Dalton makes late surge, nips Beckham in Springfield USRA RHS Modified main
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May 7, 2011  |  by Ronnie Williams

SPRINGFIELD, Mo. -- Despite close to two inches of early morning rain, the Springfield Raceway lived up to its fast reputation and provided another night of outstanding dirt track racing action as four-time track champion Jackie Dalton made a late-race surge to run down Missouri's "Mr. Excitement" Terry Beckham II and squeak out his second straight victory in the USRA RHS Modified feature as over 90 race teams checked into the pits.

The USRA RHS Modified feature saw John Yeoman and Beckham bring the field to the green only to have the race restarted as Scott Drake came to a halt. On the restart, Beckham shot to the top groove with Erik Maggard, Yeoman, defending track champion Mitch Keeter and Jody Tillman in tow.

Caution waved on lap 4 as Tillman came to a stop with a flat tire. On the restart, Beckham went back to the top lane with Maggard following as Dalton, who started in the seventh spot, began his surge to the front. Beckham was flying high as Dalton moved into second place on lap 5 while Brian Green and Dwight Neihoff, who started in the middle of the pack, were mounting some strong runs while Drake and Tillman were working traffic coming to the front.

Beckham looked to have things under control, but on lap 13 Dalton began to run down the race leader. On lap 17, Dalton closed to within three car-lengths of the high-flying Beckham and going into lap 18 caught the leader.

Working lapped traffic, Dalton tried to squeeze through as he pulled even with Beckham on the white flag lap. With neither driver lifting, the duo were side by side going down the back-stretch. In turn 3, dead even and with a lapped car in front, Dalton made the middle lane his as Beckham had moved to the bottom.

At the line, Dalton pulled another late-race pass with the win by one car-length as Beckham, Keeter, Maggard and Scott Drake completed the top-5.

Next Saturday night the running of the John Kuntz Memorial presented by Andy's Frozen Custard featuring the MARS and MLRA Super Late Models going head to head with defending event winner and MARS Champion Terry Phillips, MLRA Champion Al Purkey, Jeremy Payne, Brad Looney and many of the top touring regional Late Model drivers. Also points races for the USRA RHS Modifieds, Sport Mods, Midwest Modz and Legends Cars. Pit gates open at 3 p.m. with grandstand gates opening at 5 p.m.

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USRA Weekly Racing Series
Springfield Raceway, Springfield, Mo.
Saturday, May 7, 2011


Feature: 1. Jackie Dalton, Carthage; 2. Terry Beckham II, Webb City; 3. Mitch Keeter, Webb City; 4. Erik Maggard, Brighton; 5. Scott Drake, Webb City; 6. Jody Tillman, Branson; 7. Darian Hendrix, Joplin; 8. John Yeoman, Granby; 9. Billy Dalton, Reeds; 10. William Heath; 11. Nathan Cottrill, Nixa; 12. Brian Green, Pierce City; 13. Dwight Neihoff, Lockwood; 14. Robbie Bryant, Willard; DNS - Bobby Pearish, Oronogo; Rocky Berliew, Joplin; Kyle Slagle, Joplin.

Heat #1: 1. Yeoman; 2. J. Dalton; 3. Tillman; 4. Cotrrill; 5. Pearish; 6. Berliew; 7. Heath; 8. Slagle; 9. Drake.

Heat #2: 1. Beckham; 2. Maggard; 3. Keeter; 4. Bryant; 5. Neihoff; 6. Green; 7. Hendrix; 8. B. Dalton.

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