By CAREY FOXTimes Sports Editor
PUTNAMVILLE – A lightning quick track was the setting for Saturday’s battle for the checkered flag over four classes of action at Lincoln Park Speedway.
Shane Cockrum won the sprint car A-main by barely a car length over Brady Short. Jake Humphrey was the UMP Modified winner with Josh Boller winning his second UMP Super Stock feature of the season. Jordan Almanza parlayed a bit of good fortune into a $500 victory in the “Bomber Spring Fling.”
Cockrum and Jeff Bland put on a show for the fans at the Putnamville oval during the first half of the 25-lap sprint car main event. The pair swapped the lead and went wheel-to-wheel into lapped traffic at the 12-lap mark as Kevin Thomas Jr. reeled the pair in ahead of Nate McMillin and Brady Short.
With 10 laps to go, the leaders went 3-wide with a lapped car into turn four, but came out the other side still entangled in a struggle for the top spot. Cockrum and Bland’s battle for the lead drew most of the attention from the rapidly closing Thomas and Short, who entered the fray.
Just six laps remained when some contact between the leaders led to a displeased Bland pulling to the pits. On the re-start, Cockrum maintained the lead, but Thomas and Short were hot on his tail tank to the white flag.
As the leaders rocketed through turn three, Cockrum stayed on the bottom groove and on the throttle as he bounced a couple of times through turn four. However, he maintained enough momentum to edge Short at the line ahead of Thomas. Mario Clouser won the B-main and powered through the field for the fourth spot ahead of McMillin.
Jake Humphrey has made many an exciting charge through traffic running the cushion at Lincoln Park Speedway during his young career. However, on Saturday night, Humphrey made the bottom work to his advantage, powering to the lead several laps into the A-main and holding off the advances of Cullen Goodman over the last 15 laps to pick up the victory.
Humphrey started alongside JR Watkins on the front row and took over the point quickly as Goodman had his hands full with Brecken Prince during the first seven laps. Brent Hudson and Tyler Loughmiller were wheel-to-wheel behind the group in a battle for the fourth spot as Jay Humphrey and Josh McDaniel gave chase.
By the midway point, Humphrey was working his way through traffic before a caution flag flew with five laps remaining.
On the re-start, Humphrey mashed the throttle to stave off a last effort from Goodman for the lead. Humphrey went on to take the checkered flag with Prince placing third ahead of Loughmiller and Hudson in the top-five.
Boller made it two-for-two with his UMP Super Stock feature win Saturday night on a very fast track at LPS. However, the fastest line proved to be the one that Boller was best on too as he held off Steve Hawkins and Steve Peeden at the finish line.
Doug McCullough led the first couple of laps before pulling off the track with Boller assuming the lead after an early caution. From there, Boller stayed out front of the challengers on his way to his second win in as many races in Putnamville this year. Josh McDaniel would place fourth ahead of John Shidler in the top-five.
The “Bomber Spring Fling” was a super-sized 25-lapper with $500 at stake for the winner of the feature that was an extra 10 laps compared to the usual weekly A-main. The field grew to 28 total cars that took the green flag.
Megan Cavaness and C.J. Bryan started on the front row ahead of Josh Litton and Carlos Bumgardner Sr. After a couple of early cautions delayed the start, the field really got rolling as Bryan lead Bumgardner to the line. The pair created a bit of space out front as Bumgardner went to the high side looking for the pass on Bryan, who ran the bottom groove.
Behind the pair, Almanza moved up to the third spot as Litton was giving him all he could handle from the fourth spot ahead of Cavaness. As the laps ticked off, the leaders tracked down the back of the field as lapped traffic became a factor. Bumgardner made his move to the lead at the halfway point and half a lap later Bryan slowed and pulled off the track.
Bumgardner looked like he might have a comfortable advantage after he slipped by several lapped cars and got a re-start with them in between himself and the second-running Almanza. Litton was still on his bumper however, as a bunched group of challengers that included Cavaness, Cody Wright, James Walters and David Wallen, jockeyed for the third spot.
Almanza ticked off the lappers and advanced into a spot to challenge Bumgardner with four laps to go. One lap later, Bumgardner’s hopes of a win were derailed by mechanical woes and he pulled off the track at speed as Almanza took over the top spot. Despite Litton’s attempts over the final two circuits, Almanza found his first win of the season as Litton, Wright, Walters and Wallen rounded out an exciting A-main.
Sprint car feature
1. Shane Cockrum, 2. Brady Short, 3. Kevin Thomas Jr., 4. Mario Clouser, 5. Nate McMillin, 6. Brandon Mattox, 7. Mitch Wissmiller, 8. Charlie Belden Jr., 9. Brandon Morin, 10. Tyler Hewitt, 11. Jamie Williams, 12. JJ Hughes, 13. Lukas Smith, 14. Shelby VanGilder, 15. Jeff Bland, 16. Conner Donelson, 17. Matt Brannin, 18. Lance Grimes, 19. Hunter ONeal, 20. Tim Creech II
Heat winners: Jamie Williams, Nate McMillin, Jeff Bland
UMP Modified feature
1. Jake Humphrey, 2. Cullen Goodman, 3. Brecken Prince, 4. Tyler Loughmiller, 5. Brent Hudson, 6. Josh McDaniel, 7. Roger Mills, 8. Scott Ricketts, 9. JR Watkins, 10. David Baldwin, 11. Jay Humphrey Jr., 12. Josh Settles, 13. Kenny Weaver, 14. RJ Pruitt, 15. Sydney Landes, 16. Jerry Bland Jr., 17. Gary Ricketts, 18. Kenny Carmichael Jr., 19. Kile Meadows, 20. Travis Shoulders, 21. Randy Shuman, 22. Kenny Carmichael Sr.
Heat winners: Brecken Prince, Kenny Carmichael Jr., Jake Humphrey
Super Stock feature
1. Josh Boller, 2. Steve Hawkins, 3. Steve Peeden, 4. Josh McDaniel, 5. John Shidler, 6. Scotty Massie, 7. Larry Raines, 8. DJ Smiley, 9. Randy Brawley, 10. Michael Clark, 11. Jonathon Newgent, 12. Paul Wright, 13. Jack Campbell, 14. Chris Campbell, 15. D.J. McCullough, 16. Kenny Fields, 17. Matt Jordan, 18. Jaylen Frye, 19. Doug McCullough, 20. Jeff Starks
“Bomber Spring Fling”
1. Jordan Almanza, 2. Josh Litton, 3. Cody Wright, 4. James Walters, 5. David Wallen, 6. Megan Cavaness, 7. Kyle Prince, 8. Glenn Ogden, 9. Travis Heramb, 10. David Bumgardner, 11. Scott Crouch, 12. Ron Smith, 13. Mark Dickerson, 14. Justin Bumgardner, 15. Bob Farris, 16. Adam Farr, 17. Alex Reid, 18. Carlos Bumgardner Sr., 19. Chucky Walden, 20. Tom Plemons, 21. Ryan Freeland, 22. C.J. Bryan, 23. Larry Hutto, 24. Jerry Hutto, 25. Tom Courtney, 26. DJ Smiley, 27. Bobby Tarrh Jr., 28. Chad Casassa, 29. Joe Cash
Heat winners: Carlos Bumgardner Sr., Josh Litton, C.J. Bryan