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Don Martin II
Shannon Wins First IMCA Modified Feature
Merced, CA...June 6...DJ Shannon scored the victory in the 25 lap IMCA Modified Main Event as Merced Speedway ran a Wednesday evening program to open up the Merced County Fair. This was the first feature victory for Shannon.
Shannon had a front row start and jumped out to the lead immediately, followed by Derek Nance. Two time reigning champion Randy Brown gained second with Ramie Stone following him into third on lap three. The lead three ran that way until lap 20. Stone encountered problems and fell back in the pack, moving Brian Pearce into third. Pearce lost third to a last lap pass by Darrell Hughes II. Shannon drove a flawless race and won by a straightaway ahead of Brown. Pearce settled for fourth, followed by Chris Crompe, Shane DeVolder, Justin Villanueva, Derek Nance, Troy Stone and Alex Stanford. Eight lap heat race wins were recorded by Nance, Stanford, Shannon and Ryan Porter.
Reigning Ocean Speedway champion Rob Gallaher picked up the win in the 20 lap Hobby Stock Main Event. As with Shannon, Gallaher led every lap of the race. Austin Van Hoff held second for just one lap before Randy Brown, who was driving the Cody Brown car, settled into the spot. The lead duo ran closely until a lap nine caution flag for reigning champion Kodie Dean. James Stockton took over second behind Gallaher on the restart, but Robbie Loquaci gained the position a lap later. Loquaci ran a good race, but he was no match for the flying Gallaher. Sid Finn finished third ahead of Bubba Nelson, point leader Shannon Nelson, Marshall Weaver, Van Hoff, Kristy Shearer, Stockton and Mike Germait. There were four eight lap heat races, and wins went to Gallaher, Austin Van Hoff, Finn and Brown.
Riley Jeppesen picked up the win in the 15 lap California Sharp Mini Late Model Main Event. He jumped out to the lead at the start ahead of previous winner Jesse Burks. The two ran closely up front. Burks brought out a lap 12 caution flag, handing second to point leader Tim Crews. Jeppesen maintained his lead on the restart and went on to victory ahead of Crews. Burks made a last lap pass on Logan Clay to finish third. Carson Guthrie finished fifth. Jeppesen also won the eight lap heat race.
On June 15th and 16th, Merced Speedway hosts the two day Western States Dwarf Car Nationals. This event brings some of the best drivers on the West Coast to town for some great racing. Saturday's show will also include the Hobby Stocks, California Sharp Mini Late Models and the Super Modifieds. For further information, go to http://www.racemerced.com.