Championships won and lost
PDT Sports Report
Portsmouth Raceway Park wrapped up its 2013 regular season with the last points race of the year Saturday and the final event before The Dirt Track World Championship later this month.
Over 100 drivers were on hand for the event.
Late Model driver R.J. Conley, Modified racer Doug “The Buzzard” Adkins, Limited Late Model wheelman Robbie Lewis and Bomber competitor Jason Spillman all took feature wins. Rod Conley, Todd Robinson, Lewis and Conard Newman all captured track championships.
Twenty-seven drivers were in the house to compete in the Giovanni’s Pizza Late Model Division.
R.J. Conley was fastest in The Wesbanco Time Trials. His father Delmas Conley won the dash. Those two would battle throughout the 25-lap feature.
Delmas jumped out to the early lead from the pole position and led until lap 16 when R.J. took the top spot away. R.J. Conley would hold off his dad to win for the fifth time this season in his 10th PRP start, excluding the Lucas Oil-sanctioned Pepsi 50 River Days Rumble. The three-time track champion’s five wins are the most of any PRP Late Model driver this season.
For Delmas Conley, it was the second-straight top-two finish at PRP for the 71-year-old Hall of Famer.
While R.J. and Delmas battled for Saturday night’s win, Rod Conley turned in yet another solid performance en route to winning his very first PRP track championship. Rod, who is R.J.’s brother and Delmas’ son, posted a fifth-place finish giving him 12 top 5 finishes in 15 starts. Rod started every feature this year and finished in the top 10 in all of them but one.
Nick Bocook concluded a stellar season with a third place finish in the race. The Wheelersburg native finished second in the final points.
The R.W. Rental and Supply Modified race went down to the end as far as the championship chase was concerned. The evening began with three drivers mathematically alive to win the 2013 title, but Todd Robinson had a 40-point lead over Adam Jordan and a seemingly comfortable 85-point lead over Doug Adkins. With a five-point difference between each position on the track, Jordan would’ve had to have finished nine places ahead of Robinson to have won, and Adkins would’ve had to have placed 18 spots above Robinson to have taken the title.
The latter nearly happened. Adkins led every single lap of a feature that Jordan was unable to make. Robinson ran second for the first 13 laps before spinning. He was sent to the back and had a tough time working his way up through the field. He wound up finishing 17th and holding on to win the championship by five point, which was the closest of all championship battles this season.
The PRP title was the first for Todd Robinson. He concluded the year with five victories and 10 top 5 finishes in 14 starts.
The tightest points battle entering the night appeared to be in the O’Reilly Auto Parts Limited Late Model Division. Evyian Terry had a 15-point lead over Robbie Lewis. In order for Lewis to win the championship, he had to finish at least three spots ahead of Terry. That would’ve have had them tying but Lewis controlled the tiebreak by having the most wins.
Lewis dominated the feature leading every lap. Terry meanwhile had nothing but bad luck. He got into the wall on the first lap, which seemingly messed up his steering. Terry dropped out of the race in the final laps and wound up finishing 14th. Lewis won the title by 50 points.
For Lewis, it’s his second consecutive Limited Late Model title. He’s actually won three straight PRP track championships, as he was the Bomber champ in 2011.
This year’s champion in the M & M Inflatables Bomber division was already decided before the night began. Conard Newman clinched his very first PRP title a couple of weeks ago and on Saturday finished second to Jason Spillman in the A-Main.
The win was Spillman’s third of the year. Newman finished the season with five victories. He finished in the Top 5 in all 14 Bomber features throughout the season.
PRP’s next race will be The Dirt Track World Championship Oct. 17th, 18th, and 19th. The weekend will be highlighted by a $50,000-to-win, 100-lap Late Model feature that will be the season finale for the Lucas Oil Late Model Series. Modifieds will also be on the card racing for $3,000 to win.
Top Finishers from Saturday, Sept. 28th
Late Model A-Main – R.J. Conley, Delmas Conley, Nick Bocook, Josh Bocook, Rod Conley
Modified A-Main – Doug Adkins, Keith Smith, Steve Clemmons, Ervin Vance, Brian Whiteman
Limited Late Model A-Main – Robbie Lewis, Matt Melvin, Duane Pick, Todd Galloway, Cameron Logan
Bomber A-Main – Jason Spillman, Conard Newman, Jeremie Bretz, Cole Cooper, Derek Spencer
Top Finisher in Wesbanco Points Standings
Late Models – Rod Conley, Nick Bocook, Delmas Conley, R.J. Conley, Ben Adkins
Modifieds – Todd Robinson, Doug Adkins, Adam Jordan, Luke Jordan, Jimmy Lennex
Limited Late Models – Robbie Lewis, Evyian Terry, John Melvin, Matt Melvin, Joe Whitt
Bombers – Conard Newman, Jason Spillman, Zack Pendleton, Brett Carey, Shannon Stephens
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