Steve Dorer wins the FUPS 100 presented by A-Able Septic Service
Citrus County Speedway fans saw the racing action crank up Saturday night with time trial qualifying for the Florida United Promoters Series late models. 21 of the states top drivers and cars all took the fastest of their two qualifying laps, to help determine their starting position for the 100 lap feature. When all was said and done, it was a familiar face sitting on top of the field. Daniel Webster (33) set the fast time for the 2nd FUPS race at Citrus in a row, followed by Jesse Dutilly (30), and Steve Dorer (10) in 3rd. The top 8 drivers in the series then redraw for their starting positions. With the help of some young speedway fans, Jonathan Guy (42) had his lucky fan pull the pole position. He would have 3rd fastest qualifier and series point leader Steve Dorer alongside for the green flag. Guy would lead the field to green, and win the drag race with Dorer to turn one, but caution would fly for the stalled car of Jake Perkins (59) on the backstretch, before the lap was completed. Perkins had battled ignition problems all day, and an electrical short ended his night before the race even got started. The field was reset for a complete restart, this time, Dorer got the jump from the outside lane. The front row cars raced side by side for the first lap and a half. Contact between the top two exiting turn 2 sent both cars sliding sideways. Dorer would collected his car a little faster, and was able to clear Guy for the lead entering turn 3. Joe Winchell (64) would move quickly by Guy for 2nd, and then put the pressure on the leader Dorer right away. The race saw 4 cautions in the early going which slowed the action considerably. 2nd fast qualifier Dutilly was now moving up through the field, and by lap 47, he had moved by Winchell for 2nd. Fast qualifier Webster also moved by Winchell, into the 3rd position. At the half way point in the race your top 5 were Dorer, Dutilly, Webster, Winchell, and Wayne Anderson. Dorer would survive a few more minor cautions and restarts over the next 43 laps, Including one for the 4th running Winchell, who broke a rear end. The nights most serious incident came on lap 93, and would be the final caution of the night. Daryl Shelnut (7), and Anthony Sergi (20) were racing hard just inside the top 10. Sergi attempted and inside move on Shelnut entering turn 3, Sergi slid up the track making contact, which sent Shelnut sliding up the track also. Shelnut showed his displeasure by getting into the right rear of Sergis car at the end of the front straight. The contact sent Sergi spinning the wrong way backwards, and he made hard contact with the turn 1 wall and guardrail. Sergi was done for the night, and Shelnut was black flagged as well as disqualified for intentionally wrecking Sergi. Dorer would now have to survive a 7 lap sprint to the finish on the restart. Dutilly looked to have the faster car over the final 50 laps of the event, but wasn’t able to find a clean way by Dorer for the lead. Dorer got a great restart, but Dutilly quickly tracked him down to challenge for the lead over the final 5 laps. Dorer wouldn’t slip a wheel over the final 5 laps, and went on to take his 1st victory ever at Citrus County Speedway. Dutilly settled for a strong 2nd place, just ahead of the hard charging Wayne Anderson in 3rd. The race was Dorers 4th win of the year in the series, and let him extend his point lead over Dutilly for the series championship.
15 Street Stocks were lead to the green by Paul Fletcher (74) and Robert Kuhn Jr (92). Fletcher would jump out to the early lead with 3rd starter James Peters (5) moving to the 2nd position. 4th place starter John Chance (61) would challenge Peters for the 2nd position, and move to the runner up spot by lap 3, with Peters falling to 3rd. Chance then set his sights on the leader Fletcher. Chance would catch the leader by lap 5, and then make the outside pass for the lead on lap 7. Lap 10 saw the 1st of 2 cautions fly for a spin involving Peters and John Makula (27) while battling for 3rd. Makula would take blame for the incident, giving Peters his spot back, and sending himself to the rear. Chance would lead on the restart, with Fletcher and Peters just behind. Chance would pull out to another lead until the red flag would come out at lap 17. Tim Wilson (85) saw his power plant go up in smoke, then catching on fire. The track safety crew quickly extinguished the blaze, but a lengthy cleanup then ensued. Once back to racing, Chance would pull away over the final 3 laps to take his 1st feature win of the 2012 season. Fletcher and Peters would race hard to the line for 2nd, with Peters slipping by to take the runner up spot at the checkers. Heat race winners were Peters and Makula.
12 Pure Stocks saw Chris Ickes (20) and Dustin Dinkins (96) bring the field to green. Dinkins would get the jump and move to an early lead. Caution would fly at lap 5 for a spin involving Nicholas Malverty (17) and James Holly (09). The leader Dinkins suffered a mechanical issue during the caution, and had to retire to the pits from the lead position. This handed the lead over to 2nd place Michael Dubbs (36) for the restart. Dubbs lead on the restart, but on lap 9 his car slid up the track, letting 2nd running Sheri Makula (27) and Karlin Ray (72) by to take the lead away. The top two then waged a battle of their own for the lead, with Ray taking the lead away, only to see a caution fly before he completed the lap. This meant Ray would be moved back to 2nd, and try to make the pass all over again. Once back to green, it didn’t take long for Ray to move to the outside lane to challenge for the lead. As the two leaders pulled even with each other, contact sent both of the leaders sliding into the infield. No one spun out, but the caution was displayed. Makula had to retire to the pits after the spin, and Ray was sent to the rear for his part in the incident. This now handed the lead over to 3rd place running Malverty. Malverty would go on to take the victory over the final 3, and secure his 5th feature win of the 2012 season. Dubbs would come home 2nd just ahead of Steve Stinedurf (0) in 3rd. Malverty and Ray were your heat race winners.
9 Modified Mini Stocks saw Robbie Storer avenge last weeks last lap incident to take his 1st feature win of 2012 in only his 2nd trip of the season to Citrus County Speedway. Storer had a victory wrapped up last week, until last lap contact with Jesse Henley (3), saw him settling for 2nd at the checkers. Point leader Clint Foley had a furious and exciting battle with Phil Edwards (24) and Nick Neri (2) in the opening laps of the event. Foley actually ended up in the front stretch wall on the initial start of the race, which caused a complete restart. These three drivers raced like it was the last lap in the opening laps, which allowed Storer to pull out to a nearly half a track lead. By the time Foley made it to 2nd, Storer was too far gone to catch. Foley would settle for 2nd just ahead of Neri in 3rd. Store was also you heat race winner.
9 Figure 8 cars challenged the intersection for 20 laps with Neil Herne (09) and Ronnie Schrefiels (6) on the front row. Herne jumped out to the early lead with Schrefiels in 2nd. Behind them Travis Nichols (51) was making his return to figure 8 racing, and soon was putting pressure on the leaders. Nichols would move by Schrefiels for 2nd at lap 9, and then by Herne for the lead by lap 11. Nichols would go on to take his 1st win of 2012 in his first figure 8 start in many years. Herne would follow in 2nd, with Schrefiels coming home 3rd. The win by Nichols was pretty spectacular, the car he drove to victory was a car he owned nearly 15 years ago, and then was sold to Victory Stanley. The car was retired many years ago, and sat idle in and empty pasture until 5 weeks ago.
This Saturday night will be another action packed night at Citrus County Speedway. Headlining the show will be the Sportsman division going for 50 laps. Joining them will be the Open Wheel Modifieds after a 6 week layoff, Street Stock, Pure Stock, Mini Stock, and those crazy Pro Figure 8’s.