In a battle which lasted all race long, it’d be Gord Shepherd holding off Travis Hallyburton to pick up the feature victory on Saturday night at Sunset Speedway.
Travis Hallyburton started pole behind the wheel of the No. 39 HILLSDALE SERVICE CENTER, KNIGHTWORKS Design Late Model after setting a quick time of 15.060 seconds in time trials. Gord Shepherd (15.062) qualified second, followed by Taylor Holdaway (15.116), Sean Cronan (15.157) and Scott Wylie (15.210). Thayne Hallyburton qualified sixth, followed by Billy Zardo, Britney Gresel, Paul Maltese and Nick Goetz
Tom Walters qualified 11th, followed by Jordan Latimer, Lane Zardo, Ryan Kimball, Kyle Passer, Al Inglis, Danny Benedict, Chris Morrow, Mike Wilkinson, Dwight Brown, Mark Gordon, Justin Holmes and Ryan Semple.
The green flag saw a battle for the lead between Shepherd and Travis Hallyburton, with Shepherd putting the No. 10s PROGRESSIVE WASTE SOLUTIONS, THE DOCK GUY, COOKSTOWN AUTO CENTRE, TORBRAM ELECTRICAL SUPPLY, HAMEL MASONRY, HWY 400 TRANSMISSION, SEASONED PAINTING, NORTHWAY TRUCK STOP, FOX’S BAKERY AND DELI, KREUGER ELECTRIC, TSS TOP SHOPS, DESJARDANS Late Model out front ahead of Hallyburton and Cronan as Thayne Hallyburton battled Holdaway for fifth. The caution then flew, as a result of Passer spinning in turn two.
Another restart, another job well done for Shepherd as he resumed leading ahead of Hallyburton and Wylie as Holdaway and Cronan battled for fourth. The caution then flew once again, though, as Wilkinson spun in turn two.
The restart saw a battle for the lead between Shepherd and Hallyburton, while Wylie ran third ahead of Holdaway and Thayne Hallyburton’s battle for fourth. Shepherd got the lead on Lap 7 ahead of Travis Hallyburton and Wylie, while Thayne and Holdaway continued to battle for fourth. Holdaway got the spot on Lap 9 ahead of Thayne, Cronan, Billy Zardo and Gresel as Maltese and Lane Zardo battled for ninth.
Behind them, Kimball and Goetz battled for 11th ahead of Morrow, Brown and Walters. Lane Zardo was then able to clear Maltese for ninth at Lap 13, while Kimball and Goetz continued to run side-by-side ahead of Morrow, Brown and Walters. Inglis was then able to move into 16th ahead of Gordon and Wilkinson. Zardo then went to make the move underneath Gresel for eighth, though dove into deep, got loose and went around for the spin.
Wylie didn’t go on the restart, backing up the field which resulted in Morrow going around for the spin in turn two.
The second restart went cleanly with Shepherd grabbing the advantage ahead of Travis Hallyburton as Wylie and Holdaway battled for third. Holdaway got the spot on Lap 20 ahead of Wylie, Thayne Hallyburton, Cronan and Billy Zardo as Maltese and Gresel battled for eighth.
Goetz ran 10th at the time ahead of Kimball, Walters and Lane Zardo. Lane then got alongside Walters for 12th at Lap 24, completing the pass a lap later. However, Lane’s good fortune didn’t last long as he’d slow with a problem two laps later.
Meanwhile, Gresel would get eighth ahead of Maltese at Lap 27, as Cronan got alongside Thayne Hallyburton for fifth. Goetz then got alongside Maltese for ninth at Lap 30 as Kimball ran 11th ahead of Inglis and Morrow. Morrow then got alongside Inglis for 12th at Lap 31, while Goetz cleared Maltese for ninth. Goetz continued moving to the front, getting alongside Gresel for eighth at Lap 32. With two laps to go, Cronan was finally able to clear Thayne for fifth.
At the front of the field, Gord Shepherd led the rest of the way en route to picking up the win ahead of Travis Hallyburton, Taylor Holdaway, Scott Wylie and Sean Cronan. Thayne Hallyburton finished sixth, followed by Billy Zardo, Nick Goetz, Brittney Gresel and Paul Maltese.
Ryan Kimball finished 11th, followed by Chris Morrow, Al Inglis, Mark Gordon, Justin Holmes, Tom Walters, Danny Benedict, Dwight Brown, Lane Zardo and Mike Wilkinson.