Aside from a brief outside challenge from Clanton after a lap-37 restart, Lanigan’s only real scare came with just over 10 laps remaining when he had some trouble lapping Rich Neiser. Lanigan’s two-second-plus lead over Clanton almost completely disappeared before he cleared Neiser on lap 65 and proceeded to pull away with ease.
“They showed me (Clanton) was closing in a little bit, so I knew I had to do something there,” Lanigan said of the signals he received from his crew while riding behind Neiser. “He was making it awful wide down the straightaways and tight on the bottom, so I just knew I had to do something quick. I got by him and got clean air, and (then) the car was good the rest of the way.”
One year after winning the inaugural ‘Down & Dirty’ event at Berlin with a late-race rally that carried him into the lead with just five laps to go, Lanigan happily spent the final circuits cruising alone around a speedway that he praised for its competitiveness.
“The track raced great,” said Lanigan. “They did a phenomenal job with this dirt on here. It was a little choppy coming off of two, but other than that the track was unbelievable again.”
Clanton, 38, spent time in the lead (laps 26-32) for the second consecutive year at Berlin but once again fell short of victory. He improved to second place after finishing fourth in 2012.
“That top (groove) kind of died there,” said Clanton, who entered the event tied for second with Lanigan in the WoO LMS standings and ended it sitting four points behind the victor in third place. “We got so far out in (turns) three and four that it took all my momentum. Darrell was better through those holes in one and two too, so we run second again.”
Clanton registered his fifth runner-up finish of 2013 on the WoO LMS. He has won four A-Mains but last reached victory lane on June 1 at Stateline Speedway in Busti, N.Y.
Lanigan topped Ohlins Shocks Time Trials with a lap of 16.615 seconds during Group B.
Darrell Lanigan, Shane Clanton, Rick Eckert, Josh Richards, Tim Fuller, Matt Miller, Chub Frank, Morgan Bagley, Clint Smith, Bub McCool, Rich Neiser, Eric Wells, Brian Ruhlman, Andrew Reaume, Eric Spangler, Ryan VanderVeen, Jeep VanWormer, Curt Spalding, Jason Feger, David Hilliker, Tim McCreadie, Sammy Epling, Dave Hartman, Tom Sprague Jr.