Race Report Saturday, December 7, 2013

Race Report Saturday, December 7, 2013

ARENA RACING USA
at Richmond (Va.) Coliseum
Holiday Party 200
Race Report
Saturday, December 7, 2013

Additional Photos Here

RICHMOND, Va. (Dec. 7) — Pro Series points leader Scott Prillaman of Suffolk, Va., bolted out front at the drop of the green flag and led all the way to post his third straight win in the 50-lap AmeriGas Top Dog race, the featured event of Saturday evening’s Arena Racing USA program at the Richmond Coliseum. Overall, the win was Prillaman’s fourth of the still-young season.

Bryan Hager drew the pole for the start of the event, but pulled to the infield during the pace laps, ceding the prime starting spot to John Nickens. Prillaman was the outside pole-sitter, while Casey Sipe and Travis Wall made up the second row.

As the race got going, Prillaman powered ahead of Nickens and hauled the field toward the first turn. Wall tagged along with Prillaman and took over the second spot. Nickens slid back to third, followed by Tripp Thurston and Dystany Spurlock.

The first caution flag appeared on lap 5 for debris on the backstretch from Thurston’s machine.

On the double-file restart, Prillaman cleared Wall off Turn 2 and left the inside lane open for Spurlock, who dueled with Wall for a couple laps before claiming second. The Spurlock/Wall joust allowed Prillaman to pad his lead to half a straightaway.

The second yellow flag flew on lap 10 when Jason Manes spun off Turn 4, collecting Wesley Givens and Jordan Wallace.

On the ensuing restart, Prillaman slipped ahead of the pack, while Wall used the inside lane to regain the runner-up position from Spurlock.

The third caution flag waved on lap 19 when Francis Jarrelle III spun in Turn 2.

Back under green, Prillaman quickly cleared Wall. This time, though, Wall was able to fight off Spurlock and hang onto second place. As the crossed flags were displayed to mark the halfway point, Prillaman held a two-length margin over Wall, who enjoyed a similar advantage over Spurlock.

By the time the race entered its closing stages, Prillaman’s lead had swelled to better than half a straightaway over Wall. That edge disappeared, however, when the last of the race’s four yellow flags was unfurled on lap 39 for debris in Turn 4.

On the final restart, at the beginning of lap 45, Prillaman once again flexed his muscle and gained the clear-cut advantage before the field reached Turn 1. Wall fought off Spurlock and maintained second.

At the finish, Prillaman was the winner by three car-lengths. Wall was second, while Spurlock was third. It was the second straight 1-2-3 finish for the trio. Jason Styron was fourth and Jarrelle rounded out the top five. Thurston headed the second five, in sixth. He was the final driver on the lead lap. Jordan Wallace was seventh, followed by Nickens, Camden Testerman and Sipe. Givens, Manes, Tyler Daniels and Hager completed the rundown.

With the completion of Saturday’s event, Arena Racing USA heads into its holiday hiatus. Racing resumes at the Richmond Coliseum on Saturday, Jan. 4.

***

Travis Wall of Chesapeake, Va., grabbed the lead on the opening circuit and wired the field for his first victory of the season in the 50-lap Uptown Color A Main.

Tripp Thurston drew the pole for the start, sharing the front row with Wall. As the event got under way, Wall remained on Thurston’s flank and edged ahead as the field returned to the flagstand. He cleared Thurston along the backstretch on lap 2 and brought Scott Prillaman along with him, to second.

The race was slowed by caution flags on laps 12, 13, 26 and 43 as Wall and Prillaman held onto the top two spots. Francis Jarrelle III occupied the third position for much of the event before getting shuffled back in the waning laps.

What should have been the last lap was already under way when the final caution flag waved as Cody Carlton and Tyler Daniels tangled on the frontstretch, collecting Thurston. The incident set up a “green-white-checkered” sprint.

On the final restart, Wall and Prillaman pulled ahead of Spurlock, who launched from the outside lane. While the lead duo pulled away, Jason Manes moved up to challenge Spurlock for third.

At the finish, Wall was the winner by a car-length over Prillaman. Spurlock withstood Manes’ bid and held on for third. Jarrelle was fourth to the line, while Manes slipped to fifth. Jason Styron, Daniels and Thurston were sixth through eighth, in that order, and joined the top five in advancing to the Top Dog finale. Carlton and Scott Allen missed out on Top Dog starting spots.

***

Wesley Givens made his Arena Racing debut a successful one, picking up the win in the 50-lap Insurance Doctor B Main. He assumed the lead on lap 20 and showed the way to the finish.

John Nickens was the pole-sitter for the event, but gave way to his front-row colleague, series veteran Mike Weddell, on the first lap.

Weddell pulled away by as much as a full straightaway in the early going and easily made his way past Bryan Hager, the only slower machine he encountered. Nickens, on the other hand, tangled with Hager on lap 20 to bring out the first caution flag.

