WINCHESTER, Va. – After starting the weekend with a pair of runner-up finishes, Darrell Lanigan returned to his preferred top spot Saturday night at Winchester Speedway with a victory in the World of Outlaws Late Model Series-sanctioned Gunter’s Honey 50.
Lanigan, the two-time WoO LMS champion and current points leader, earned $10,650 for his series-leading 12th victory of the season as the national tour wrapped up a three-race weekend in the Mid-Atlantic region. The tour’s all-time winningest driver earned his 65th career series victory in front of a near-capacity crowd at the northern Virginia track.
Advancing from his fourth starting spot, Lanigan overtook Tim McCreadie on lap 44 of the 50-lap race and pulled away in his Keyser Manufacturing-sponsored Club 29 Race Car on his way to claiming his first victory at Winchester’s three-eighths-mile oval.
“I don’t like second,” said Lanigan, who settled for runner-up finishes Friday night at Delaware Int’l Speedway in Delmar, Del., and Saturday night at Potomac Speedway in Budds Creek, Md. “It’s always better to win, especially here at Winchester where we’ve struggled. To come here with our Club 29 car and get a win, it’s awesome.”
McCreadie, the 2006 WoO LMS champion who sits third in the current series standings, settled for second in his Sweeteners Plus Rocket Chassis, 2.360 seconds behind Lanigan at the finish. McCreadie started from the outside pole and took the lead from polesitter Dan Stone on lap 22.
Thompson’s Stone’s Excavating Rocket was third at the finish after riding out front for the race’s first 21 laps. Rick Eckert was fourth in the Rocket Chassis house car with Kenny Pettyjohn rounding out the top five in his Rocket car.
Lanigan made his way to third early in the event and rode patiently in the spot through the race’s opening laps as Stone paced the field ahead of McCreadie. When McCreadie began to pressure Stone in traffic around lap 15, Lanigan closed in on both drivers to make it a three-car battle for the lead.
After taking several looks under Stone in traffic, McCreadie pulled ahead for the lead on lap 22 as Lanigan looked to take second. Lanigan overtook Stone on lap 27 and erased what little advantage McCradie had built in just a couple of laps.
Lanigan pressured McCreadie as the leaders raced through heavy traffic, pulling alongside multiple times before finally completing the winning pass when McCreadie slipped high on lap 44.