Gustin, Murphy, Luellen, Stanton, and Bryan, opening night winnersJoyce Eisele
April 21, 2018
Boone Speedway finally got the first race of the season in the books on Saturday night, after fighting Mother Nature for weeks. The pits were filled with 157 race cars in the divisions that began their points chase. Jimmy Gustin looked dominate in taking the win in the IMCA Modified class, Trent Murphy held off a late race threat to win the IMCA Stock Car feature, and Eric Stanton got back to his winning ways in the IMCA Hobby Stocks. Austin Luellen finished comfortably ahead of his nearest competitor in the IMCA SportMod main event, and it was Randy Bryan taking the win in the Mod Lite division. As an added bonus, the night was capped off with a King of the Hill in the IMCA Modified class with Nick Roberts taking home the prize.
The Mod Lites kicked off the night’s feature racing. Randy Bryan led the 15-lap A main from start to finish, to start his season off on the right foot. He held off Travis Stensland in second place, Joel Huggins finished third, Bryan Zehm was fourth and Terry Brown completed the top five.
Austin Luellen took command of the 18-lap IMCA Northern SportMod feature just after lap six was scored, and from there on, never looked back on his way to victory. He finished comfortably ahead of second place Ryan King, Taylor Musselman finished third, fourth was Dusty Masolini, and Jake McBirnie was fifth.
Jimmy Gustin kicked his season off in fine fashion with a dominating win in the IMCA 20-lap Modified feature. Gustin started seventh, and worked his way to then leader Josh Gilman’s tail by lap eight. On lap eleven, Gustin snatched up the top spot, and then pulled away to take the feature win easily. Gilman held on to claim second place, with Scott Hogan a close third. Josh Truman and Ethan Dotson were fourth and fifth respectively.
Trent Murphy captured the checkers in the 18-lap IMCA Stock Car main event. He held off a hard charging Johnny Spaw to claim the win. Third place went to Jay Schmidt who started 22nd in the starting line up, fourth was Reid Keller, and Josh Daniels was fifth.
The IMCA Hobby Stocks completed the nights feature racing and a familiar face went back to victory lane. Eric Stanton swapped the lead with Justin Wacha several times before claiming the lead for good on his way to another winner’s circle interview. Following second place Wacha was Worthington, Minnesota driver, Malik Sampson who claimed third, fourth went to David Rieks, and Andrew Burg was fifth.
The evening ended with the Harris Auto Racing/IMCATV King of the Hill for the Modifieds. Sixteen competitors were narrowed down to three remaining drivers through eliminating rounds, and standing atop the Hill and $1,000 in his pocket was Nick Roberts. He bested Ethan Dotson and Josh Gilman to win the glory.
Racing action kicks back into gear next Saturday night, April 28, at the Boone Speedway with hot laps scheduled for 5:45, and racing at 6:30. The IMCA RaceSaver Sprint cars will begin their season as they join the IMCA Modifieds, IMCA Stock Cars, IMCA Northern SportMods, and the Mod Lites.