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Shady Oaks Speedway race recap, 9-6-14


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Shady Oaks Speedway race recap, 9/6/2014

 

by Jon Hutchinson, Lone Star Speedzone Reporter

 

Made it back to Corpus safely after an entertaining night at the beautiful Shady Oaks Speedway. Was fortunate enough to meet some of the Stacy family and courteous Shady Oaks staff and enjoyed a great burger and soda from concession worker extraordinaire and National Anthem singer. Great people at this race track and always enjoy a night there. One thing I noticed tonight while the cars were rolling the track in, several familiar cars and faces from Corpus and visitors from other tracks like Cotton Bowl. Full night of racing and all done by 11 (even with a power outage more on that later).

 

The first race of the night were the Farm Trucks. Unfortunately we only received last names in the booth Thomas cruised to a victory over Jennings, Airheart, Lewis, then Bednarz rounding out the field. Only race of the night as these guys just come out and have a good time when they show up and put on a little show.

 

Two heats for the Street Stocks tonight, first heat saw Kevin Sullivan take the win followed closely by Kevin Willms, those two battling back and forth evenly matched. Brian Morris holds on for third fighting a loose car Adam Moyer rounded off the field as Jason Zarbock experienced problems and pulled off early. In heat two, Steven Doty completes the Corpus sweep for heats holding off a strong challenge from Jason Fox, Brian Hayes and Michael Friedrich third and fourth respectively and Chris Shafer not running a heat but would start in the rear from the main.

 

Six Dwarf/Modlites duking it out tonight. Heat race saw Morgan Rios claiming the win followed by Buck McFarlin, Rick Adcock, Douglas Wright, Jerry Godfrey and Eric Salles, Jr. Adcock with a sizeable lead slows exiting two, may have thought the race was over while Rios and McFarlin racing hard, Rios used the slowed Adcock as a pick to get around McFarlin and take the win after a brief pause over who won and how the end of the race was run. Mr. Adcock had an interesting night to say the least, more on this later as well.

 

Usually my favorite class at any track, Pure Stock, 14 present tonight. This class is always good for some racing throughout the pack. First heat went to Martin "Cooter" Koehne, followed by Lonnie Koehne, Logan Schunka, Jamie Dear, Gary McDonnel Nathan Corpus, and Joe Dee Johnson. Travis Copeland edged out Travis Schmidt at the line in a hard fought race. Donald Schunka took third, followed by Ethan Hoover, Hannah Wright, and South Texas Speedway point leader Alaina Smith bringing up the rear.

 

Limited Modified heat one saw Shane "Insert nickname here" Haefling pull away as Larry Jernigan and Brice Barros close at the line followed by Mickey Helms, Jeff Nix and Sherill Lewis. Not to be outdone by rival Haefling, Vince Louden claimed heat two with Chase Sanchez and Broc Bowen finishing as Bart Wilcox sat in the infield and an early caution claimed Randy Bennett and John Bonneau.

 

Five Late Models and Five Modifieds graced their presence at SOS tonight. In Late Model action, Jarrod Stepanski held off Kody Hardage, Alan Kunkel, Michael Wagner and Jesse Harris. With Cody Leonard in Boone, Iowa, five Modifieds seek to claim bragging rights on this Saturday night. Hunter Flanagan drew first blood winning the heat with Jamie Campbell in pursuit, third went to Carson Bednarz, Matt Fox fourth, and Mike Morris fifth. Two more Modifieds would arrive in time for the main, George Fink and I believe Jake Rollins in the 95 machine.

 

Three classes of go karts raced during Intermission but I failed to get the results or names of the kids in the races. Let me tell you though, the future generation will provide plenty of entertainment in the not so distant future. These kids drove the wheels (and chains) off their karts.

 

Street Stocks on the track first for the Features for the night, Sullivan/Doty, Willms/Fox, Morris/Hayes, Zarbock/Friedrich, Shafer the starting lineup tonight. Doty takes an early lead followed by Sullivan and the rest of the field falls in. Morris has his hands full in the 9 machine as he and Zarbock spin bringing out a caution and Zarbock retires, never did get the car running tonight. Red Rocket Shafer picking cars off one by one as he follows Fox around Sullivan in the battle for second. Shafer moves into second and sets his sights on Doty who's had clear sailing up front. Fox exits two really high allowing Sullivan and Willms running the low line to get by near the crossed flags. Doty ahead by nearly a straightaway with Shafer begging for a yellow as Hayes pulls into the pit area. Morris and Friedrich pull off as well as the battle heats up between Willms and Sullivan, Willms staying low, Sullivan high both cars pretty even as Fox sneaks back into the battle for third. Doty takes the win as Shafer's bid of last to first comes up a bit short. Willms, Sullivan, and Fox round up the top five.

