UNON, Ky. — Don O’Neal became the third driver in the history of the Sunoco North/South 100 Presented by Lucas Oil to win the event twice, back-to-back. O’Neal led the main event flag-to-flag, in Florence Speedway’s $50,000 signature event. Following O’Neal were Tim McCreadie, Dale McDowell, Darrell Lanigan and Jimmy Owens at the finish.
“I have to thank the fans for staying around tonight. I hope we put on a great show for everybody! Our car was better up near the wall than in the black. The track was fantastic all night long,” said the winner.
O’Neal fought off the challenges from John Blankenship and Steve Francis early on as several caution flags kept the field bunched up. Blankenship was O’Neal’s only real competition for the first part of the race. Later in the race, McCreadie tried to run down O’Neal but it went to no avail.
On lap 96, Blankenship was running third and slowed dramatically with a broken rear end. Greg Johnson was just outside the top five and crashed into Blankenship; ending a sold run. On the restart, O’Neal pulled away from McCreadie to take his 32nd career LOLMDS victory.
McCreadie was complimentary of O’Neal afterward.
“To run against Don and the rest of these guys is awesome. I mean they race you hard, but they race you clean! I had a heck of a race with Blankenship and he never gave up! I want to thank the fans for coming out this weekend! This is the best we’ve run here, and we will definitely be back,” said the driver of the Sweeteners Plus, Warrior Race Cars No. 39.
McDowell charged through the field after starting 16th to finish third.
“Man that was a great race,” McDowell said. “Our car was strong early on, and then we kind of leveled out. To run in the top three against these guys in a car we don’t normally drive says a lot about our team.”
Don O’Neal, Tim McCreadie, Dale McDowell, Darrell Lanigan, Jimmy Owens, Steve Francis, Eddie Carrier Jr., Randy Weaver, Jared Landers, Duane Chamberlain, Dennis Erb Jr., Scott Bloomquist, R.J. Conley, John Blankenship, Greg Johnson, Steve Shaver, Earl Pearson Jr., Eric Wells, Dustin Linville, Tim Prince, Walker Arthur, Brad Neat, Gregg Satterlee, Mike Marlar, Steve Casebolt, Billy Moyer Jr.