Updated 11:34 PM CT [Updates from Cole Perkins & Trevor Gonzales(RPM)]
By Trevor Gonzales (RPM Writer)
The 2019 Schaffer’s Oil Spring Nationals kicked off Friday night with the first ever appearance at Oglethorpe Speedway Park In Pooler, GA with a 40 lap, $4,000 to win show. At the conclusion of the night, it would be National Late Model Hall of Famer Dale McDowell from Chickamauga, Georgia who would take the checkers and win the $4,000 prize.
18 cars were signed in for the opening race with entrants such as McDowell, Casey Roberts in the Wynn Motorsports Longhorn Chassis, 2-time Spring Nationals champion Donald McIntosh, and Lucas Oil Dirt Late Model regular Tim McCreadie.
Roberts would set the overall fast time in Group A qualifying while clinching the pole after running a lap of 17.730 seconds around the reconfigured 3/8 mile track. The top four qualifiers in each group would be locked into the feature. Joining Roberts would be Ivedent Lloyd Jr., McIntosh, and McCreadie.
McDowell would be the fastest in Group B with a lap of 17.982 seconds along with Ashton Winger, Brian Connor, and Ross Bailes.
Jimmy Sharpe Jr. would win the first B-Main with all cars transferring over Michael Page, John Henderson, and Brian Nuttell.
Tyler Millwood would win the second B-Main over Lonnie Brant and Larry Anderson.
The 40 lap feature would be underway as Roberts would lead the opening lap over McDowell, Winger, McIntosh, and Lloyd Jr. The first yellow of the race would fly after the completion of Lap 1 for the spinning machine of Jimmy Sharpe Jr.
The green flag quickly returned as Roberts would hold a steady lead over McDowell and Winger. On Lap 5, 8th place starting Tim McCreadie would crack into the top five after getting around Lloyd Jr. Roberts would still lead as he entered lapped traffic on Lap 12. The field would begin to settle in as they would run the bottom lane during the green flag run.
The second and final caution would fly on Lap 17 for the slowing machine of 10th place running Brian Connor. His night would be done early as well as top ten running Michael Page as he would pull off with mechanical issues.
The turning point of the race would be the ensuing restart on Lap 17 as Roberts would push up the track in Turns 1 & 2 allowing McDowell to get around Roberts and take the lead. McDowell would separate himself from Roberts and Winger as McIntosh and McCreadie would swap fourth and fifth repeatedly until McIntosh would take the fourth position for good on Lap 22.
The track would begin to rubber down with about 15 laps to go as passing was a premium. McDowell would get caught a few times in lapped traffic allowing Roberts to catch up to him some but it was not enough as McDowell would have a clear track the final five laps of the race. McDowell would take the checkers followed by Roberts in second and Winger in third. McIntosh would take fourth and McCreadie would finish fifth. Rounding out the top ten would be 16th starting Walker Arthur, Ross Bailes, Ivedent Lloyd Jr., John Henderson, and Tyler Millwood.
McDowell was piloting a Sweet-Bloomquist Race Car with a Clements Race Engine sponsored by EZGO, Will Kinzer Foundation for Autism & Research, New Era Industrial, and Klotz Synthetics.
Round 2 of the Schaeffer’s Oil Spring Nationals will be Saturday, March 23rd at Cochran Motor Speedway paying $10,000 to win.
Schaeffer's Oil Spring Nationals at Oglethrope Speedway Park $4,000 to win
Car Count: 18
Overall Fast Qualifier: Casey Roberts 17.730 sec
1. 17M Dale McDowell
2. 101 Casey Roberts
3. 12 Ashton Winger
4. 7 Donald McIntosh
5. 39 Tim McCreadie
6. 87 Walker Arthur
7. 87 Ross Bailes
8. 58 Ivendent Lloyd
9. 2x John Henderson
10. 31 Tyler Millwood
11. 144 Chicky Barton
12. 4 Lonnie Brant
13. 18x Michael Page
14. 77 Brian Connor
15. 21x Rob Robertson
16. 26 Jimmy Sharpe
17. 51 Larry Anderson DNS
18. 44 Brian Nuttell DNS
Row 1: 101 Casey Roberts, 17M Dale McDowell
Row 2: 58 Ivendent Lloyd Jr, 12 Ashton Winger
Row 3: 7 Donald McIntosh, 77 Brian Conner
Row 4: 39 Tim McCreadie, 87 Ross Bailes
Row 5: 26 Jimmy Sharpe, 31 Tyler Millwood
Row 6: 18x Michael Page, 4 Lonnie Brant
Row 7: 2x John Henderson, 51 Larry Anderson
Row 8: 44 Brian Nuttell, 21x Bob Robertson
Row 9: 144 Chicky Barton, 87 Walker Arthur
Heat 1 Results
1. 26 Jimmy Sharpe Jr
2. 18x Michael Page
3. 2x John Henderson
4. 44 Brian Nuttelll
5. 144 Chicky Barton-DNS
Heat 2 Results
1. 31 Tyler Mllwood
2. 4 Lonnie Brant
3. 51 Larry Anderson - DNF
4. 21x Bob Robertson - DNS
5. 87 Walker Arthur - DNS
Group A Qualifying
101 Roberts 17.730
58 Lloyd 17.816
7 McIntosh 17.932
39 McCreadie 17.969
26 Sharpe 18.146
18X Page 18.153
24 Henderson 18.204
144 Barton 18.332
44 Nuttall NO TIME
Group B Qualifying
17M McDowell 17.982
12 Winger 18.006
77 Conner 18.179
87 Bailes 18.199
21x Robertson 18.346
31 Millwood 18.578
87 Arthur 18.695
4 Brant 19.278
51 Anderson 20.166