April 10, 2004
McFarland Claims 4th Opening Night Feature In A Row ..
In what seems to be a normal occurrence at the Old Dominion
Speedway, 2003 NASCAR National Champion Mark McFarland made a triumphant return to the 3/8
mile oval, and picked up the opening night feature win, dominating the Bailey's 100 lap
event for the NASCAR Dodge Weekly Series Late Model Stock Cars. It was McFarland's 4th
opening night feature win, dating back to the 2000 season. McFarland took over top spot in
his Washington Area Dodge Dealers / Popeye's Dodge before the 10 lap mark, and breezed to
yet another feature win at the historic facility. McFarland also led qualifying, as he did
13 times in 2003, circling the 3/8 mile oval in 15.36 seconds (87.891 mph). Rounding out
the top 6 qualifiers were Dustin Storm, Dion Ciccarelli, Brandon Butler, Andreas
Kesterman, and Jack Bailey. New to the Old Dominion Speedway this season is the Manassas
Dodge "Dash For The Cash", which puts the top 6 qualifiers in a 10 lap sprint to
determine the top 6 starting postions in the night's featured event. The top 6 were
inverted, putting Jack Bailey on the pole for The Dash. Bailey went on win the event,
putting him on the pole for the Bailey's 100. The command to fire the engines was given by
Sean T. Connaughton, Chairman of the Prince William County Board of Supervisors, and when
the green flag dropped on the 22 car field, it didn't take long for McFarland to take
command, coming up from his 3rd starting spot. Once up front, he never looked back as the
remainder of the field battled for their positions. Two major incidents took out several
top contenders, including former track champ Dustin Storm, Mike Colabucci, Mike Southard,
and Dash winner Jack Bailey. The battle throughout the night was for the second spot, as
Butler, Kestermann, and 5 time track champ Danny Fair worked each other hard, with Butler,
a former Mini Stock track champ, held on for the second spot. Kestermann, Fair, and
Richard Boswell Jr. rounded out the top 5.
Mark Winstead took over the lead from Willard Lawrence late in the Bailey's 100 lap event for the Redman Fleet Service Grand Stocks, and picked up his first feature win since 2000. Lawrence, who was the quick qualifier (16.130) led throughout much of the event, but a broken shock caused the handling of his RW Associates Pontiac to faulter. Winstead made a bold move in his Mid-Atlantic Wrecker Service Chevy coming out of turn 2, and took over the top spot. With less than 10 laps to go, Les Miranda, who had ran third for most of the evening, caught Lawrence and took over second in his Cross Roads Realty Pontiac, giving him his best finish thus far in his short Grand Stock career. Rounding out the top 5 were Lawrence, Bryan Short, and Rob Jardine.
Tom Beckman started the 2004 season off with a win in the Springfield Toyota Mini Modified 30 lap feature. Beckman and Colt White battled throughout most of the event. Ken Datesman held the lead early, but he slipped to the outside, allowing White and Beckman to drop him back to third. White led for a short period of time, then Beckman powered his way to the point. A caution period at the halfway point closed the field up, allowing White to get a final shot at Beckman, but he was a bit short at the end, finishing a car length behind. Vince Langan finished third, while Datesman, and 2003 Mini Stock champ Mike Carte rounded out the top 5.
Jamie DeMattio took over the lead from Joe Edwards just past the halfway point, and held off Mark Averi for the win in the Gaston Automotive Speedway Sportsman 25 lap feature. David Smith finished third, while Dave Nobles, and Matt Lloyd rounded out the top 5. Next Saturday night, the Old Dominion Speedway welcomes "The Greaseman", as he will be signing autographs and adding his own special style of entertainment to the night's activities. Activities include a 100 lap feature for the Late Models, 50 laps for the Grand Stocks, 30 laps for the Mini Modifieds, 25 laps for the Speedway Sportsman, and 30 laps for the INEX Legends. Practice begins at 2 PM, qualifying starts at 4 PM, pre-race activities begin at 6 PM, and the Manassas Dodge "Dash For The Cash" takes the green at 7 PM.
Feature Winners From 4/10/04: