Landers Outlasts Owens in Texas Shootout at LoneStar
KILGORE, TX (March 31, 2012)- Jared Landers of Batesville, AR regained the lead on the final lap and held off Jimmy Owens of Newport, TN for the win on Saturday Night at LoneStar Speedway. Landers earned $10,000 for the victory in the Lucas Oil Late Model Dirt Series High Banks Havoc for his first series win of the season.
For the third consecutive race Owens finished second. Steve Francis of Ashland, KY made a tremendous charge through the field to finish a close third after he started 14th on the grid. He was followed by Jonathan Davenport of Blairsville, GA and Duke Whiseant of Texarkana, AR.
Landers held off Owens for the lead nearly the entire 50-lap race, but with two laps to go a two-lap shootout took place. The only caution of the race came out for seventh-place running Don O'Neal, who stopped in turn four with a flat tire. When the race went green again Owens dove in front of Landers in turn three to take over the lead, the pair came across the start-finish line nearly dead even with Owens holding a slight advantage. As the two raced the final lap, Landers was able to maneuver his car by Owens to beat him to the checkered flag.
In Lucas Oil Victory Lane for the third time in his career, the 2011 series rookie of the year was just glad the race was over. "I didn't know there were two laps to go when the caution came out, then I went too slowly in the turn and I knew Jimmy was going to be right there. Because we battled the whole race, I never got any distance over him at all. He's a heck of a racer and to beat him says a lot about this team," said Landers.
"He (Owens) passed me there in three and I dove down low and got under him on the last lap, I wanted the win, I was either going to win or wreck is how I looked at it. Jimmy races clean and I raced him clean, I think we may have finally got a handle on this Barry Wright Race Car," said Landers, whose Clint Bowyer Motorsports Toyota Camry is powered by a Roush-Yates Engines and sponsored by Crawford Supply, Klotz Synthetic Lubricants, Cometic Gasket, Georgia Boot and Mark Martin Automotive.
Completing the top ten were John Blankenship of Williamson, WV; Earl Pearson Jr. of Jacksonville, FL; Scott Bloomquist of Mooresburg, TN; B.J. Robinson of Shreveport, LA; and Ray Cook of Brasstown, NC.
In preliminary action Jared Landers was the Red Buck Cigar Fast Qualifier among the 28 entrants with a lap of 14.540 seconds. Heat race winners were Jimmy Owens, John Blankenship, Landers, and Jonathan Davenport. Jeff Chanler and Jon Mitchell won B-Mains.
The next Lucas Oil Late Model Dirt Series event will take place on Friday and Saturday, April 13th and 14th at Bill Sawyer's Virginia Motor Speedway in Jamaica, VA. The Commonwealth 100 will pay $25,000 to win. For more information, go to www.vamotorspeedway.com.