Wild Finish Lands Pope In East Bay Victory Lane
GIBSONTON, Fla. – It looked throughout the week that Mother Nature was going to play spoils for Saturday nights racing, but it was another cool night of racing at East Bay Raceway Park.
Five divisions were on hand with the Limited Late Models, Gagel’s Open Wheel Modifieds, V8 Warriors, Street Stocks and the Florida Old Time Mods ready to put on a show for the fans.
First feature of the night went to the Street Stocks with Brian Morgan and Garry Sheffield winning their heats. For the feature event it was Thomas Burnside and Roberto Morfin, Sr. making up the front row. When the green waved it was Burnside leading lap one until the first caution came out for several cars spinning and David Barwick II tagging the back wall ending his night.
Burnside would continue to lead until the next caution waved on lap nine as Michael Eaton spun in turn one. On lap ten it was Hunter Gustafson slapping the front stretch wall then spinning in turn one collecting Mike Wilson.
On lap 11 it was Brian Morgan taking over the top spot after starting in the fifth position and going on to win the feature. Rounding out the top five were Thomas Burnside, Dennis Williams, Ronnie Heard and Dennis Wilson Jr.
Next up was the Florida Old Time Modifieds. Winning the heats was David Kelly. For the feature event it was Tom McDonald and Bob Fink on the front row. Jamie Franklin charged up from the inside second row and would take over the lead on lap one but then would slow in turn four ending his night.
That handed the lead over to JR Garcia. Garcia would lead until a hard charging Dan Darnell after starting from the rear of the field would take over on lap eight and would go on to win the feature. Finishing second was JR Garcia with David Kelly, Gary Riccio and Bob Fink rounding out the top five.
Gagel’s Open Wheel Modifieds were next with Austin Sanders and Bill Howard winning their heats. For the feature it was Tim Gay and Roger Crouse making up the front row for the feature. When the green waved it was Roger Crouse leading lap one until Austin Sanders would charge up from his fourth starting position and take over on lap 10.
But it was Crouse once again taking over the lead on lap eleven only to surrender it again to Sanders on lap twelve and going on to win his fourth feature event of the 2013 Season. Rounding out the top five were Roger Crouse, Matt Miller, Tim Gay and Thomas Pratt.
Limited Late Models were next to follow with Waylon Haynes and Dale Pope winning their heats. Jason Pope and Shane Koperda made up the front row for the feature. After lap one it was Pope leading until the first of several cautions came out with Rich Livernois, Sr. spinning in turn one. Pope was still leading with Koperda second and Jesse Brown third.