David Clegg

BORN TO BE WILD: Tropical Storms Stay Away, New Drivers Race To 2022 Victory Lane

The week leading up to the Wild Card 25 was nothing short of speculation, worry and anticipation. After talks of there being a tropical storm to ravage the night of racing, there was consideration of cancellation. Instead, the track management pushed on for racing and it was the best decision to make.

 

The Wild Card name lived up to the night provided, however. Unlikely winners and new faces to the 2022 victory lane made the night special.

 

Mikey Kopka has been mentioned many times throughout the 2022 season with one question; when will he break the bad luck? The Pierson native has come close so many times and was just unable to close the deal at the end of the night. That was until the 602 late models raced last night. Barring challenges from Lenny Dallman and Travis Staats, Kopka threw the monkey off his shoulders and cashed in the $700 in his 1A machine.

 

  1. 1A-Mikey Kopka[3]; 2. 18-Austin Leamon[7]; 3. 1AR-Travis Staats[4]; 4. 99-Colton Blair[2]; 5. 21D-Lenny Dallman[1]; 6. 57-Fletcher Mason[5]; 7. 35D-Justin Dean[6]; 8. 12-Billy Gast[9]; 9. 31-Tim Swartz[8]; 10. (DNF) 47-Michael Ridgeway[12]; 11. (DNF) M51-Mark Steube[10]; 12. (DNF) 3C-Cale Gilbert[11]; 13. (DNF) 23-Jason Papp[13]

The headliner for the Wild Card was the DIRTcar UMP Modifieds. A season high 22 cars made up the field for the $1,500 to win feature event. The race was controlled mostly by the 21J of Clay Harris. Harris started 5th and easily made his way up to lead the field. After a late race caution, the 21J was jumped on the restart and couldn’t make up the time lost. The man that took the race over was none other than points leader Seth Geary. Geary crossed under the line to get his third win of the season, including another tally mark to extend his points lead.

 

  1. 7G-Seth Geary[6]; 2. 67-Garret Stewart[9]; 3. 21J-Clay Harris[5]; 4. 51-Dalton Lanich[2]; 5. 15-Hunter Gustafson[4]; 6. 80-Paul Shead[1]; 7. 11Z-Zane Oedewaldt[11]; 8. 3S-Josh Sanford[15]; 9. 17-Patrick Vareika[7]; 10. 34P-Jim Passino[18]; 11. 3-Tony Campbell[17]; 12. 34-Rob Giffen[16]; 13. 37-Eddie Scarberry[14]; 14. (DNF) 00-Buzzie Reutimann[13]; 15. (DNF) 11P-Charlie Phillips[21]; 16. (DNF) 1P-Mike Phillips[19]; 17. (DNF) 91-Jamie Green[12]; 18. (DNF) 22K-Dale Kelley[8]; 19. (DNF) 2-Joshua Kunstbeck[22]; 20. (DNF) 18-Eric Moon[3]; 21. (DNF) 2D-Ray Durrence Jr[20]; 22. (DNS) 7S-Ronnie Chance

The 604 late models was what the event almost ended with. Past lap 11, the race was stopped for rain coming into the area. It had sprinkled a few times prior to the cars going green, but nothing too serious. Fortunately, the rain stopped and added enough water to the track to help make the track tackier and faster. For the eventual winner, David Clegg, he talked about how he thought the track would be a disadvantage to him because he had struggled in the lead prior to the rain. 

 

When the race went back green, Clegg led the final 11 laps to be completed and gets his first win of 2022 under his belt.

 

  1. 07-David Clegg[6]; 2. 5-Dustin Carter[3]; 3. 51K-Mikey Kopka[2]; 4. 721-Joe Kump[10]; 5. 75-Sonny Thompson[5]; 6. 54T-Tuck Trentham[8]; 7. 12-Robert Gast[7]; 8. 26-Bill Adkins[9]; 9. 46C-Hamp Conley[12]; 10. RP1-David Castello[13]; 11. (DNF) 10S-Steve Shead[11]; 12. (DNF) 41-Derike Bennett[4]; 13. (DNF) 11K-Joshua Kunstbeck[1]

The Thunder Stocks were led and controlled by two men all night; Shaun Daugharty and Mike Tovet. Throughout the feature. They continued swapping the lead from each other until Tovet left everyone in the dust to collect the win in a caution free event.

 

  1. 1SHOT-Mike Tovet[4]; 2. 00-Shaun Daugharty[2]; 3. 20-Justin Reynolds[3]; 4. 1-Tanner Thomas[1]; 5. 9AR-Charlie Staats[6]; 6. 30-Chris Jeune[5]; 7. 73S-David Szczepanik[8]; 8. 96J-Scott Haas[11]; 9. 10S-Ronnie Scarberry[7]; 10. 27-Wesley Morgan[9]; 11. (DNS) 38-Charles King

Jimmy Wagner made the Street Stock feature his walk in the park for the entire 20 laps. He led from green to checkered and was close to lapping the field up to third by the end of lap 20. The win makes it his second, with a points lead to now be in sight.

