Tommy Jackson, Jr. Breaks the String of Bad Luck with INEX National Qualifier Win; Cole Bruce Take Home the Win in Bandos
Hampton, VA – With the 9th Annual Hampton Heat upon Larry King Law’s Langley Speedway this weekend, it was announced late last week that the INEX Legends and Bandolero features would both be national qualifiers. Thirteen Legends drivers made the trip out in the insane July heat here in Hampton Roads. Interesting enough, only one new driver made the trip this weekend after the qualifier was announced and that was the #51 of Ryan Matthews, a series winner up at Southside Speedway so far in 2017.
Tommy Jackson, Jr. once again looked to be the car to beat during qualification edging out current track points leader Brian May for the pole by seven-hundredth of a second. The 18.229-second lap (78.008 MPH) was good enough for Jackson’s second consecutive pole and eventually proved to be enough to land the Poquoson native in Dale Lemonds Victory Lane for the first time this season. Defending race winner, Spencer Saunders, would start third with Cody Carlton and Jamie Price rounding out the fastest five cars.
When the green flag dropped on the 30-lap feature, Jackson left nothing on the table and took command of the race lead early bringing Saunders along with him leaving May in third. It was almost like Deja Vu as Jackson and Saunders worked in tandem to pull away from the rest of the pack just like a couple weeks ago. Where Saunders hounded the rear nerf bar of Jackson and made a great late race pass coming to the white flag to steal the victory. This time around though, Jackson just looked too strong.
Some good battles would take place throughout the field behind the leaders with David Brandt, Lane McKee, Colby Flowers and Zach Lightfoot as you sprinkled a few cautions throughout the race. A late race caution for the #4 of Chris Hayes – who’s night would end early after a trailing arm bolt broke – and then again quickly there after for McKee and Matthews, would set up a four lap shoot out for the win.
Jackson, however, was not phased by the late restart and he was not going to be denied on this night and drove his #87 to victory lane. Saunders would settle for second place but continue his streak of podium finish while finishing two positions ahead of May – who would eventually lose third to a hard charging Cody Carlton on that late restart – to tighten up the championship points battle heading into the back half of the season.
“Awe man, it feels good in this hot weather,” Jackson said in victory lane after the race. “Yeah, it’s just a lot of hard work, we went through a really bad spell there. We weren’t winning races; mechanical failures that would take us out of it, just gotta thank my crew. Worked some really long nights in the shop to get us here, thank Spencer, we lead all thirty laps and he was right there with us”.
Cole Bruce, of Fredricksburg, Virginia, found himself in Dale Lemonds Victory Lane as well this past weekend at Larry King Law’s Langley Speedway after rolling off for his 15-lap feature in fifth place. Bradley Kilby was the fastest in final practice, which set the grid for the eleven-car field but had problems early getting going. This allowed Autumn Weaver to power her way around the outside and take the lead early.
Autumn’s lead would last several laps until Kilby gave her a shot through turn two that sent Weaver spinning through the grass and kicking up water onto the racing surface. The caution flag would be displayed to investigate. Weaver would come down pit road and restart the race towards the rear of the field. This would hand the lead over the Kilby but only for a few moments as he too went for a spin of his own on lap twelve, in turn four, handing the lead over the Bruce.
Cole would have his work cut out for him in the closing laps as Conner Jones mounted an incredible charge but did not have enough laps to make anything happen. “I don’t know what happened over in turn one”, said Bruce. “I thought the axle was bent, I thought the front spindle was bent. I thought we were a junk car after that wreck over there, of course, we worked our way up in qualifying, made some changes. It’s just a great night to get to win”.
Cycle City Corp Legends OFFICIAL Results;
- #87 Tommy Jackson Jr; 30
- #7 Spencer Saunders; 30
- #94 Cody Carlton; 30
- #22 Brian May; 30
- #7L Zach Lightfoot; 30
- #33 Colby Flowers; 30
- #08 Jamie Price; 30
- #51 Ryan Matthews; 30
- #21 Lane McKee; 30
- #88 Ryan Center; 30
- #31 David Brandt; 30
- #17 Devon Courtney; 30
- #4 Chris Hayes; 26
Cycle City Corp Bando’s OFFICIAL Results;
- #31 Cole Bruce; 15
- #14 Connor Jones; 15
- #3 Jacob Putman; 15
- #18d Emily Day’ 15
- #33 Franklin Caricofe; 15
- #18 Autumn Weaver; 15
- #8 Jacob Derrick; 15
- #6 Jake Waltman; 15
- #5 Bradley Kilby; 15
- #87 Kenton Case; 15
#48 Wesley Newell; 14