By CAREY FOXTimes Sports Editor
PUTNAMVILLE — The Lincoln Park Speedway racing season came to a close on Saturday night with the same brand of exciting action that the Putnamville oval has become known for in 2010.
There were 123 cars on hand to put the cap on a resurgent season at LPS and fans were treated to another great night of racing.
Dickie Gaines still had a smile on his face as he entered the pits and for good reason as he claimed a down-to-the-wire points championship at Bloomington Speedway the night before. Gaines was already the victor six times in 2010 at Lincoln Park and faced 34 other sprint car drivers with victory lane on their minds.
Gaines started the night with a heat race win with Ethan Barrow, Kent Christian and Ty Deckard also earning wins.
In the feature, Barrow and Deckard were on the front row ahead of Gaines and Kent Christian.
The A-main was barely under green before Deckard took a hard tumble entering turn one to bring out the red flag. He was shaken, but didn’t suffer any serious injuries in the flip.
Once the race resumed, Barrow led early ahead of Christian and Gaines with Joss Moffatt close along with Shawn Krockenberger.
While Barrow held the lead during the early stages, Gaines was stalking him closely. Gaines pulled within a car length heading into turn three and he made the dive to the bottom for the lead.
From there, Gaines wasn’t going to look back, steadily pulling ahead of the rest of the field. Barrow maintained second ahead of Christian and Daron Clayton, who were swapping slide jobs for the third position. Gaines meanwhile had reached lapped traffic and was skillfully maneuvering his way through. Christian’s race came to an end in the waning laps as he had a tire go down, leaving the third spot to Clayton.
Out front, Gaines had checked out to a full straightaway lead as he flashed across the finish line for win No. 7 at LPS in the Daryl Tate-owned No. 21x. Barrow held down second ahead of Clayton, Casey Shuman and Moffatt.
Krockenberger came home sixth ahead of Bub Cummings, Troy Link, Seth Parker and AJ Hopkins.
In the UMP Modified division, Brian Hayden, Roger Cary and Travis Shoulders each earned heat race wins in the 26-car field.
Carlos Bumgardner started on the pole with Shoulders alongside him as Hayden and Cary made up row two.
Once the green dropped, Bumgardner and Shoulders raced hard into turn one and there was contact up front as Shoulders came off the backstretch airborne and made hard contact with the concrete wall. Though he was climbed from the car apparently uninjured after the frightening crash, the No. 59 modified was done for the evening.
As the race resumed, Hayden got by Bumgardner to take the point and held it early as Cary moved into second ahead of Josh Boller and side-by-side battles between Bumgardner and Craig Conyer along with Mark Grosvener and Chris Brewer.
Hayden chose the top along a sizable cushion, but the bottom was working for Conyer, who moved up to challenge for second alongside Cary. He continued to move forward, chopping into Hayden’s lead and pulled even with three circuits remaining. Hayden made the decision to go to the bottom to take away Conyer’s line with one lap left and that proved to be the winning move.
Hayden came away with the victory ahead of Conyer as Cary, Bumgardner and Boller made the top-five. Brian Yeatman was sixth followed by Kevin Davis, Brewer, Jim Bailey and John Grenier Jr.
The UMP Modified feature got underway as Chris Hillman and Steve Peeden started up front with Paul Bumgardner and Chris Bennett in row two.
Peeden took the lead from the green flag as Hillman chased and Bumgardner and Bennett battled door-to-door followed by Kris Starks and Kenny Carmichael Sr. Peeden and Hillman gained some ground on the rest of the field and moved into lapped traffic quickly. Bumgardner snared the third spot ahead of Bennett with Starks and Carmichael racing hard as the laps dwindled.
With two laps to go, Hillman closed right on Peeden’s bumper as Starks was forced to the infield to end his evening couple laps too early.
Up front, Peeden wasn’t going to give up any more ground, claiming another win at LPS this season followed by Hillman, Bumgardner, Bennett and Travis Butler.
Mike Staggs finished sixth ahead of Slick Griffin, Doug McCullough, Scott Tidwell and Dan McCullough.
The final feature of the night came was 24 cars started the bomber feature after a stout field of 39 cars were on hand to begin the night.
