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Langley Speedway News
Danny Edwards Jr. wires field in '09 opener
Apr 12, 2009 - updated Apr 12th, 2009 12:41pm
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Hampton, VA --
NASCAR Whelen All-American Series at Langley Speedway
Hampton Roads Toyota Dealers Night Race Report Saturday, April 11, 2009
Beginning his quest for a third straight track championship, Danny Edwards Jr. turned in a dominating performance to notch the victory in the Hampton Roads Toyota Dealers 100 for the Crossroads Fuel Service Late Model Stock Cars, the featured event of Saturday evening?s season-opening NASCAR Whelen All-American Series program at Langley Speedway.
Edwards bagged the pole position in late afternoon qualifying, touring the .395-mile oval at 87.551 mph. C.E. Falk was second-quickest, only 23-thousandths of a second off Edwards? pace. Woody Howard, Paul DeBolt and Dean Shiflett filled spots 3-5 on the 17-car starting grid.
As the race got under way, Edwards leaped ahead of Falk and took the lead into Turn 1. Before the first lap was officially in the books, however, trouble broke out as DeBolt, Shiflett and sixth-place starter Greg Edwards piled up at the end of the backstretch. All three drivers were relegated to the sidelines for the duration, while the rest of the field lined up for a complete restart.
Under green for a second time, Edwards pulled out front as the pack exited Turn 2. Howard rushed to fill the void to the inside of Falk and came away with the runner-up position. Falk settled into third, followed by Mark Wertz and John Staton.
On lap 9, Falk slipped back around Howard to regain second place. The exchange allowed Edwards to increase his advantage to almost half a straightaway. He would maintain that edge to the crossed flags.
Just past the halfway mark, at lap 51, fifth-place Staton and the lapped machine of Terry Carroll tangled in Turn 1 to prompt the second caution flag, wiping out Edwards? comfortable margin.
Lining up for the restart, Edwards enjoyed a buffer of two lapped cars between himself and Falk. Returning to green, he took full advantage of the situation, quickly regaining his half-straightaway lead, while Falk battled past the slower traffic.
The third, and final, caution flag fluttered on lap 63 when Aaron Adams got out of shape off Turn 2 and came to a stop in the middle of the backstretch.
Gathering for what would turn out to be the final restart, Falk was parked squarely on Edwards? rear bumper with Howard just behind. Wertz and Jeff Shiflett were fourth and fifth, respectively.
As the race resumed, Falk latched onto Edwards in a bid for the lead. He was able to stay with Edwards for a couple laps, then the leader began to ease away. Meanwhile, Howard had come to life and was closing on Falk.
While the front three sorted themselves out, the action was heating up deeper in the field as Shiflett challenged Wertz for the fourth spot, eventually taking the position on lap 76. Two laps later, Adams, having recovered from his misadventure, swiped fifth from Wertz. Continuing his rally, Adams bypassed Shiflett for fourth on lap 81.
Heading into the final 10 circuits, Edwards was up by over half a straightaway. Lapped traffic loomed ahead, however. Rather than risk a mad dash into a pack of slower machines, Edwards slowed the pace, giving up a few lengths from his lead, but keeping himself in a more comfortable position.
At the finish, Edwards was the winner by 1.277 seconds over Falk. Adams overtook Howard on lap 97 to snag third. Howard was fourth, while Shiflett grabbed fifth from Staton on lap 96.
Wertz was sixth to the line, followed by Staton, the final driver to complete the entire distance. Wesley Falk, Tiffany Daniels and Shawn Balluzzo were eighth, ninth and 10th, in that order, all one lap down.
In Victory Lane after the race, Edwards welcomed the start of a new season: ?It?s been a long winter. Just glad to get back out here and get started again. Lot of anxious moments. We let one slip by at the end of last year, the last race of the season, got involved in a wreck there, had to rebuild the car, so we were unsure about how it was gonna run this year. But, I think tonight eased my mind a little bit. The car was definitely pretty good. We were able to get out front and pace a little bit.?
