Lanigan Continues World of Outlaws Late Model Series Onslaught With ‘Fulton Bank 50’ Victory At Delaware International Speedway
Points Leader Rolls To Third Win In Last Four Starts On National Tour, Fifth Of 2012 Season
By Kevin Kovac, WoO LMS P.R. Director
DELMAR, DE – May 31, 2012 – Darrell Lanigan of Union, Ky., continued his World of Outlaws Late Model Series onslaught on Thursday night at Delaware International Speedway, dominating the ‘Fulton Bank 50’ for his third win in the last four races.
Racing just three days before his 42nd birthday, Lanigan blasted forward from the sixth starting spot to take the lead from Austin Hubbard of Seaford, Del., on lap 18 and never looked back. He easily handled two restarts over the remaining distance to pad his already substantial points lead with his series-leading fifth victory of the 2012 season.
With the $10,650 triumph, Lanigan pushed his earnings through 15 WoO LMS events this season to a resounding $115,700. No other driver has won even half that amount – and Lanigan remains the only driver with more than one win on the circuit.
“Everything is just clicking for us right now,” said Lanigan, who won for the third time in eight WoO LMS starts at Delaware International and the 31st time overall in his career on the series. “The car, the engine, my crew – we’re just on a roll. We’re having fun.”
The 20-year-old Hubbard settled for second place after leading laps 1-17, crossing the finish line 1.940 seconds behind Lanigan at a half-mile oval located less than 20 minutes from his home. It was the best finish in five career WoO LMS starts at DIS for the national tour’s 2010 Rookie of the Year.
Defending WoO LMS champion Rick Eckert of York, Pa., started from the pole position but slipped to third at the checkered flag. Ricky Elliott of Seaford, Del., advanced from the 17th starting spot to place fourth and ninth-starter Shane Clanton of Fayetteville, Ga., was fifth for his first top-five run on the WoO LMS since Feb. 25 at Volusia Speedway Park in Barberville, Fla.
Lanigan’s victory completed a very successful four-race stretch, which also included wins on May 25 at Wayne County Speedway in Orrville, Ohio, and May 26 at Tyler County Speedway in Middlebourne, W.Va. ($25,000-plus ‘Jackpot 100’). A sixth-place finish on May 27 at I-77 Raceway Park in Ripley, W.Va., was his only slight stumble.
The 2008 WoO LMS champion was on his game at Delaware International, a track where he is the only driver to win more than one World of Outlaws A-Main. He simply blasted the outside of the track to reach the front in his Cornett-powered Rocket machine.
“It was on a rail,” said Lanigan, who outdueled Eckert for second on a lap-15 restart and sailed by Hubbard just three circuits later. “We could go right around the top there. I passed ’em all right around the top. You usually don’t get to do that here.
“It was unbelievable out there on that outside. It was a great track – I can’t believe the track came around like that.”
Hubbard’s attempt to make the inside lane work at one of the track opened the door for Lanigan to surge into the lead.
“I moved down (in turns three and four) after that (lap-15) restart and it felt good,” said Hubbard, who started from the outside pole in his father’s Rocket car. “I said, ‘I’ll just go to the top down here (one and two) and the bottom down there (three and four,’ and then Darrell just blew by me. Then I was like, ‘I guess I’ll move up.'”
The race ended just in time for Hubbard, whose engine began going sour late in the distance and finally broke on the final lap.
Eckert, 46, wished he could have a mulligan on his tire selection..
“I beat myself in the pit area,” said Eckert, who won last year’s WoO LMS A-Main at Delaware International. “We run the same tires we had last year, and they changed the racetrack up a good bit. It was a good bit faster around the top than it has been in the past, and I was a little too tight to be up there.
“That was the first time we started up front in a long time so you’re a little bitter about not winning, but we just got beat in the pits. It was a tire choice, and I made the wrong one.”
