Wheatland, MO (April 1, 2023) – There would be no fooling Superman Jonathan Davenport on April Fools Day at the Lucas Oil Speedway, as the Blairsville, GA driver dominated the night, sweeping the finale of the 10th Annual MLRA Spring Nationals, Presented by Arizona Sport Shirts.

After starting in tenth and having to work hard for a third place finish on Friday night, Davenport made sure to make the job easier in Saturday's $10,000 main event. Davenport jumped out of the gates and collected the MyRacePass "Fast Time Award" with a lap of 15.680 seconds, topping the field of 50 late models. Davenport didn’t stop there, as he went on to collect the win in his respective heat race, placing him on the pole for the 40 lap main event.

Davenport rolled to the green alongside defending MLRA series champion and fellow Longhorn Chassis driver Chad Simpson, but Davenport wasted no time in showing who was in control. By the time Davenport caught lap traffic on lap number six, he had established a lead of nearly two seconds over Simpson. Simpson would use that lapped traffic to his advantage early on, closing to under 1.5 seconds, but with a 4 to 5 car buffer established, Davenport again began to stretch out his advantage.


For the second night in a row the feature event would go the distance caution free, providing for plenty of great side-by-side battles all over the track. Davenport lapped the field up to the thirteenth position, included putting Friday night winner Ricky Thornton Jr. a lap down in the closing laps. In the end, it was Davenport getting the win by 2.918 seconds over Simpson, while Garrett Alberson grabbed the Swift Springs "Move of the Night" and rounded out the podium in third.

Bobby Pierce was the MD3 "Hard Charger of the Race" after advancing 9 positions to finish in fourth, while two time career MLRA winner Logan Martin rounded out the top five. 

Davenport debuted a new Longhorn for the weekend and appreciated the hard work put in by his team to get him into Cedar Creek Beef Jerky Victory Lane. “This is a new piece. We have been working on it, we’ve got two practice sessions on it and then we got to race last night. It likes a little bit different stuff, but my guy’s put their heads together and really hit on something tonight.”

“I’ve got to thank my crew on this one here, Vinny, Cory, and Michael. This is a new car that they built in the past week and everybody at Longhorn from the fab guys to the assembly guys to parts guys and Steve and everybody up front, I really appreciate it.”

The biggest challenge on the night for team # 49 came in the form of lapped traffic, but Davenport navigated it to perfection to complete the sweep. “You can’t ever take your foot off the gas with these guys,” he noted. “If you start loafing through lapped traffic the guys behind you will close really quick. It feels really good to get a win. We’ve had a lot of bad racing luck, we’ve had fast cars and it just feels good and builds the confidence back up in the team and myself pretty much going into the biggest weekend of my career racing next week.”

Simpson was all smiles following his first podium finish of the year, also working through the challenges of a new car coming into the weekend. The three-time series champion commented on his battle with Davenport in saying, “You always feel like you got a little bit of a shot when you can gain on him a little bit, but I knew once he got back out to clean traffic he was just a little bit better car than we were.”

“That was super fun,” exclaimed Alberson of his third-place run.  “I’m glad they reworked the track a little bit, we got to move all over the place.  It was changing the whole time and we got to use the gas pedal a little, so that was pretty fun. This Black Diamond is only two weekends old, so this is pretty sweet,” he concluded. 

The Lucas Oil MLRA returns to action next weekend for a double header at the Tri-City Speedway in Pontoon Beach, IL. The host for the MLRA’s annual season championship weekend picks up a second weekend on the schedule in 2023, with Friday nights opener paying $5,000 to win, while Saturday nights finale will send the winner home with a $7,000 pay day.

Lucas Oil Speedway Contingencies 4/1/23
Lap Leaders – Jonathan Davenport (1 - 40)
Cautions – 0

MyRacePass “Overall Fast Time Award" –Jonathan Davenport (15.680 sec.)
Performance Bodies "Performer of the Race" – Jonathan Davenport
Outerwears Crew Chief of the Race – Cory Fostvedt
MD3 "Hard Charger of the Race" – Bobby Pierce (+9)
Swift Springs “Move of the Race” – Garrett Alberson
Sunoco Race Fuel “Rookie of the Race” – Tyler Stevens
Hooker Harness "11th Place Finisher" – Tanner English
PEM Racing "4th Place Finisher" – Bobby Pierce
Sunoco "Engine Builders Challenge" – Cornett
Midwest Sheet Metal "Points Leader Spoiler Challenge" – Jonathan Davenport
MSD Performance Holley: “1st B-Main NON-Qualifier” – Brandon Sheppard

