On Top of the World: Pierce wins Eldora’s Crown-Jewel

11 09 2016

Dennis Erb Jr. and Dale McDowell go bumper-to-bumper

ROSSBURG, OH ­- September 11, 2016  –  (Motor Sports Newswire) – Bobby Pierce battled more than 100 dirt late models all weekend long to capture his first-ever World 100 title Saturday night at Eldora Speedway. The 46th running of the event featured drivers from 22 states, two Canadian provinces and two Australian cities. The Oakwood, Ill. native was the last man standing in the five-caution feature.

“I’ve won some big races, but this by far is the biggest win,” said Pierce, who was the first Illinois driver to win the event. “This is going to take forever to sink in. It means the world. I dreamt of this day and when I cross the finish line, I [thought I was] going to have tears coming out of my eyes. But, I didn’t. I don’t think I did because this has to take a while to sink in. It hasn’t yet.”

In the 100-lap crown-jewel, 14 states were represented. Of the three Illinois-natives competing, the Oakwood driver’s World 100 victory did not come easily. Though Pierce won one of the two preliminary features on Friday, Pierce’s No. 32P Allgayer Inc. Champion Spark Plugs Bob Pierce racecar had some ground to cover for the night’s main event – starting 22nd in the 30-car field.

Chickamauga, Ga. driver Dale McDowell, who led the field into the green flag of one of dirt late model racing’s most prestigious races, opened up a 2.139-second lead by the fifth lap. Though the 2005 World 100 Champion dominated early, it was those who started from mid-pack that would soon challenge him. Dennis Erb Jr., the 2016 Dirt Late Model Dream Champion, started 11th. However, the Carpentersville, Ill. driver was on the prowl. Erb broke into the podium by passing Billy Moyer Jr. in turn three of lap 14. Less than one lap later, Erb was runner-up to McDowell and quickly approaching.

The following lap, Erb got within 0.297 seconds of McDowell before making his move. Side-by-side, the duo charged down the straightaways, swapping spots with every turn; Erb got the better of the battle. All the while, Pierce was climbing up into the top five. On lap 26, Pierce had his sights at the lead from fourth position. It did not take long. By lap 35, Pierce was in a barn-burner for second with McDowell.

“Ever since lap 20, I was thinking, ‘I don’t know how long these tires are going to last,” Pierce said. “When I got the lead there, I started working them harder and harder. They stayed under me the whole race.”

The 2016 UMP DIRTcar Summer Nationals Champion managed to get by McDowell before the race’s second caution on lap 37; however, McDowell reclaimed the spot by his strong restarts. From there Pierce filed back into fifth, leaving Erb and McDowell to revisit their battle.

Through four more cautions and a fierce battle between Erb and McDowell – the advantage to Erb – Pierce yet again charged to the front. Fender-to-fender with Erb, Pierce passed Erb on lap 55 for the lead. He never looked back. Pierce opened-up more than a two-second and by lap 77, lapped former World 100-winner Jonathan Davenport; last year’s winner placed 18th on the night.

With one-quarter of the race left, Erb solidified second position over McDowell. Erb finished 4.489 seconds behind Pierce. Erb finished third in his heat earlier in the program, while McDowell won his. McDowell said his car grew tighter into the race. Pierce’s car was balanced, while Erb’s car performed better than his on the bottom – though they were both tight in the corners.

“I mean, we had a good car that was racey from the middle to the bottom,” Erb said. “Dale was up-top and we were side-by-side for a long time. Dale and I had a great race going there for a while, but he just faded.”

When Pierce met his family and crew in victory lane, the 19-year-old grew emotional – especially when his father met him up on victory lane to hoist the coveted trophies over their heads. Bob Pierce, a National Dirt Late Model Hall of Fame Inductee in 2003, never won the World 100.

