CORDELE - Chris Dilbeck topped a stout field of Outlaw Late Model competitors to score the victory Saturday night in the Racing For Fair Tax OLM Series at Watermelon Capital Speedway in Cordele, GA Saturday night.
Dilbeck started the night by taking the pole with a 16.59 second lap. Alex Coffey would qualify on the outside of the front row.
On the drop of the green flag, Dilbeck and Coffey would run side by side for several laps until the caution flew for Cody Hale sliding off the track in turn 2 of the track, which does not have an outside retaining wall off turns two, three and the backstretch. The restart again saw a good battle between Dilbeck and Coffey. Gradually Coffey slid back into the clutches of Stuart Dutton who had been dogging his rear bumper for many laps. Dutton made the pass with 25 to go.
Another caution flew around the halfway mark when Coffey spun off turn three. This bunched the field again and put Dutton on the front row with Dilbeck for the restart. With some bumping and pushing, Dilbeck and Dutton raced for the lead for several laps, until the two got together in turn three, sending Dilbeck spinning off the top of the track.
Watermelon Capital speedway has a "protect the leader" rule that prevents the leader from being spun out by a pursuing racer to gain the lead. Since it could not be determined that the leader had done anything to cause the caution, the caution was called on Dutton, who was sent to the back. The spin was not deemed to have been done on purpose, but the rules say the car that the caution is called on has to go to the rear.
That put Steve Barker on the front row with Dilbeck for the restart. Coffey quickly assumed second, while Dutton charged back to the front.
Trouble broke out again when Steve Barker's car dipped off the track, on the backstretch, then made contact with Dutton when he came back on. The contact sent Dutton into Christopher Tullis, sending both spinning into the inside wall. Blake Gaither also made contact with the wall while trying to avoid the trouble. Gaither was able to continue, but Tullis' night was over, along with Dutton.
Back under green, Dilbeck went on to score the win, with Coffey in second, Barker third, Stewart Smith fourth, and Gaither finishing in fifth.
Championship points are tied between Coffey and Dilbeck with Barker in third 4 points back and a three way tie for fourth between Stuart Dutton, Blake Gaither and Stewart Smith.
Other winners on the night included Edward Allen in Super Street, Michael Hutto in Enduros, Joshua Hicks in Bandoleros and C.R. Brackett, Jr. in Go Karts.
Action returns to Watermelon Capital Speedway on June 7, featuring the Racing For Fair Tax Outlaw Late Models, plus local divisions.
Watermelon Capital Speedway - Cordele, GA
Race Results - May 17, 2014
Outlaw Late Models
1. # 9 Chris Dilbeck
2. # 7 Alex Coffey
3. # 64 Steve Barker
4. # 18 Stewart Smith
5. # 92 Blake Gaither
6. # 49 Alex Leverette
7. # 32 Stuard Dutton
8. # 24 Chris Tullis
9. # 35 Cody Hale
10. # 91 Marlin Gunter