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Chris Davidsion wins at TMS


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For Immediate Release – June 10, 2006

Contact: Nick Holt, USRA Media Director

(210) 415-1251

(210) 690-8564

cnholt@sbcglobal.net

nick@texasspeedzone.com

 

 

 

Chris Davidson Cruises to USRA Super Speedway Win at Texas Motor Speedway

 

by J M Hallas

 

Ft. Worth, TX (June 10, 2006) – Veteran United States Racing Association (USRA) Super Late Model driver Chris Davidson make it look easy in winning the Konica Minolta 100 at Texas Motor Speedway by several seconds over rookie Matt Merrell.

 

Well, it was easy after his father and fellow USRA Super Late Model driver Greg Davidson lost an engine after closely tailing his son for the first 53 laps of the 70-lap event at the Fort Worth super speedway. The race was the first segment of a two-race series named the “Texas Two Step.” The second segment will be contested at San Antonio Speedway next Saturday. Both races offer $5,000 to win and a $5,000 bonus if someone wins both segments.

 

The dynamic Davidson duo sat on the front row of the 22-car field after the elder Davidson set fast time with the younger only 0.06-seconds behind.

 

Chris Davidson out ran his dad at the drop of the green with Kent Baltzell, last year’s winner T. Wade Welch, Joe Aramendia and current USRA SLM points leader Casey Smith falling in behind.

 

The Davidsons quickly put some distance on the field as Welch, Baltzell and Thad Felton battled for third. Back in the pack there were two good door-to-door skirmishes

between Kirby Caldwell and Jonathon Beason for 13th and another with Chad Wheeler and Shawn Hunt vying for 15th.

 

Leilani Munter, one of two female drivers in the field, picked up one of the spots she lost on the start, getting by Aramendia for eighth on the fourth circuit. Munter took two more positions on lap 8 as she worked her way around Matt Merrell for sixth, then Baltzell for fifth. Merrell followed Munter past Baltzell for sixth.

 

Chris Davidson caught the tail end of the field by the tenth lap and negotiated his way

through a four-car pack while his dad took the opportunity to make up some of the ground he had been slowly loosing.

 

Merrell and Munter continued their personal battle for fifth with Merrell getting back around Munter on lap 11. Despite waging their own little war, Merrell and Munter still were able to close in on Welch for fourth. Munter then retook fifth from Merrell on lap 13.

 

The three car pack of Welch, Munter and Merrell caught another multi-car battle at the tail of the pack on lap 15. As they diced through traffic Munter and Merrell both moved past Welch. . Merrell took over the fourth spot from Munter on lap 17, while Smith, Aramendia, Donny Kelly and Hudson ran bumper to bumper for seventh through tenth.

 

Meanwhile up front, the gap between father and son would yo-yo back and forth as Chris Davidson would back off whenever he approached lapped traffic.

 

A lap 27 caution for debris on the front straight bunched up the field.

 

On the restart the top three - Davidson, Davidson and Felton – were nose tail with three lapped cars separating them from fourth and fifth. The Davidsons slowly crept away from Felton as Merrell slipped passed the lapped cars. And it wasn’t long before Merrell was at Felton’s rear bumper challenging for third.

 

Smith, who was battling Kelley for seventh at the time, was forced to pit on lap 38 due to a flat right rear. The stop cost the USRA points leader several positions.

 

Chris Davidson, meanwhile, had built up a margin of several seconds over his dad who was being run down by Felton and Merrell. Unfortunately, Greg Davidson’s attempt to catch his son would come to a sudden halt when his engine quit running on the 53rd lap.

 

This moved Felton to a distant second and Merrell to third.

 

Munter was finally able to get by Caldwell and Hunt for fourth, but found herself lapped by the speedy Davidson on lap 57.

 

With ten laps to go, Merrell caught up with Felton but seemed content to follow in Felton's tracks about six seconds behind Davidson.

 

On the last lap Felton had a tire go down which sent him crashing into the turn 2 wall. At the same time Merrell experienced major engine problems and slowed dramatically.

 

As Davidson took the checkered flag in his Turner Motorsports, Volunteer Performance (Sereneville, TN), Grand American Race Car Super Late Model, Merrell coasted around and actually crossed the finish line on pit road.

 

Felton, who was uninjured, was credited with third despite finishing on the back of a wrecker.

 

Rounding out the top five were Munter, one lap down, and Baltzell, two laps down.

 

“I’m ready to race the second part of the Texas Two-Step at San Antonio next week to win that $5,000 bonus,” Chris Davidson said after the race. “We’ll go ill go back and work hard to get ready for SAS. I had a real good race car, but I knew I had to take the lead early and I was lucky to take it on the start. At Texas Motor Speedway you just keep the pedal to the floor. I was very pleased with win today and hope I closed the gap on Casey (Smith) in the points.”

 

Munter was also pleased with her fourth place finish.

 

“Overall I’m really happy,” Munter said. “We had a problem with lapped cars, especially when they were two-wide and trying to go three-wide. But I didn’t want to tear up the car. I was hoping for a Top 5 finish, so I’m pleased with finishing fourth. After today, TMS is favorite track.”

 

Merrell seemed to take his second place finish in stride.

 

We were a little worried because we didn’t do too well in qualifying,” Merrell said. “But we made some adjustments on the carburetor and picked up some speed during the race itself. I really enjoyed getting to run where the big boys run.”

 

Results of the USRA Konica Minolta 100 at Texas Motor Speedway, June 10, 2006

 

1. (41) Chris Davidson, Pearland, TX, 70

2. (03) Matt Merrell, Portland, TX, 70

3. (29) Thad Felton, Woodlands, TX, 69

4. (57) Leilani Munter, Charlotte, NC, 69

5. (19) Kent Baltzell, Spring, TX, 68

6. (79) Joe Aramendia, Seguin, TX, 68

7. (71) Donny Kelley, New Caney, TX, 68

8. (7) Tuffy Hudson, Ingleside, TX, 67

9. (13) T. Wade Welch, Houston, TX, 67

10. (70) Shawn Hunt, Houston, TX, 65

11. (85) Thomas Tillison, Wellston, OK, 65

12. (67) Kirby Caldwell, Beaumont, TX, 65

13. (02) Matt Smith, Houston, TX, 64

14. (16) Danny Pike, Red Oak, TX, 62

15. (47) Ed Mann, Kingwood, TX, 61

16. (99) Casey Smith, Austin, TX, 60

17. (39) Hal Martin, Galliano, LA, 58

18. (96) Greg Davidson, Pearland, TX, 53

19. (88) Chad Wheeler, Muskogee, OK, 47

20. (00) Kristin Bumbera, Sealy, TX, 45

21. (36) Jonathan Beason, Broken Arrow, LA, 32

22. (54) Todd McLemore, Austin, TX, 0

 

Lap Leaders: Chris Davidson led laps 1-70

Fast Qualifier: Greg Davidson - 34.910 seconds, 154.683 MPH

 

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