Josh Richards Victorious in First Appearance at Macon!
Story By: Jeremy Shields/LOLMDS
Photos By: Heath Lawson/LOLMDS
MACON, IL (July 25, 2017) Making his first-ever appearance at Macon Speedway, the current Lucas Oil Late Model Dirt Series points leader, Josh Richards took the lead on lap 60 and held off Shannon Babb in a one-lap shootout to win the St. Louis U-Pic-A-Part 100 on Tuesday night. For Richards, it was his eighth series win of the season extending his lead in the championship chase.
Babb finished in second, with Darrell Lanigan coming home in third. Jason Feger and Jimmy Owens completed the top-five finishers.
Scott Bloomquist led the first 32 laps of the race until he relinquished the lead to Babb. Babb then held the point until Richards took over the top spot on lap 60. Babb hounded Richards for the next 39 laps before caution with one lap to go set up a one-lap dash to the finish in which Richards prevailed.
“When you are at Macon and you have Shannon Babb on your bumper it makes you nervous even so with one lap to go. I can’t thank these guys enough. It was my first time here and it was a fun track to race at. It might be one of my favorite tracks to run on now. I didn’t know quite what to do in hot laps. So, we went back and made some changes for the heat race and feature. He [Babb] was getting better and better and before that caution came out I was sweating it for sure,” said the 29-year-old Richards.
Richards, who started ninth gave Babb credit for his win. “Every time I am at his shop he makes me watch video of Macon. It’s a great place to be. We just did what we thought would work best. The bottom was good there early and then it developed a black streak. I went to the top there for a while
and got up there where he [Babb] was running. I just tried to ride it out and find a good pace and it worked out.”
Babb who was trying to win his second LOLMDS event of the season drove hard in front of his hometown fans. “It was a heckuva race for sure. He got me down on the bottom. It looked like Josh was good everywhere on the track. Darrell [Lanigan] was right in there as well. Congrats to both of those guys on a good run.”
“We grew up right here and have made a lot of laps around this track no doubt. It’s action-packed, everybody saw that tonight. Every lap is intense you, have to be up on the wheel for every lap,” Babb added.
Lanigan finished third in the race with his car owner, Clint Bowyer watching. “It was actually quite fun out there. When it slicked off you could race all over. It had to be a great race for the fans to watch. We were good around the bottom until it kind of gave up. Like I said we will take a top three. The way our luck has been this year. It feels like a win.”:
Completing the top ten were Hudson O’Neal, Earl Pearson Jr., Dennis Erb Jr., Tim McCreadie and Scott Bloomquist.
Lucas Oil Late Model Dirt Series
Tuesday, July 25th, 2017
St. Louis U-Pic-A-Part 100
Macon Speedway – Macon, IL
Miller Welders Fast Time Group A: Shannon Babb / 10.367 seconds
Miller Welders Fast Time Group B: Brent Larson / 10.582 seconds
Eibach Springs Heat Race #1 Finish (10 Laps, All Transfer): Brandon Sheppard, Shannon Babb, Darrell Lanigan, Tim McCreadie, Kolby Vandenbergh, Cody Maguire, Bobby Pierce, Don O’Neal, Don Hammer
FK Rod Ends Heat Race #2 Finish (10 Laps, All Transfer): Scott Bloomquist, Brent Larson, Steve Francis, Jason Feger, Gordy Gundaker, Boom Briggs, Timothy Culp, Gregg Satterlee
Simpson Performance Products Heat Race #3 Finish (10 Laps, All Transfer): Hudson O’Neal, Tony Jackson, Jr., Josh Richards, Earl Pearson, Jr., Dennis Erb, Jr., Jason Suhre, Jimmy Owens, Greg Kimmons
Feature Finish (100 Laps):
Hudson O’Neal ®
Earl Pearson, Jr.
Dennis Erb, Jr.
Tony Jackson, Jr.
Boom Briggs ®
Bear Lake, PA
Lake Elmo, MN
St. Charles, MO
New Berlin, IL
Bowling Green, KY
Gregg Satterlee ®
Rochester Mills, PA
Pleasant Plains, IL
Lap Leaders: Scott Bloomquist (1 – 32); Shannon Babb (33 – 59); Josh Richards (60 – 100)
Cautions: Don O’Neal (Lap 5); Timothy Culp, Tony Jackson Jr., Bobby Pierce (Lap 28); Dennis Erb Jr., Boom Briggs (Lap 31); Steve Francis, Brent Larson (Lap 31); Debris (Lap 37); Tony Jackson Jr. (Lap 45); Gregg Satterlee (Lap 68)
Lucas Oil Late Model Dirt Series Provisionals: n/a
Lucas Oil Late Model Dirt Series Emergency Provisionals: n/a
Wrisco Feature Winner: Josh Richards
Optima Batteries Hard Charger of the Race: Jimmy Owens (Started: 18th; Finished: 13th; Advanced 5 Positions)
Midwest Sheet Metal Spoiler Challenge Point Leader: Josh Richards
Allstar Performance Power Move of the Race: Darrell Lanigan
Sunoco Race for Gas Highest Finisher: Josh Richards
Hot Rod Processing Rookie of the Race: Hudson O’Neal
COMP Cams Engine Builder of the Race: Durham Racing Engines
Ohlins Shocks Chassis Builder of the Race: Rocket Chassis
Outerwears Crew Chief of the Race: Brian Leonburg (Darrell Lanigan)
Safecraft Most Laps Led: Josh Richards
PFC Brakes Pole Award: Brandon Sheppard
Time of Race: 50 minutes 42 seconds