Times Sports Editor
PUTNAMVILLE -- The annual King of Non-Wing event always brings a bevy of sprint car talent to Lincoln Park Speedway and Saturday may have been the best in quite some time as 46 cars were on hand to battle for the coveted title.
With every car running a feature this time around, there was no shortage of action for a great crowd on hand for a night of racing along with an outstanding fireworks show.
Defending event champion, Bobby Stines, was on hand as well as defending track champion Billy Puterbaugh and the always tough Shane Hollingsworth and former track champion, Justin Marvel made his first appearance of the season. A surprise driver also made the trip as Adam Andretti was on hand to race. The son of Aldo Andretti, Adam is the younger brother of NASCAR veteran, John Andretti.
Just three laps into the feature, Thomas Meseraull darted past Bradshaw coming off turn two and flashed beneath Harris coming out of turn four to the lead. The Arizona native has practically owned the Putnamville oval since he got behind the wheel of the Paul Hazen-owned, Physical Medicine Consultants, Bud's Auto Sales machine K&N Filters, Keco, Hunt Magneto's machine.
On the bottom, Cole Carter and Puterbaugh nearly got together in their chase for Meseraull, but Carter held onto the position as the pair battled side-by-side down the frontstretch. Out front, Meseraull was wheeling out to a big lead while Carter and Puterbaugh fought it out. Dakota Jackson and Cramer also had a tussle brewing for the fifth position with Marvel holding down fourth in the 30-lap main event.
A spin by Brandon Mattox brought out the first caution of the night as Blake Fitzpatrick's night ended after a first lap collision finally took its toll and he pulled into the infield.
Meseraull was awesome on restarts all night and this one was no different as he jumped out to a solid lead, but Puterbaugh got a great run as well and passed both Carter and Bradshaw in turns three and four and set his sights on T-Mez.
Hollingsworth joined the battle a couple of laps later, splitting both Jackson and Bradshaw down the backstretch and into the fray with Carter.
Behind the leaders, Michael Severs got airborne in turn three and collected Alvin Brantley and John Boyd to end each drivers' night.
On the re-start, Puterbaugh took his shot at Meseraull, rocketing under him off turn two after getting a huge bite off the cushion. Flying down the backstretch, Puterbaugh briefly held the lead before Meseraull slid to the bottom off turn four and regained the position with a wheelstand down the front stretch.
From there, Meseraull built another lead as Carter challenged Puterbaugh for a couple of laps and Hollingsworth duked it out with Cramer behind them.
Puterbaugh took a couple of hard shots off the cushion as he slowly reeled in Meseraull as the pair approached lapped traffic in the final laps. With two circuits remaining, Puterbaugh gave it one final shot on the bottom, but wasn't quite able to get past as Meseraull took the checkers and the King of Non-Wing title.
Carter remained third at the line ahead of Hollingsworth, Jackson, Kent Christian, Marvel, Kenny Carmichael Jr., who came forward from 16th to eighth ahead of Dene McAllan and Bradshaw.
In the second feature of the evening, Shawn Krockenberger was the man to beat, starting on the pole and building a lead with Andretti tailing him followed by Aaron Mosley, Jordan Kinser and Troy Link.
Krockenberger reached lapped traffic and navigated through with perfection as Link closed the gap and into a side-by-side battle for the lead. Seth Parker and Bobby Stines were close behind the leaders and putting on a wheel-to-wheel battle as well. Link worked under Danny Pollock and closed right alongside Krockenberger as Stines joined the mix for a brief three-wide race off turn four. Link dove under Krockenberger heading into turn one and slid in front of Krockenberger off turn two and into the lead. The pair were side-by-side through turns three and four with one lap remaining. Link worked off the cushion and Krockenberger held fast to the bottom line on the final lap and coming off the final corner, Link got just enough of a run to cross the line first for the win ahead of Krockenberger and Stines. Parker held fourth ahead of Kinser, Andretti, Michael Fischesser, Blair Julian, Kevin Chambers and Mike Hagemeier.
In the UMP Modified feature, Clint DeMoss showed why he is the UMP Points leader in the Southeast Region and 14th in the nation as he started on the pole and led the entire way, withstanding a challenge from last week's winner, Kenny Carmichael Sr. and defending track champion, Paul Bumgardner.
Carmichael and Bumgardner were involved in a tight battle for position over the final few laps as Phil VanSant gave chase followed by Steve Sheeks. DeMoss maintained his lead and Bumgardner nearly spun coming off turn two as Carmichael jetted by and stayed in second over the final remaining laps. Bumgardner was followed by VanSant and Sheeks across the line. Travis Shoulders came from the back of the field to take sixth followed by Brian Kempf, Doug Bryant Jr., Brett Andrew and Albert Gardner.
DeMoss' win was his second at LPS and came in the Erwin's Drywall, B&W Automart, Travis Kern's Racing Engines modified.
