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Tweed, Byrd, Sise, Rickett, Adams, Keck capture Volunteer Speedway ‘Fan Appreciation Night’
John Tweed of Greeneville captured the Steel Head Late Model victory, while Tim Byrd of Jonesborough recorded the Crate Late Model win. Zach Sise of Knoxville took the Sportsman Late Model victory, with Chris Rickett of Morristown getting the Modified Street win. Don Adams of London, Kentucky, captured the Open Wheel Modified win, with Eli Keck of Corryton recording the Classic victory.
Chase King was fastest in Steel Head Late Model qualifying at 13.477 seconds, with Greg Estes second quickest on the clock to nail down the outside front row starting berth for the 30-lap feature. Following two flawed attempts to begin the race by King and Estes, the second row of Bobby Mays and John Tweed were moved up a row to let them try getting the field up to speed.
During the week Tweed serves as President and CEO of Landair Transportation headquartered in Greeneville, but when the weekend rolls around he enjoys getting behind the wheel of a dirt late model at “The Gap.”
On the start Tweed powered into the lead over Estes, Eddie King Jr., Mays and Mike Weeks. Outside the top five Chase King, Layne Clifton, John Llewellyn, Jody Horton, Michael Smith, Josh Henry and Jason Cardwell were jockeying for position.
With Tweed in command out front leading, running positions were being exchanged between King Jr. and Weeks, with Weeks moving into second and setting his sights ahead on Tweed. Mays got around King Jr. for the third spot on lap 17 racing off the second turn down the backstretch and he quickly closed in behind Weeks.
Tweed was feeling pressure from Weeks, but he remained calm and hit his marks lap-after-lap to maintain his advantage at leading the race. A late caution on lap 28 set the stage for a classic shootout for the win, when Llewellyn slowed exiting the fourth turn onto the front straightaway.
Tim Byrd jumped out into the lead at start of the 30-lap Crate Late Model feature over Josh Henry, Tim Maupin, Ross White and Danny Yoder. The event’s first caution waved on lap 3 when Preston Whitehead spun in the fourth turn.
On the ensuing restart, with Byrd flexing his muscles to show the way out front, Maupin’s night ended prematurely with a broken rear axle sending him into the pits. Byrd owns three Crate Late Model championships (2013, 2015 and 2016) at Volunteer Speedway, but the current campaign has not produced results he’s accustomed to.
Zach Sise scored his first-ever win at “The Gap” last month and starting the 20-lap Sportsman Late Model feature from the front row he was looking to take another trophy home. Pole-sitter Matt Tharp and Sise led the stellar 25-car field to green and it was Sise grabbing the lead over Tharp, while Jed Emert, Brad Seagle, Chris Coffey, Andy Ogle, Kevin Lewis, Rex Coffey, Heath Alvey and Warren McMahan battled for real estate behind the front-running duo.
Austin Atkins jumped out to the lead at start of the 20-lap Modified Street feature over Chris Rickett, Kurt Owens, Brad Davis and Jeffrey Melton, setting the pace out front for the first eight laps, Atkins tangled with a slower car while working lapped traffic between turns one and two and came to a stop high in the banking to bring the caution out.
Back under green Rickett led Owens and Davis, while behind them battles for position involved Melton, Shannon Emery, Wayne Rader, Parker Estes, Nick Presley, Jon Cook and Blake Kelley. Tough luck for both Davis and Melton with the laps winding down, as Davis spun while negotiating lapped cars between turns three and four on lap 16, and Melton was spun between turns one and two and had to be towed into the pits with apparent rear-end issues.
Shon Flanary set fast-time over a strong 17-car Open Wheel Modified field in qualifying at 14.751 seconds, but it was Don Adams powering into lead at the start. While Flanary kept pace with Adams in the early going, he was eventually passed for the runner-up position by Chase King. Adams was chased to the checkered flag by King, Flanary, Brad Hall and Jeff Hamby.
Eli Keck captured his second Classic victory on the season over Chris Worsham, Jesse Hickman, Tony Trent and Chris Nix.
VOLUNTEER SPEEDWAY – SATURDAY, AUGUST 26, 2017 – FAN APPRECIATION NIGHT
STEEL HEAD LATE MODEL (30 laps)
1. John Tweed #5
Did Not Pass Post-Race Technical Inspection (Light At Scales): Bobby Mays #25
Did Not Start: Brandon Tipton #4
CRATE LATE MODEL (30 laps)
1. Tim Byrd #24
SPORTSMAN LATE MODEL (20 laps)
1. Zach Sise #9
Did Not Start: Michael Boyd #3
MODIFIED STREET (20 laps)
1. Chris Rickett #36
OPEN WHEEL MODIFIED (20 laps)
1. Don Adams #90
Did Not Start: Terry James #J1
CLASSIC (20 laps)
1. Eli Keck #8