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Cooper & Bright Plumbing night @ Texas Thunder Spwy 4/9/11

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Cooper & Bright Plumbing Night @ Texas Thunder Speedway, 4/9/2011

By J M Hallas


Killeen, Tx.,(April 9th, 2011) It was Cooper and Bright Plumbing night at Texas Thunder Speedway Saturday night. Cooper and Bright, a long time supporter of the track as well as sponsor for racers, hosted the nights action on the ¼ mile, high-banked track near venerable old Fort Hood. The nights action included IMCA Modifieds, Southern Sportmods, Stock and Hobby's plus the Street Stocks, Dwarf Cars and Texas Twisters.


Hot and windy conditions made for some tricky track conditions with turns 1-2 drying quicker than the other end of the track which still held some moisture. Drivers quickly found out negotiating that area was not as easy as the more sheltered side.


Jupe Jumps Out Front, Motors to Mod Main

Waco's Chase Jupe finally found his way to Texas Thunder Winner's Circle Saturday against one of the toughest fields in central Texas. Jupe worked his way up to challenge early and polesitter, Doug Lorenz at halfway. Lorenz made one small mistake and Jupe was there to capitalize grabbing the top spot on lap 12. From there Jupe was able to pull out to a good margin over Lorenz, who held second, Benji Kirkpatrick, JP Dowell and Ken Old filed the top five at the finish.


On the initial start of the 20-lap IMCA Modified main, Lorenz jumped out front, but Bill Lecompte stalled in turn 3 for an immediate yellow. Lorenz again led the 18-car field into turn 1 with Hardy Henderson getting second from Allen Williams, with Jupe and Old falling in line. Jupe got past Williams for third on lap 2 as Kirkpatrick moved in to battle with Old for fifth. Jupe then began to pressure H. Henderson for second as the lead group hit slower traffic.


Contact between GW Egbert IV and Mike McCarthy brought out a yellow on lap 7 sending them both to the pits for repairs. On the restart Jupe took second from H. Henderson, while Old took fourth from Williams. Jupe showed Lorenz the nose on lap 8 then hung on to the rear bumper. At halfway it was Lorenz, Jupe, H. Henderson, Kirkpatrick and Old, with Williams, Joe Spillman and Dowell three wide for sixth.


Lorenz bobbled in turn 4 giving Jupe an opportunity, and Jupe took it, getting the lead on lap 12. Dowell emerged from the three-car slug fest getting sixth from Spillman. Dowell then worked his way by Old for fifth while H. Henderson and Kirkpatrick were wheel to wheel for third. With five to go Jupe had built a full straightaway margin over the field.


Even lapped traffic didn't slow Jupe down as he diced his way through slower cars. Kirkpatrick was finally able to get third from H. Henderson on lap 18. H. Henderson tried to retake the spot on the final lap but spun in turn 2. In the meantime, Jupe in the Double B Specialized Carriers, Jupe Trucking, Tow King, Clover Cleaners, JRC Motorsports & Bodies, Cen-Tex Motorsports powered Hughes Chassis way grabbing the victory.


“I've got a good car, and good crew,” replied Jupe. “A little bit of luck doesn't hurt either. We got a good starting sport tonight after Dillon(Smith) lost oil pressure and our line moved up a row. So that put me in a little better starting position. The track was in good shape and the car was on the money.”


“We did a lot of homework in the off season to try to catch up with guys like Keith(White). When everyone else is probably getting off work and going home, we're still working on the racecar. We spent a lot of time on our set ups and figuring everything out. That's the main thing.”


“Everyone wants to beat Keith, he's the champion, that's why we stepped up our game to race consistently and competitively against him. We've got some ideas from other people and Hughes Racing Chassis' have been phenomenal. Second to none in my opinion. Cen-Tex does an awesome job on our engine. I've got to thank Butch Nix and my crew.”


