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SUPR at Champion Park Speedway - 5/28 Results (Read 1065 times)
SUPR at Champion Park Speedway - 5/28 Results
06/02/11 at 2:05pm
SUPR Late Models
June 2, 2011
Another new face in SUPR victory lane, Robinson takes Champion Park
by Bryan Wimberley
HAUGHTON, La. (May 28) - B.J. Robinson of Blanchard, La., made sure that the SUPR trend continues and became the fifth first-time series winner this season, edging Kevin Sitton of Baytown, Tex., by three lengths at Champion Park Speedway. With a recent modified background, Robinson elevated his Raymond Childress-owned car to the teams' first series victory since last July. Robinson earned $2,500 for the O'Reilly Southern United Professional Racing series win and marked his fourth top 5 out of his last six entered events, including an unsanctioned win on May 21st at Chatham, Louisiana.
"When we drew in, we thought it was going to be a little difficult, especially when we seen who was in the heat race lineup. There was quite a few tough cars in that one heat race over the rest of them. Not that there is any bad cars whenever you show up to a race like this, but this heat was stacked. Everything worked out pretty decent and I got to run second that heat race, which was fortunate enough to start us on the pole for the feature. We just came out and hit our marks and make sure we didn't mess up too bad during the 40 laps," said Robinson.
Robinson added, "It was one-laned, we have all raced here so many times, they have three or four races here a year (with the series). We have raced here quite a bit in the modified and the bottom is always the preferred groove. I think it made it a little worse once it rubbered up, we went a little softer on tires than probably some other drivers. I was just trying to bide my time to make sure the tires didn't go away on us."
Series points leader, Morgan Bagley of Longview, Tex., went from 6th-to-third. Chris Holley of Dayton, Tex., scored his first top 5 in six weeks, by taking a backup car to a 4th-place finish, while Jeff Chanler of Minden, La., rounded out the top 5.
Robinson jumped into the lead over Sitton, Allen Tippen, Troy Berdan and Bagley on the initial lap. Trouble would strike quickly with the yellow flag waving for a four-car accident in the middle of turns one & two. Collected in the melee, would be Kennith Crowe, Wesley Chanler, Odie Green and Litton. Green, driving a Burnie Sharp-owned car, would head to the pits and get a flat changed -Green would later be an early retiree, to a 21st-place finish.
On the restart, Robinson again took charge, but Sitton would nose under him on the third circuit to challenge for the lead. Robinson would maintain the point, as the top six cars would break-away from the rest of the field.
In three laps, Timothy Culp would get shuffled out of the top ten running order, getting passed by Bubba Mullins and Jeff Chanler, seven laps into the feature.
Sitton would try the high side to make a move on Robinson for first, but it backfired when Allen Tippen slid by to capture second from Sitton. Robinson reached the back of the pack, encountering traffic on lap 15.
Bagley began showing muscle during the 19 green flag laps between cautions, moving to second on lap 16. Robinson held a slim four length lead, when a lap 20 caution came out for the spun car of Derek Perkins of Oakdale.
It would continue to get hairy before getting back to green flag racing, when Troy Berdan of Minden, would tangle with Chris Holley in turn three.
Third-running Sitton would start pressing Bagley for second, as it became a three car show on lap 26. Holley would take his bented up race car into fourth on the next lap.
Inside of ten laps remaining, Sitton took a peek inside of Bagley to stake claim to the runner up position. Sitton would have to work seven more laps to finally make the move stick, going by Bagley for second with two laps to go.
Sitton talked about the late race battle with him and Bagley.
"Morgan (Bagley) was faster in the beginning than we were, because he had a softer left rear. We got by Morgan late because the track had rubbered up by then and he had a softer right front. Those tires get hot and the car just stops turning, I seen him struggling with it. I was riding and riding and knew I had to be there when he started pushing up at just the right time, so I could go underneath him to make the pass. It happened and I took my shot and drove right by him to get into second."
Sitton was only a few lengths behind Robinson and closing, but Robinson would hold on to break through for his first series win at the checkered flags, becoming SUPR's fifth first-time winner in nine series events this season.
SUPR's other four first-time winners this season include, Will Vaught at Texas Motor Speedway Dirt Track, Morgan Bagley at USA Speedway, Gary Christian at Champion Park Speedway, Timothy Culp at Greenville Speedway.
Notes: Robinson's Victory Circle by Stuckey race car is powered by a Jay Dickens Racing Engine and sponsored by Childress Inspection Service, Stuckey Enterprises Racing, X-Treme Graphics, Childress Fishing Rental, TWM and Outpace.
In a fill-in role last season, Robinson put a Gilbert Swayne-owned Late Model on the front-row, at Champion Park Speedway in the SUPR Series, before jumping full-time in the Childress Racing No. R5 car he won in Saturday.
"Slick Swayne gave me an opportunity to drive an older car here last year, that was all that his funds would allow to do. He ask me if I would be interested in driving it some and make a few late model starts locally around here. We actually intended to race a few races out-of-town once we got going, about a couple of hours or so drive from here, but we had motor problems and a few other things. There at the end of the year, Raymond and Kathy (Childress) gave me an opportunity to drive this car and it was a no-brainer for me on that question. The equipment that they provide, the support that they give, is very low pressure in the driver's seat. I would say that there is very few people out there, even on a national level, that have a situation like I have," Robinson said.
The first series victory came for Robinson in only his 10th SUPR Series start with car owner-Raymond Childress, dating back to October last season.
