the two tangled at the entrance to Turn 1. Queen’s car climbed up the side of Edwards’ machine and sent Edwards for a hard ride into the outside wall, chasing him to the sidelines. With tow vehicles blocking the track in the middle of Turns 1 and 2, the race was red-flagged.
  Preparing for the ensuing restart, third-place Edwards Jr. gave up his spot in line and pulled to the outside of Hughes. He was joined on the top side by Matt Waltz, Mark Wertz, William Byron, Michael Hardin and Natalie Decker.
  Back under green, Hughes and Edwards Jr. went door-to-door until they reached the end of the backstretch and Hughes surged ahead. Berry immediately rushed to fill the opening underneath Edwards Jr. Between laps 3 and 6, second place changed hands four times with Berry eventually clearing Edwards Jr. and bringing Waltz along with him, to third.
  Berry quickly tracked down Hughes and went for the lead on lap 8, driving underneath Hughes into Turn 1 and completing the pass on the back straightaway. Two laps later, Waltz rooted Hughes aside in Turn 2 and grabbed second, while Edwards Jr. tagged along and took over third. The shuffle allowed Berry to pad his lead to five car-lengths.
  As Berry added to his advantage, Edwards Jr. closed in on Waltz, looking for the runner-up position. He took one run at Waltz on lap 20, but came up empty. Undeterred, he renewed the attack on the following circuit and worked underneath Waltz in Turn 1. The side-by-side battled lasted until lap 23 when Edwards Jr. gained the clear-cut edge off Turn 4.
  At the head of the field, Berry was now up by more than half a straightaway. Meanwhile, Waltz continued to slip back in the field. He gave up third to Hughes on lap 26 and surrendered fourth to Wertz on lap 28
  The second yellow flag waved on lap 57 when Cameron Bowen spun in Turn 2. Setting the running order, Berry held the lead, followed by Edwards Jr., Hughes, Wertz and Waltz. Bunching for the restart, Hughes, Waltz, Hall, Dalton Sargeant, Queen and Decker opted for the outside lane.
  The return to green was short-lived as Terry Carroll spun off Turn 4, prompting the last of the race’s three caution flags. Bruce Livingston bore the brunt of the incident and headed to the pits with a rumpled race car.
  Gathering for what would turn out to be the final restart, Hughes, Wertz, Hall, Byron and Queen chose the outside lane.
  As the race resumed, Hughes put up a fight, but gave way to Berry as they exited Turn 4. Edwards Jr. drove underneath Hughes in a bid to reclaim second place. Edwards Jr. snagged the position on lap 61. In the meantime, Berry had opened a five-length advantage, which he would maintain all the way to the checkers.
  At the finish, Berry was the winner by 0.852-second over Edwards Jr. Hughes was third, followed by Waltz, who slipped by Wertz for fourth on lap 64. Wertz rounded out the top five.
  Hall headed the second five, in sixth, while Queen, Byron, Sargeant and Collin Cabre completed the top 10. Decker and Hardin were 11th and 12th, the final drivers on the lead lap.
  Rolling the #88 JR Motorsports machine into Victory Lane, Berry seemed a bit surprised at his sudden success: “Yeah, we really weren’t sure what to expect. When we got here, we felt like we had a good car, but you never know until you race. I hate to see the 97 (Greg Edwards) get involved in a wreck. I was looking forward to racing him. He’s always strong here. We had a good car there and was just kinda cruising. Had that caution. Always gotta have that at the end to race for it. Man, that’s cool. First trip here. First time I seen the place was yesterday. This is a tough track, for sure, and there’s a lot of good cars here. I mean, this place has had a lot of cars all year long, so it’s awesome.”
  During the race, it was learned, via Twitter posts, that Berry’s car owner, Dale Earnhardt Jr., was keeping tabs on the proceedings on the FansChoice.tv website.
  The lineup for the second of the Twins mirrored the finishing order of the first, placing Berry on the pole with Edwards Jr. alongside. Four drivers from the first race — Decker, Livingston, Mike Weddell and Justin Carroll — were unable to compete in the nightcap, reducing the field to 16.
  As the second race got going, Edwards Jr. remained on Berry’s outside flank through Turns 1 and 2, then motored ahead as they sped down the backstretch for the first time. Berry settled back into second, followed by Waltz, Hughes and Wertz, who were nearly three-wide as they returned to the flagstand to complete lap 1.
  At the front, Edwards Jr. held a slim edge over Berry, who was matching him stride for stride. Behind them, Hughes was working on Waltz for third. That battle came to an end on lap 5 when Hughes shouldered Waltz up the track in Turns 1 and 2. The scuffle opened up the inside lane for Wertz, who pulled underneath Hughes, while Waltz slipped to fifth.
  The Hughes/Wertz tussle lasted until lap 25 when Wertz spun in Turn 2, bringing out the first caution flag and allowing the rest of the field to catch up to Edwards Jr. and Berry, who had driven away by more than half a straightaway.
  Lining up for the restart, Hughes and Queen, the third- and fourth-place drivers, broke ranks and pulled to the outside lane. They were joined by Casey Wyatt, Waltz, who had slid back to eighth, and Cabre.
  Back under green, Edwards Jr. cleared Hughes on the backstretch to retain the top spot. Deeper in the field, Waltz skittered up the track in Turns 1 and 2 and plummeted to the rear. A lap later, Berry moved past Hughes to regain second, leaving him in a nose-to-tail joust with Queen and Wyatt.
  At lap 31, Edwards Jr. was clinging to a one-length margin over Berry. The front two had distanced themselves from the third-place scramble by over half a straightaway. Queen eventually got the better of Hughes and brought Wyatt along with him, to fourth.
  Passing the halfway mark, Edwards Jr. began to extend his lead over Berry. Meanwhile, Wyatt hounded Queen for third. Wyatt grabbed the spot on lap 38, only to have Queen root him out of the way on lap 40. Wyatt wasn’t through, though, driving back underneath Queen on lap 41. Behind them, Greg Edwards, who started shotgun on the field in his backup car, bypassed Hughes to crack the top five.
  The second, and final, caution flag appeared on lap 44 when Wyatt spun in Turn 4. The incident erased Edwards Jr.’s lead, which had grown to five car-lengths. Getting ready for the restart, Berry headed for the outside lane, followed by Hughes, Hall and Cabre.
  Back under green, Edwards Jr. won the drag race into Turn 1, relegating Berry to second. Behind them, Queen and Hughes went door-to-door for third. Queen won that skirmish and left the lane open for Greg Edwards and Wertz, who moved up to fourth and fifth, dropping Hughes to sixth.
  On lap 50, Edwards scooted past Queen to pick up the third position. Ahead, his brother had set sail, stretching his lead to nearly half a straightaway.
  At the finish, Danny Edwards Jr. was the winner by 2.334 seconds — better than half a straightaway — over Berry. Greg Edwards was third, followed by Queen and Wertz.
  Hughes, Hall, Sargeant, Cabre and Wyatt rounded out the top 10, while Terry Carroll, Hardin, Bowen, Macy Causey and Byron were also on the lead lap. Waltz was the only retiree and the only driver not to finish the entire distance.
  Returning to Victory Lane for the first time since April 23, 2011, Danny Edwards Jr. was both elated and relieved: “Man, we had two solid runs tonightand I want to thank Rev. Potter for holding this water bottle for three years (actually, four) for me out here. It’s been a long time and I’ve really gotta thank all the guys on this team, and gals, that have been working so hard with me that didn’t give up on me and knew that we could still get it done. Junior Keen, I’m telling ya’ what, man, this guy builds a tremendous engine and I can’t thank him enough. Bobby Creech built us a new car this year and we did a lot of work, putting it all together. Man, this is a great night.”
  The Late Models will be off next Saturday, June 20, as Langley plays host to the Visit Hampton VA 175 for the NASCAR K&N Pro Series East. They will return to action in another pair of 65-lappers on Saturday, June 27.