Goode Towing IMCA Modifieds

303 Chase Jupe, 97 Doug Lorenz, 47 Benji Kirkpatrick, 715 JP Dowell, 52 Ken Old, 20 Mike McCarthy, 44s Joe Spillman, 07A Allen Williams, 37 Ben Ketteman, 44 Allen Waltermire, 88s Brad Smith, 1x Jake Henderson, 63 Hardy Henderson, 717 GW Egbert, 19 George Lamphere jr., 31 Doyle Massa, 41 Carl McConnell, 28 Neil Floyd, 247 Bill Lecompte---DNTG, 03 Dillon Smith---DNS, 3J Brad Jordan---DNS


IMCA Modified heats

Heat 1

97 Doug Lorenz, 03 Dillon Smith, 63 Hardy Henderson, 717 GW Egbert, 44 Allen Waltermire, 41 Carl McConnell, 20 Mike McCarthy


Heat 2

303 Chase Jupe, 52 Ken Old, 07A Allen Williams, 88s Brad Smith, 28 Neil Floyd, 247 Bill Lecompte


Heat 3

47 Benji Kirkpatrick, 715 JP Dowell, 44s Joe Spillman, 37 Ben Ketteman, 1 George Lamphere jr., 31 Doyle Massa, 1x Jake Henderson



Green(TJ) Grabs Gold in Sportmod Scramble

In the hotly contested IMCA Southern Sportmod main, TJ Green(Waco) held off, brother, Kevin Green and Cody Frank throughout the last half of the 20-lap event. After getting past Randy Doyle, the trio then ran nose to tail, traded bumper tags, dodged spinning cars and put on the best race of the night. At the checkers it was TJ holding off Kevin(Greens), Frank, Doyle and Mike McDougal in the top five.


As green waved on the 21-car field Albert Wininger led into turn 1, but a spin by Garrett Jonse brought the yellow back out. Wininger led the pack again with a three wide battle for second. Jared Rady went around in turn 2 collecting McDougal. On the third start Ricky Rodriguez sailed past Wininger for the lead, with Doyle and Wininger side by side for second and a three abreast fight for fourth.


Rady, using the extreme high groove, moved along side Doyle and Wininger, but got loose and fell back. Once Doyle secured second, TJ Green, Frank and K. Green followed past Wininger. Shelly Sakhnini spun on lap 5 coming off turn 2 and collected the leader Rodriguez ending his night. This put Doyle out front for the restart that saw the top four break away on green.


K. Green had just got along side Frank for third when Chad Ellis spun scattering the lead pack. Once back to racing, TJ Green took looks under Doyle in turns 1 and 3. The next lap TJ Green got the nose inside Doyle off of turn 2. The two ran side by side down the back stretch and into turn 3. TJ Green inched his car out front coming off turn 4 for the lead on lap 8.


Frank then closed in on Doyle getting by on lap 9 followed by K. Green. At the crossed flags it was TJ Green, Frank, K. Green, Doyle and McDougal. Despite battling among themselves, the top three were able to ease away. The lead trio played a little bumper tag and tried each other high and low. Behind them Doyle and McDougal had their own personal scrap going on for fourth.


While Doyle and McDougal swapped fourth, the lead trio was still going at it tooth and nail for the lead. K. Green was finally able to sneak past Frank for second on lap 17. With two to go, Jonse did a 360 in front of the lead group, but all escaped. K. Green gave his brother one last try low on the final lap, but TJ Green held him off for his third in a row driving the Greens Automatic Transmissions, Hewitt's Gun Shop, Hewitt's Pawn Shop, Lambs Muffler Service, Simpson Racing Products, Outlaw Race Engines, TRE Chassis.


“The key was getting to the front early and staying consistent, said TJ Green. “I knew Cody(Frank) was there and then my brother. When you feel someone on your bumper it can get a little frustrating, but I knew if I could just hit my marks I'd be alright. You just try to stay smooth and hold your line. I didn't think they could get around me if I did.”


“I saw Kevin stick his nose in the final laps and I kind of pinched him off a bit. He'd do the same with me racing to the checkers on the final laps. We give each other a little extra room, but run each other just as hard or harder for a win. It's really fun racing with my brother, Cody and Randy(Doyle). It's good to know you're around guys that you can trust running that close.”