The next event for the World’s Fastest Half Mile is the Bad Fast 30. Gates open at 4:00, with Hot Laps to follow at 6:00. Be sure to come out, or watch the broadcasting action live on DIRTVision. We’ll see you then!

A CLASSIC DOGFIGHT: Top Gun Sprint Cars Return To Volusia and The Kids School The Late Models

The return of the Top Gun Sprint Car Series, young guns claiming the late models, and fast paced action were the ingredients to what made tonight’s Top Gun Classic worth the wait.

 

Even though it doesn’t feel that long, the Top Gun Sprint Cars returned to the World’s Fastest Half Mile for their first of three races at the track for their 2022 campaign. Tonight, it was all the Danny Martin Jr show as he dominated the majority of the times he was out on track. He started the night out by winning his heat race with Brandon Grubaugh challenging at times. 

 

After an invert and starting 7th, Martin quickly made up ground and took the lead early in the program. From that point on, it was all eyes on him as he led over five seconds for the majority of the feature. Cautions and lap cars didn’t do him in either, as he led with Grubaugh behind him to take the Top Gun win. It’s his 6th win of the season, making his championship bid early in the 24 car.

 

  1. 24-Danny Martin Jr[7]; 2. G6-Brandon Grubaugh[6]; 3. 82-Garrett Green[8]; 4. 21B-Brandon McLain[4]; 5. 10TRB-Bob Martin[11]; 6. 6S-Robbie Smith[5]; 7. 26-Jeff Bye[1]; 8. 97B-Dustin Burtron[3]; 9. 14-Danny Jones[13]; 10. 67-Jacob McLain[9]; 11. 20-Frank Carlsson Jr[10]; 12. 13-Nathan Barouch[2]; 13. (DNF) 0X-Clint Weiss[12]; 14. (DNS) 32-Andrew Griffin; 15. (DNS) 12B-Bryan Eckley; 16. (DNS) 41-Matt Kurtz

 

In the 604 Late Models, it was looking to be David Clegg’s race throughout the majority of the night.. That was until Trey Mills had something to say about it.

 

Winning his heat, Mills was bound to start the night smooth. He had competition all around the 20 lap feature from Jackson Hise, Mark Fleischer and Clegg. But at the end, the fourteen year old driver took home the $1,000 check after getting past Clegg with a few laps to go.

 

  1. 14JR-Trey Mills[5]; 2. 07-David Clegg[2]; 3. 18B-Mark Fleischer[1]; 4. 388-Jackson Hise[9]; 5. 54T-Tuck Trentham[6]; 6. 51K-Mikey Kopka[4]; 7. 12-Robert Gast[13]; 8. 5-Dustin Carter[7]; 9. 51A-Larry Anderson[8]; 10. 721-Joe Kump[14]; 11. 10S-Steve Shead[11]; 12. 46C-Hamp Conley[10]; 13. (DNF) 15M-Chris Meyer[12]; 14. (DNF) 7-Jason Fitzgerald[3]

 

Mills wasn’t the only young gun to win in a late model tonight through all the chaos and excitement of the 602 Late Models. At the start of the feature, it was looking like it would be the night where Mikey Kopka would have all his gremlins sorted out and get home the win in the late models. However, Kole Platt and Jackson Hise challenged Kopka for the lead, with Platt leading the final few laps.

 

When a late race caution came out, Platt went slow on the throttle and opened the door for Hise. He took the lead going into turn one and didn’t look back the rest of the way. This marks Hise’s 2nd win at Volusia this season and could be some added momentum into the Gator Nationals.

 

  1. 388-Jackson Hise[6]; 2. 1A-Mikey Kopka[3]; 3. 44P-Kole Platt[9]; 4. M51-Mark Steube[2]; 5. 14JR-Trey Mills[4]; 6. 1AR-Travis Staats[8]; 7. 18-Austin Leamon[7]; 8. 31-Tim Swartz[1]; 9. 21D-Lenny Dallman[11]; 10. 99-Colton Blair[10]; 11. 12-Billy Gast[12]; 12. 3C-Cale Gilbert[15]; 13. (DNF) *69-Brad Fender Jr[14]; 14. (DNF) 18R-Bubba Roling[5]; 15. (DNF) 11-J R Gray[13]

 

The final two laps were nothing short of heart racing for Chris Olmstead and Timmy Hogan in the ¾ modifieds. Throughout the night, the two drivers swapped the lead through both their heat race and feature. Even with cautions being thrown almost every five laps for the chaos, it also made the show closer and exciting.

 

Coming into turn one with two to go, Timmy Hogan lost brakes and drove high into turn one, easily giving Olmstead the lead. All of a sudden after exiting turn two, Olmstead ran out of fuel and began sputtering. Hogan retook the lead and won. A closing Korbin Minchew finished second, so he will continue to lead the points.

