Stephen Muilenburg takes hard-earned Back To School Night win at Springfield
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August 11, 2012  |  by Ronnie Williams

SPRINGFIELD, Mo. -- With cooler temps and over 95 race teams in the pits, Springfield Raceway and Pepsi presented Back To School Night as veteran USRA Modified driver Stephen Muilenburg took advantage of the redraw to lead all 20 laps of the Budweiser USRA Modified feature, but it wasn't without a struggle.

Muilenburg, currently ranked in the top 10 in USRA national points, found Bobby Pearish and John Yeoman on his bumper all night long and then had Jackie Dalton charging late in the feature in taking his first Springfield win of the season.

Muilenburg and Yeoman brought the field to the green flag with Muilenburg quickly going to the middle groove as high point car Bobby Pearish shot from his 5th starting spot to 3rd place. The top 7 drivers quickly were pulling away which also included co-point leaders Jackie Dalton and Mitch Keeter along with Rob Muilenburg and Brian Green. Yeoman was applying pressure for the first 7 laps while Pearish was making runs on Yeoman.

The 1st caution waved on lap 8 for a single car spin. On the restart, Pearish got the jump and moved into second and right on Muilenburg's heels. Caution waved 1 lap later as Rex Merritt jumped the cushion in turn 3. On the restart, Pearish was right with Muilenburg as Dalton and Keeter were wagging a tight battle for spots. On lap 11 the final caution waved for debris on the track bunching the field again as Muilenburg brought them down with Pearish, Dalton, Keeter and Yeoman all together.

On lap 15, Dalton shot around Pearish and set his sight on leader Muilenburg who had moved to the extreme top groove while Keeter and Pearish battled. On lap 17, a near miss by Keeter as he glanced off the way out of turn 4 losing several spots but gathered it back up.

Dalton would make a late rally, but Muilenburg kept smooth and fast in taking his Ozark Tire/Mike's Motor Machine/TRE to his first win of the season and adding his name to the new winners list. Following Muilenburg to the line was Dalton in the Doug's Pro Lube/Garrison Performance/Hoffman while Pearish in the Pearish & Sons construction/Yeoman Engines/Hoffman, Yeoman in his Yeoman's 25th Anniversary Engines/Hoffman and Jerry Lankton rallied from 16th tonight to finish 5th aboard his Lankton's Welding/Yeoman Engines/Hoffman as 14 of the 16 starters finished on the lead lap.

Reliable Chevrolet GM Performance USRA B-Mod action saw an opening lap incident involving Thomas Hylton, Jeff Scroggins and current point leader Scott Drake all get together in turn 4. Only Drake would continue at the rear of the 21 car field. On the restart, Andy Beauchamp shot to the opening lead with former champion Wayne Graybeal followed quickly while Blake Ellis followed. Beauchamp who was never won a Springfield "Quick-Quarter" feature event was pulling away from Graybeal as both drivers have had their fair share of bad luck this season.

By lap 5, Beauchamp was smooth on the bottom groove while Graybeal found a pair of 160 cars coming quickly in Michael Maggard and defending track champion Bobby Maggard Jr. As the track stayed green, Beauchamp pulled away even more as the battle for 5th place was tight with young Ryan Hendrix and a fast moving Drake side by side. On lap 16, Graybeal's good run ended in the infield with problems as Hendrix already with 1 win this season had charged to second place and was bringing Drake with him.

Beauchamp would not be denied tonight as his Eagle Machine number 50 took the win with Drake edging out Hendrix for the runner up spot while Hendrix, Michael Maggard and Maggard Jr. completed the top 5 runners as the 20 lap feature was run caution free following the opening lap incident. 11 of the 21 starters completed the lead lap.

Action continues next Saturday night August 18th with the Transport Graphics Championship Chase featuring USRA Modifieds, USRA B Modifieds, Midwest Modz, Legends, Pure Stocks, Street Stocks and Young Lions with Racing at 7:30 Sharp. more information can be located at WWW.SpringfieldRaceway.Com or by contacting Jerry Hoffman at 417-673-7426 and be sure to visit and like the Facebook page.

Over $1,000 worth of school supplies were given out to kids 12 and under as 4 kids bikes were also given away in special drawings with Ron's Racing Collectibles, Jackie Dalton Racing,& Doug's Pro Lube, Yeoman's Racing Engines, The Chainey Group, Andy's Frozen Custard, Race Brothers Farm And home Supply, Auto Express in Joplin and Dirt works Race Cars and Hoffman Race Cars In Oronoco sponsoring the night.

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OFFICIAL RESULTS
American Racer USRA Weekly Racing Series
Springfield Raceway, Springfield, Mo.
Saturday, Aug. 11, 2012

USRA MODIFIEDS

A Ft-1) Stephen Muilenburg-Sparta 2) Jackie Dalton-Carthage 3) Bobby Pearish-Oronogo 4) John Yeoman-Joplin 5) Jerry Lankton-Lampe 6) Brian Green-Pierce City 7) Mitch Keeter-Webb City 8) Jody Tillman-Branson West 9) Rob Muilenburg-Sparta 10) Nick Whitehead-Nixa 11) Daniel Franklin-Eureka Springs, Arkansas 12) Danny DeMasters-Joplin 13) Scott Symmonds-Bolivar 14) Fred Slagle-Pierce City 15) John Briggs-Flippin, Arkansas 16) Rex Merritt-Billings.

1st Ht-1) Pearish 2) Keeter 3) S Muilenburg 4) Yeoman 5) Merritt 6) Tillman 7) Franklin 8) DeMasters.

2nd Ht-1) R Muilenburg 2) Whitehead 3) Dalton 4) Green 5) Briggs 6) Symmonds 7) Slagle 8) Lankton.

USRA B-MODS

A Ft-1) Andy Beauchamp-Springfield 2) Scott Drake-Webb City 3) Ryan Hendrix-Joplin 4) Michael Maggard-Republic 5) Bobby Maggard Jr-Republic 6) Steve Muilenburg-Sparta 7) Don Luna-St James 8) Kaleb Copher-Webb City 9) Blake Ellis-Sarcoxie 10) Derek Watson-Willard 11) Jared Thulin- Miami, Oklahoma 12) Mike Mansker-Republic 13) Ken Scott-Willard 14) Dakota Maggard-Republic 15) Mike Watson-Springfield 16) Wayne Graybeal-Springfield 17) Jeremy Thulin-Miami, Oklahoma 18) James Redus-Springfield 19) Tyler Chainey-Springfield 20) Thomas Hylton-Avilla 21) Jeff Scroggins-Republic DNS-Michael Page-Webb City.

1st Ht-1) Drake 2) Page 3) Hylton 4) M Maggard 5) Watson 6) D Maggard 7) Redus 8) Thulin.

2nd Ht-1) Beauchamp 2) Graybeal 3) Hendrix 4) B Maggard Jr 5) Watson 6) Thulin 7) Mansker.

3rd Ht-1) Ellis 2) Copher 3) Scroggins 4) Chainey 5) S Muilenburg 6) Luna 7) Scott.



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