Old Dominion Speedway / April 13, 2002
McFarland Scores Yet Another Opening Night Victory .
Mark McFarland from Winchester VA. picked up his third opening
night feature win in a row, taking home the checkers in the 100 lap feature for the
Baileys NASCAR Weekly Racing Series Presented by Dodge Late Model Stock Cars. It was
an impressive win for the young driver, as he piloted his brand new Popeyes Chicken
and Biscuits Chevy to victory.
The overcast evening started out with qualifying, and McFarland made everyones head turn as he eclipsed the modern day track record, circling the high banked, 3/8 mile oval in 15.435 seconds (87.464 MPH). But with the inversion, he was to start the 100 lap event in from the 6th spot. When the green dropped, it took barely any time for him to make it to the front. By lap 7, he had made it by all but early leader Earl Case, and dove underneath Case heading into turn one on lap 9. From that point on, it was not who was going to make it to victory lane, but who would be runner-up. That battle between Case in the Idylwood Exxon Shop Chevy, defending track champ Dustin Storm with his new Baileys colors, and Stan Owens in his Dudley Martin Chevrolet sponsored ride. Those three battled nose to tail throughout the event until the rains came with just 9 laps remaining. The red-checker was displayed, and McFarland added yet another win to an already impressive resume.
Jerry Black from Elkridge Md., who finished just 4 points out for the track championship in 2001, started the 2002 season off in fine fashion, taking home the win in the 50 lap feature for the Redman Fleet Service Grand Stocks. Black held off defending track champ Jimmy Hardin for the final 20 circuits, beating him to the stripe by less than a car length. Rounding out the top 5 was Ray Terczak, Chris Donnelly, and Willard Lawrence.
In other racing action, Keith Machleit blistered the field in the 30 lap Mini Stock event, leading all but the first few laps. At the end it was Machleit crossing the stripe by 15 car lengths over apparent second place finisher James Pack. Post race inspection found an illegal carburetor on Packs Ford, which relegated him to the last finishing position. As of this release, scoring is being reviewed for the finishing order. In the Gaston Automotive Speedway Sportsman division, Ray Miller took advantage of the misfortunes of Jamie DeMattio, and found himself in victory lane in the 25 lap feature. With just over half a lap to go, DeMattio, who had led a major portion of the event, ran out of fuel, allowing the trailing pack to overtake him on the backstretch. Miller found himself out in front at the stripe. Finishing second was Jeff Sisak, followed by Jeff Pearson.
Next Saturday night, the Legends cars return for the first of their 9 race schedule at ODS. They will compete in a 30 lap feature, along with a 75 lap feature for the Late Models, 50 laps for the Grand Stocks, 30 laps for the Mini Stocks, and 25 laps for the Speedway Sportsman. As an added bonus, the Champs and Mini Cups will also have featured events. Gates open at 5 PM, with qualifying beginning at 5:15 PM. The Champs and Mini Cups take to the
track at 6:30 PM, with NASCAR racing set for the green flag at 7 PM.