A Feature Cedar Creek Beef Jerky 40 Laps | 00:11:31.675 1. 49-Jonathan Davenport[1]; 2. 25-Chad Simpson[2]; 3. 58-Garrett Alberson[7]; 4. 32P-Bobby Pierce[13]; 5. 36-Logan Martin[5]; 6. 11-Spencer Hughes[4]; 7. 15L-Payton Looney[9]; 8. 2S-Stormy Scott[8]; 9. 11G-Gordy Gundaker[14]; 10. 21MBilly Moyer Sr[12]; 11. 96V-Tanner English[16]; 12. 11H-Jeff Herzog[3]; 13. 46-Earl Pearson Jr[10]; 14. 3S-Brian Shirley[6]; 15. 20RT-Ricky Thornton Jr[20]; 16. 19R-Ryan Gustin[22]; 17. 2-Tyler Stevens[24]; 18. 8-Dillon McCowan[11]; 19. 51-Larry Ferris[15]; 20. 22-Daniel Hilsabeck[25]; 21. 56JR-Tony Jackson Jr[23]; 22. 78S-Steve Stultz[17]; 23. 14G-Trevor Gundaker[27]; 24. 3-Brennon Willard[26]; 25. 32S-Chris Simpson[18]; 26. 15V-Kolby Vandenbergh[19]; 27. USA1-Chris Hawkins[21]; 28. 93-Mason Oberkramer[28]

B Feature 1 Sunoco 12 Laps | 00:11:42.483 1. 15V-Kolby Vandenbergh[1]; 2. USA1-Chris Hawkins[6]; 3. 56JR-Tony Jackson Jr[4]; 4. B5-Brandon Sheppard[5]; 5. 3- Brennon Willard[3]; 6. 96-Dalton Imhoff[2]; 7. 7D-Dusty Leonard[10]; 8. 67-Jim Vanzandt[9]; 9. 82-Jace Parmley[14]; 10. 14W-Dustin Walker[11]; 11. 29-Chandler Moenning[12]; 12. 81-Troy Bynum[8]; 13. 50-Kayden Clatt[7]; 14. 23-Chad Walter[13]; 15. 71-Jim Body[16]; 16. (DNS) 28-Dustin Sorensen

B Feature 2 Hoosier 12 Laps | 00:05:14.220 1. 20RT-Ricky Thornton Jr[1]; 2. 19R-Ryan Gustin[2]; 3. 2-Tyler Stevens[5]; 4. 15-Justin Duty[7]; 5. 60-Kip Hughes[6]; 6. 45-Cole Wells[9]; 7. 7B-Mark Burgtorf[8]; 8. 22-Daniel Hilsabeck[3]; 9. 93-Mason Oberkramer[13]; 10. 49T-Jake Timm[4]; 11. 14G-Trevor Gundaker[11]; 12. 22H-Dustin Hodges[12]; 13. 14M-Reid Millard[14]; 14. 42-Johnathan Huston[16]; 15. 2BJason Bodenhamer[15]; 16. 1X-Aaron Marrant[10]

Heat 1 Midwest Sheet Metal 8 Laps | 00:04:51.866 1. 49-Jonathan Davenport[1]; 2. 58-Garrett Alberson[2]; 3. 32P-Bobby Pierce[4]; 4. 15V-Kolby Vandenbergh[3]; 5. 56JRTony Jackson Jr[5]; 6. 50-Kayden Clatt[8]; 7. 7D-Dusty Leonard[6]; 8. 23-Chad Walter[7]; 9. 71-Jim Body[9] Heat 2 Hooker Harness 8 Laps | 00:07:02.886 1. 11H-Jeff Herzog[3]; 2. 15L-Payton Looney[2]; 3. 51-Larry Ferris[4]; 4. 96-Dalton Imhoff[1]; 5. B5-Brandon Sheppard[5]; 6. 81-Troy Bynum[7]; 7. 14W-Dustin Walker[8]; 8. 82-Jace Parmley[6]

Heat 3 My Race Pass 8 Laps | 00:02:50.589 1. 36-Logan Martin[2]; 2. 8-Dillon McCowan[1]; 3. 78S-Steve Stultz[5]; 4. 3-Brennon Willard[3]; 5. USA1-Chris Hawkins[7]; 6. 67-Jim Vanzandt[6]; 7. 29-Chandler Moenning[8]; 8. 28-Dustin Sorensen[4]

Heat 4 Fast Shafts 8 Laps | 00:02:46.730 1. 25-Chad Simpson[1]; 2. 2S-Stormy Scott[2]; 3. 11G-Gordy Gundaker[3]; 4. 20RT-Ricky Thornton Jr[7]; 5. 49T-Jake Timm[6]; 6. 15-Justin Duty[8]; 7. 1X-Aaron Marrant[4]; 8. 93-Mason Oberkramer[5]; 9. 42-Johnathan Huston[9]

Heat 5 Midwest Sheet Metal 8 Laps | 00:04:09.488 1. 11-Spencer Hughes[2]; 2. 46-Earl Pearson Jr[3]; 3. 96V-Tanner English[1]; 4. 19R-Ryan Gustin[4]; 5. 2-Tyler Stevens[6]; 6. 7B-Mark Burgtorf[5]; 7. 14G-Trevor Gundaker[7]; 8. 14M-Reid Millard[8]

Heat 6 Hooker Harness 8 Laps | 00:04:13.340 1. 3S-Brian Shirley[1]; 2. 21M-Billy Moyer Sr[2]; 3. 32S-Chris Simpson[5]; 4. 22-Daniel Hilsabeck[3]; 5. 60-Kip Hughes[4]; 6. 45-Cole Wells[6]; 7. 22H-Dustin Hodges[7]; 8. 2B-Jason Bodenhamer[8]