Anthony Nicholson earned the POWRi Lucas Oil WAR Sprints win on Friday at the Hockett/McMillin Memorial. (Kenny Shaw photo)
WHEATLAND, Missouri (September 22, 2018) – Veteran Johnny Herrera found his best stride late to pick up Friday night’s Lucas Oil ASCS Winged Sprint Series feature win at the 8th annual Jesse Hockett/Daniel McMillin Memorial.
The win was Herrera’s first of the season, snapping an 80-race winless streak. It came at an ideal time, giving the Albuquerque, New Mexico driver valuable points toward starting position for Saturday night’s $10,000-to-win main event at Lucas Oil Speedway.
The co-headliner in the middle night of the tripleheader of open-wheel racing went to Anthony Nicholson in the POWRi Lucas Oil WAR Sprint Series.
Results from the first two nights help set the feature lineups for Saturday night’s grand finale. The ASCS Sprints will aim for a $10,000-to-win feature prize with the POWRi WAR winner taking home $3,077 – plus the prestigious Hockett/McMillin trophies.
Gates open at 4 p.m. Saturday with hot laps set for 5:45 and racing at 6:35.
Herrera breaks drought: Johnny Herrera sailed past Jake Bubak with six laps remaining, then drove away to win by about half a straightaway to collect $3,000.
“It was a good race,” Herrera said. “Bubak, he did a great job. I don’t know how he was sticking to the bottom so good. I just kept working and working.
“It’s been almost a year since we got a win,” Herrera added. “We haven’t been good all year, but we’ve been better the last month. We’ve been working harder, just wanting to win again.”
Herrera emerged the winner in an entertaining race with plenty of passing. Second-place Tony Bruce Jr. of Liberal, Kansas, drove from a 13th-starting position and into contention, passing Bubak for the runner-up spot in the final laps.
“We’ve had some terrible runs the last couple of weeks,” Bruce said. “You just have to keep after it. I knew we had a really good car to drive up to the front. We’ll take second.”
Wayne Johnson, who won Thursday’s opening preliminary feature, sprinted away from the pole and led the first four laps. But Matt Covington, the outside front-row starter, made a pass for the lead to complete lap five.
Roger Crockett flipped his car in turn four on the next circuit, bringing out the red flag. The Oklahoma driver, who was battling in the top five, emerged from the crumpled machine under his own power.
Third-running Dylan Westbrook spun on lap nine to bring out a caution, taking him out of contention as Covington and Johnson continued to run 1-2. Covington and Johnson wound up fourth and fifth, respectively.
Herrera began to make progress, driving into the top three by lap 12 and putting himself into position as the race went green the rest of the way.
Nicholson earns POWRi win: Anthony Nicholson of Bartlett, Tennessee took command with six laps to go in a caution-free POWRi WAR Sprints 25-lap feature that had four different leaders. He picked up $1,077.
Nicholson, who started on the pole, passed runner-up Wyatt Burks on lap 19. Burks grabbed the lead on lap 10 and had command until Nicholson’s winning move.
Kyle Cummings wound up in third with Matt Moore fourth and series points leader Riley Kreisel finishing fifth.
“We had a tight car all night and we were still tight in the beginning,” Nicholson said. “It just kind of came to us. As it went away, they slowed down and we were able to get them.
“We really didn’t touch the car all night. We hoped the track came to us, and it did.”
Burks, of Topeka, Kansas, said driving his car too hard probably wound up costing him a chance at the win.
“I just used my brakes up too much at the beginning and I couldn’t drive the car like I wanted to,” Burks said.
Kreisel was contending for a top two finish until the final couple of laps, but slid too high in turns three and fourth to slip back and had to settle for fifth.
Live PD Watch Party: Along with the big night of racing, Lucas Oil Speedway also will play host to a watch party for one of the nation’s hottest television shows.
“Live PD” will be available on televisions throughout the facility and members of the Greene County Sheriff’s Office, including Corporal James Craigmyle and K-9 Lor, will be on hand on the Lucas Oil Speedway midway prior to the races for a meet and greet with fans.
The hit show, which airs on the A&E Network on Friday and Saturday nights from 8-11 p.m., features law enforcement officers from across the country during their nighttime patrols. The Greene County Sheriff’s office has been one of the agencies on the show since March with members like Craigmyle and K-9 Lor, plus Deputy Dustin Kendrick and K-9 Stark, becoming popular among viewers nationwide.
For ticket information on all events at Lucas Oil Speedway in 2018, contact Admission Director Nichole McMillan at (417) 282-5984 or by email at nichole@LucasOilSpeedway.com. Fans also can go online to purchase tickets for any event on the 2018 schedule.
September 20th-22nd, 2018: 8th Annual Jesse Hockett/Daniel McMillin Memorial
The 8th Annual Jesse Hockett/Daniel McMillin Memorial is set for Thursday through Saturday at Lucas Oil Speedway.
Complete Lucas Oil Speedway event information, archived race recaps, previews and driver features, along with ticket information and 2018 schedule can be found by visiting LucasOilSpeedway.com.
Lucas Oil Speedway is located at Highways 83 and 54 in Wheatland, Missouri. A campground with shower and bathroom facilities is also available. With its entrance located just outside the pit gate this sprawling scenic camping facility will continue to enhance the racing experience at the Diamond of Dirt Tracks.
Click LucasOilSpeedway.com for more information and detailed directions to the speedway or call the Track Hotline at (417) 282-5984.
In addition, fans can get social with Lucas Oil Speedway by following @LucasSpeedway on Twitter, clicking “Like” at www.facebook.com/LucasOilSpeedway and on www.youtube.com/LucasOilSpeedway
About Lucas Oil Speedway
Lucas Oil Speedway is considered by fans, drivers and industry insiders to be one of the top five racing facilities in the nation. Located in Wheatland, Missouri, approximately an hour from Springfield, Missouri, and just an hour and a half from the Kansas City metro area, the “Diamond of Dirt Tracks” lives up to its title.
Twenty-One VIP Luxury Suites, HD Jumbo-Tron Screen, Stadium Style Musco Sports Lighting, a Bose Sound System, Go-Kart Slick Track, The Diamond Bar, Track Treasures Gift Shop, the best track food in the country and paved pits are a few of the spectacular amenities setting the Diamond of Dirt apart. This year marks the 8th season for the Liquid Quarter Mile Drag Racing Lake, “Lake Lucas.” Two nationally televised Drag Boat Races featuring the Lucas Oil Drag Boat Racing Series are held annually. New for 2017 was all-purpose built Off Road facility featuring the Lucas Oil Off Road Racing Series as well as a host of other regional events.
Lucas Oil Speedway’s dirt oval track plays host to some of the largest and most-popular events in the Midwest with national and regional touring series appearing frequently including: The Lucas Oil Late Model Dirt Series, POWRi Midget National Series, Lucas Oil Pro-Pulling League, United States Modified Touring Series, ASCS Sprint Cars and the Lucas Oil MLRA.
In addition to the special events, the Lucas Oil Speedway Big Adventure RV Weekly Racing Series features the Warsaw Auto Marine & RV ULMA Late Models, Pitts Homes USRA Modifieds, Big O Tires Street Stocks and the Ozark Golf Cars USRA B-Mods.