  In the evening’s other feature events:

  In the 40-lap Pepsi Grand Stock feature, Tommy Sweeney moved out front on lap 38 and scored his second straight victory.
  Jamie Sample was the pole-sitter, at 79.264 mph, sharing the front row with Sweeney. Mark Frye, Andrew Condrey and Thomas Marks rounded out the top five on the grid.
  On the start, Sample and Sweeney raced wheel-to-wheel with Sample eking out a slim lead at the end of the first circuit. He cleared Sweeney on the frontstretch on lap 2. Sweeney settled into second, followed by Frye, Condrey and Marks. On lap 4, Marks swiped fourth from Condrey.
  In the early going, Sample steadily pulled away from the pack, while Frye pestered Sweeney for the runner-up spot. He snagged the position on lap 11, but handed it back on lap 18 when slower traffic came into play.
  Passing the halfway mark, Sample enjoyed a half-straightaway margin over Sweeney. As the laps clicked by, though, Sweeney began to narrow the gap noticeably. By lap 37, he had completely erased Sample’s advantage and was filling his mirror.
  On lap 38, Sweeney went after Sample for the lead, ducking low on the backstretch. Returning to the start/finish line, he was up by half a car-length. Sweeney gained the clear-cut edge in Turn 2 on lap 39 and
motored away.
  At the finish, Sweeney was the winner by 0.740-second — about three car-lengths — over Sample. Marks was third to the line, while Frye and Mark Claar were fourth and fifth, in that order.