In a caution filled UMP Super stock feature, Brazil's Slick Griffin held off a late challenge from Kris Starks to claim the victory, his third of the season in the Hoosier Towing, Griffin Auto Salvage, Budda Transmissions and Bonewell Racing Engines sponsored machine. Joe Starks finished third ahead of Michael Conner and Scott Carrington with Tony Erdly, Matt Jordan, Mark Dickerson, Jacob Wright and Gary Archer wrapping up the top-10.
In the final feature of the night, the final battle for the lead was a familiar one between Dustin Shoulders and C.J. Bryan as Ben Williams and David Wallen gave chase. Josh Settles was a threat to the leaders for much of the feature before a late spin sent him to an 11th-place finish. Shoulders started on the pole and was able to stay there as Bryan came up from a fifth-place start to battle for the lead down the stretch, but Shoulders held off the challenge for his fifth victory. Bryan added to his points lead as Ryan Freeland ran up front before his hood broke free and flipped up to block his vision and force him to pull off with an 18th-place.
Williams remained third with Wallen and Chad Nolte in the top-five. Chuck Walden, Tony Cochenour, Richard Watkins, Josh Presley and Sean Yakel wrapped the top-10.
Next week will feature the Patriot 100 event for the UMP Modifieds with $2,000-to-win. The sprint cars have also been added to the lineup along with super stocks and bombers. There will be a 50-point bonus for all classes.
King of Non-Wing
Sprint car feature
1. Thomas Meseraull, 2. Billy Puterbaugh, 3. Cole Carter, 4. Shane Hollingsworth, 5. Dakota Jackson, 6. Kent Christian, 7. Justin Marvel, 8. Kenny Carmichael Jr., 9. Dene McAllan, 10. James Bradshaw, 11. Ray Humphrey, 12. Brandon Mattox, 13. Jim Dugan, 14. Jesse Cramer, 15. Jeff Wimmenauer, 16. Michael Severs, 17. John Boyd, 18. Alvin Brantley, 19. Kenny Carmichael Sr., 20. Jared Harris, 21. Blake Fitzpatrick
B-main winners: Kenny Carmichael Jr., John Boyd
Heat winners: Carter, Hollingsworth, Christian, Puterbaugh, Fitzpatrick
KNW Special feature
1. Troy Link, 2. Shawn Krockenberger, 3. Bobby Stines, 4. Seth Parker, 5. Jordan Kinser, 6. Adam Andretti, 7. Michael Fischesser, 8. Blair Julian, 9. Kevin Chambers, 10. Mike Hagemeier, 11. Doug Heck, 12. Brian Lake, 13. Jimmy Romig, 14. Danny Pollock, 15. Tommy Shields, 16. John Irvin, 17. Dan Meyer, 18. Mark Brucker, 19. Dave Gross, 20. Aaron Mosley, 21. Mark Harden, 22. Eric Krockenberger
UMP Modified feature
1. Clint DeMoss, 2. Kenny Carmichael Sr., 3. Paul Bumgardner, 4. Phil VanSant, 5. Steve Sheeks, 6. Travis Shoulders, 7. Brian Kempf, 8. Doug Bryant Jr., 9. Brett Andrew, 10. Albert Gardner, 11. Josh Landers, 12. Bradley Sterrett, 13. Paul Wright, 14. Dan Lewellen, 15. Josh Edmondson, 16. Scott Ricketts, 17. Wes McClara, 18. Josh Fagg, 19. Michael Beatty, 20. Garry Ricketts, 21. Carlos Bumgardner Sr.
Heat winners: DeMoss, Sterrett, VanSant
UMP Super stock feature
1. Slick Griffin, 2. Kris Starks, 3. Joe Starks, 4. Michael Conner, 5. Scott Carrington, 6. Tony Erdly, 7. Matt Jordan, 8. Mark Dickerson, 9. Jacob Wright, 10. Gary Archer, 11. Roy Bruce Jr., 12. Jeremy Wilson, 13. Kenny Carmichael Jr., 14. A.J. Smith, 15. Doug McCullough, 16. Travis Heramb, 17. Dennis Morgan, 18. Steve Hollars, 19. Ron Smith, 20. Chris Bennett
B-main winner: Morgan
Heat winners: Bruce Jr., Griffin, Heramb
1. Dustin Shoulders, 2. C.J. Bryan, 3. Ben Williams, 4. David Wallen, 5. Chad Nolte, 6. Chuck Walden, 7. Tony Cochenour, 8. Richard Watkins, 9. Josh Presley, 10. Sean Yakel, 11. Josh Settles, 12. Josh Fagg, 13. Jordan Almanza, 14. Ron Wallen Jr., 15. Michael Thompson, 16. Daylan Chambers, 17. Barry Hicks, 18. Ryan Freeland, 19. Cory Williamson, 20. Ron Smith, 21. Red Hayden
B-main winner: David Wallen
Heat winners: Bryan, Freeland, Shoulders