By: Gary Jacob|
Where: Gillette, WY
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Gillette, WY -- Having broken before the feature green flag the previous night at his hometown track, Eric Mass from Rapid City SD rebounded in a big way as he turned an outside front row starting spot into a win in the WISSOTA dirt late model feature on Saturday night at Gillette Thunder Speedway. Mass ran third in his heat race with his Rayburn and has cut Eddie Kirchoff’s track point lead down to 20 points. Mass lost the BHS point lead to John Bey on Friday night. Comeback driver Dan Henrikson got his best finish of 2006 as he drove his Rocket to a second from sixth starting. Eddie Kirchoff drew 12th starting spot in the 12 car redraw for the front of the feature, but battled to a third in his Rocket. Consistent Scott Anderson followed up a 2nd on Friday night with a fourth here and Chris Johnson added a fifth to his third at Rapid City. Wes McKenney lost ground in the track point race with a 13th place run that left him 13 points back of Eddie Kirchoff. It was a tough night for Black Hills Speedway clean sweep performer John Bey as he ran last in both his heat and the 16 car feature tonight. With that performance, defending track champion Bey fell to fifth in the track standings, 25 points back of Eddie Kirchoff.
McKenney won the opening heat race from the pole over third starting Eddie Kirchoff and 4th starter Mike Stadel. Ed Kirchoff won heat 2 from the pole with third starting Dan Hofer from Sturgis SD second ahead of Jess Anderson. Outside front row starter Randy Thomas from Casper impressive as he beat pole starter S Anderson and fourth starting Mass in heat 3. In the 12 car redraw for the front of the feature, Gillette’s Richard Haberstroh and Mass drew the front row ahead of Hofer, Mitch Rodgers, Thomas, Henrikson, McKenney, J Anderson, Stadel, S Anderson, Ed Kirchoff and Eddie Kirchoff. Mass was able to take advantage of the bad redraws for the other top cars to race to his 7th feature win. Henrikson fought off the challenges of Eddie Kirchoff for third. S Anderson ran fourth ahead of Johnson, Hofer, Thomas, 13th starting Forest Canipe, J Anderson and E Kirchoff. Mass climbed to third in track points, 7 behind McKenney and just one ahead of S Anderson. Bey is 4 behind S Anderson and 13 ahead of Hofer. The Casper based duo of Rodgers and Jason Schierkolk are 2 and 5 points respectively behind Hofer.
The prestigious NAPA-MDA Tour returns to Gillette for round six of their season schedule on June 24. They also race at Black Hills on June 23.
Summary Heat 1-Wes McKenney, Eddie Kirchoff, Mike Stadel, Dan Henrikson, Forest Canipe, John Bey. Heat 2-Ed Kirchoff, Dan Hofer, Jess Anderson, Richard Haberstroh, Chris Johnson. Heat 3-Randy Thomas, Scott Anderson, Eric Mass, Mitch Rodgers, Jason Schierkolk. Main-Mass, Henrikson, Eddie Kirchoff, S Anderson, Johnson, Hofer, Thomas, Canipe, J Anderson, Ed Kirchoff, Schierkolk, Rodgers, McKenney, Stadel, Haberstroh, Bey.