Stephens Rules East Bay Opener

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Rithie Stephens claimed night one of the third annual World Street Stock Championship at East Bay Raceway Park Thursday night. (Mike Horne Photo)
Rithie Stephens claimed night one of the third annual World Street Stock Championship at East Bay Raceway Park Thursday night. (Mike Horne Photo)

GIBSONTON, Fla. – It was a cool night for the first night of the 37th annual Winternationals at East Bay Raceway Park, which began with the third annual World Street Stock Championship.

Ronnie Whitley and Brian Morgan were on the front row. When the green flag waved, Powers shot past the front two and led the way until Kevin Durden spun bringing out the caution and a complete restart.

The field lined back up and once again the green flag waved and it was this time Brian Morgan leading the field into turn one. The red flag came out on lap two as several cars got tangled up on the backstretch. Involved in the accident was Terry Jones and Dennis Wilson Jr. Drivers were okay but both of the cars were unable to continue.

On the restart it was Morgan once again showing his muscle until lap five it was Ritchie Stephens taking over the top spot. Caution came out on lap eight as Jason Harrison spun in turn four.

At the halfway point, Stephens continued to show the way, but on lap 16 Powers slowed down and brought out the caution and headed to the pits. Stephens was leading with Dennis Wilson right on his back bumper. Powers was able to return just before the green flag waved.

On lap 17, 2012 Outlaw Fours Champion Stephen Hohlbaugh brought out the caution as he came to rest on the front stretch with some right front damage ending his night.

Two more cautions came out before the final green flag waved as Stephens went on to win opening night of the third annual World Street Stock Championship and night number one of the 37th Annual WInternationals.

Finishing second was Dennis Williams, third went to Scotty Kay Jr., fourth was Tim Powers and Brian Morgan came home fifth.