In the evening?s other feature events:
Thanks to a pre-race miscue by fast qualifier Shawn Balluzzo, Chris Johnson landed on the pole for the start of the 50-lap B&C Seafood Modified feature. It was the only lucky break he?d need as he showed the way from flag-to-flag to pick up the win.
Balluzzo was tops in time trials, at 84.809 mph. Buster Horne Jr. was second-fastest, followed by Johnson, Rusty Wood and Michael Leech.
As the field circulated behind the pace truck prior to the initial green flag, Balluzzo suddenly pulled out of line. He had taken to the track without his fire-resistant gloves ? a Langley requirement ? and had to wait for a crew member to retrieve them. He rejoined the tail of the field, while Johnson moved up to the inside of Row 1.
On the start, Johnson got the jump on Horne and hauled the field off into Turn 1. Horne dropped into second place, followed by Wood, Joe Scarbrough and Leech. Within the first few laps, Johnson was able to pull away by five or six lengths as Wood hounded Horne for second.
On lap 7, Wood and Scarbrough slipped past Horne, dropping him from second to fourth. Cameron Patrick scooted by on the following circuit as Horne fell to fifth. The shuffle allowed Johnson to extend his lead to better than half a straightaway.
Gradually, Wood began to chip away at Johnson?s advantage. By the halfway mark, he had whittled the lead down to just a couple car-lengths. As the event continued, however, Johnson began to edge away from the pack.
Meanwhile, Balluzzo was marching from the rear of the pack. He cracked the top five on lap 16, picked off Patrick for fourth on lap 32 and snagged third from Scarbrough on lap 43. Within a couple laps, he was on Wood?s bumper and looking for second.
Balluzzo grabbed the runner-up spot from Wood in Turns 3 and 4 on lap 46 and set off after Johnson, who had driven away by nearly half a straightaway.
At the finish, time ran out on Balluzzo?s back-to-front rally as Johnson won by four lengths. Wood was third to the stripe, followed by Scarbrough and Patrick.
Ryan Nester started on the pole, at 74.732 mph, and led all the way to win the 50-lap lid-lifter for the Atlantic Power Sweeping Super Streets.
As in the Modified event, missing gloves factored into the outcome as several drivers, including four of the top six, had to pull into the pits before the race to pick up the safety gear, losing their starting spots in the process.
When the green flag flew, Nester motored into the lead, followed by Doug Woodyard and Larry Venable. Before the first lap was completed, though, the caution flag waved as Randy Akers, Sean Calway and Jerry LaMontagne tied up in Turns 3 and 4. All three drivers were sidelined by the incident, a particularly tough pill for Akers to swallow, since he had to give up the outside pole before the start.
Back under green, Nester again jumped into the lead. Venable tagged along and took over second place, followed by John Foster, Randy Sample and a side-by-side battle between Rod Busitzky and Woodyard.
The second caution flag appeared on lap 4 when someone strayed a bit off-track in Turn 3 and kicked some water up onto the racing surface.
As the race resumed, Nester pulled out to a three-length advantage over Venable. Behind them, Busitzky snagged fifth from Woodyard and opened the door for Jamie Sample and Jonathan Mullett.
Lap 8 found the Sample brothers on the move as Randy took over third place from Foster, while Jamie scooted past Busitzky for fifth.
By lap 16, Randy Sample had closed in on Venable and was looking for the runner-up spot. With Sample?s #24 car filling his mirror, Venable began to close ground on the leader. At the halfway mark, Nester?s margin had been trimmed to little more than a car-length.
Randy Sample slipped by Venable for the second spot on lap 30 and quickly drove away. The swap of positions, however, allowed Nester to pad his lead. And, as the laps clicked off, the margin continued to swell.
At the finish, Nester was the winner by better than half a straightaway over Randy Sample. Foster was third, followed by Jamie Sample and Mullett. After running in the lead pack for most of the race, Venable faltered down the stretch, finally retiring to a 12th-place finish.