 

Dwarf/Mod Lites up next. Rios/McFarlin, Adcock/Wright, Godfrey/Salles Jr. the starting grid. Rios jumps to an early lead with McFarlin on his tail. Adcock slips but recovers nicely to hold onto third. Rios and McFarlin start putting some distance on Adcock and Godfrey until Rios spins bringing out a caution. Track officials having a discussion with Rios in turn 3. He falls in line at the rear so the restart sees McFarlin, Godfrey, Adcock, Wright, Salles, Rios. Rios quickly back into third before the lap is completed under green and sets sail for second as McFarlin starts to pull away. Rios spins again while frantically chasing McFarlin and Adcock but gets it going before the yellow comes out. Adcock pulls the slide job in four on McFarlin then the two come together in 1-2 as they trade the lead. Adcock takes lead as McFarlin gets stuck behind lapped traffic and Rios settles into third. McFarlin closes in on Adcock's back bumper and again approach lap traffic as they take the white flag. Contact in one as Adcock is sitting facing the wrong way on the berm in 1-2. McFarlin takes the win, Rios second, Wright, Godfrey, Salles Jr, and Adcock. McFarlin with some harsh words in the post race interview as Adcock refires and pushes that tachometer to the limit on the back straight, past the pit gate but turns it around and heads to pits as officials have a conversation with McFarlin but looks to keep his victory.

 

Pure Stocks on the track next here's how they lined up: Cooter/Copeland, Koehne/Schmidt, L. Schunka/D. Schunka, Dear/Hoover, Corpus/Wright, Johnson/Smith, McDonnel/Maurer. Copeland and Cooter separate from the field early as everyone else races pretty close. Koehne loses a few spots after going off out of two and kicking up some dust down the back straight. Copeland begins to pull away from Cooter and the rest of the field. Corpus goes to the hot pit with a flat right front but rejoins the race. Copeland enters lapped traffic but Smith and others concede to the leaders and lets him go. Copeland opens the lead up further over Cooter as they work through traffic. Great three way battle for third going on between Schmidt, Koehne, and L. Schunka. Hard, clean racing with those three giving it their all on double points night. Copeland cruises to the victory tonight, Cooter, Koehne, Schmidt, L. Schunka the unofficial top five. Copeland obviously excited about his victory tonight doing some doughnuts on the front straight, great job by that young man.

 

Limited Modifieds up next on the docket tonight. Haefling/Louden, Jernigan/Sanchez, Barros/Bowen, Helms/Wilcox, Lewis/Bennett, Nix is how they line up tonight. Louden and Haefling take off early as Sanchez tries to keep pace with the front two. Rest of the field battling closely as the top three get some separation. Barros gets to the front of the second group and tries to real in the trifecta of Haefling, Louden and Sanchez until the yellow comes out for Bowen's stalled car in turn 2. As Haefling, Louden, Sanchez and Barros try to expand their lead over the second half of the field, Helms begins making his charge to the front and gets around Barros for fourth. Top five at the halfway point, Haefling, Louden, Sanchez hanging with them followed by Helms and Barros but Barros begins to fade. Louden catches Haefling and this has become a two man race but Sanchez still in striking distance if the top two make a mistake. Louden takes the lead in turn 2 with 3 to go. Haefling and Louden racing hard for the win, Haefling regains the lead in two, Louden gets under Haefling in 3-4 and they drag race down the front straight, throwing sparks and bending sheet metal but Louden takes it by a bumper. Sanchez a strong third, Helms, and Bennett (recovering from a heat race collision) are the top 5 and boom boom out go the lights as Louden comes towards victory lane. Lights out in Louden tonight or maybe we can get him a nickname too, Vince "Lights Out" Louden. Great racing by Louden and Haefling, physical, aggressive but both cars drove away and put on a great show.

 

Time for the Modifieds, Flanagan/Campbell, Bednarz/Morris, Fink/Fox, Rollins trying to lay claim to the crown with Cody Leonard up in Boone, Iowa. Flanagan jumps out to an early lead but loses power coming out of four. Then Morris and Fox come together so we're off to a sloppy start to this one. Campbell and Fox jump out on the restart with Bednarz trying to keep up the pace followed by Rollins, Fink, and Morris. Campbell drives out to a commanding lead as Bednarz and Fox battle for second with Bednarz coming out ahead at the crossed flags. Campbell pulls off with about five to go and Bednarz inherits the lead and widens the gap over Fox, Rollins, Fink and Morris and claims the victory. Very excited and somewhat shocked young man in Victory Circle as he claimed he thought Campbell had won, he was just out there getting some laps in and having fun.

 

Rounding out the night are the Late Models. If these guys can ever get a full field, look out. You'll probably feel and hear them from Victoria. The ones that were there line up like so: Stepanski/Hardage, Kunkel/Wagner and Harris. Harris spins in four before the first lap is complete so mulligan. Stepanski takes the green and sets sail as he drives smooth and consistent while Hardage is pushing his car hard to keep up the pace til the driveshaft or something in the rear end lets go ending his night. Stepanski pulls away after the restart and never looks back, Harris recovered well from his early spin and takes second followed by Kunkel and Wagner. Stepanski was a smooth operator tonight and was definitely the car to beat tonight in Late Model action.

