West Liberty, IA (May 4, 2019) - For the second time in three days, Bobby Pierce showed his toughness as he dominated the Lucas Oil MLRA main event at the West Liberty Raceway. Pierce's win netted him a $5,000 pay day, and makes it his third on the season with the MLRA.
Heavy rains early in the week provided for a challenging track as a softer than normal racing surface left drivers searching for the smoothest line around the super fast ½ mile speedway in the twenty-five lap A-Main. For the second time this season Chad Simpson locked up the DirtonDirt.com pole position after a dominating heat race win after starting in the eighth position.
Pierce rolled off alongside of Simpson with both drivers making a deep run into turn one at the drop of the green flag. Side-by-side through the corner both drivers showed a sense of urgency to assume the lead and it was Pierce using the top side momentum to seize control down the back stretch. Simpson would stay within striking distance until the events first caution on lap six for a slowing Jeremy Grady.
As he would do all night, Pierce showed his strength on the restart to again distance himself from the field. A red flag would slow the pace two laps later as contact down the front stretch between Jordan Yaggy and Dave Wada would see Yaggy barrel rolling down the front stretch multiple times. Yaggy, who already had a pair of MLRA top five finishes on the season was able to exit the car under his own power and walk away.
The event would also see its fair share of drama among the leaders. Fourth running Billy Moyer would exit the track during the red flag, while a hard charging Hudson O'Neal suffered a flat right rear tire after climbing into the runner-up spot on the 17th lap. O'Neal would restart at the tail and make it back to the eighth position at the finish.
In the end it would be Pierce showing the way for the entire 25 laps and giving him back-to-back wins with the series. In the closing laps, series point leader Will Vaught was able to sneak past Chad Simpson for second, while Jason Rauen and Sunoco Rookie candidate Jake Neal completed the top five.
"I've got to give a big thanks to my crew, I guess all the nuts and bolts stayed tight on this thing. It was a little choppy out there, so just glad we hung onto it. Besides the track being a little rough it was a pretty fun place," commented Pierce from Lucas Oil MLRA Victory Lane.
"There was actually a cushion on the inside of the track right next to the tires and if you hit it right you could sail through there pretty good. "It definitely had a lot of characteristic in this race track tonight that's for sure, and you can't complain about that," concluded Pierce.
Vaught who was able to extend his series point lead with his 2nd place run commented, "I gained on him (Pierce) and got to his bumper and then got an aero push off of four and lost all my ground and about stuffed it in the fence, so I was like I'm going to be pleased with second and just run my laps."
Simpson, who was back racing on his home track, echoed how challenging Saturday nights event was from the driver's seat. "That race track is a handful when it's like that, the corners are so big and so wide you get to turning through there and hit them ruts you never know what's going to happen. You just have to kind of stand on it, hope you have some wheel spin, and hang on."
One more night of action remains on the weekend for the MLRA as Sunday night will find drivers taking to the quarter mile Quincy Raceways in Quincy, IL. For the second time on the weekend, Sundays event will also mark another first time venue for the series in 2019. Racing action at the quarter mile "Broadway Bullring" will get underway with hot laps at 5:15 pm with racing action to follow.
West Liberty Raceway Contingencies 5/4/19
Allgaier Motorsports Racing Shocks Award - Will Vaught
Casey's General Store's "Hard Charger of the Race" - Joseph Gorby
Cedar Creek Beef Jerky "Most Laps Led" - Bobby Pierce
DirtonDirt.com "Pole Award" - Chad Simpson
Hooker Harness "11th Place Finisher" - Dave Eckrich
Midwest Sheet Metal "Points Leader Spoiler Challenge" - Will Vaught
Mittler Brothers Machine and Tool "Crew Chief of the Race" - Bob Pierce
Performance Bodies "Performer of the Race" - Bobby Pierce
RacingJunk.com "Hard Luck Award" - Jordan Yaggy
Sunoco "Rookie of the Race" - Jake Neal
Lucas Oil Racing TV A Feature (25 Laps): 1.Bobby Pierce 2.Will Vaught 3.Chad Simpson 4.Jason Rauen 5.Jake Neal 6.Rich Bell 7.Logan Martin 8.Hudson O'Neal 9.Chad Holladay 10.Mitch McGrath 11.Dave Eckrich 12.Joseph Gorby 13.Billy Moyer 14.Jordan Yaggy 15.Dave Wada 16.Chris Simpson 17.Nick Marlof 18.Ray Guss Jr. 19.Jeremy Grady 20.Jay Johnson 21.Tim Simpson 22.Skip Frey 23.Jonathan Brauns
Cedar Creek Beef Jerky Heat 1 (10 Laps): 1.Bobby Pierce 2.Will Vaught 3.Chris Simpson 4.Jake Neal 5.Logan Martin 6.Nick Marlof 7.Joel Callahan 8.Jesse Stovall 9.Skip Frey
Casey's General Stores Heat 2 (10 Laps): 1.Billy Moyer 2.Jason Rauen 3.Dave Eckrich 4.Jay Johnson 5.Jeremy Grady 6.Jordan Yaggy 7.Tim Simpson 8.Dave Wada 9.Terry Phillips
Sunoco Race Fuels Heat 3 (10 Laps): 1.Chad Simpson 2.Rich Bell 3.Hudson O'Neal 4.Chad Holladay 5.Mitch McGrath 6.Ray Guss Jr. 7.Joseph Gorby 8.Jonathan Brauns 9.Andy Eckrich (DNS)
For all of the latest news and information fans are encouraged to visit the series website at www.MLRARacing.com.
Lucas Oil MLRA Series Director
Mobile: (417) 309-3509