Scott Bloomquist turned in yet another dominant performance Saturday night at Portsmouth Raceway Park winning the feature, his heat, posting fast time, and setting a new track record.
The Lucas Oil Series-sanctioned Independence 60 presented by R.W. Rental and Supplies brought in Late Model talent from near and far, but Bloomquist was untouchable from the start. The Mooresburg, TN driver and defending winner of the Dirt Track World Championship captured his third consecutive Lucas Oil Series victory at PRP.
Also on Saturday’s card at Portsmouth Raceway Park were the R.W. Rental and Supplies Modifieds and the O’Reilly Auto Parts Limited Lates. Ervin Vance outdueled Jeremy Rayburn in a great race to take to the checkers in the Modifieds, while Limited Late Model driver Joe Whitt returned to winner’s circle at PRP for the first time in 12 years.
This annual Fourth of July Weekend race in Portsmouth brought out a great crowd of fans, and those who were pulling for Bloomquist walked away all smiles.
Bloomquist set quick time during time trials and in doing so established a new track record of 14.129 eclipsing Jackie Boggs’ mark of 14.15 which had stood for five years. Bloomquist started on the pole and led every lap of his heat. He later would start on the pole of the Independence 60 and lead every lap of that event.
Jared Landers climbed from seventh to place second. Steve Francis was third. Tim McCreadie finished fourth, and former PRP track champ Rod Conley rounded out the top five. Brandon Sheppard moved from 14th to sixth using the highest groove imaginable throughout much of the race. Eddie Carrier, Jr., Jonathan Davenport, Don O’Neal, and Jimmy Owens made up the rest of the top 10.
The Modified A-Main proved to be one of the more competitive races of the evening, as Beaver, KY’s Ervin Vance and Lucasville’s Jeremy Rayburn battled hard over the first 14 laps. Jeremy Rayburn, driving his father Tim’s No. 31 car, led the first 13 laps before Vance finally got around him to take the lead.
The two went at it side by side for much of the feature but never touched despite the close and intense racing.
Justin Cooper, Tony DeHart, and Jody Pucket made up the rest of the top 5 with David McWilliams, Jimmy Lennex, Jeremy Hayes, Brian Skaggs, and Drew Bender rounding out the top 10.
Hayes was the race’s Markwest Ranger Pipeline Hard Charger moving up six positions.
In the Limited Late Model A-Main, Joe Whitt led from flag to flag. Whitt fended off Cameron Logan to take the win. Duane Pick, John Melvin, Evyian Terry, Kevin Terry, Randy
Ross, Ellis Cook, Vincent Bender, and Billy Staker made up the rest of the top 10.
Whitt became the fourth different Limited Late Model feature winner in four races.
Portsmouth Raceway Park will be back in action on Saturday, July 9th. It will be Vallery Chevrolet Kids’ Night featuring Giovanni’s Pizza Late Models, R.W. Rental and Supplies Modifieds, O’Reilly Auto Parts Limited Lates, M & M Inflatables Bombers, and Sport Mods. Children ages 12 and under will receive free general admission. Gates will open at 4 p.m. with racing at approximately 7:30.