Owens earns Tribute to Gibson victory in Show-Me 100 preliminary feature at Lucas Oil Speedway
Wheatland, Missouri (May 26, 2018) - Jimmy Owens showed again why Lucas Oil Speedway is one of his favorite venues, driving to victory in Friday night's Tribute to Don and Billie Gibson as the scene was set for Saturday night's 26th annual Show-Me 100 Presented by ProtecttheHarvest.com.
Owens, who has won four of the previous eight Show-Me 100s contested at Lucas Oil Speedway, took the lead on lap 14 of Friday's 40-lap feature, which was named in honor of Don and Billie Gibson, who started the Show-Me 100 at West Plains Motor Speedway in 1993.
The Newport, Tennessee veteran held off Brian Shirley over the final few laps to prevail for his 59th Lucas Oil Late Model Dirt Series career victory. He finished 1.093 second ahead of Shirley to earn $6,000.
"I feel like we had a really great car yesterday, but I let my tires seal over on a caution," Owens said. "I wasn't gonna let those suckers seal over tonight. We had an awesome car all night long and maybe we can carry it over into tomorrow."
While Owens took the night two checkers, the real attention-grabber was third-place finisher Scott Bloomquist. He drove from a 20th-starting position to finish third and, due to combined points from that and his Thursday win in the "Cowboy Classic," will unofficially start on the pole of Saturday's $30,000-to-win, 100-lap feature.
It was an eventful night for Bloomquist. The Mooresburg, Tennessee veteran was not allowed to participate in time trials for failure of his team to follow proper procedure when drawing for a qualifying number. He started tailback in the third heat and finished seventh, forcing him into a B Main.
Bloomquist rallied to win the second B Main - driving the final seven laps essentially on three wheels after his left-front suspension broke following contact with Jimmy Mars - to qualify for the feature. After quick repairs to make it to the starting grid, he had the fans cheering as he charged through the field.
"We really dug ourselves ... well, one of my boys dug ourselves a hole earlier," Bloomquist said. "That's what got us put in the back. The (Lucas Oil) Series did its job. We just had to fight an uphill battle all night.
"We were up for it," Bloomquist added, "but it's hard on the car and it's hard on myself. We didn't quite have time to get everything fixed the way it needed to be. We had to hurry up and get on the racetrack and get going. But all in all, the car ran good and the engine stayed cool. We'll work on it. We have 100 laps tomorrow."
Bloomquist is a five-time Show-Me 100 winner, but all of those were pre-2010 when the race was at West Plains. He has a chance to solve the Wheatland puzzle on Saturday.
"You get to racetracks and there are characteristics about some places that cause you maybe a little bit more trouble than others," he said. "This is the most comfortable I've ever been here. The car feels as good as any I've ever had here."
Jonathan Davenport finished fourth and defending Show-Me 100 champion Bobby Pierce was fifth. Mason Zeigler led the first 13 laps, but faded to finish ninth.
Points accumulated from Thursday and Friday night's programs help set the first 18 starting positions for Saturday night's feature race. The remainder of the field will be determined via B-Mains and the Midwest Sheet Metal Challenge.
Hubert grabs USRA Modified win: Evan Hubert passed Chase Domer when the leader slipped up a bit with two laps remaining to earn the $600 Pitts Homes USRA Modified victory.
"Sixty seven cars here tonight, it feels really good," said Hubert, from nearby Cross Timbers, Missouri. "Chase Domer messed up a little bit and I snuck in there and took my opportunity."
Domer saw a sizable lead wiped out late due to a caution, but said he didn't mind as he was nearing lapped traffic. Two weeks ago, he pointed out, lapped traffic slowed him in another runner-up finish.
"This one's on me," Domer said. "I hate it for my guys. We're getting closer. We're gonna keep digging."
Mark Dotson started 11th and finished third.
For tonight's big finale, spectator gates open at 4 p.m. with hot laps at 6:30 and opening ceremonies at 7.
For the first time, the entire final night of the Show-Me 100 - which will include B-Mains and the Midwest Sheet Metal Show-Me Challenge plus the USRA Modified program's B-Mains and A-Main - will air live on MAVTV Motorsports Network along with live coverage on LucasOilRacing.TV.