Pole starter Tommy Nixon paced the 25-lap Med Express Urgent Care Super Truck race from green to checkers to pick up the victory.
Nixon?s pole-winning speed was 74.724 mph. Brad Adams started on the outside of Row 1, while Troy Turnage, Robbie Davis and Chase McAdams filled spots 3-5.
On the opening lap, Nixon and Adams jostled a bit in Turns 1 and 2 and Adams? truck went around to bring out the caution flag. Davis, the defending division champ, replaced Adams on the front row as the field bunched for a complete restart.
Under green for a second time, Nixon powered ahead, while Davis dropped into second place. Turnage, Paul Hogge Sr. and McAdams emerged from the shuffle in third, fourth and fifth, respectively.
By lap 8, Nixon had opened a lead of almost half a straightaway over Davis. Meanwhile, deeper in the field, Adams was steadily making his way back toward the front. He moved past McAdams for fifth on lap 10, grabbed fourth from Turnage on the following circuit, then took third from Hogge on lap 18.
The second caution flag flew on lap 20 when Mike Bridwell spun at the start/finish line.
Only one more lap was completed before big trouble broke out on the backstretch, ending with Aaron Baker?s truck resting on its side. Sixth-place Turnage also caught a heavy piece of the action and joined Baker on the sidelines.
Back under green, Nixon, Davis and Adams bolted from the pack. Reaching Turn 1, Adams swiped the second spot from Davis and set off after the leader, who had pulled away by four lengths.
At the checkers, Nixon was the winner by nearly half a straightaway over Adams. Davis was third, followed by Hogge and McAdams.
After weathering a tough 2008 season, Randy Prillaman greeted the 2009 EZ Auto of Newport News UCAR campaign with guns a-blazin?. He set a new division record in qualifying ? 71.565 mph ? and backed it up with a flag-to-flag victory in the 25-lap feature contest.
Greg Pass shared the front row with Prillaman and provided a constant challenge for the race winner, finishing just three lengths back. Adam Florian, who won the final two races of ?08, was third to the line, followed by Robbie Salas and Matt Hockaday.
The race was slowed by three caution flags and 14 of the 23 starters finished on the lead lap.
With a drafting boost from David Phelps, Jeremy Grogg moved out front on lap 15 and rolled to victory in a 20-lapper for the Rhonnda Claiborne, Realtor HRKC Pro Winged Champ Karts.
Chuck Weeks started on the pole, at 60.282 mph, and led the first 14 circuits before giving way to the Grogg/Phelps tandem.
Phelps rode Grogg?s bumper until the final lap when he swung wide off Turn 4. He couldn?t overtake Grogg at the checkers, though, finishing just 89-thousandths of a second behind. Weeks was third, while Ron Foxx and Richard Harberts completed the top five.
CROSSROADS FUEL SERVICE
LATE MODEL STOCK CARS - 100 laps
Fin. Pos. (Car #) Driver; Laps Compl.
1. (26) Danny Edwards Jr.; 100
2. (40) C.E. Falk; 100
3. (6) Aaron Adams; 100
4. (21) Woody Howard; 100
5. (01) Jeff Shiflett; 100
6. (55) Mark Wertz; 100
7. (17) John Staton; 100
8. (41) Wesley Falk; 99
9. (14) Tiffany Daniels; 99
10. (48) Shawn Balluzzo; 99
11. (4) Matt Waltz; 99
12. (90) Terry Carroll; 98
13. (1) Kyle Waltz; 91
14. (12) Doug Warren; 15
15. (34) Paul DeBolt; 0
16. (06) Dean Shiflett; 0
17. (27) Greg Edwards; 0
Pole: D. Edwards - 87.551 mph.
B&C SEAFOOD MODIFIEDS - 50 laps
Fin. Pos. (Car #) Driver; Laps Compl.
