Webster Outlasts Stroebel for Intermountain Outlaw Winadmin
Brilliant sunshine beat down on a packed pit area as Meridian Speedway’s 69th season of racing commenced with the ATS Inland Season Opener. The Intermountain Outlaw Modifieds and PitStopUSA.com NASCAR Whelen All-American Series Modifieds double headlined the Saturday, April 13, event, while the Project Filter Pro-4s, Factory Motor Parts Mini Stocks, Teleperformance Street Stocks, and Big Daddy’s Barbecue Hornets provided race fans with a full night of racing thrills and spills.
Mike Davis and Quentin Duncan lead a pack of seventeen PitStopUSA.com NASCAR Whelen All-American Series Modified to green on their 35 lap PitStopUSA.com Shootout feature. Davis piloted his Pegasus Towing, Jesey’s Labs modified to the lap one lead while the pack jockeyed for position behind him. Veterans Casey Tillman and Shelby Stroebel made the most of the early race chaos as they, together with Wyatt King, sliced their way forward.
After ten laps of close quarters racing something had to give, and it was Mark Floyd and Dennis Brodigan who came together in turn four, where a huge pile up ensued. When the smoke cleared six machines sat in a heap, with Rookie of the Year contenders Floyd, Tim Wallace, and Brandon Kelly with terminal damage.
The race restarted with Tillman out front, followed by King and Stroebel. Stroebel dispatched King to put his racer in the runner up spot and immediately set to stalking Tillman. Tillman’s best defense was speed, and with a string of qualifying-quick laps he pulled into a dense pack of traffic.
Stroebel saw his opportunity and ducked high and low in an effort to pin Tillman behind a slower competitor and take the top spot on the Pepsi-Cola scoreboard. But Tillman put on a masterful display of traffic management through the race’s last half to wheel his modified across the Caleb’s Chop Shop Winner’s Circle first.
Fourteen fast Intermountain Outlaw Modifieds crowded the quarter-mile for the final ATS Inland Season Opening feature. On the green Meridian, Idaho’s Chris Fenton parlayed his outside front row starting spot into the early lead. But all was not well up front as contact sent Fenton’s Pepsi-Cola machine spinning in front of the field. Brakes locked and modifieds scattered, but somehow the tightly bunched pack avoided contact with Fenton.
The restart saw Salt Lake City, Utah racer Zach Webster inherit the lead with heavy hitters Tim Elam and Shelby Stroebel in his rearview mirror. Through a bevy of early cautions Webster kept his Young Automotive Group, Dura-Create Inc. modified out front with Stroebel second.
A lap ten restart saw Webster get a good jump on Stroebel while Zach Telford moved his Builders First Source machine into third. With no cautions to keep the field bunched up Webster soon rocketed into lapped traffic, which allowed Stroebel to close. By the race’s halfway point Stroebel was locked on Webster’s bumper as they dueled mono-a-mono for the lead.
The halfway point also marked the first appearance of rain on the quarter-mile oval. In the minutes between a lap 26 caution and the corresponding restart the sprinkle turned into a driving downpour, and the race was called three laps later with Webster taking the division’s first feature win.
With the ATS Inland Season Opener settled Meridian Speedway turns its attention to this Saturday, April 20, and the Sprintcar Opener. The Speed Tour Regional Sprint Car Series, Pepsi Crate Cars and Idaho Sprintcar and Roadster League, Coors Super Stocks, Domino’s Legends, Factory Motor Parts Mini Stocks, and Firehouse Pub and Grill Bombers kick off their seasons on $2 Keystone Light Night at the quarter-mile asphalt oval. General admission to this celebration of speed is just $12 for adults, $10 for seniors and military members, and $7 for kids 7-11. Gates open at 4:45 p.m. with racing at 6:45 p.m. Stay up to speed with your favorite drivers by visiting www.meridianspeedway.com and don’t forget to text ‘meridianspeed‘ to 84483 to receive exclusive updates from the Concrete Jungle. We’ll see you this Saturday, April 20, for the Sprintcar Opener on $2 Keystone Light Night at your NASCAR Home Track, Meridian Speedway.