 

That wraps up the night at Shady Oaks Speedway. I would like to thank the Stacy family, Shady Oaks staff, and the racers for making it a great place to visit. Stands were about half full but can be much better. The racing is good and always exciting, even when the car counts are low in certain classes. I've been to several tracks in my lifetime and always enjoy time at SOS and as we were leaving, the three of us in the van all agree that SOS is the best appearing track we've been too. Great facilities, people, ambiance, etc. The people in charge care and want to make it as fun and entertaining as possible and it's never a disappointment to go watch a race, spend a Saturday night with family and friends. Business owners, it's a good way to get your company some visual advertising. So I strongly encourage people, all people, fans, sponsors, racers, everyone to come out and support local racing and keep it alive. Shady Oaks Speedway has two more events on their schedule this year, September 20th featuring the Street Stock Shootout, that group is always good at SOS or anywhere they go so you don't want to miss it. October 25th is Halloween Havoc which will feature all classes of racing and should draw cars from all over the region. So again, come out and support the track and bring a friend or ten and enjoy a night out.

 

Note: Official results are posted already, including go karts here: http://www.speednetdirect.com/results.php?track_id=8459

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Thanks for the great report, Jon Hutchinson! (AKA top_shelf_12 here on LSSZ). You need a raise, I can see that right away!

 

You are now declared an Official Lone Star Speedzone reporter with a byline and everything!

 

Nick

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Alright maybe next year I can drive a Lighter Than Air, Heinz ketchup powered car into a tree, I mean on a track somewhere in South Texas. It was a fun night as usual. Just glad the lights went out after the race was over, that would have been pretty scary with the way Louden and Haefling were racing, especially at the end of that race.

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Don't think it is tires anyway. I admit I'm not as good of a driver as Tony and some of these other guys. Was easy to see last year when tony drove my car. I have yet to win a feature and he won several driving my car last year. I think there are lots of guys that just don't want to admit that and do there homework to get better.

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Gotta say the battles Haefling and Louden have remind me of the battles Davidson and Kelly used to have in the old TIDA/ROMCO Late Model Days.No matter what the track if the 6 and 63 are racing fans are usually not sitting! Got to echo Jon's statement about supporting your race tracks especially Shady Oaks.You can't beat SOS for atmosphere and the entire staff are as friendly as they can be.I too urge race fans if you have never been to Shady Oaks Speedway or haven't been there in some time to go to one or both of the last two races,you will not be disappointed.It is an easy one and 1/2 hour drive from Corpus.So race fans come and give Shady Oaks a shot on 9/20 and/or 10/25.

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Great Write Up!

I had a great time at SOS last night! the track was wide and racey all over it! Let just say that was the first time i've never been out for hot laps and not gotta 50LBS of mud on the car. If the Stacy family continues to keep the track in this condition they will see the car count grow in all classes because its keeps the motor cost down and lets the driver and setups win races.

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I'm sure that's a great feeling. My father has been taking me to race tracks since birth it seems, so for me it was a thrill pulling onto the track for the first time knowing he was there watching. That's the closest I'd get. SOS has always been enjoyable and yes, we're planning on coming back Sept. 20, even though STS is running that night. The drive is easy and doesn't seem to take that long. I've been real impressed with the Pure Stocks there the few times I've come up.

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Thanks Gone, hated to see you pull off, had the field covered for sure. I bet 12 or more Mods would be good at SOS, wonder if the Gulf Coast Modifieds would be interested in coming. They had 14 at Battleground the night I went there. Most were from the Houston area so not sure how many would come down but may be something to consider.

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Its Great To See All The Input From People, This Is Bye Far The Most Positive Post's I've Seen On The Shady Oaks Sight In Quite Some Time. It Is Well Deserved, The Stacy Family Goes Far And Beyond To Try And Satisfy All Peoples Wants And Needs . I Personally Don't Think You Will Any Nicer People At Any Other Track That Work And Try As Hard AS They Do , And Is Much Appreciated From Me

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The Stacy family would like to say a big THANK YOU to top_shelf_12 for the time he took to write such a nice article about the racing at SOS. It is always nice to get to put a face with the screen name used here on Lone Star. I also got to meet arob. Hope to get to meet some more of our screen name race supporters in person. It is race fans like this that work so hard to keep the interest in local tracks alive. Thank you to everyone else who has made such nice comments here on this article. We welcome all of you to SOS and look forward to seeing Jon and Rob back next race. Come on out and join them as we host our second street stock shootout event. Mark you calendars for Halloween Havoc on October 25.

SEE YA AT THE RACES!

Rosemary

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You guys are very welcome. As long as you guys put up with me I'll keep doing these write ups. The Stacy family and all SOS staff were courteous and a pleasure to talk with. I was at the first Street Stock Shootout at SOS and they put on a show. Like a higher paced Pure Stock race where you'll see racing throughout the field. September should be no different or better, you won't regret going. Then Halloween Havoc will have a little bit of everything, so be there and get your racing fix no matter what class you like.

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We plan on being there both nights and urge all fans to take a short trip to SOS. The Street Stock Shootout never fails to deliver and like Jon said the Havoc has a little of everything with the Limited Late Models joining this year.Even the post race interviews are entertaining at SOS!

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