 

  1. 26-Timmy Hogan[2]; 2. 23K-Korbin Minchew[3]; 3. 99-Wade Olmsted[7]; 4. 23L-Lawton Minchew[4]; 5. 32P-Jesse Powers[15]; 6. 26L-Colton Lane[14]; 7. 51-Dustin Peterson[6]; 8. 7-Chris Olmstead[1]; 9. 57-Nathyn Hwan[11]; 10. 0-CR Hill[16]; 11. (DNF) 21-Robert Fleming Jr[10]; 12. (DNF) 21J-Jeff Newton[12]; 13. (DNF) 72-Van Rayburn[8]; 14. (DNF) 67-Tad Olmsted[5]; 15. (DNF) 27-Steven Powers[9]; 16. (DNF) 10-Ethyn Hwan[13]

 

Finally, the Street Stocks was nothing but the Jimmy Wagner Show. The Reutimann Racing driver won his heat race earlier in the evening and was smooth the whole race. It’ll be a major gain if he continues to race for the Street Stock championship when November arrives.

 

  1. 17W-Jimmy Wagner[3]; 2. 17-Alan Peacock[1]; 3. 72-Bruce Griffin[9]; 4. Y7-Zach Yakaboski[4]; 5. 7R-Rick O’Steen[5]; 6. 11K-Kameron McGauley[10]; 7. 46F-Chuck Frater[7]; 8. 1-Patrick Thomas[6]; 9. 63-Chris Lawrence[15]; 10. 83F-Kody Fisher[14]; 11. 9-Gavin VanHoose[12]; 12. (DNF) 40-Clayton Ruth[8]; 13. (DNF) C5-Stephen Copeland[11]; 14. (DNF) 388-Walt Kahr[13]; 15. (DNF) 99-Rodney Wright[2]; 16. (DNS) B11-Buddy Higgins

 

The next race at the World’s Fastest Half Mile will be the Gator Nationals. Gates open at 4:00 with Hot Laps at 6:00. The racing will also be broadcasted live on DIRTVision. We’ll see you then!

 

The 2020 Door Closer

Cool temperatures and hot racing were on tap for the final night of the 2020 season at Volusia Speedway Park. As always, the side-by-side racing was at its best and fans got everything they could ever want from a Saturday night show at the World’s Fastest Half Mile!

The Florida Late Models kicked off the feature events with David Clegg putting on an exhibition in his #07 Snow Brothers Chassis. Clegg pulled out to a big lead early and never looked back. Kunstbeck in the #11 contended for second early before falling back, leaving the #84 of Gray and the #721 of Kump to battle it out for the runner up position. Kump eventually secured the position with five to g,o but the night belonged to Clegg, who went on to win and bank a cool $1500 in winnings!

The DIRTcar UMP Modifieds were running for $1200, and 20 cars lined up to take their shot at the cash prize. Pole-sitter Eric Moon took the early lead, but after a caution on lap three David Reutimann made a quick pass in turn one to grab the lead. Seth Geary worked his way to second challenging Reutimann right to the end, but Reutimann held on to take the win and a nice pay day. Geary came home in second, and Garver brought the #27 home in third.

The Thunder Stocks were up next. Ron Adams led the early laps of this race, holding off early challenges from the #17 of Alan Peacock. As the laps ticked off Jason Garver worked his way up to challenge Adams, but the big mover of the night was Joe Belkey. The fifteenth place starting position isn’t normally where you look to find the eventual winner of a race, but by lap 7 Belkey was challenging Adams, and after a three-wide battle that included Garver, Belkey once and for all put his #112 Monte Carlo out front and cruised to a win and a $750 pay day. Garver held on for second ,and pole-sitter Joey Haslauer came back to finish third.

The ¾ mods were the fourth feature on the night. Pole-sitter Paul Shead has been hard to beat all year and after he jumped out front it looked as if the result would once again be the same, but Pat Vareika stormed up beside Shead on lap two to take the lead and pulled away to take the win. Shead held on for second, and young Mason Olmsted made a last-lap pass on the outside to take third from Tim Hogan.

Jimmy Wagner led the Street Stocks to the green flag, but Tuck Trentham led the first lap. A veteran of racing at Volusia Speedway Park, Trentham looked untouchable in the early laps, but a familiar name from earlier in the evening found his way to the front after a three-wide pass on the outside of turn four. Thunder Stock winner Joe Belkey put his #119 car out front and held off multiple challenges for the lead from Trentham to take the Street Stock win and bank another $750 on the night. Chris Lawrence used a late-race restart to move up to the second position, while Trentham brought his car home in third.

The Compact 4s were the final race of the night and the final race of the 2020 season. In an almost Cat in the Hat-like rhyme Todd Latour in his Compact 4 shut the door on the 2020 season. Leading every lap and gapping the field, Latour was never challenged, taking the win and $150.

With that the 2020 season has come to an end. We return to action in January for the DIRTcar Sunshine Nationals, followed by the legendary DIRTcar Nationals. Get your tickets now!