Automax IMCA Southern Sportmods

55 TJ Green, 5D Kevin Green, 7 Cody Frank, 65 Randy Doyle, 224 Mike McDougal, 70 George Egbert, 8 Jared Rady, 2m Brittany McElroy, 48x Duane Toyne, 7G David Goode jr., 40 Albert Wininger, 01 Terry Tschoerner, 29 Marcus Warren, 27j Garrett Jonse, 591 Chad Ellis, 5R Ricky Rodriguez, 23s Shelly Sakhnini, 681 Matt Miller, 0 Tim Carmen jr, 05 Dennis Purrington, 77 Gary Harris



Heat 1

65 Randy Doyle, 7 Cody Frank, 5R Ricky Rodriguez, 29 Marcus Warren, 48x Duane Toyne, 681 Matt Miller


Heat 2

5D Kevin Green, 224 Mike McDougal, 40 Albert Wininger, 8 Jared Rady, 23s Shelly Sakhnini, 70 George Egbert


Heat 3

0 Tim Carmen jr, 55 TJ Green, 2m Brittany McElroy, 01 Terry Tschoerner, 05 Dennis Purrington, 7g David Goode jr., 77 Gary Harris, 27j Garrett Jonse



Batt Bests I-Stock Field for Third Win

Harker Heights' Jason Batt made his way forward in the 20-lap IMCA Stock Car feature getting by early leaders, Matt Guillaume and Austin Smith at halfway. Good friend and perennial challenger, Eric Jones closed on J. Batt in the final laps, but came up short as J. Batt grabbed his third checkers of the season.


Guillaume grabbed the lead in turn 3 as the 16-car I-Stock field roared to green. Smith fell in line second with Robin Rasmussen-Batt, Peter Delevan and Tony Hamil three wide for third. J. Batt moved into the top five on lap 4 getting by Trevor Sparkman for the spot. J. Batt then closed in on Delevan and R. Batt going three wide on lap 6, while Jones was getting fifth from Sparkman.


J. Batt finally got the position on lap 7 while Smith was trying the high side on Guillaume. Smith got the top spot on lap, with Jones getting fourth from R. Batt. A bumper on the track brought out the yellow. On the restart J. Batt got by Guillaume for second and was inside Smith. J. Batt took the top spot at halfway with Smith, Guillaume, Jones and Delevan holding the top five spots.


Smith tried to challenge J. Batt for the lead back, but was unsuccessful. Jones picked off another spot getting third from Guillaume on lap 12. Jones got inside Smith and snagged second on lap 13 while Guillaume spun from fourth, kept going and fell to the tail. Delevan was next to put the pressure on the rookie, Smith.


Up front Jones was slowly cutting into J. Batt's lead lap by lap. Delevan and Smith were door to door for third on lap 17, with Delevan getting the spot. With two to go Jones had closed to within two car lengths of J. Batt as the duo took the white flag. Jones gave it his best effort but came up a car length short as J. Batt in the Kwik Kar Oil & Lube, Kiserz Customs, hoffmanfabrications.com, Garvin Machine Shop, SCS Chassis held him off for the win.


“That restart really helped me,” commented Batt. “ I was able to get under Austin Smith and get by him. I worked the bottom for a long time. Once I got through traffic then I started using the top too. I used the bottom in (turns) 1-2 and the top in (turns) 3-4. I really wanted to use the bottom in (turns) 3-4,but the car kept wanting the top. I noticed that's were Eric(Jones) was running.”


“I didn't really feel the track being that rough, but saw it in the Modified race. The top of (turns) 3-4 was still pretty tacky. The track was very racey there, in (turns) 1-2 it was just using the shortest way around. It felt like maybe the moisture .came back up.”


“We've had some early success this year picking up where we left off last year. We've got some competition now in Waco and stepped up our game and so has Eric. Robin has stepped up her game this year too. Rayland Whitehead, Josh Batt and Robin all do a lot for the team. We were joking around the other day on how much work we do for each other. Robin says she does all the laundry.”



