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Redemption For Sheppard On Night Two of Lernerville Firecracker Weekend

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Jason Shank

SARVER, PA (Pittsburgh Racing Now) – One night after contact ended his attempt at victory, Brandon Sheppard captured the checkered flag in the World of Outlaws Morton Buildings Late Model feature at Lernerville Speedway on night two of Firecracker weekend.

Sheppard survived a late race charge by Sarver’s on Mike Norris to claim his 60th career World of Outlaws Morton Buildings Late Models Series feature win.

“This track was definitely a lot different then what I’m used to, but we were still really good,” said Sheppard.  “I could run the middle-to-high real well, didn’t try the bottom too much, but I felt comfortable down there when I did.”

Sheppard started on the pole position and led all 25-laps en route to the victory.  The battle for the rest of the podium came down to a national legend and a two-time Lernerville track Champion.

Boom Briggs started in the second spot with Scott Bloomquist and Norris making up the second row.  Bloomquist quickly got around Briggs to move into second place.  Norris got around Briggs and set his sights on Bloomquist.

Norris passed Bloomquist on lap 15, much to the delight of the hometown crowd, and set his sights on the leader.  Meanwhile up front Sheppard was navigating lap traffic and “The Crusher Kid” kept hitting his marks, cutting Sheppard’s lead from 2.9-seconds to 1.2-seconds as the laps were winding down.

Sheppard managed to get through the lap traffic just quick enough to hold off the charge from Norris, who finished 10th on Thursday night after starting second.

“This is definitely a little redemption for us,” Norris. “It’s crazy to think that when we started we just wanted to make these features and now we’re disappointed with tenth-place finishes. Tonight felt really great though. We’re in pretty good company up here on this podium.”

Bloomquist brought it home in third position at a place where he’s the only 3-time winner of the Firecracker 100.

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“I love it,” Bloomquist said on Lernerville. “We’ve been coming here for a long time, we’ve had some good runs and won some races. We’ve been making some mistakes with tires that we need to fix tomorrow. Last night we put a hard tire on and that was wrong, tonight we put a soft tire and needed a hard one. At least we know what we’re getting into tomorrow. Hopefully the weather holds off and we can get up front.”

Norris also thinks he’ll have something for Saturday night’s $30,000-to-win feature.

“I think we’ll have something for them tomorrow,” said Norris.  “We’ll see what the weather brings and go from there.”

Sheppard will also be in contention as his car has been strong with a win and a near-win that some would argue was taken away Thursday night.

“I think tonight says a lot for tomorrow, because the big race will probably be a little bit more slicker and I don’t know if it will be this slick or not,” said Sheppard.  “I have a feeling we’ll be between last night and tomorrow on the track. Either way, it’s gonna be a great race.”

The 14th rendition of the Firecracker will conclude Saturday night at Lernerville. Tickets are still available for purchase at the gate.  If you can’t make it, the 50-lap main event will air LIVE on CBS Sports Network at 9:00pm ET.  If you can’t watch it live, set your DVR as Thursday and Friday night’s action was intense.

Morton Buildings Feature:

  1. 1-Brandon Sheppard [1] $6,000
  2. 72n-Mike Norris [4] $3,000
  3. 0-Scott Bloomquist [3] $2,000
  4. 97-Cade Dillard [5] $1,750
  5. 99b-Boom Briggs [2] $1,500
  6. 25z-Mason Zeigler [6] $1,400
  7. 22-Gregg Satterlee [13] $1,300
  8. 29v-Darrell Lanigan [15] $1,200
  9. 18-Chase Junghans [7] $1,100
  10. 0m-Chris Madden [9] $1,000
  11. 18b-Shannon Babb [8] $900
  12. 56-Russ King [10] $850
  13. 72-Jason Covert [11] $800
  14. 28-Dennis Erb [12] $775
  15. 10-Jared Miley [17] $750
  16. 12-Ashton Winger [23] $700
  17. 1x-Chub Frank [16] $660
  18. 20rt-Ricky Thornton [18] $640
  19. 111-Max Blair [20] $620
  20. 7-Ricky Weiss [22] $600
  21. 12d-Doug Drown [14] $600
  22. 2s-Dan Stone [21] $600
  23. B1-Brent Larson [24] $600
  24. 0s-Ryan Scott [19] $600

Lap Leader(s): Sheppard 1-25.

Hard Charger Award: 29v-Darrell Lanigan[+7]

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Dirt Racing

All Star Circuit of Champions returning to Lernerville Speedway for 2-events including Don Martin Memorial

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SARVER, PA (Pittsburgh Racing Now) – The All Star Circuit of Champions (ASCoC) is returning to Lernerville Speedway in 2022 for two nights of action including the Don Martin Memorial XXXI.

The All-Stars will make their first appearance at ‘The Action Track’ on Friday, April 29.  The appearance will mark the series return to Lernerville for the first time since 2019 as COVID-19 cancelled their 2020 appearance and rain washed out this year’s visit.

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On July 6th the All-Stars will return for the $25,000-to-win ‘Don Martin Memorial Silver Cup XXXI’, one of the most prestigious Sprint Car events in the history of the sport.

“We’re very excited to bring in the All-Stars and their thrilling brand of high-level Sprint Car racing” said Lernerville Speedway General Manager Mike Lysakowski said in a statement. “I have always been a fan of the All-Stars and for 2022, we had more freedom in choosing a date for this year’s Silver Cup. We believe we have chosen a date that is very conducive to bringing both national and regional Sprint Car aces to Lernerville.”

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Western PA Speedweek to return in 2022

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SHIPPENVILLE, PA (Pittsburgh Racing Now) – Western PA Speedweek is returning for 2022 following a successful reboot earlier this year.

The five consecutive nights of winged 410 Sprint Car action will see the best regional drivers vying for an A-Main feature purse that is increasing to $14,000 with $3,000 going to the winner each night and a $300 minimum to start!

The action takes place Wednesday, June 1st through Sunday, June 5th at Michael’s Mercer Raceway (Mercer, PA), Thunder Mountain Speedway (Brookville, PA), Lernerville Speedway (Sarver, PA), Sharon Speedway (Hartford, OH) and Tri-City Raceway Park (Franklin, PA), with the round-trip total clocking in at exactly 259 miles from beginning to end.

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The group time trial format used last season was extremely popular with both drivers and fans alike, and will also be utilized again in 2022.

Ryan Smith of Fleetwood, PA is the defending Speedweek Champion after winning two features and a podium in three events in 2021.

 

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Lernerville Speedway not on World of Outlaws schedule in 2022

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SARVER, PA (Pittsburgh Racing Now) – Lernerville Speedway, a fixture on the World of Outlaws tour since their inception in 1978, is not on the Outlaws schedule for 2022.  The fate of the Don Martin Silver Cup is unknown at this time.

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Lernerville officials were planning for two NOS Energy Drink Sprint Car events as well as a World of Outlaws Late Model event for 2022 and were shocked and surprised when the schedule was released on Monday.

Pittsburgh Racing Now has reached out to World Racing Group, the parent company of the World of Outlaws, for comment but have not received a response as of publication.

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