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Martin captures Volunteer Speedway Steel Head Late Model Championship $5,000 victory

By volunteer | 17 August 2013 | 2013 | | 0 Comments   

Martin captures Volunteer Speedway Steel Head Late Model Championship $5,000 victory

By Robert Walden – Volunteer Speedway Media/Public Relations

BULLS GAP, Tenn. (Aug. 16) — When Late Model driver and engine builder Vic Hill and Volunteer Speedway owners Joe and Phyllis Loven got together and decided to promote a $5,000-to-win Limited Late Model race at Volunteer Speedway, the event immediately became the talk of the east Tennessee dirt racing community. And as a result of that excitement, a total of 51 drivers from five states signed in for competition on Friday night.

At the end of the night, it was Baxter, Tennessee’s Mark Martin who beat out a field stocked with track champions from just about every surrounding speedway within a three hour driving radius of Bulls Gap to come away with the big $5,000 winner’s check from the Steel Head Late Model Championship presented by Vic Hill Race Engines.

Martin served notice early on that he would be a top contender as he set fast time in qualifying for Group A and overall with a lap of 13.014 seconds around the high banked track. He would be joined on the front row in the feature event by Ethan Hunter, who led Group B qualifying with a time of 13.066 seconds.

In all, 16 drivers were locked into the main event through time-trials while the rest of the 24 car field was determined by two Last Chance Qualifiers. Those two preliminary events were won by Steve Smith and Brad Lowe.

At the start of the 40-lap feature, Martin wasted no time in taking command of the race. “The Baxter Bullet” shot to the lead at the drop of the green flag with Hunter, Ross White, Cory Hedgecock and Matt Henderson in hot pursuit. Martin’s bright silver machine used the high line on both ends of the track to stretch out a relatively comfortable lead as the race ran caution free through the early laps.

However, Hunter, White and Hedgecock were able to close down on the leader as slower traffic became a factor after 15 laps. Nonetheless, Martin was able to maintain the lead as those cars being lapped gave way to the front runners.

Cautions on lap 24 and lap 26 bunched the field, but also removed the threat of race traffic which allowed Martin to jump out on the ensuing restarts and build a working margin over the field which he would never give up.

At the finish it was Mark Martin, Ethan Hunter, Cory Hedgecock, Ross White, Matt Henderson, Mack McCarter, Trevor Sise, Anthony White, Josh Henry and Jason Trammel who made up the top-10.

“This is the first time I’ve come to a racetrack in a long time where I didn’t have to do anything,” the winner said in his post-race interview. “I just told them (his crew) what I wanted and they gave it to me.”

Warren McMahan of Dandridge, with five championships (four Super Stock and one Crate Late Model) to his credit over the years at Volunteer Speedway, grabbed the lead at start of the 20-lap Modified Hobby feature and never looked back en route to recording the win over Jon Cook, Mike Mays, Tim Mason and Jesse Helton.

STEEL HEAD LATE MODEL CHAMPIONSHIP (40 laps) $5,000-TO-WIN

1) Mark Martin #90; 2) Ethan Hunter #15; 3) Cory Hedgecock #23; 4) Ross White #0; 5) Matt Henderson #17; 6) Mack McCarter #51; 7) Trevor Sise #73; 8) Anthony White #2; 9) Josh Henry #B00; 10) Jason Trammell #90j; 11) Bryan Hendrix #5; 12) Allen Champ #14; 13) Todd Morrow #22; 14) Jason Cardwell #07; 15) Kevin Gill #1g; 16) Barrett Lowe #1; 17) Steve Smith #3; 18) Ryan King #30; 19) Josh Collins #63; 20) Bobby Mayse #22; 21) Kennie Compton Jr. #10; 22) Brad Lowe #16; 23) Chris Chandler #8; 24) Dean Bowen #55; 25) Dan Tipton #12

B-MAIN #1 (12 laps) Top 4 Finishers Transfer: 1) Steve Smith #3; 2) Allen Champ #14; 3) Kevin Gill #1g; 4) Jason Cardwell #07; 5) Steve Carr #77; 6) Brad Dyer #17; 7) Ruben Mayfield #00; 8) Chris Chandler #8; 9) Dustin Cansler #18; 10) Gary Crittenden #18c; 11) Drew Kennedy #K37; 12) Jason Manley #32; 13) Phillip Anderson #9; 14) John Tweed #5; 15) Jason Welshan #29; 16) Mark Leach #66; 17) Mike Smith #4

B-MAIN #2 (12 laps) Top 4 Finishers Transfer: 1) Brad Lowe #16; 2) Dan Tipton #12; 3) Barrett Lowe #1; 4) Dean Bowen #55; 5) Heath Hindman #9; 6) Danny Yoder #2; 7) Shannon Bearden #32; 8) Roger Best #5; 9) Anthony Arnwine #11; 10) Levi Hicks #4; 11) Justin Fairbanks #14; 12) Chris Long #75 – Did Not Start: Brent Hensley #70, Brad Hall #47, Perry Delaney #77; Greg Estes #31, Scott Shelton #5, Kip Sawyer #11

Group A Qualifying: Mark Martin 13.014
Group B Qualifying: Ethan Hunter 13.066

MODIFIED HOBBY (20 laps)

1) Warren McMahan #33; 2) Jon Cook #0z; 3) Mike Mays #30; 4) Tim Mason #45; 5) Jesse Helton #28; 6) Clynis Phillips #46; 7) Charlie Bates #27; 8) Eddie Morris #2x; 9) Kaleb Trent #3; 10) Jesse Wilder #79; 11) #119; 12) Parker Estes #31; 13) #J1; 14) David Bullington #20

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