Dan Corbin & Associates IMCA Stock Cars

9 Jason Batt, 84x Eric Jones, 98 Peter Delevan, 313 Austin Smith, 3 Robin Rasmussen-Batt, 489 Anthony Otken, 20 Trevor Sparkman, 4 Ken Plonsky, 8 Buck Owens, 43s Randal Wilson, T4 Tony Hamil, 50 Matt Guillaume, 96 Richard Valentine, 44 Joe Spillman, 7 Pat Wilson, 7c Tony McPherson


IMCA Stock Car heats

Heat 1

50 Matt Guillaume, 9 Jason Batt, 3 Robin Rasmussen-Batt, T4 Tony Hamil, 20 Trevor Sparkman, 4 Ken Plonsky, 43s Randall Wilson, 7c Tony McPherson


Heat 2

84x Eric Jones, 96 Richard Valentine, 489 Anthony Otken, 313 Austin Smith, 98 Peter Delevan, 7 Pat Wilson, 8 Buck Owens, 44 Joe Spillman



Right Place, Right Time for Roller

Andy Roller(Bellmead) was in position to take advantage of problems of early leader Michael Gaunet and Chris Grusendorf during the IMCA Hobby Stock feature. Grusendorf spun himself, while Gaunet suffered a a flat right rear during the 15-lap event. Roller led the final 5 laps followed by Charles Cosper, Grusendorf, Jaron Shahan and Sean Ward.


As the green flag flew on 15-lap, 10-car feature, Zach Riley beat Jeremy Wininger into turn 1 for the lead. Grusendorf, flying around the top, moved quickly to second trailed by Gaunet with Wininger and Cosper side by side for fourth. Riley got a little loose in turn 3 giving Gaunet and Grusendorf an opening. Gaunet was first to the line on lap 4 with Grusendorf on his tail.


In the pack Shahan spun battling with Roller and Cosper for a top five spot. Back up front Grusendorf got inside Gaunet on lap 7 with the two side by side on lap 8 before Grusendorf got the spot on lap 9. Grusendorf then spun himself coming off turn 2 giving the lead back to Gaunet on lap 10.


Roller caught Gaunet and got inside on lap 10 taking over the point on lap 11. Cosper then passed a slowing Gaunet for second before Gaunet pulled to the infield with a flat. Grusendorf took third from Richard Pickens on lap 12. Shahan got by Pickens on the final lap for fourth, wile Roller in the Howard's Automatic Transmissions, Hammack Racing, Mach-1, Demon Decals, Southwest Maintenance, A&J Custom Paint, J&J Race Engines, Charger Chassis was taking the checkers.


“I'm just happy I remembered to turn left every time,” joked Roller who made a mistake one night last year that he hasn't lived down yet. “Seriously though, I was just patient the first few laps and let things sort out. The track was real racey, you could run the top or the bottom. I got a few good breaks and ended up out front.”


“Texas Thunder is the place to be for the IMCA Hobby Stocks on Saturday night. We've run five features this year without a single lap of caution. I think for the most part everyone is having fun out there.”


Mufflers & More IMCA Hobby Stocks

63 Andy Roller, 33c Charles Cosper, 74 Chris Grusendorf, 7 Jaron Shahan, 889 Sean Ward, 28 Richard Pickens, 25 Michael Gaunet, 14 Zach Riley, 77 Bill Siegman jr., 41 Jeremy Wininger, 60 Nathan Sodek---DNS, 47 Shannon Dulock---DNS


IMCA Hobby Stock heats

Heat 1

63 Andy Roller, 33c Charles Cosper, 41 Jeremy Wininger, 7 Jaron Shahan, 60 Nathan Sodek


Heat 2

74 Chris Grusendorf, 25 Michael Gaunet, 4 Zach Riley, 889 Sean Ward, 77 Bill Siegman, 28 Richard Pickens



Nolanville's Norman Notches, 'Nother Win

Gary Norman made it two in a row in the Street Stocks snatching the win in the final laps. After giving up positions to Jeff Currier and others early in the 15-lap race, Norman came back at the end edging out Currier with two to go. Rounding out the top five behind Norman and Currier were Dave Meadows, Chris Cockrell and Danny Dunn.


