Taylor and Maoke win features at Belle-Clair

News-DemocratAugust 15, 2013 

Matt Taylor won the Kenny Shrum 100 feature race for Super Late Models last Friday at Belle-Clair Speedway in Belleville while Zeb Maoke won the feature in UMP Modifieds.

Other feature winners were Jon Ripperda (Sportsman), Ryan Emig (Pure Stock) and Dallas Lugge (Pro 4).

Bryan Clauson led all 35 laps for his 20th career victory in the POWRi Lucas Oil National Midget Series at the Arnie Kneeper Memorial last Sunday at Belle-Clair Speedway and Nathan Benson won his third of the season in the POWRi Speedway Motors 600cc Outlaw Micro Series.

Clauson started on the outside of the front row next to Zach Daum and took the lead exiting turn two. The 24-year-old from Noblesville, Ind., was never challenged in taking back-to-back wins on the one-fifth mile track.

Clauson's win was his first in the Knepper, which was run for the 21st time.

"It's pretty special to put your name on a race like this," Clauson said. "It was nice to go wire-to-wire. I committed to the top early and then moved around to the middle and bottom. We ran the same kind of package (on his Spike-Esslinger) we did in July and it seemed to work."

Daum, from Pocahontas, finished second and took over the POWRi points lead with 17 of 30 events completed.

Daum has driven his Toyota-powered Eagle to one victory, three second places, a fourth and a ninth in the last six features.

Tyler Thomas, of Collinsville, Okla., continued to rebound from a crash that destroyed his car in a heat race at Belle-Clair on July 5 and caused him to miss his only two features of the season by finishing third.

Thomas has finished seventh or better in the past four POWRi features.

Benson was excited about his win in the micro series.

"We finally conquered Belleville and it feels good," Benson said. "My throttle stuck open at the start and I had to spend the first half lap pulling it back with my foot. I knew the laps were winding down and I had to make a move to get the lead. I had to slow down to hit my marks and get down in the moisture on the track to get a drive off the corner.

"The (inside) wall is so close here, it can be a little risky down there. I'm happy to win a race that honors a driver who was so well known and popular in the St. Louis area."

POWRi Lucas Oil National Midget feature top five (35 laps): 1. Bryan Clauson. 2, Zach Daum. 3. Tyler Thomas. 4. Chett Gehrke. 5. Jake Blackhurst. 6

POWRi Speedway Motors 600cc Outlaw Micro Series top five (20 laps): 1. Nathan Benson. 2. Jeremy Camp. 3. Joe B. Miller. 4. Derek LeMaster., 5. Jimmy Stearns.

Tri-City Speedway

Friday is "Topless Night" at Tri-City Speedway in Pontoon Beach as cars will be running topless in the UMP Late Model, UMP Modified and UMP Pro Crate Late Model divisions.

It's also $700 to win for the UMP Pro Crate Late Models in a double-down promotion with Highland Speedway.

Highland Speedway

It's also "Topless Night" at Highland Speedway on Saturday, featuring a full regular racing program along with the Kids Night Bicycle Blowout.

Feature winners last Saturday at Highland were Michael Kloos in UMP Late Models, Mike Harrison in UMP Modifieds , Zach Daum in the Daum Insurance Micros and Mark Clary in the UMP Sport Mods.

Federated Auto Parts Raceway

Saturday is the sixth annual Jim Woodrum Memorial presented by ReMax/best Choice and Marzucco Electric at Federated Auto Parts Raceway at I-55 in Pevely, Mo.

The full program includes UMP Late Models, Modifieds, UMP/AARA Sportsman and Pro 4 Stocks and vintage cars. Grandstands open at 5 p.m. with racing at 7 p.m.

Items for the Local Auto Racing Notebook are compiled from area track websites and local racing enthusiasts. If you have local racing story ideas, news items or photographs of races to submit to us, send an email to pkuhl@bnd.com.

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