Chris Simpson triumphs in MLRA win at Maquoketa
by Mike McGuire
MAQUOKETA, Iowa – It was text book short track racing Saturday night at the Maquoketa Speedway as the Lucas Oil MLRA Late Models were in town. Graduating at the head of the class was Chris Simpson, who also took home a check for $5,000.
Simpson jumped to the early lead in the 40-lap A-Main, with Bobby Pierce in tow. The lead duo quickly got to the top of the racetrack and set a torrid pace. As the race entered the final ten laps, Pierce tried several slide jobs on Simpson, with Simpson crossing over to re-take the lead each time.
Finally, Pierce was able to complete the pass for the lead, but the caution flag came out for a lapped car. The line-up reverted to the last completed lap, putting Simpson back in front, with three laps to go.
Chris would not be denied, leading the rest of the laps to the checkered flag. Pierce finished a close second, followed by Dennis Erb Jr., Chad Simpson, and Ryan Unzicker, in that order.
Modifieds were racing for $1,000-to-win, with Bryce Garnhart taking the checkers. Bryce took the lead from Ryan Duhme early in the race. After that his only challenges came on restarts. A lot of late race chaos brought Austin Blume to a second place finish, with Chris Simpson taking third. Timmy Current and Matt Short rounded out the top five.
The Sport Mod feature saw Shane Paris drive from sixth starting position to the victory. Bob Silaggi was near or at the front all race long took second. Justin Becker finished third, Ryan Reed fourth, and Jacob Arp fifth.
Mitch Beilenberg captured the 4-Cylinder main, after an exciting battle with Joe Lafrenz. Lafrenz finished second, despite bringing out the caution and having to restart at the tail. Brett Marshall, Brandon Schnieder, and Cody Brewster completed the first five.
The American Iron Racing Series cars were also racing Saturday. Matt Hudspeth held off Bruce Yoerger and came away with the victory. Yoerger finished in second followed by Bart Miller, Tim Bader, and Ron Cook, in that order.
The Lucas Oil MLRA Late Models, Modifieds, SportMods, and A.I.R.S. classes take their excitement to West Liberty Raceway on Sunday, June 14th. The pit gate opens at 2:00pm, with hotlaps @ 4:30pm, and racing to follow.
Lucas Oil MLRA Late Models
Time Trials: Shannon Babb (13.965 seconds)
Heat #1: 1.Chris Simpson; 2. Chad Simpson; 3.Garrett Alberson; 4.Ryan Unzicker; 5.Andy Eckrich;
Heat #2: 1.Billy Moyer Sr.; 2. Dennis Erb Jr.; 3.Brian Birkhofer; 4. Tony Jackson Jr.; 5.Paul Parker;
Heat #3: 1.Will Vaught; 2.Shannon Babb; 3.Justin Duty; 4.Mike Spatola; 5.Jeremy Grady;
Heat #4: 1.Bobby Pierce; 2.Jeremiah Hurst; 3.Aaron Marrant; 4.Mitch McGrath; 5.Dave Eckrich;
Semi #1: .Justin Kay; 2.Andy Eckrich; 3.Paul Parker; 4.Tony Toste; 5.Jonathan Brauns;
