TEXARKANA, Arkansas (June 3, 2022) — Veteran short track pilots Dean Abbey, Adam Roy and Michael Smith all earned wins in their respective divisions, as officials hosted the American Crate Late Model series and three weekly support classes on Friday night at 67 Speedway of Texarkana.
Abbey powered to victory in the $2,000-to-win 15-lap A Main for Crate Late Models, Roy prevailed in a hotly-contested tussle for the USRA Limited Modifieds, while Smith was triumphant in the Factory Stock feature. Justin Converse (USRA Tuners) was also a feature winner on a busy night at the oval.
Abbey, of Comanche, Texas, led every lap of his feature and survived a pair of restarts in the process. On lap nine, Brandon Ball flipped his No. B17 machine over, bringing out the Red Flag. Ball was not injured, and Abbey set sail once again on the ensuing restart.
Rob Litton started 11th on the grid, made a strong late-race charge on Abbey yet settled for second, while other Jeffrey filled out the podium in third. Young rising star Wyatt Wilkerson crossed the stripe in fourth, while Kevin Ramey completed the top five.
“Man, it feels great to start the weekend with a win,” Abbey said in Victory Lane. “We had a good car all night. It's been about 15 years since I've been here, and we got a little lucky tonight. Rob (Litton) gave me all I wanted there at the end; I knew he was there and I had to pick up the pace.”
Abbey, Kevin Sitton, Kevin Ramey, Jeffrey Abbey and Jarrett Stuckey all won their respective qualifying heats earlier in the evening.
Roy, of Hooks, Texas capitalized on his brother Aaron's mechanical failure on Friday. Aaron jumped out to lead the first three circuits before falling off the pace and pulling into the infield. Adam survived three restarts (laps 13, 15, 16) and held off Dustin Robnett for top honors.
Troy Keith filled out the podium in third, while Carey Eason and Jake Huckaby rounded out the top five.
“My brother was by far the fastest car out there tonight,” Roy said. “A win is always good, but I wish he could have finished second. I need to thank all of my sponsors from getting me here. I'll be back here next when they run the Sprint car show.”
Smith, of Paris, Texas, started third, dove to the inside of early leader Terry Tussey with just five laps remaining and hung on for top honors. Tussey settled for second, while Chad Herring finished third. Brandon Puryear and Mike Wells finished fourth and fifth, respectively.
Ark-La-Tex regional stalwart Justin Whitehead led the first six laps before suffering a failure.
“This is my first time here in about six years, and my first time in a Factory Stock here,” Smith said in Victory Lane. “I ran a Modified here years ago, and this was sure different. I'm not sure if something broke on his (Whitehead's) car or what, but when he came out of Turn 4 he kind of turned real hard.
“I was there; I had a good run coming off the corner and got into him. It wasn't intentional, I didn't try to hit him but I'll apologize right now. It was a good race.”
Officials at 67 Speedway had a full house on Friday evening, with 84 entries on hand spread across four classes. The American Crate Late Models, with Dustin Daniel now at the helm, drew 30 entries as the cost of open motors has brought increased curb appeal for crate engines in several types of racing.
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By Phil Whipple, RaceOnTexas.com Staff Writer