DON O’NEAL VICTORIOUS IN 16TH ANNUAL HOOSIER DIRT CLASSIC AT BROWNSTOWN
BROWNSTOWN, IN – June 19 – Don O’Neal of Martinsville, IN survived a late race scare in lapped traffic to score the win in the 16th Annual Hoosier Dirt Classic Saturday night at Brownstown Speedway. This was O’Neal’s second win in this event, the first time being back in 1995. It was the fifth win of the season at Brownstown for O’Neal, this one being worth $5,000.
Polesitter Kevin Weaver jumped to the lead at the start of the 50-lap grind, with O’Neal, C.J. Rayburn, Mark Barber, and Bart Hartman in tow. The first caution would wave on lap 3 as John Gill stopped on the track after slipping off the track in turn one. After the restart, Hartman would slip past Barber for the fourth spot on lap 5. The front five would remain the same as Jim Curry began to move toward the front as he had come from 14th to 9th when the caution would appear again on lap 13 for the stalled mount of Greg Johnson. After the restart, the front four would remain the same as Steve Barnett made his way into the top five on lap 15, up from his 10th starting spot. Another drive on the move was Scott Smith who had rallied his way into the top ten from the 17th position by lap 15 as Curry fell back after slipping off the track entering turn one. One lap 20, Hartman’s entry began to flex some muscle as he disposed of Rayburn for third and began to track down O’Neal for second.
At the halfway point of the event, the top five were Weaver, O’Neal, Hartman, Rayburn, and Barnett, with Kevin Claycomb up to sixth. On lap 30, Claycomb would squeeze past Barnett for firth as the battle for the lead heated up between Weaver and O’Neal, with Hartman close behind. On lap 31, O’Neal would clear Weaver for the lead and two laps later on lap 33, Hartman would pass Weaver for the second spot. At this point, Claycomb began to move, as he would pass Rayburn for fourth on lap 35. O’Neal and Hartman would begin to stretch their advantage over the rest of the field, while Smith would slip into the top five, getting by Rayburn on lap 43. Action would really heat up at the front as the lead duo was starting to work would-be lapped traffic. As O’Neal and Hartman raced off turn four to get the two-lap-to-go indicator from starter Rusty Nunn, O’Neal attempted to drive around John Gill and the two made slight contact, then made heavier contact at the start/finish line, getting both mounts somewhat out of shape, but both were able to drive on, as Claycomb had slipped past Weaver for third position. At the checkered flag, O’Neal’s Enjoy Indiana, O’Neal Wood Products #71, C.J. Rayburn was first followed by Hartman, Claycomb, Weaver, and Smith. On the cool down lap after the race, O’Neal would spin Gill in turn four, presumably over the contact made earlier in the race. Rayburn, Barnett, Tony Izzo, Jr., Scott James, and Mark Barber completed the top ten.
In UMP Modified action, Randy Petro of Columbus, IN passed race leader Nelson Gingery with 10 laps to go and won his fourth feature of the season at Brownstown. Petro worked his way to the front around the top from his 8th place starting position to take the win in his #95 Lightning Chassis mount. Matt Boknecht would pass Gingery for second, while veterans Scott Patman and Brad Cummings completed the top five. Completing the top ten were John DeMoss, Darren Davis, Brent Londeree, Adam Sasser, and John Davis.
In the 15 lap Bomber feature, veteran Terrance Johnson of Crothersville, IN was victorious in the Hick’s Racing #12 entry. Last week’s winner, Matt Bex was second, with Darrell Dearing, Vernon Soeder, and Robbie Palmer completing the top five. Rounding out the top ten were Jason Dorsan, Charlie Stevens, Jeff Helton, Josh Turner, and Sam Chastain.
SUMMARY – BROWNSTOWN SPEEDWAY – BROWNSTOWN, IN – JUNE 19, 1999