1. (36) Chris Johnson; 50
2. (48) Shawn Balluzzo; 50
3. (69) Rusty Wood; 50
4. (30) Joe Scarbrough; 50
5. (20) Cameron Patrick; 50
6. (6) Buster Horne Jr.; 50
7. (5) Michael Leech; 50
8. (12) Jimmy Humblet; 48
9. (33) Rob Wells; 45
10. (7) Steve Wagner; 41
Pole: Balluzzo - 84.809 mph.
ATLANTIC POWER SWEEPING
SUPER STREETS - 50 laps
Fin. Pos. (Car #) Driver; Laps Compl.
1. (51) Ryan Nester; 50
2. (24) Randy Sample; 50
3. (01) John Foster; 50
4. (28) Jamie Sample; 50
5. (95) Jonathan Mullett; 50
6. (3) Jeramie Wood; 50
7. (81) Jeff Shannon; 50
8. (2) Rod Busitzky; 50
9. (58) Doug Woodyard; 50
10. (55) Michael Farmer; 50
11. (09) Harry VanGuilder; 48
12. (14) Larry Venable; 45
13. (92) Jack Robinson; 19
14. (03) Jerry LaMontagne; 0
15. (21) Randy Akers; 0
16. (12) Sean Calway; 0
Pole: Nester - 74.732 mph.
MED EXPRESS URGENT CARE
SUPER TRUCKS - 25 laps
Fin. Pos. (Truck #) Driver; Laps Compl.
1. (8) Tommy Nixon; 25
2. (51) Brad Adams; 25
3. (17) Robbie Davis; 25
4. (1) Paul Hogge Sr.; 25
5. (22) Chase McAdams; 25
6. (13) Mike Bridwell; 25
7. (52) Chris Bechtel; 25
8. (18) Cory Millard; 25
9. (20) Buck Munger; 24
10. (7) Lloyd Holbrook; 23
11. (90) Troy Turnage; 20
12. (4) Tory Vaughn IV; 20
13. (00) Aaron Baker; 19
14. (21) Rick Potter; 11
15. (14) Debbie Biesecker; 3
Pole: Nixon - 74.724 mph.
EZ AUTO OF NEWPORT NEWS
UCARS - 25 laps
Fin. Pos. (Car #) Driver; Laps Compl.
1. (26) Randy Prillaman; 25
2. (75) Greg Pass; 25
3. (80) Adam Florian; 25
4. (25) Robbie Salas; 25
5. (68) Matt Hockaday; 25
6. (01) Renno Marchetti IV; 25
7. (22) Bill Eaker; 25
8. (1) Johnny Pereira; 25
9. (98) Matt Morgan; 25
10. (89) Allen Dail; 25
11. (57) Ben Zoellner; 25
12. (6) Paul Hogge Jr.; 25
13. (2) Michael Waters; 25
14. (71) Chris Hildebrand; 25
15. (36) Andrew Condrey; 24
16. (27) William Whitehurst; 24
17. (72) Rich Cooper; 22
18. (10) John Matthews; 18
19. (3) John Reardon; 17
20. (04) Doug Patrick; 14
21. (13) Larry Drommerhausen; 13
22. (88) Ron Shumate; 10
23. (20) Michael Joyner; 1
Pole: Prillaman - 71.565 mph.
(NEW DIVISION RECORD)
RHONNDA CLAIBORNE, REALTOR
HRKC PRO WINGED CHAMP KARTS - 20 laps
Fin. Pos. (Kart #) Driver; Laps Compl.
1. (81) Jeremy Grogg; 20
2. (46) David Phelps; 20
3. (31) Chuck Weeks; 20
4. (55) Ron Foxx; 20
5. (80) Richard Harberts; 20
6. (4) Mike Dayton; 20
7. (00) Bill Dailey; 20
8. (99) Chris O'Brien; 20
9. (05) Tim Benefield; 20
10. (63) Clif Savage; 19
11. (64) John Savage; 19
12. (9) Eddie Mitchell; 19
13. (28) Robert Peach; 19
14. (25) Adam Chalkley; 19
15. (88) Robert West; 18
16. (8) Dannie Wyatt; 4
Pole: Weeks - 60.282 mph.
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