Semi #2: 1.Jeremy Grady; 2.Jason Papich; 3.Dave Eckrich; 4.Payton Looney; 5.Luke
Feature: 1.Chris Simpson; 2.Bobby Pierce; 3.Dennis Erb Jr.; 4.Chad Simpson; 5.Ryan Unzicker; 6.Billy Moyer Sr.; 7.Jeremiah Hurst; 8.Mike Spatola; 9.Justin Kay; 10.Will Vaught; 11.Tony Jackson Jr.; 12.Justin Duty; 13.Payton Looney; 14.Mitch McGrath; 15. Jeremy Grady; 16.Spencer Diercks; 17.Garrett Alberson; 18.Aaron Marrant; 19.Jason Papich; 20.Shannon Babb; 21.Brian Birkhofer; 22.Paul Parker; 23.Dave Eckrich; 24.Andy Eckrich;
Heat #1: 1. Ray Cox Jr.; 2. Jayden Fryer; 3. Jeff Larson; 4. Bryce Garnhart; 5. Matt Stein;
Heat #2: 1. Timmy Current; 2. Matt Short; 3. Austin Blume; 4. Tom Pestka; 5. Kory Meyer;
Heat #3: 1. Ryan Duhme; 2. Joe Beal; 3. Steve Johnson; 4. Chris Simpson; 5. Trent Wyssbrod;
Feature: 1. Bryce Garnhart; 2. Austin Blume; 3. Chris Simpson; 4. Timmy Current; 5. Matt Short; 6. Ray Cox Jr.; 7. Jade Fryer; 8. Derrick Stewart; 9. Steve Johnson; 10. J oe Beal; 11. Kory Meyher; 12. Matt Stein; 13. Trent Wyssbrod; 14. Tom Pestka; 15. Ryan Duhme; 16. Jeff Larson; 17. Jeremy Campbell; 18. (1-DNS)
Heat #1: 1. Mitch Bielenberg; 2. Joe Lafrenz; 3. Chris Claypoole; 4. Codie Proehl; 5. Rob Harding Jr.;
Heat #2: 1. Brett Marshall; 2. Cody Brewster; 3. Brandon Schneider; 4. Jared Kingery; 5. Austin Vorbeck;
Feature: 1. Mitch Bielenberg; 2. Joe Lafrenz; 3. Brett Marshall; 4. Brandon Schnieder; 5. Cody Brewster; 6. Rob Harding Jr.; 7. Chris Claypoole; 8. Austin Vorbeck; 9. Jared Kingery; 10. Codie Proehl; 11. Cody Van Dusen; (1-DNS)
Heat #1: 1. Chance Huston; 2. Ryan Reed; 3. Bob Silaggi; 4. Randy Butterbrodt; 5. Jacob Arp;
Heat #2: 1. Gage Neal; 2. Tylelr Soppe; 3. Shane Paris; 4. Justin Becker; 5. Matt Irwin;
Heat #3: 1. Scott Williams; 2. Corey Kuntzelman; 3. Ed Mills; 4. Dakota Cole; 5. Kevin Rasdon;
Feature: 1. Shane Paris; 2. Bob Silaggi; 3. Justin Becker; 4. Ryan Reed; 5. Jacob Arp; 6. Gage Neal; 7. Ed Mills; 8. Chance Huston; 9. Matt Irwin; 10. Scott Williams; 11. Dakota Cole; 12. Shawn Robertson; 13. Joe Grant; 14. Corey Kuntzelman; 15. Mike Evans; 16. Kevin Rasdon; 17. Tyler Soppe; 18. Michael Heister; 19. Randy Butterbrodt; 20. Jed Frederick;
Heat #1: 1. Bruce Yoerger; 2. Bart Miller; 3. Dan Thompson; 4. Gary Proehl; 5. Bryan Caspary;
Heat #2: 1. Travis Heier; 2. Dan Kessler; 3. Steve Olson; 4. Brian Stock; 5. Ron Cook;
Heat #3: 1. Tim Bader; 2. Matt Hudspeth; 3. Dennis Etten; 4. Mike Arp; 5. Jeremy Clement;
Feature: 1. Matt Hudspeth; 2. Bruce Yoerger; 3. Bart Miller; 4. Tim Bader; 5. Ron Cook; 6. Dan Kessler; 7. Mike Arp; 8. Dan Thompson; 9. Brian Stock; 10. Jeremy Clement; 11. Justin Stock; 12. Gary Proehl; 13. Dennis Etten; 14. Don Betke; 15. Steve Olson; 16. Travis Heier; 17. Bryan Caspary; 18. Jake Hayes; (2-DNS)