Eric Wells Wins Schaeffer’s SNBS/Iron-Man Firecracker 40 at Tazewell Speedway
(July 3, 2018) The Schaeffer’s Oil Southern Nationals Bonus Series presented by Sunoco Race Fuels and Tennessee RV and the Schaeffer’s Oil Iron-Man Championship Late Model Series presented by DirtonDirt.com would co-sanction the Firecracker 40 at Tazewell Speedway in Tazewell, Tenn. on Tuesday evening and Eric Wells of Hazard, Ky. would be victorious and earn himself $5,000 for his efforts. The Brucebilt Performance Iron-Man Modified Series would also be in competition at “The Bad Fast Taz” and Ricky Arms of Moss, Tenn. would see the checkered flag first and score a $1,000 victory. (McLeod Media Services Photo)
The victory by Wells would be his second career victory in Southern Nationals Bonus Series and Iron-Man Series competition and would take place in the familiar David Wells owned Convenient Lube, Wells Motorsports, Penske Racing Shock, All Star Performance, Schaeffer’s Oil, Big Blue Smokehouse sponsored #18 Longhorn Chassis, Cornett Race Engines powered entry. The win for Arms would be first career Iron-Man Modified Series checkered flag and would come aboard the Richard Harlow owned Diamond Auto Collision, Paintless Dent Repair, Barren River Pest Control, Fire Pit Spirits sponsored #4 Bandit Race Car, Dale Meers Race Engines powered mount.
Outside front-row starter Dakotah Knuckles would jump to the lead at the start of the Firecracker 40 event, with Brian Smith, Chad Ogle, Eric Wells, and Aaron Ridley giving chase. Knuckles would set a torrid pace out front and would begin the process of lapping slower traffic on lap seven, while Ridley and Wells would battle for the fourth position. By lap ten, Knuckles would have almost a full straightaway advantage over the field, while Ridley got by Wells for the fourth position, only to have Wells reclaim the position three circuits later on lap thirteen. Knuckles advantage out front would quickly disappear on lap fourteen when his machine started showing puffs of smoke and the first caution of the event waved on lap sixteen when Ridley would slow on the frontchute and pull into the work area and would return to action. Under the caution, race leader Knuckles would pull to the work area and would be done for event as the result of an oil-line that came loose. This would put Smith in the lead of the race and the restart would see Wells work past Ogle for the runner-up spot and immediately set his sights on Smith and would pass him on lap eighteen, but a caution for a three-car tangle on the frontchute that involved Ogle, fifth-place running Chicky Barton, and sixth-place running Jeff Neubert would negate the pass, as Ogle would be the only driver not able to continue as his mount suffered a broken rear-end. The restart would also see the caution wave for what would be the final time when Ridley again slowed on the track and would be pushed to work area, finished for the night. The final restart would see Wells immediately begin to pressure Smith for the lead and Wells would grab the first position on lap twenty. Wells would open up a comfortable advantage by lap twenty-five and would begin working slower traffic on lap twenty-seven. Meanwhile, sixteenth-place starter David Payne had charged his way to the front and would battle with Smith for second, while Barton had recovered from his incident a few laps earlier and would take fourth from Clyde Overholt on lap twenty-eight. Wells would not be challenged the remainder of the way in the event and would cross under the checkered flag first, while Smith would finish second, with Payne completing the podium finishers with a third-place effort. Barton and Overholt would complete the top five. The remainder of the top ten finishers would be thirteenth starting Matt Tharp, Neubert, fourteenth starting Joey Standridge, Mitchell Childress, and Mitchell Burke.
The Modified feature event would see top qualifier Chase King jump to the early advantage and hold the top spot until lap nine when Ricky Arms would drive past King for the race lead and never be seriously challenged the remainder of the way in the twenty-lap contest to claim the victory. King would settle for runner-up honors, while first-time visitor Clayton Miller would drive to a third-place finish. Shane Roberts would finish in the fourth position, while Amos Bunch would make a late-race pass to claim the fifth position. The remainder of the top ten at the conclusion of the event would be Wayne James, Jody Horton, Jimmy Payne, Tyler James, and Terry James.
The Schaeffer’s Oil Southern Nationals Bonus Series presented by Sunoco Race Fuel and Tennessee RV next event will be Saturday August 18 at North Georgia Speedway in Chatsworth, Ga., paying $10,000 to win. The Schaeffer’s Oil Iron-Man Championship Late Model Series presented by DirtonDirt.com next event will be Saturday August 4 at Brownstown Speedway in Brownstown, Ind., paying $10,000 to win the track’s Hall of Fame Classic, which will also be co-sanctioned with the MARS Super Late Model Racing Series. The Brucebilt Performance Iron-Man Modified Series next event will be Saturday August 25 at Lake Cumberland Speedway in Burnside, Ky., paying $1,022 to win as part of the track’s Harold Hardgrove Memorial event.
Further information on the Spring Nationals, Southern Nationals, Southern Nationals Bonus Series, and Iron-Man Series can be obtained by calling Southern Nationals Promoter Ray Cook at (828) 360-5353 or Iron-Man Series Promoter Chris Tilley at (606) 219-1723 or by visiting the official series websites located at www.SouthernNationalsSeries.com
Official Summary of Results
Feature Results for Schaeffer’s Oil Southern Nationals Bonus Series/Schaeffer’s Oil Iron-Man Championship Late Model Series at Tazewell Speedway in Tazewell, Tenn. on July 3, 2018
1. Eric Wells-Hazard, Ky.
2. Brian Smith-Barbourville, Ky.
3. David Payne-Murphy, N.C.
4. Chicky Barton-Middlesboro, Ky.
5. Clyde Overholt-Tazewell, Tenn.
6. Matt Tharp-Luttrell, Tenn.
7. Jeff Neubert-Rockford, Tenn.
8. Joey Standridge-Telico Plains, Tenn.
9. Mitchell Childress-Seymour, Tenn.
10. Mitchell Burke-Tazewell, Tenn.
11. Brad Dyer-Mohawk, Tenn.
12. Lynn Leach-Andersonville, Tenn.
13. Aaron Ridley-Chatsworth, Ga.
14. Chad Ogle-Sevierville, Tenn.
15. Vic Hill-Mosheim, Tenn.
16. Steve Smith-Powell, Tenn.
17. Dakotah Knuckles-Ewing, Va.
18. Layne Clifton-Seymour, Tenn.
19. Eric Webber-Morristown, Tenn.
Time of Race: 26 minutes, 35 seconds
Margin of Victory: 3.874 seconds
Yellow Flags: 3 (lap 16, 18, 18 restart)
Red Flags: None
Lap Leaders: Dakotah Knuckles 1-15, Brian Smith 16-19, Eric Wells 20-40
Speedway Videos Overall Top Qualifier: Dakotah Knuckles (Group B) 11.491 seconds
Keyser Manufacturing 11th Place Award: Brad Dyer
Highest Finishing CT525 Engine ($200): None
Highest Finishing Steel/SPEC Engine ($200): Clyde Overholt
Provisional Starters: None www.southernnationalsseries.com