  Bobby Hall took the lead for good on lap 8 and survived a “green-white-checkered” sprint at the end to post his second win in the 30-lap KeesVacations.com Pro Six race.
  Landon Florian won the pole position, at 82.296 mph, and shared the front row with Hall. Travis Wall and Casey Sipe made up Row 2, while Cody Carlton lined up in fifth.
  As the race got under way, Hall remained to Florian’s outside and nosed ahead to lead lap 1. Florian rallied on lap 2 and eked out a narrow advantage at the stripe. Hall came back on lap 3, though, and cleared Florian off Turn 2 on lap 4.
  The first caution flag waved on lap 7 when Angela-Marie Steele smacked the wall in Turn 3. Lining up for the restart, Wall, J.B. Sipe, Justin Fuller, Ben Zoellner and Debbie Biesecker opted for the outside lane.
  As the event resumed, Wall stayed even with Hall and pulled ahead by half a car-length at the end of lap 7. Hall led lap 8 and gained the clear-cut edge through Turns 1 and 2 on lap 9. Wall slid back to second, just ahead of Florian. Behind them, Casey and J.B. Sipe went door-to-door for fourth.
  Heading into the second half of the race, Hall was beginning to check out on the field. In his wake, Florian zeroed in on Wall. Florian took over second on lap 22, but faced a steep climb as Hall was up by over half a straightaway.
  Needing a caution flag to have a chance at the win, Florian got his wish on lap 29 when Carlton spun in Turn 4. Gathering for the final restart, Florian and Casey Sipe headed for the high lane. It was a bit of a surprise move for Florian, who has always seemed more at home when he’s hugging the bottom groove.
  Returning to green, Hall scooted ahead of Florian off Turn 2. Wall tagged along with the leader and took over second, while Florian dropped to third.
  At the checkers, Hall was the winner by 0.551-second — about three lengths — over Wall. Florian was third, while Casey Sipe and Dashe McLaughlin rounded out the top five.

  In the evening’s opening event, a 20-lapper for the Rhonnda Claiborne, Realtor HRKC Pro Winged Champ Karts, Tommy Jackson Jr. took the lead for good on lap 12 and motored to his first win of the season.
  Aaron Leach was the pole-sitter, at 61.893 mph, flanked by his brother, Matthew. Tillman Heuer and Mattisen Morrill lined up in Row 2, while Jackson launched from fifth on the 21-kart grid.
  The event got off to a rocky start as Tony Spechio III spun out of the pack in the middle of Turns 1 and 2 on the opening lap and walloped the outside wall, prompting a complete restart.
  Under green for a second time, Aaron Leach pulled the inside line forward, coming away with the lead, followed by Heuer, Jackson and Charlie-Ray Lorah. On lap 2, Jackson and Lorah double-teamed Heuer and moved into second and third.
  Linking up in a tight draft, Aaron Leach, Jackson and Lorah quickly distanced themselves from the pack. Behind them, Matthew Leach and Vaughan Crittenden made their way into fourth and fifth.
  With a push from Lorah, Jackson took the lead for the first time on lap 6, sweeping past Leach on the outside. The shuffle allowed Matthew Leach and Crittenden to catch up to the lead trio. As Aaron Leach fell from the top spot, he hooked up with Matthew Leach and Crittenden and began to move forward again.
  Aaron Leach regained the lead by a nose at the end of lap 8. Four laps later, though, Jackson moved back out front.
  The last of the race’s two caution flags flew on lap 13 when Jonathan Mullett and Cody Carlton both ground to a halt in Turn 3 with mechanical issues.
  On the restart, Jackson led the top seven karts in a breakaway at the head of the field. Within two laps, that group of seven was whittled down to three as Jackson, Lorah and Cullen Roberts pulled away.
  Roberts lost contact with Jackson and Lorah on lap 15 and gave way to Matthew and Aaron Leach on lap 16. A lap later, the Leachs had run down Jackson and Lorah. Their advance was stymied, however, when Lorah and Matthew Leach scuffled briefly at the flagstand.
  Closing in on the finish, the Leachs dropped back a few lengths, perhaps preparing to generate a run at the leaders on the last lap. At the white flag, Jackson and Lorah were up by two lengths.
  With Jackson and Lorah maintaining a disciplined draft on the final circuit, though, the Leachs couldn’t make up the lost ground.
  At the finish, Jackson and Lorah were nose-to-tail. Jackson’s official margin of victory was 77-thousandths of a second. Matthew Leach was third, followed by Aaron Leach and Morrill.
                                • • •
  MEDIA CONTACT:        Gary Daughtrey
                        Home: (757) 657-6741
                        Track: (757) 865-7223
                        E-mail: daughtrey@langley-speedway.com