"It's huge to win this early for my car owner (Raymond Childress), it is definitely huge for us, especially when we got off to a decent start last year and struggled a little bit this season early. A lot of that was just being at the wrong place and the wrong time. Last year I had run about 30 races in my modified at this point, where we have probably only run about 15 or so in the late model this season. Laps in a race car period, just helps you make better decisions when you are out there on the racetrack and in the pits on your car in the adjustments that you make. None of this would be possible without the Childress Racing Team and of course my boss, Ronnie Stuckey also. It is just so helpful to learn the in's-and-out's and the do's-and-don'ts on the tires and the changes to make at the racetrack throughtout the night," said Robinson.
Robinson works for Stuckey Enterprises Racing and is yet another racer having success in the series after recently moving up from the modified ranks.
"It is not easy by any means for a modified driver to have late model success. It is easier in the modifieds, where you have less tire with quite a bit of motor. I would say the tire-to-motor ratio is way harder to drive in a modified, than in a late model, you can never slip the tires, because in the slick conditions a modified is a lot harder to drive. Then you have the SUPR deal with the spec motors and big spoilers, you definitely have got to have them in our area or you can't go and compete hardly with those guys on the smaller tracks like this (Champion Park), with the little spoiler. You are going to be out to lunch if you do, that was a lot of the problem with the No. 96 when we ran it, it was an open motor with an 8" spoiler and you are the only car in the pits like that," explained Robinson.
The checkered flag fell on the 25-minute feature at 11:48 pm and was slowed by three cautions.
Jeff Chanler was the hard charger of the race, going 14th-to-fifth. Chanler had a fourth place finish the night before at USA Speedway in Sterlington, La., his best two finishes of the season.
Defending and 2-time SUPR Series champion, Rob Litton of Alexandria, La., suffered some engine woes in his No. 6x car and borrowed Paul Joyner's No. 74 car to start the feature. Litton started 19th and salvaged an 11th-place finish in the loaned machine.
Timothy Culp's frustrating weekend continued at Champion Park Speedway on Saturday night. Things began sour for Culp in hot laps, when Brandon Russell of Keithville, La., got crossed up and came to a stop in the middle of turns three & four. Culp and Doug Begnaud of Cypress, Tex., could not avoid colliding with the stalled machine of Russell, causing significant right side damage to both of their cars. Culp headed directly to the pits and began repairs to the No. c8 car, later declining comment on the extent of damages to his car. Culp fell back another 31 points to leader Morgan Bagley in the point standings, but still holds onto second place. Bagley currently holds a 95-point advantage atop the standings.
Begnaud would make a couple more hot laps, after being cleared of the accident and checked to see the extend of the damage to his No. 1 car.
"I wanted to make a couple more laps around the track to see if I would have some steering or handling problems. At this point, I believe it is mostly cosmetic damage and we should be okay. It just left us with more unnecessary work to do," Begnaud said.
Begnaud would be the last transfer in the consolation race and have a 20th-starting position in the feature -Begnaud would record a 13th-place finish.
Kevin Sitton would continue success in his new Barry Wright Race Car, finishing with back-to-back top 3's.
Sitton remarked, "So far, so good, we have adapted to this new Barry Wright Race Car. We have only had two nights of racing with it and we have two heat race wins, finished third last night and second tonight in the features. We like the way it turns, it steers really well, it drives off the corners good, I am satisfied and like it a lot right now.
We showed up over at BWRC in South Carolina and stayed four days. On the last day we stayed there, Barry & Lance Wright took the car in the back of the shop, set it up for us, showed us what to do, scaled it up and showed us what bars to move. Barry & Lance have been a huge help to us, they are always a phone call away if we have any problems with it and you couldn't ask for a better experience up there with them when we was up there. It was just great putting the car together when we was there and learning, it was truly a positive experience for us."
A faulty gear shifter during his heat, would keep Allen Murray of San Antonio, Tex., out of his consolation race, ending his night early.
Drivers failing to make the feature included, Nate Jantz, Paul Joyner, Allen Murray, Darin Patirck and Brandon Russell.
SUPR @ Champion Park: (1) B.J. Robinson, (2) Kevin Sitton, (3) Morgan Bagley (4) Chris Holley, (5) Jeff Chanler, (6) Allen Tippen, (7) Bubba Mullins, (8) Jon Mitchell, (9) Timothy Culp, (10) Ronny Adams, (11) Rob Litton, (12) Robbie Stuart, (13) Doug Begnaud, (14) Wesley Chanler, (15) Jay Brunson, (16) Troy Berdan, (17) Kennith Crowe, (18) Derek Perkins, (19) Curt Lipsey, (20) Brett Frazier, (21) Odie Green, (22) Jody Prince
Heat race winners (among 27 cars): Tippen, Sitton, Berdan, Frazier
Consolation race winner: Prince
Provisional starters: Perkins, W. Chanler
O'Reilly SUPR Series points
(Through May 28th)
1. Morgan Bagley - 1,017
2. Timothy Culp - 922
3. Allen Tippen - 891
4. Kevin Sitton - 833
5. Rob Litton - 754
6. B.J. Robinson - 623
7. Chris Holley - 592
8. Robbie Stuart - 536
9. Ray Moore - 519
10. Jody Prince - 500
11. Bubba Mullins - 485
12. Ronny Adams - 460
13. Jeff Chanler - 453
14. Robbie Starnes - 428
15. Troy Berdan - 387
16. Derek Perkins - 355
17. Jay Brunson - 346
18. Jon Mitchell - 298
19. Kennith Crowe - 290
20. Nicholas Brown - 279
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