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THR race recaps, 4/29/06

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Thunder Hill Raceway

24801 IH 35, Kyle Texas

Race Office (512) 262-1352

Press Office Phone (281) 482-6798

Press Office Fax (281) 648-4601


Casey Smith Tops Big Weekend At Thunder Hill Raceway

By: Pat Mayberry


Eight classes of cars rolled into Thunder hill Raceway Saturday night for what promised to be a great night of racing featuring the USRA Super Late Models in the Texas Speed Zone 125. However, Mother Nature cause track officials to work throughout the night pumping water out of the infield from the heavy thunderstorms that rolled across the area late Friday night. But when the pit gates flew open at 10:00 AM, owners Brian Calloway and Mary Ann Naumann told drivers they would be ready to start practice about 45 minutes behind schedule, but we would be able to race tonight.


Casey Smith, who won the season opener at San Antonio Speedway, was looking forward to coming back to his hometown track where he won his first ROMCO Super late Model race before the series was sold to USRA. In qualifying for the Texas Sped Zone 125, Smith was again the man to beat after setting fast time for the night. However, Chris Davidson drew the pole spot for the field inversion while smith ended up on the outside of the front row.


Davidson led the first 53 laps of the night but on lap 54, Smith worked over Davidson’s bumper pretty hard to get him loose and slid underneath to grab the lead. From that point Smith showed his power and drove away from the rest of the field. Top five for the Texas Speed Zone 125 were Casey Smith, Chris Davidson, Greg Davidson, Bradley Riethmeyer and Kent Baltzell.


The oldest touring series in Texas, the Texas Pro Sedans, showed that Donnie Moore is still the man to beat in the series. Moore and his Volkswagen Sirocco grabbed a win in the heat race and then took the lead on the first lap of their 20 lap feature on his way to a fourth straight series victory. The top five chasing Moore under the checkers was Sergio Hexsel, Randy Larson, Joshua Tuttle and Mike Knotts.


After engine trouble claimed several cars during qualifying, a small field took the track for the Double Oak Construction Sportsman Modified 30 lap feature. Jerry Schild led the pack from the start with H. E. Naumann and Mike Williams battling hard most of the night for second and third. Williams finally won the battle finishing second with Naumann a close third and Ronnie Loomis taking fourth as the checkers flew.


The Lone Star Legacy’s saw Trey Mitchell grab fast time in qualifying with a quick 17.050 effort. Unfortunately for Mitchell, early trouble would send him to the pits for the night. Matt Hodge grabbed the lead on the first lap and was able to hold off a hard charging group of cars all night long as six cautions kept the field tight most of the night. The top five following Hodge across the stripe was Dillon Spreen, John Riley, Jake Kruger and Tom Harwell.


In the Grand Stock class Ray Wiley claimed the first heat race win and James Lynch Jr. grabbed the second heat win. As the cars lined up for their feature, Richard Fitch took the early lead, but Lynch Jr. showed why he is the reigning series champion when he went to the outside on lap two, getting by for the lead and held on for the victory. Top five were Lynch Jr., Byron Reed, Jody Wayne Stewart, 2005 Rookie of the Year - Travis O’Brien and Ray Wiley.


The Hobby Stock class saw Roy Loveday claim the first heat victory and Kevin Bowen take the checkers in the second heat. Dave Loveday started on the pole in the feature with Gary Chancellor close behind exiting turn one. Chancellor saw an opening on lap two and got by for the lead and never looked back. Chancellor led his son, Gary Chancellor Jr. under the waving double checkers followed by Kevin Bowen, 2005 Rookie of the Year and Series Champion Cody Smith and Joey Tschoerner rounded out the top five.


The A-Line Street Stock division saw David Webster take the opening heat win with David Hassinger claiming the second heat prize. Chris Birmingham looked like he might break up the David and David show when he took the early lead and led the opening half of the 30 lap feature. But trouble in the form of a flat tire cost Birmingham his shot. As Webster took over the top spot he checked out on the rest of the field and the race was for second. Trailing Webster was Hassinger, Bobby Teer Jr. Doug Ayers and defending series champion - Cary Strapp rounded out the top five.


In quite possibly the most exciting class of the night, the NASKARTS, put on another great show of drafting and passing. Lyndon Kirk came out on top followed by Jason Marshall, Mike Steinman, K. W. Stanko and Chris Lapenski rounding out the top five.


The next racing weekend scheduled for Thunder Hill Raceway will be May 27th when the Texas Super Late Model series return for their second visit of the season on the quick high banked 3/8 mile oval. Joining the Texas Super Late Models will be the Texas Pro Sedans, the NASKARTS, the THR Hobby Stocks, A-Line Street Stocks, Grand Stocks, Dwarf’s and Lone Star Legacy’s. There will also be a very special JRA Kid’s Club Bike race. For more information or tickets to Thunder Hill Raceway please visit their web site at www.thunderhillraceway.com or call them at (512) 262-1352.

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