FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE Contact: Ben Shelton (firstname.lastname@example.org) August 3, 2021 Top-5 Run in Prairie Dirt Classic for Rocket1 Racing Four Nights of WoO Wisconsin Action on Tap this Week SHINNSTON, W.Va. (08/03/21) – Brandon Sheppard and Rocket1 Racing rolled into the famed Fairbury Speedway over the weekend for the 31st edition of the Prairie Dirt Classic. Saturday night’s $50,000-to-win finale found Sheppard recording a fifth-place finish in his Valvoline No. 1 Seubert Calf Ranches/ Durham Racing Engines-powered XR1 Rocket Chassis Super Late Model. “Really late in the race when my car came to me, I was a few spots too far back,” Sheppard said. “We just had to make the most out of it and made a few passes on the restarts and just came up short. It’s disappointing because we had a better car than where we finished. We’ll head to Wisconsin this week to go after some more big checks. Thanks as always goes out to all of our marketing partners and supporters.” Taking part in one the biggest weekends of the year with the World of Outlaws (WoO) Morton Buildings Late Model Series, Rocket1Racing and Brandon Sheppard invaded Fairbury Speedway (Fairbury, Ill.) on Friday afternoon for the 31st annual Prairie Dirt Classic. With the massive 74-car field split into two separate groups for time trials, Sheppard recorded the 11th fastest time in his group. Starting his $3,000-to-win preliminary feature in sixth, Brandon improved three spots in the 25-lapper to register a third-place finish. With his third-place finish in preliminary action on Friday placing him 11th on the starting grid for Saturday night’s $50,000-to-win Prairie Dirt Classic, Sheppard advanced six spots in the 100-lap affair to finish fifth. He followed Kyle Larson, Bobby Pierce, Shannon Babb, and Chris Madden across the line. Brandon now sits 86 points ahead of Chris Madden atop the World of Outlaws point standings. For complete results from these events, please visit www.WorldofOutlaws.com . The upcoming week has the team set for four nights of WoO action in Wisconsin. The week opens on Tuesday evening at Outagamie Speedway with a $10,000-to-win event, which is co-sanctioned with the Dirt Kings tour. On Thursday evening three rounds of WoO action kicks off at Cedar Lake Speedway with a $6,000-to-win affair. On Friday and Saturday the 2021 USA Nationals take center stage with double heat races on Friday evening followed by B-mains and the $50,000-to-win finale on Saturday night. Rocket1 Racing would like to thank all of their marketing partners, which include Valvoline, Seubert Calf Ranches, Rocket Chassis, Ace Metal Works, Durham Racing Engines, FiveStar RaceCar Bodies, Gunters Honey, Hoosier Racing Tire, Integra Racing Shocks, Keyser Manufacturing, Petroff Towing, Slavic Custom Racing Shirts & Decals, Sweet Manufacturing, Sunoco Race Fuels, Accu-Force Shock Service, ATL Fuel Cells, Aurora Rod Ends, Barnes Dry Sump Oil Systems, Bazell Race Fuels, Beyea Custom Headers, Brown & Miller Racing Solutions, Brinn Transmissions, Cometic Gasket, COMP Cams, CP Carrillo, Dohm Cycles, Edelbrock, Fibreworks Composites, Hardrock Powder Coating, Howe Racing Enterprises, Jones Racing Products, Kenny’s Components, Maxima Racing Oils, MSD, NGK Spark Plugs, Tel Tac, Performance Bodies, Peterson Fluid Systems, Powers Performance, Performance Rod & Custom, Quarter Master, QuickCar Racing Products, Rocket Pre-Owned Motors, Safecraft, Show Trucks Unlimited, Simpson, Stealth Carburetors, Strange Oval, Suave Talk, Total Power Valvoline Pro-V Racing, Walker Performance Filtration, Weld Racing, Wiles Driveshafts, Wilwood Brakes, Winters Performance Products, Wrisco Aluminum, Xceldyne Valvetrain, and MSR Mafia Marketing Services. For the latest information on Rocket1Racing please visit the team website at www.Rocket1Racing.com as well as their social media channels at www.facebook.com/Rocket1Racing, www.twitter.com/Rocket1_Racing, and www.instagram.com/rocket1racing .
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TITLETOWN THRILLER: Dillard scores FVP Platinum Battery Showdown Victory
The Robeline, LA driver, made his move on a Lap 15 restart. He ran down Brandon Overton in two laps, dove to the bottom in Turn 3, and slid up in front of “Big Sexy” to take the lead. Dillard used his momentum to drive away from Overton, pounding the cushion with speed to collect the $10,000 prize.
The “Thriller’s” fourth career World of Outlaws win comes in a season with few bright spots so far.
“It’s been a really tough year, and things haven’t went our way,” Dillard said. “We’ve been changing a lot on the car just to find something to get it clicking again. I knew [Brandon Overton] and [Brandon Sheppard] would be hard to compete with when we were lined up in staging. So to be able to outrun those guys is very rewarding for us."
The Lap 15 caution, involving then race leader Ryan Gustin changed the entire complexion of the race. Dillard was running third when “The Reaper” spun, putting him on the second row for the restart. That’s when Dillard stated some luck fell his way as Brandon Sheppard chose the bottom lane while running second.
