WEST LIBERTY, Iowa — Ray Guss Jr. got back on track Saturday night and he had the point leader in the Deery Brothers Summer Series to thank for it.
Powered by a motor borrowed from Mike Murphy Jr., Guss drove to a convincing $3,000 win in the IMCA Late Model tour main event at West Liberty Raceway.
The two-time defending series champion had broken his own engine during qualifying at Friday’s event at Davenport. Murphy, the winner of the last two Deery races, offered Guss his backup for the West Liberty show.
That generosity helped Guss get his career 24th tour win. Denny Eckrich caught brother Andy for second late in the 40-lapper while Justin Kay and Kurt Kile completed the top five.
Matt Ryan started outside the front row and led the first six circuits while Joel Callahan, Andy Eckrich, Guss and Kay jockeyed behind him.
Andy Eckrich needed just five laps to race from 15th into the top five; Callahan caught Ryan for the lead on lap seven and was beginning to put some distance on his closest challengers before the only caution of the night waved on lap 11.
Restarting third, Guss went to the low side to slide past Callahan and was scored first the next time around. He was running with lapped traffic by midway and built a sizable advantage as the race stayed green.
Denny Eckrich passed nine cars in all and took over the runner-up spot in the late going, but had nowhere near enough laps to catch Guss. Andy Eckrich passed 12 cars.
Ray Guss Jr., Denny Eckrich, Andy Eckrich, Jus¬tin Kay, Kurt Kile, Joel Callahan, Tyler Bruening, Jeff Aikey, Mike Murphy Jr., Nick Marolf, Jay Johnson, Dan Shelliam, Brett Diercks, Darrel DeFrance, Colby Springsteen, Doug Yates, Tom Goble, Dave Stichter, Jonathan Brauns, Gary Webb, Matt Ryan, Mark Burgtorf, Jeff Mi¬trisin, Jay Chenoweth.BREAKING NEWS: SPEED SPORT is back in print with a new monthly format! Subscribe for just $24.95. Special offer for former subscribers.