Duncan Steam Rolls the field at Thunder Valley
Glenmora, Louisiana (April 28, 2001) – Dennis Duncan once again dominated the competition to claim his 3rd O’Reilly SUPR event of the 2001 Championship season. Duncan started alongside the GRT Top Qualifier Marlon Wild and was able to grab the lead as Wild’s car pushed high coming out of turn 2 on the first lap. “Lapped traffic was the biggest concern but once I made it through the first few cars I just kind of got in a groove.” And while Duncan’s GRT started to get tighter as the race wore on, Duncan had established a large enough lead over Jay Blair and David Ashley that he could just ride out the last 10 laps. “I need to thank Majestic Metals and Duncan Motorsports for their support of my program and I couldn’t be successful without the help of my crew, Jonathan Donahoe and my dad Tommy Duncan.”
Once Duncan grabbed the lead on the backstretch, he began to ease away until the field was slowed on lap 5 when Rob Litton, Junior Taylor and Dave Siegert tangled. All 3 cars were able to continue but the same could not be said for Rusty Cummings, Donald Watson and Lonnie Covington as they were caught up in a tangle on the restart when Rusty Cummings spun in turn 4. Bill Gordon was also caught up in the spin but he was able to continue. Duncan continued to run strong up front and when the final caution waved on lap 14, Duncan had established his control on the event.
Jay Blair started on the outside of row 2 but he was able to quickly move to 2nd as he got by Marlon on lap 2. Blair, running the All Star Graphics/Creel Brothers/Parish Disposal GRT was able to keep pace with Duncan throughout most of the race but as the race wore on he became attention shifted to maintaining his position as David Ashley closed in to challenge. Ashley was unable to get by Blair but he did earn the Lloyd Wild Jr. Logging Hard Charger Award as he 10 cars en route to his 3rd place finish.
Blair’s 2nd place finish allowed Blair to move by Ashley in the 2001 O’Reilly SUPR point standings. Ashley running his Ashley Brother Racing American Made Race Car minimized the point loss by closing in on Blair as the race wore on. Ashley and Blair appeared to be set for a yearlong battle for the O’Reilly SUPR Championship as Blair is looking to defend his 2000 title while Ashley is intent on regaining the title he won in 1999.
Rodney Wing returned to O’Reilly SUPR competition and looked to have a strong car early in the race but the car failed to maintain his early pace that had seen Wing climb as high as 3rd before Ashley moved by near the halfway mark to grab the spot. Wing was able to keep the B&K Underground Directional Boring/Boland Performance Rocket in 4th.
Marlon Wild started on the pole but he fought a tight race car in the early stages of the race falling back to 5th position. Wild began to adapt to the racing surface and settled into 5th place ahead of ever-improving Curt Lipsey.
Kenny Merchant experience at an early season show at Thunder Valley had influenced his decision to bring his open motor package to the event but the racing surface proved to be unable to hold the extra horses and Merchant slipped back to 7th place after starting the feature 3rd. Ryan Plaisance, fresh off a win the night before in weekly competition at Baton Rouge Raceway was right behind Merchant in 8th with Lee Davis a step behind in 9th. Terry Henson recorded his 4th top 10 finish in as many races with the O’Reilly SUPR Series as he rounded out the Top 10.
Leading Behind the Wheel/Ashley Brothers Rookie of the Year contenders Odie Green and Kennith Crowe were the last cars on the lead lap in 11thand 12th respectively.
27 Late Models were on hand. Heat race wins went to Duncan, Blair, Wing and Lipsey. Diamond Dave Siegert topped the Last Chance race to earn a transfer spot into the feature.
Donald Watson, who was forced to use a SUPR point provisional to make the race only to be eliminated in on lap 5 when Rusty Cummings spun in turn 4 was named the B&K Underground Directional Boring Hard Luck recipient.
For further information regarding the 2001 OReilly SUPR Series contact Greg Holmes at 225-275-5040 or e-mail us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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