BROWNSTOWN, Ind. (June 14) — It was more than two decades ago that Billy Moyer of Batesville, Ark., scored his first career Hoosier Dirt Classic victory in the 1985 edition of Brownstown Speedway’s annual event. Years later, the Hall of Famer continues to pile up victories, notching his 94th career UMP DIRTcar Summernationals triumph in Wednesday’s tour opener at the quarter-mile oval.
Slipping under polesitter Jackie Boggs of Grayson, Ky., in turns one and two on lap 37 of 40, the second-starting Moyer led the rest of the way to earn a $5,000 payday in his third victory of the 2017 season.
“We come off such a dismal run,” Moyer said after the race. “I guess we ran 12th (at Eldora) last weekend. It’s not anything like we wanted to do. We went back to the drawing board, changed some stuff this last week and that Victory Race Car is digging. I’m real happy with some stuff we’re doing.”
Redrawing to start on the pole of Wednesday’s 40-lap feature, Boggs shot to an early lead, with the frontrunners approaching the tail of the field by lap 15. Using the lapped traffic to his advantage, Moyer briefly pulled ahead of Boggs on lap 17, just as the race’s lone yellow flag waved.
Boggs held his lead on the restart, but was unable to hold off Moyer in the final laps. Slipping up the track ever-so-slightly, Moyer was able to pull ahead of Boggs in turns one and two on lap 37, leading the final four circuits for his 819th career victory.
“The sea parted there for me,” Moyer said. “Our cars were pretty darn equal. (Boggs) had different tires on than I had and he was good in the short run. Right before that first yellow come out, when we got to lapped traffic, it didn’t seem he was maneuverable at all and I kind of thought, ‘I’ve got him where I need him.’
“I don’t know what happened there. Parts of it was rubbered-up, but it wasn’t asphalt-type of rubbered up. I tried a bunch of different games. I would ride a while, charge it a while. Then finally I started to tear the right-rear tire off of it and it seemed like I got a little better. Then come the push through the middle. I didn’t know who it was behind me for sure, but I could hear them at times. It all worked out good.”
Debuting a new car, Cody Mahoney of Madison, Ind., finished runner-up, with Jason Jameson of Lawrenceburg, Ind., rounding out the podium in third. Boggs slipped back to run fourth at the checkers, with Steve Casebolt of Richmond, Ind., notching a top-five finish.
“The race car was real good,” Mahoney said. “That was our first night out with it. We didn’t arrive until 6:30. We’ve been busting butt, waiting on parts and stuff. I’ve got to thank everybody at Stuckey Enterprises and Black Diamond for getting that thing done and building a really good race car. We’ll keep working on that. I feel like we’ve got something to work on to get a lot better with.”
After nearly slipping over the berm in turns three and four early in the race, Jameson was happy to bring home a third-place finish.
“It was just a train race and the rubber just kept moving down,” Jameson said. “I was just following them. I screwed up there early and almost cost myself a lot more spots than I did. But I’ll take it after last weekend.”
Notes: Moyer captured his third victory of the 2017 season and his 94th career Summernationals victory. The Hall of Famer is a four-time winner of the Hoosier Dirt Classic. … The race was slowed by a single caution when Jeremy Hines spun in turn four on lap 17. … The tour boasts its richest points fund ever. In addition to $25,000 to the champion (out of a $55,000 postseries points fund), $5,000 will be distributed about the top 10 drivers each week of the tour. … Summernationals competitors travel to Kankakee Speedway on Thursday for another $5,000-to-win event.