C.J. Bryan started on the pole with Josh Foxworthy on the outside and Kenny Carmichael Jr. and Jim Litton Jr. in row two.
The feature boiled down to a battle between Bryan and Carmichael as both drivers ran the top and were nearly bumper-to-bumper for the duration of the feature.
Carmichael was running above the cushion and was incredibly fast, but Bryan was running just below him on the top and was smooth and focused on the win. The pair got into lapped traffic late in the feature and weaved through while staying tight as David Wallen locked up with Litton in the latter stages of the race.
As the laps counted down, Bryan wasn’t going to give any ground and Carmichael couldn’t get an opening for a pass. Bryan came home with the victory as Litton took third ahead of Foxworthy and Jeff Herron. Corey Gregory started 18th and came home sixth as Jason Thornburg, Bob Farris, Josh Presley and Tyler Neal wrapped up the top-10.
The Lincoln Park Speedway awards banquet will be held on Saturday, Nov. 13 at The Dixie Chopper Air Hotel and Conference Center in Greencastle. The banquet will be catered by Dixie Chopper. More information and the pre-registration form can be found at www.lincolnparkspeedway.com.
Lincoln Park Speedway
Sprint car feature
1. Dickie Gaines, 2. Ethan Barrow, 3. Daron Clayton, 4. Casey Shuman, 5. Joss Moffatt, 6. Shawn Krockenberger, 7. Bub Cummings, 8. Troy Link, 9. Seth Parker, 10. AJ Hopkins, 11. JC Bland, 12. Jonathan Vennard, 13. Conner Donelson, 14. Kent Christian, 15. Wes McIntyre, 16. Jesse Cramer, 17. Lance Grimes, 18. Kenny Carmichael Jr., 19. Ty Deckard, 20. Braylon Fitzpatrick
B-main winner: AJ Hopkins
Heat winners: Ethan Barrow, Dickie Gaines, Kent Christian, Ty Deckard
UMP Modified feature
1. Brian Hayden, 2. Craig Conyer, 3. Roger Cary, 4. Carlos Bumgardner Sr., 5. Josh Boller, 6. Brian Yeatman, 7. Kevin Davis, 8. Chris Brewer, 9. Jim Bailey, 10. John Grenier Jr., 11. Jeremy Edmondson, 12. Joel Shoales Jr., 13. Michael Spencer, 14. Jacob Houts, 15. Mark Grosvener, 16. John Hipps, 17. Neil Rollins, 18. Dale Hayes, 19. Brad Robinson, 20. Travis Shoulders
B-main winner: Brad Robinson
Heat winners: Roger Cary, Brian Hayden, Travis Shoulders
UMP Super Stock feature
1. Steve Peeden, 2. Chris Hillman, 3. Paul Bumgardner, 4. Chris Bennett, 5. Travis Butler, 6. Mike Staggs, 7. Slick Griffin, 8. Doug McCullough, 9. Scott Tidwell, 10. Dan McCullough, 11. Kenny Carmichael Sr., 12. Chad Burgen, 13. Scott Carrington, 14. Donnie Shoemaker, 15. Dustin Bruce, 16. Stacey Chadd, 17. Kris Starks, 18. Joe Starks, 19. Travis Heramb, 20. Josh Burton
B-main winner: Slick Griffin
Heat winners: Chris Bennett, Paul Bumgardner, Steve Peeden
1. C.J. Bryan, 2. Kenny Carmichael Jr., 3. Jim Litton Jr., 4. Josh Foxworthy, 5. Jeff Herron, 6. Corey Gregory, 7. Jason Thornburg, 8. Bob Farris, 9. Josh Presley, 10. Tyler Neal, 11. Tony Tidwell Jr., 12. Chuck Walden, 13. Christian Kline, 14. JR Watkins, 15. Kenny Treash, 16. Alan Basset, 17. Josh Fagg, 18. David Wallen, 19. Michael Nail, 20. Josh Litton, 21. Larry Shelley Jr., 22. Chad Nolte, 23. Kevin Kemp, 24. Tony Cochenour.
B-main winner: Christian Kline
Heat winners: C.J. Bryan, Josh Foxworthy, Kenny Carmichael Jr., Jim Litton Jr.