Contact at Stateline Speedway Causes Controversy Between Sheppard and Madden
Story By: Kayla May/WoOLMs
Photo By: Eileen Shrey/WoOLMs
BUSTI, NY – June 14, 2018 – Brandon Sheppard collected his fourth World of Outlaws Craftsman® Late Model Series win of the 2018 season at Stateline Speedway on Thursday evening. The New Berlin, IL driver hijacked the lead from Chris Madden on lap 35 after a restart. As the drivers headed into turn two, contact was made ultimately sending Madden in a 180-degree spin and to a complete stop. Madden, who had led every lap up until that point, was then sent to the tail of the field.
“I mean, I obviously didn’t mean to do that to Chris,” explained Sheppard in Victory Lane. “He had a pretty good car there and we were racing pretty hard and he went to the middle there where he had been running before that restart and I really didn’t expect him to turn down that hard. I was carving around the bottom there and we just, I don’t know, we just can watch the video but I didn’t mean to do that. If he’s listening back there [in the pits] I just apologize for that.”
The New Berlin, IL driver started fifth in the 50-lap event and used the top side of the track to his advantage in gaining early momentum.
“I was trying to get as many cars as I could as early as I could because I knew that top [side of the track] was going to go away at some point,” said Sheppard. “I was probably going to run second there and me and Chris just got together there. I hate it for him. I definitely didn’t want to win it that way… [but] we’ll take the win. It’s definitely been a long time coming (May 3 at Lavonia Speedway). We’ve had a rough streak here and it’s nice to be back on the podium.”
Current Series Points leader, Madden finished 12th in the event. When asked to comment on what happened on the track he quietly smiled and shook his head. He had nothing more to say about the incident.
Sheppard’s victory and Madden’s misfortune has once again tightened the points race. Madden now sits just 16 points ahead of Mike Marlar, 46 points ahead of Sheppard and 76 points ahead of Shane Clanton. The Rocket 1 Racing machine was trailing by 70 points prior to the shootout at Stateline Speedway.
Finishing second in the feature was a local standout, Darrell Bossard of Titusville, PA.
“We’ve had some bad luck with this car this year but it’s been really fast,” said Bossard. “Racing with these guys is really a dream. You grow up and you dream of racing with Mike [Marlar], and Brandon [Sheppard], and Shane [Clanton] and all of those guys. I remember watching Rick [Eckert] as a kid and driving by Rick Eckert tonight is something I thought I’d never do.”
Mike Marlar rounded out the podium at Stateline Speedway. Marlar charged to a third place finish after starting seventh.
“I was trying to stay out of trouble and do the best we can do here,” said Marlar. “There will be nights we’ll have some but luckily we’ve dodged it so far. It helped a little on the points lead but I hate to see them guys get together like that. It’s slick, it’s slow and everybody is fighting for their own little lane on that bottom. I think Chris maybe arched out but I don’t know. I couldn’t really tell what was going on.”
The World of Outlaws Craftsman Late Model Series heads to Ransomville Speedway on Friday, June 16 for its last stop in the state of New York in 2018.
Abbreviated results from Stateline Speedway
Sears Craftsman Feature (50 Laps): 1. 1-Brandon Sheppard [$10,000]; 2. 22B-Darrell Bossard [$5,000]; 3. 157-Mike Marlar [$3,000]; 4. 7-Rick Eckert [$2,500]; 5. 9-Devin Moran [$2,000]; 6. 111-Max Blair [$1,700]; 7. 44h-Dave Hess [$1,400]; 8. O-Ryan Scott [$1,300]; 9. 12B-Andy Boozel [$1,200]; 10. 25-Shane Clanton [$1,100]; 11. 2-Dan Stone [$1,050]; 12. 44-Chris Madden [$1,000]; 13. 18c-Chase Junghans [$950]; 14. X3-Wyatt Scott [$900]; 15. 91-Tyler Erb [$850]; 16. B1-Brent Larson [$800]; 17. 54-David Breazeale [$770]; 18. 14m-Morgan Bagley [$750]; 19. 22-Chris Ferguson [$730]; 20. 9s-Breyton Santee [$700]; 21. 1x-Chub Frank [$700]; 22. 28L-John Lobb [$700]; 23. 76-Steve Kania [$700]; 24. 111m-Matt Lux [$700]
Hard Charger Award: 111-Max Blair[+10]