Tim McCreadie of Watertown, N.Y., started fourth and briefly climbed as high as second early in the A-Main but ultimately fell to sixth at the finish. Chub Frank of Bear Lake, Pa., battled his car to a seventh-place finish and David Williams of Chaptico, Md, placed eighth to earn the $500 WoO LMS ‘Bonus Bucks’ cash for being the highest-finshing driver who hasn’t won a tour A-Main and isn’t ranked among the top 12 in the points standings. Tim Fuller of Watertown, N.Y., was ninth and Clint Smith of Senoia, Ga., who used a provisional to start the A-Main, took 10th.
Five caution flags slowed the event, including a multi-car tangle in turn four on a lap-15 restart that involved Bub McCool of Vicksburg, Miss., Gregg Satterlee of Rochester Mills, Pa., Darryl Hills of Great Mills, Md., Donnie Lingo Jr. of Millsboro, Del., and Richard Jarvis Jr. of Powellville, Md.
Thirty-four cars were signed in for the event, the tour’s eighth visit to DIS in the last nine years.
Jamie Lathroum of Mechanicsville, Md., was quickest in Ohlins Shocks Time Trials, turning a lap of 18.257 seconds to earn his first-ever WoO LMS fast-time honor. He went on to win a heat race as well, but his A-Main run came to an end on lap 33 due to a broken rearend as he ran seventh.
Joining Lathroum as heat winners were Lanigan, McCool and Eckert. The B-Mains were captured by Elliott Tim Fuller.
Heat action was marred by a wild crash during the third preliminary involving Brady Smith of Solon Springs, Wis., whose car hopped the berm between turns one and two and rolled several times. He said he had a slight headache but was otherwise uninjured.
Smith was done for the night, abruptly ending his hopes of improving upon the pair of runner-up finishes he registered in his two previous WoO LMS starts at Delaware International, in 2009 and ’10.
The WoO LMS will return to action in two weeks, contesting a weekend doubleheader on June 16 at Hagerstown (Md.) Speedway and June 17 at Eriez Speedway in Hammett, Pa.
Results of WoO Late Model Series ‘Fulton Bank 50’ at Delaware International Speedway (Finishing Position/Start/Driver/Laps Completed/Money Won):
1. (6) Darrell Lanigan/50 $10,650
2. (2) Austin Hubbard/50 $5,000
3. (1) Rick Eckert/50 $3,700
4. (17) Ricky Elliott/50 $2,500
5. (9) Shane Clanton/50 $2,550
6. (4) Tim McCreadie/50 $2,350
7. (5) Chub Frank/50 $2,000
8. (10) David Williams/50 $1,800
9. (18) Tim Fuller/50 $1,800
10. (23) Clint Smith/50 $1,650
11. (12) Vic Coffey/50 $1,600
12. (11) Pat Doar/50 $1,550
13. (22) Rob Schirmer/49 $1,000
14. (7) Bub McCool/43 $1,750
15. (14) Donnie Lingo Jr./37 $850
16. (3) Jamie Lathroum/33 $800
17. (19) Dale Lingo IV/33 $770
18. (24) Kent Robinson/22 $1,350
19. (8) Gregg Satterlee/14 $730
20. (15) Kenny Pettyjohn/14 $700
21. (16) Darryl Hills/14 $700
22. (13) Richard Jarvis Jr./14 $700
23. (21) Mark Byram/13 $700
24. (20) John Lobb/5 $700
* Earnings include Winners Circle program and cash contingency award bonuses
Time of Race: 35 Mins., 4.940 Secs.
Margin of Victory: 1.940 Secs.
Yellow Flags: 5 (Laps 5, 15, 15, 22, 33)
Lap Leaders: Hubbard (1-17); Lanigan (18-50)
Provisional Starters: C. Smith, K. Robinson
Rookie of the Race: McCool ($250)
WoO LMS ‘Bonus Bucks’ Winner: David Williams($500)