NASCAR Whelen All-American Series
at Langley Speedway - Hampton, VA
NAPA Auto Parts/Whelen Night
Race Results
Saturday, June 13, 2015

  Race #1:
Fin. Pos. (Car #) Driver; Laps Compl.
1.  (88) Josh Berry; 65
2.  (26) Danny Edwards Jr.; 65
3.  (8)  Tyler Hughes; 65
4.  (2)  Matt Waltz; 65
5.  (55) Mark Wertz; 65
6.  (77) Connor Hall; 65
7.  (03) Brenden Queen; 65
8.  (9)  William Byron; 65
9.  (51) Dalton Sargeant; 65
10. (6)  Collin Cabre; 65
11. (4)  Natalie Decker; 65
12. (7)  Michael Hardin; 65
13. (90) Terry Carroll; 64
14. (33) Macy Causey; 64
15. (77x)Bruce Livingston; 57
16. (19) Cameron Bowen; 54
17. (92) Casey Wyatt; 42
18. (08) Mike Weddell; 5
19. (97) Greg Edwards; 2
20. (97x)Justin Carroll; 1
Pole: Hughes - 89.137 mph.

  Race #2:
Fin. Pos. (Car #) Driver; Laps Compl.
1.  (26) Danny Edwards Jr.; 65
2.  (88) Josh Berry; 65
3.  (97) Greg Edwards; 65
4.  (03) Brenden Queen; 65
5.  (55) Mark Wertz; 65
6.  (8)  Tyler Hughes; 65
7.  (77) Connor Hall; 65
8.  (51) Dalton Sargeant; 65
9.  (6)  Collin Cabre; 65
10. (92) Casey Wyatt; 65
11. (90) Terry Carroll; 65
12. (7)  Michael Hardin; 65
13. (19) Cameron Bowen; 65
14. (33) Macy Causey; 65
15. (9)  William Byron; 65
16. (2)  Matt Waltz; 43
Pole: Berry - via Race #1 finish.

Fin. Pos. (Car #) Driver; Laps Compl.
1.  (11) Tommy Sweeney; 40
2.  (28) Jamie Sample; 40
3.  (88) Thomas Marks; 40
4.  (29) Mark Frye; 40
5.  (7)  Mark Claar; 40
6.  (36) Andrew Condrey; 40
7.  (6)  Shawn Scovel; 40
8.  (75) Jeff Driskill; 39
9.  (5)  Jonathan White; 28
Pole: Sample - 79.264 mph.

Fin. Pos. (Car #) Driver; Laps Compl.
1.  (26) Bobby Hall; 30
2.  (44) Travis Wall; 30
3.  (98) Landon Florian; 30
4.  (23) Casey Sipe; 30
5.  (21) Dashe McLaughlin; 30
6.  (94) Cody Carlton; 30
7.  (03) Justin Fuller; 30
8.  (57) Ben Zoellner; 30
9.  (4)  Debbie Biesecker; 30
10. (14) J.B. Sipe; 29
11. (10) Maddy Mulligan; 28
12. (47) Angela-Marie Steele; 5
Pole: Florian - 82.296 mph.

Fin. Pos. (Car #) Driver; Laps Compl.
1.  (8)  Tommy Jackson Jr.; 20
2.  (59) Charlie-Ray Lorah; 20
3.  (51) Matthew Leach; 20
4.  (45) Aaron Leach; 20
5.  (39) Mattisen Morrill; 20
6.  (24) Vaughan Crittenden; 20
7.  (27) Cullen Roberts; 20
8.  (71) Shawn Gervais; 20
9.  (63) John Savage; 20
10. (47) Angela-Marie Steele; 20
11. (52) Chris Bechtel; 20
12. (26) Robert Pellek; 20
13. (14) Tillman Heuer; 20
14. (25) Cody Espinoza; 20
15. (41) Brian McGhee; 19
16. (73) Harry Leach; 18
17. (28) Gary Osbourne; 18
18. (01) Jesse Call; 12
19. (94) Cody Carlton; 11
20. (95) Jonathan Mullett; 9
21. (34) Tony Spechio III; 0
Pole: A. Leach - 61.893 mph.

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