Final Turn Pass Earns Sheppard Super DIRTcar Series Win
Point leader snatches 3rd win from Larry Wight at Canandaigua
CANANDAIGUA, N.Y. – July 2, 2015 – Matt Sheppard snatched victory from Larry Wight with a last-lap final turn low-lane move as a large holiday crowd rose to its feet in a 76-lap Super DIRTcar Series thriller at Canandaigua Motorsports Park Thursday.
Wight had retaken the lead from Sheppard with 11 laps to go and opened up a three car-length lead that shrank in a hurry when the pair broke out of lapped traffic momentarily with two laps to go.
Wight met a final backmarker exiting turn three on the final lap and hesitated for a split second enabling Sheppard to pull off his winning bid through the final turn. Sheppard’s margin of victory – four feet.
“I was running up top to get around the traffic, but I was getting free up there,” Sheppard said. “When I got some open race track at the end, I got to the bottom. I saw the white flag and I thought – if I do this right, I think I can get there.”
“I thought I had time to get around that last car, but then I saw Matt there,” Wight shrugged, “One little slip-up cost me, but we’ll keep working at it.”
Jimmy Phelps finished third, close behind the leaders. “Right as I got to them, I had a left front going down,” Phelps said.
Billy Decker, who contested the lead for many a lap over the first 50 circuits, finished fourth. Stewart Friesen was fifth after outdueling Peter Britten and Billy Dunn. Steve Paine, Rob Bellinger and Justin Haers completed the top ten.
Polesitter Danny Johnson led for 24 laps before giving way to Wight. He was closely stalked by Decker and Sheppard (from 9th on the grid) before bringing out the first of two cautions with a flat tire on lap 32.
At the halfway mark, Wight had a two car-length advantage over Sheppard with Decker third and Britten fourth.
Sheppard gained the point with a strong inside move on the final restart on lap 45.
The Super DIRTcar Series moves to Albany-Saratoga Tuesday, July 7 for Brett Hearn’s “Big Show 7”, which pays $10,000-to-win and will include Kenny Wallace and many competitive local teams. Thirty-seven Big-Blocks competed at Canandaigua.
Super DIRTcar Big-Block Modified Series Statistical Report; Canadaigua Motorsports Park; July 2, 2015
“Stars and Stripes 76”
A-Main (76 laps): start in (*)
1. 9h Matt Sheppard – Waterloo, N.Y. (9)
2. 99L Larry Wight- Phoenix, N.Y. (7)
3. 98h Jimmy Phelps – Baldwinsville, N.Y. (13)
4. 91 Billy Decker – Unadilla, N.Y. (5)
5. 7z Stewart Friesen – Sprakers, NY (11)
6. 21a Peter Britten – Brisbane, Queensland, Australia (8)
7. 49 Billy Dunn – Watertown, N.Y. (4)
8. 7x Steve Paine – Waterloo, NY (3)
9. 8R Rob Bellinger – Cicero, N.Y. (6)
10. 3 Justin Haers – Phelps, N.Y. (17)
11. 20 Brett Hearn – Sussex, NJ (10)
12. 33 Mike Mahaney – King Ferry, N.Y. (19)
13. 42p Pat Ward – Genoa, N.Y. (15)
14. 91H Chad Homan – Macedon, N.Y. (2)
15. 43 Keith Flach – Ravena, N.Y. (23)
16. 27j Danny Johnson – Rochester, N.Y. (1)
17. 32 Vic Coffey – Leicester, N. Y. (20)
18. 6m Mat Williamson – St. Catherines, ONT (22)
19. 8 Rich Scagliotta – Bound Brook, N.J. (18)
20. 14J Alan Johnson – Middlesex, N.Y. (14)
21. 3 Mark Kislowsky – Ballston Spa, N.Y. (24)
22. 48T Dave Rauscher – Waterloo, N.Y. (29)
23. 5* Tyler Siri – Horseheads, N.Y. (18)
24. 5h Chris Hile – Watertown, N.Y. (27)
25. 77 Dan Wiesner (30)
26. 19 Tim Fuller – Edwards, N.Y. (28)
27. 28p Eldon Payne – Canandaigua, N.Y. (26)
28. 21 Derek Podsialdo – Penn Yan, N.Y. (25)
29. 93 Gary Tomkins – Clifton Springs, N.Y. (16)
30. 66x Dale Planck – Cortland, N.Y. (12)
DID NOT START
19w Jason Wright
96 Jean-Francois Corriveau
07 Tim Kerr
38 Ryan Susice
1jr Mike O’Brien
63 Adam Roberts
12 Brian Sage
Qualifying Heats (8 laps, top 5 transfer, top 3 redraw)
Heat 1: Decker, Homan, Dunn, J Phelps, Haers, Payne, Rauscher, Hile, Corriveau
Heat 2: Wight, Sheppard, Paine, A Johnson, Siri, Flach, Podsiadlo, Susice, Wiesner
Heat 3: D Johnson, Friesen, Hearn, Ward, Mahaney, Williamson, O’Brien, Fuller, Sage
Heat 4: Planck, Britten, Bellinger, Tomkins, Coffey, Kislowski, Scagliotta, Kerr, Roberts, Wright
Consi 1: Payne, Flach, Hile, Susice, Rauscher, Corriveau
Consi 2: Williamson, Kislowsky, Scagliotta, Fuller, O’Brien, Roberts, Sage