The second caution flag flew on the ensuing restart when Casey Sipe, who was lined up in the outside lane, tangled with Camden Testerman off Turn 4 and collected Connor Medeiros. While the field circulated under the yellow flag, Weddell ground to a halt in Turn 4, the victim of mechanical problems.

With Weddell relegated to the sidelines, the lead passed to Givens, followed by Jordan Wallace, another relative newcomer making his second start. Though short on experience, Givens and Wallace were up to the task as they maintained the first and second positions to the checkers.

At the finish, Givens was the winner by half a straightaway over Wallace. Nickens was third, while Hager and Testerman completed the top five. Those five, along with sixth-place Sipe, moved on to the Top Dog feature. John Alford, Medeiros and Weddell didn’t make the Top Dog cut.

***

Allowed a “do-over” on the initial start, Garrett Manes of Powhatan, Va., jumped out front and led all the way for his second win in a 30-lapper for the Youth Series.

Olivia Florian started from the pole and got the drop on Manes, the outside pole-sitter, when the original green flag waved. Before the opening lap was in the books, however, the caution flag appeared as Autumn Weaver and Chase Burrow locked horns in the middle of Turns 3 and 4. The incident precipitated a complete restart.

On the second try, Manes easily cleared Florian as the field rolled toward Turn 1. Florian dropped into second, followed by Mini Tyrrell.

In the early going, Manes pulled away by four car-lengths. At the halfway mark, though, he ran up on slower traffic, giving Florian and Tyrrell a chance to close ground.

On lap 16, Florian and Tyrrell tangled in Turn 2, bringing out the second yellow flag. As they retreated to the back of the pack, Savannah Nickens moved up to second place.

Back under green, fourth-place Weaver swung to the outside and bypassed both Nickens and third-place Aubrey Hill. The moved drew a black flag, however, and Weaver fell to the rear. Manes, meanwhile, had driven away by more than a straightaway.

The last of the race’s three caution flags appeared on lap 28 for a multi-car fracas in Turns 3 and 4. Florian and Tyrrell overturned in the melee, while Jay Seward and Nickens were also collected.

On the final restart, Manes bolted from the pack and won by half a straightaway over Hill. Weaver was third to the line, followed by Nickens and Florian. Tyrrell, Seward and Burrow completed the rundown.

***

Dystany Spurlock of Henrico, Va., nabbed her second straight pole award in late afternoon Pro Series qualifying. She circled the tenth-mile oval in 7.878 seconds on the first of her two timed laps. Her second circuit was derailed by a hard crash and rollover off Turn 2.

Cody Carlton was second-fastest, just 22-thousandths of a second off Spurlock’s pace. Travis Wall was third in the rundown, the only other driver to crack the 8-second barrier. Scott Prillaman and Tripp Thurston were fourth and fifth, respectively, among the 18 Pro Series participants.

In Youth Series qualifying, Garrett Manes maintained his unblemished time trial record with his third straight pole award. His best lap — at 8.475 seconds — topped Olivia Florian by 44-thousandths of a second. Mini Tyrrell was third-quickest, followed by Chase Burrow and Autumn Weaver.


DECEMBER 7 RACE RESULTS from Richmond Coliseum:

PRO SERIES TOP DOG (50 laps): 1. Scott Prillaman; 2. Travis Wall; 3. Dystany Spurlock; 4. Jason Styron; 5. Francis Jarrelle III; 6. Tripp Thurston; 7. Jordan Wallace; 8. John Nickens; 9. Camden Testerman; 10. Casey Sipe; 11. Wesley Givens; 12. Jason Manes; 13. Tyler Daniels; 14. Bryan Hager. Pole: Hager.

PRO SERIES A MAIN (50 laps): 1. Travis Wall; 2. Scott Prillaman; 3. Dystany Spurlock; 4. Francis Jarrelle III; 5. Jason Manes; 6. Jason Styron; 7. Tyler Daniels; 8. Tripp Thurston; 9. Cody Carlton; 10. Scott Allen. Pole: Thurston.

PRO SERIES B MAIN (50 laps): 1. Wesley Givens; 2. Jordan Wallace; 3. John Nickens; 4. Bryan Hager; 5. Camden Testerman; 6. Casey Sipe; 7. John Alford; 8. Connor Medeiros; 9. Mike Weddell. Pole: Nickens.

YOUTH SERIES (30 laps): 1. Garrett Manes; 2. Aubrey Hill; 3. Autumn Weaver; 4. Savannah Nickens; 5. Olivia Florian; 6. Mini Tyrrell; 7. Jay Seward; 8. Chase Burrow. Pole: Florian.

NEXT EVENT: Saturday, Jan. 4, at the Richmond Coliseum. Doors open at 6:00 PM; racing starts at 7:00 PM.

MEDIA CONTACT: Erika Gay Phone: (804) 835-5211 x.4 E-mail: Erika.Gay@ArenaRacingUSA.com


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