“Shoot, I can’t,” said Bob Pierce when asked how it felt to see his son win Eldora’s gem. “I’ll tell you what…I told Earl [Baltes] years ago…I said, ‘Earl, I’ll win this race, and me and you will be on the front stretch all night drinking beer.’ He’s coming down tonight, and he’s going to drink beer with us. This one’s for you, Earl.”

DIRTcar UMP Late Models Statistical Report; Eldora Speedway; Rossburg, Ohio

Heat 1 –  (15 Laps)
1. 71C-RJ Conley[1] ; 2. 44M-Chris Madden[4] ; 3. 28-Dennis Erb Jr. [2] ; 4. 22-Chris Ferguson[7] ; 5. 18x-Michael Page[10] ; 6. 7R-Kent Robinson[8] ; 7. 15J-Scott James[11] ; 8. 7W-Ricky Weiss[3] ; 9. 39T-Rob Toland[9] ; 10. 48L-Tim Lance[12] ; 11. 51-Joey Moriarty[6] ; 12. 4x-Kevin Reeve[14] ; 13. 93b-Donald Bradsher[13] ; 14. 17-Lamar Haygood[18] ; 15. 77B-Adam Bowman[15] ; 16. 3K-Tanner Kellick[16] ; 17. 5*-Bryant Dickinson[17] ; 18. 5-Don O’Neal[5]

Heat 2 –  (15 Laps)
1. 99M-Devin Moran[14] ; 2. 1-Josh Richards[5] ; 3. 39-Tim McCreadie[4] ; 4. D8-Dustin Linville[1] ; 5. 4B-Jackie Boggs[17] ; 6. 15H-Jon Henry[6] ; 7. 91s-Rusty Schlenk[13] ; 8. 71H-Hudson O’neal[3] ; 9. 0-Jake O’Neil[7] ; 10. 71-Delmas Conley[11] ; 11. 6w-Mark Whitener[15] ; 12. 2c-Joey Coulter[10] ; 13. 11-Josh Rice[9] ; 14. 79-Shane Unger[16] ; 15. 212-Josh Putnam[8] ; 16. 8V-Craig Vosbergen[12] ; 17. 9G-Larry Greer[18] ; 18. 1H-Jason Hiett[2]

Heat 3 –  (15 Laps)
1. 21JR-Billy Moyer Jr. [2] ; 2. C9-Steve Casebolt[4] ; 3. 25C-Shane Clanton[5] ; 4. 17D-Zack Dohm[1] ; 5. R1-Riley Hickman[8] ; 6. 18-Shannon Babb[3] ; 7. 9R-Curtis Roberts[13] ; 8. 50-Shanon Buckingham[7] ; 9. 15L-Darrell Lanigan[17] ; 10. 31-Nick Latham[9] ; 11. 40B-Kyle Bronson[6] ; 12. 11G-Gordy Gundaker[12] ; 13. 10-Alex Ferree[11] ; 14. 3G-Brian Gray[16] ; 15. 8-Rob Anderzack[14] ; 16. 21H-Robby Hensley[10] ; 17. 1JH-Jared Hawkins[18]

Heat 4 –  (15 Laps)
1. 101-Casey Roberts[1] ; 2. 99JR-Frank Heckenast Jr. [3] ; 3. 3-Matt Miller[5] ; 4. 21-Billy Moyer[4] ; 5. 91-Tyler Erb[2] ; 6. 14M-Morgan Bagley[6] ; 7. 16-Jason Jameson[12] ; 8. 1N-Casey Noonan[11] ; 9. 88-Andrew Reaume[7] ; 10. 14z-Zachary McMillan[14] ; 11. 1V-Vic Hill[8] ; 12. 4G-Kody Evans[13] ; 13. 89-Mike Spatola[15] ; 14. 95J-Jerry Bowersock[18] ; 15. 6s-Blake Spencer[17] ; 16. 4BG-Bob Gardner[9] ; 17. P3-Jeff Robertson[16] ; 18. 1G-Devin Gilpin[10]

