DODGE CITY, Kan. — Zach Blurton outlasted reigning track champion Taylor Velasquez to post his first Precise Racing Products DCRP Sprint Car feature win of the year before a crowd in excess of 5,000 people to cap off Friday night’s Driver Appreciation Night at Dodge City Raceway Park.
While Blurton finally took command on the 15th of 20 rounds after a handful of lead changes, Mike Petersilie broke a DCRP victory drought by taking IMCA Modified honors, Brandon Kenny scored the IMCA Sport Modified win, Angel Munoz notched his fifth IMCA Stock Car win of the season and Reagan Sellard landed his second IMCA Hobby Stock triumph.
In the 20-lap Precise Racing Products DCRP Sprint Car feature, Jetmore native Zach Blurton took the lead for the third and final time on the 15th lap en route to landing the Midwest Ag Professionals/Wheat State Roofing No. 2J entry in entry lane.
“That was an awesome race,” Blurton proclaimed to the massive crowd. “The top was slowing down a little and the bottom was starting to take a little rubber here and there, we were able to find it a couple of times coming off four and some in two.”
While Blurton started the feature inside row two, Velasquez gunned into the lead at the outset from the second row outside in his bid for a second consecutive win. Blurton was on the march though, surging past Ray Seemann for second on the third round and then closing in to challenge for the point.
With Velasquez ripping the topside and Blurton catfishing the bottom, the latter got a run off of turn four to edge ahead on the eight circuit. Velasquez battled right back out front in the next pair of corners only to surrender the point again a lap later.
Traffic worked to Velasquez’ advantage to regain the lead on the 12th round, with him moving the No. 21x to the bottom to protect the lead. But, when he slipped off the bottom exiting turn two on the 15th round, Blurton was there to take quick advantage by shooting back out front as Koby Walters made an effort to join in on the lead mix.
Approaching a gaggle of lapped cars in the final circuits with the top three in close contact, one of those lapped cars (Cody Lampe) slapped the turn two wall directly in front of the leaders to bring out the race’s only caution with three laps to go.
With clear track ahead, Blurton raced on to the stripe unabated with Walters taking advantage of another Velasquez slip off the bottom of turn two on the restart to claim runner-up honors. Velasquez settled for third with Seemann and Keefe Hemel rounding out the top five.
In the 20-lap IMCA Modified feature, 2007 track champ Mike Petersilie raced around Randy Wilson for the lead on the seventh lap en route to his first DCRP win in several years. “We were overdue to get one here,” the Hoisington racer said afterward.
While Wilson gunned into the lead at the drop flag from sixth, Petersilie needed just one lap to move his No. 25p into second from the eighth starting position.
Petersilie reeled Wilson in before racing by for the lead on the seventh round. Tenth-starter Clay Sellard and 12th-starter Brendon Gemmill followed suit soon after and tried to chase down the win with Sellard closing Petersilie’s rear bumper and trying to challenge, but to no avail.
Petersilie slipped away to take the checkered flag by a handful of car-lengths with Sellard and Gemmill filling out the podium. Wilson was fourth after leading early while Jesse Smith batted into fifth in the closing circuits.
Brandon Kenny became the fourth different leader of the 20-lap IMCA Sport Modified feature with a handful of laps to go and then held off fellow Woodward, OK, shoe Jeff Kaup to post the win in his first DCRP visit of the year.
While Kenny worked forward from the ninth starting position, Bart Baker paced the opening four rounds before an incident handed the lead over to current points leader Kaup. Kaup had his hands full though with the duo of Robert Elliott and Kenny pressuring to take command.
Elliott powered into the lead on 11th round before Kenny surged to the front on the 15th lap with Elliott retiring to the pits under a caution period with five laps to go.
Kenny fought off Kaup over the remaining handful of laps to secure the win with Dustin Donley taking advantage of a Kaleb Roach spin in the final corner to nab the third spot behind the lead duo. Jeremy Sigler crossed the stripe in fourth with Jarett Lunow rounding out the top five.
In an evenly-matched 15-lap IMCA Stock Car feature, Lamar, Colorado’s Angel Munoz denied Tyler Tipton’s bid for two in a row by taking his fifth DCRP triumph of the season.
With Tipton gridding the field sixth and Munoz in seventh, it was Munoz winning the race through traffic to get to second behind early leader Chris Oliver. Munoz charged into the lead on the third round with Tipton right on his heels in pursuit of the lead.
The duo battled for the lead the rest of the way, with Tipton pulling alongside on several occasions. Munoz was unflappable however, putting together 15 flawless circuits to take the win ahead of Tipton with Ondre Rexford, Cole Traugott and Ron Hartman rounding out the top five
Bucklin’s Reagan Sellard rounded out the night’s feature winners by fending off Matt O’Hair for his second 15-lap IMCA Hobby Stock victory of the year.
While Sellard and O’Hair worked forward from their row three starting positions, Brett Copeland led in the early going as he made a run at two wins in a row.
Sellard and O’Hair closed in though, with both slipping by on the eighth round to move into first and second, respectively. O’Hair pressured Sellard the rest of the way, but Sellard was up to the task.
Sellard took the checkered flag ahead of O’Hair with Tathan Burkhart a close third. Duane Wahrman rebounded from an early incident to salvage a fourth-place finish with Bryan Habiger rounding out the top five.