Tony McPherson sr. led the 18-car field through turns 1-2, but Jacob Sakhnini got the lead coming out of turn 4 to lead lap 1. Andrew Richards spun on the front stretch, while Paul Kohl and Dennis Simmons were tangling in turn 3 for an early caution. On the restart Bobby Norton got the jump into turn 1, but Danny Dunn snuck by to lead lap 2.


Currier got by Norman on lap 2 for second and along side Dunn for the lead taking over the point on lap 3. Kevin Ashley and Jessica Plonsky made contact sending Ashley around for a lap 4 yellow. Currier got a big jump on green with Norman getting past Norton for third, then Dunn for second. Meadows was also moving forward getting around Sakhnini for fifth, then Norton for fourth on lap 5.


Continuing his march forward, Dunn was Meadows next victim giving up third on lap 6, while Norman was running down Currier. McPherson, Richards and Donald Merritt tangled in turn 2 for a lap 8 caution. Norman looked high on Currier as green waved again. Norman kept the heat on as the two eased away from Meadows. Norman used the outside line to get along side Currier on lap 11. Norman finally completed the pass on lap 13 and held off Currier for the victory.


Bills Muffler Street Stocks

3 Gary Norman, 65 Jeff Currier, 74 Dave Meadows, 45 Chris Cockrell, 63 Danny Dunn, 96 Paul Kohl, 30 Bobby Norton, 28 Donald Merritt, 97 Andrew Richards, 70 James Corliss, 84 Tony McPherson sr. 2 Kevin Ashley, 56 Jacob Sakhnini, 4J Jessica Plonsky, 829 JD Hardcastle, 19R Dean Silva, 83 Dennis Simmons, 43 Gene Burnett, 23 Leon Mendenhall---DNS, 47 Owen Carlson---DNS


Street Stock heat winners; 3 Gary Norman, 96 Paul Kohl, 65 Jeff Currier



PJ Egbert(Copperas Cove) showed once again he can win in just about any class as he jumped into cousin Trevor's Dwarf Car for the 8-lap feature. PJ Egbert got out front on green and lead every lap while GW Egbert and Billy White battled for second. GW Egbert got by White but PJ Egbert had checked out on his way to the checkers.


Wolfman Towing Dwarf Cars

78 PJ Egbert, 717 GW Egbert, 17 Billy White, 07 Michael Dion


Dwarf Car heat winner; 717 GW Egbert



In the first of two Texas Twister features Kelvin Harper(Harker Heights) jumped out front and ran away from the field. Harper quickly put distance on Daniel Reed who had a gap back to Jonathon Hunter and TJ Speidel as they battled for third. Harper's only challenge was lapped traffic as he got run to the infield passing a slower car.


Budweiser Racing Texas Twisters

Feature 1

12 Kelvin Harper, 84 Daniel Reed, 11j Jonathon Hunter, 15 TJ Speidel, 22 Clayton Clarkson, 86 Richard Shields, 51 Tommy Hultz, 17 Don Krahn---BF, 77 Michael Hufschmid---DNS, 1 James Cochran---DNS, 28 Jeffery Hunter---DNS, 128 Chance Eddins---DNS


Jumping back into his old ride for Texas Twister feature #2, Austin Smith(Copperas Cove) got by early leader Brian Bagent near halfway then held off Bagent the final laps. Bagent was briefly able to retake the point as the duo battled through traffic, but Smith regained the spot while Daniel Wade and Brenda Mitchell were swapping position and paint behind the leaders. Smith then scaled the hill under the flagstand and gave his trophy away to one the kids in the grandstands.



Feature 2

313 Austin Smith, 45 Brian Bagent, 911 Daniel Wade, 10 Brenda Mitchell, 01 Bo Duke, 11 Colby Krahn, 233 Girard Heard, 23T Robert Roysdon, 007 Rick Smith, 52 Lucas Watts, 09 Mark Hufschmid---DQ(Rough Driving), 18 Haley Kaiser---DNS, 23 Dennis Heard---DNS

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