“I really expected [Sheppard] to restart on the top,” Dillard said. “I think there was a little mud on the bottom to kind of get you going, but I think it just so wore out down there, so we were lucky to get a good jump right there because if the roles were reversed and he was upfront, he would’ve been hard to get by.
Sheppard settled for second, his 16th podium finish of 2021. He also extended his points lead over Chris Madden to 88.
The New Berlin, IL driver knew passing Dillard would be a challenging climb to the lead once he got into second.
“[Dillard] was in the preferred line there, and once I got to him, I knew he was going to be tough to pass just because he rolled the top about as good as I could,” Sheppard said. “I could turn off of it and keep up with him, but I just wasn’t fast enough down low to be able to pass him.”
Madden followed Sheppard over the line in third after passing Overton late for the podium position.
The Gray Court, SC campaigner thinks he’s close to finding his way back into the win column.
“I know what I need; I just got to figure out how to get it,” Madden said. “We’re missing just a little bit right now, we’re steady and getting podium finishes, but I need just a little bit to get back into Victory Lane.”
Even though Dillard won the race, Gustin put on a show. He seemed destined to win his first Morton Buildings Feature before the incident on Lap 15, when trouble in traffic forced him to spin in Turn 3.
“I don’t know what that [lap car] was doing,” Gustin said. “It looked like he was going to the bottom, and he pulled it to the right at the last minute, and I was already on the gas and couldn’t get off it. I tried and just ran it straight into the fence.”
After re-starting at the tail of the field, “The Reaper” was on a mission. He continuously ripped his right-rear tire off the cushion, thundering past drivers on the outside to grab a fourth-place finish.
“I was just mad,” Gustin said. “I was trying to get as many points as we can after we get wrecked leading. I thought it was our night, but it just wasn’t meant to be.”
Brandon Overton finished fifth, his seventh top-five with the World of Outlaws in 2021.
Cade Dillard’s win Tuesday gives his team momentum heading into a Crown Jewel event. If the “Thriller” can build off his triumph, he may be able to put his bad luck in the rear-view mirror and turn the season around.
UP NEXT: The Most Powerful Late Models on the Planet travel to Cedar Lake Speedway in New Richmond, WI Aug. 5-7 for the 34th annual USA Nationals.
Morton Buildings Feature (40 Laps)-1. 97-Cade Dillard [$10,000]; 2. 1-Brandon Sheppard [$6,000]; 3. 44-Chris Madden [$3,500]; 4. 19R-Ryan Gustin [$2,800]; 5. 76-Brandon Overton [$2,500]; 6. 28M-Jimmy Mars [$2,300]; 7. 16-Tyler Bruening [$2,200]; 8. 28-Dennis Erb [$2,100]; 9. 7-Ricky Weiss [$2,050]; 10. 0E-Rick Eckert [$2,000]; 11. 25-Jason Feger [$1,600]; 12. 12-Ashton Winger [$1,400]; 13. 66-Ron Berna [$1,200]; 14. B1-Brent Larson [$1,100]; 15. 99B-Boom Briggs [$1,050]; 16. 111V-Max Blair [$1,000]; 17. 3-Brett Swedberg [$1,000]; 18. 38-Thomas Hunziker [$1,000]; 19. 10-Paul Parker [$1,000]; 20. D1-Turk Letizia [$1,000]; 21. 1st-Johnny Scott [$1,000]; 22. 5-Lukas Postl [$1,000]; 23. 74-Mitch McGrath [$1,000]; 24. O3-Kyle Raddant [$1,000]Hard Charger: 66-Ron Berna[+6]
Qualifying Flight-A –1. B1-Brent Larson, 13.996; 2. 7-Ricky Weiss, 14.061; 3. 28M-Jimmy Mars, 14.14; 4. 111V-Max Blair, 14.148; 5. 15-Nick Anvelink, 14.171; 6. 19R-Ryan Gustin, 14.194; 7. 44-Chris Madden, 14.301; 8. 0E-Rick Eckert, 14.331; 9. 3-Brett Swedberg, 14.445; 10. 1st-Johnny Scott, 14.529; 11. 38-Thomas Hunziker, 14.651; 12. 66-Ron Berna, 14.755; 13. 5-Lukas Postl, 14.818; 14. 10-Paul Parker, 15.115; 15. 27-Derek Janke, 15.351Qualifying Flight-B-1. 1-Brandon Sheppard, 14.127; 2. 28-Dennis Erb, 14.171; 3. 76-Brandon Overton, 14.33; 4. 97-Cade Dillard, 14.346; 5. 10S-Taylor Scheffler, 14.477; 6. 12-Ashton Winger, 14.524; 7. 16-Tyler Bruening, 14.572; 8. 99B-Boom Briggs, 14.615; 9. 25-Jason Feger, 14.795; 10. 74-Mitch McGrath, 14.948; 11. 33E-Chris Engels, 15.101; 12. 70-Justin Ritchie, 15.19; 13. D1-Turk Letizia, 15.244; 14. O3-Kyle Raddant, 15.294