Heat 5 –  (15 Laps)
1. 6m-Wendell Wallace[2] ; 2. 14-Steve Francis[6] ; 3. 32-Chris Simpson[4] ; 4. 32P-Bobby Pierce[13] ; 5. 28M-Jimmy Mars[5] ; 6. 240-Doug Drown[11] ; 7. c8-Timothy Culp[9] ; 8. 55-Jeep VanWormer[7] ; 9. 1m-Mike Mataragas[8] ; 10. 25-Jason Feger[10] ; 11. 77-Gavin Landers[12] ; 12. 33-Jesse James Lay[14] ; 13. 69-Jonny Huck[15] ; 14. 8JR-Samuel Tolley[18] ; 15. 34-Chase Porter[16] ; 16. 20C-Duane Chamberlain[1] ; 17. 11A-Austin Smith[3] ; 18. 281-Kyle Pierce[17]

Heat 6 –  (15 Laps)
1. 17M-Dale McDowell[2] ; 2. 6-Jonathan Davenport[4] ; 3. 1P-Earl Pearson Jr.[5] ; 4. 72-Mike Norris[1] ; 5. 4-Cody Mahoney[3] ; 6. 25Z-Mason Zeigler[13] ; 7. 28C-Tyler Carpenter[8] ; 8. 49-Brian Ruhlman[6] ; 9. 2NH-Nick Hoffman[11] ; 10. F5-Garrett Alberson[9] ; 11. 1GK-Ryan King[12] ; 12. 5N-Dustin Nobbe[7] ; 13. 77A-Dylan Ames[10] ; 14. 23w-Brad Wade[15] ; 15. 25S-Chad Simpson[16] ; 16. 93-Jay Johnson[14] ; 17. 12-Devin Friese[17]

B-Feature 1 –  (20 Laps)
1. D8-Dustin Linville[2] ; 2. 17D-Zack Dohm[3] ; 3. 7R-Kent Robinson[7] ; 4. 18x-Michael Page[4] ; 5. 15L-Darrell Lanigan[18] ; 6. 22-Chris Ferguson[1] ; 7. 18-Shannon Babb[9] ; 8. 7W-Ricky Weiss[13] ; 9. 31-Nick Latham[21] ; 10. 9R-Curtis Roberts[12] ; 11. R1-Riley Hickman[6] ; 12. 48L-Tim Lance[19] ; 13. 15H-Jon Henry[8] ; 14. 50-Shanon Buckingham[15] ; 15. 51-Joey Moriarty[22] ; 16. 40B-Kyle Bronson[24] ; 17. 71H-Hudson O’neal[14] ; 18. 15J-Scott James[10] ; 19. 39T-Rob Toland[16] ; 20. 4B-Jackie Boggs[5] ; 21. 3K-Tanner Kellick[26] ; 22. 91s-Rusty Schlenk[11] ; 23. 5*-Bryant Dickinson[25]

B 1 Scramble –  (5 Laps)
1. 18-Shannon Babb[2] ; 2. 7W-Ricky Weiss[3] ; 3. 31-Nick Latham[4] ; 4. 22-Chris Ferguson[1] ; 5. 9R-Curtis Roberts[5] ; 6. 48L-Tim Lance[7] ; 7. 40B-Kyle Bronson[15] ; 8. 51-Joey Moriarty[10] ; 9. 15J-Scott James[13] ; 10. 39T-Rob Toland[14] ; 11. 4B-Jackie Boggs[11] ; 12. R1-Riley Hickman[6] ; 13. 3K-Tanner Kellick[16] ; 14. 15H-Jon Henry[8]

B-Feature 2 –  (20 Laps)
1. 32P-Bobby Pierce[2] ; 2. 25Z-Mason Zeigler[9] ; 3. c8-Timothy Culp[8] ; 4. 72-Mike Norris[3] ; 5. 2NH-Nick Hoffman[18] ; 6. 1V-Vic Hill[22] ; 7. 21-Billy Moyer[1] ; 8. 240-Doug Drown[5] ; 9. 14M-Morgan Bagley[7] ; 10. F5-Garrett Alberson[21] ; 11. 91-Tyler Erb[4] ; 12. 55-Jeep VanWormer[11] ; 13. 16-Jason Jameson[10] ; 14. 14z-Zachary McMillan[19] ; 15. 1N-Casey Noonan[13] ; 16. 49-Brian Ruhlman[15] ; 17. 4-Cody Mahoney[6] ; 18. 1m-Mike Mataragas[14] ; 19. 88-Andrew Reaume[16] ; 20. 1GK-Ryan King[24] ; 21. 33-Jesse James Lay[23] ; 22. 77-Gavin Landers[20] ; 23. 28C-Tyler Carpenter[12] ; 24. 25-Jason Feger[17]

B 2 Scramble –  (5 Laps)
1. 1V-Vic Hill[1] ; 2. 21-Billy Moyer[2] ; 3. 240-Doug Drown[3] ; 4. 14M-Morgan Bagley[4] ; 5. 55-Jeep VanWormer[7] ; 6. F5-Garrett Alberson[5] ; 7. 14z-Zachary McMillan[9] ; 8. 49-Brian Ruhlman[11] ; 9. 16-Jason Jameson[8] ; 10. 91-Tyler Erb[6] ; 11. 1N-Casey Noonan[10] ; 12. 33-Jesse James Lay[16] ; 13. 1m-Mike Mataragas[13] ; 14. 1GK-Ryan King[15]

World  100 –  (100 Laps)
1. 32P-Bobby Pierce[22] ; 2. 28-Dennis Erb Jr. [13] ; 3. 17M-Dale McDowell[1] ; 4. 21JR-Billy Moyer Jr. [4] ; 5. 1P-Earl Pearson Jr.[18] ; 6. 32-Chris Simpson[17] ; 7. 25C-Shane Clanton[15] ; 8. 18x-Michael Page[27] ; 9. 5-Don O’Neal[19] ; 10. 7R-Kent Robinson[25] ; 11. 1-Josh Richards[8] ; 12. 44M-Chris Madden[7] ; 13. 14-Steve Francis[11] ; 14. 39-Tim McCreadie[14] ; 15. 17D-Zack Dohm[23] ; 16. 99JR-Frank Heckenast Jr. [10] ; 17. 99M-Devin Moran[5] ; 18. 6-Jonathan Davenport[12] ; 19. 6m-Wendell Wallace[2] ; 20. 2NH-Nick Hoffman[30] ; 21. 71C-RJ Conley[6] ; 22. 15L-Darrell Lanigan[29] ; 23. 25Z-Mason Zeigler[24] ; 24. 72-Mike Norris[28] ; 25. 101-Casey Roberts[3] ; 26. 28M-Jimmy Mars[20] ; 27. 3-Matt Miller[16] ; 28. C9-Steve Casebolt[9] ; 29. c8-Timothy Culp[26] ; 30. D8-Dustin Linville[21]

The Super DIRTcar Series and DIRTcar Racing in the Northeast is brought to fans by many important sponsors and partners, including: Hoosier Racing Tire (Official Tire), VP Racing Fuels (Official Racing Fuel), Chevy Performance Parts and NAPA Auto Parts; in addition to contingency sponsors, including: ASI Race Wear, Bicknell Racing Products, Bilstein Shocks, Cometic Gasket, Comp Cams, Edelbrock, Fox Shocks, Henry’s Exhaust Systems, Intercomp, JE Pistons, JRI Shocks, KSE Racing Products, Mike’s Racing Heads, Motorsports Safety Systems, MSD, Pole Position Raceway, Superflow Dynos and Wrisco Aluminum; along with manufacturer sponsors, including: Beyea Headers, Racing Electronics and TNT Rescue.

Source: World Racing Group

DirtcarRacing

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