Thomas, Cogburn, Hopkins score big wins at Heart O’ Texas

By Phil Whipple, Staff Writer

ELM MOTT, Texas (May 15, 2021) — Sprint car pilot Marcus Thomas, open-wheel veteran Chris Cogburn and stock car ace Ryan Hopkins all earned wins in their respective divisions, as officials at Heart O' Texas Speedway completed another round of weekly points racing on Friday.

Thomas prevailed in a thrilling 25-lap contest for the visiting Bandit Outlaw Sprint Series (BOSS); Cogburn led all 20 laps of the IMCA Sport Mod A Main, while Hopkins held off George Egbert to claim a hotly-contested Factory Stock feature.

Trevor Cogburn (Junior Limited); Brent Mayfield (Outlaw Street Stock); and Joe O'Bryan (IMCA Stock Car) were also feature winners on a perfect, summer-like evening for racing just north of Waco.

Thomas, of Corsicana, TX, held off a late-race charge from Dalton Steel to prevail in the BOSS feature. Austin Mundie filled out the podium in third, while Colby Estes and Blake Mallory completed the top five. Thirty entries battled for 24 spots, with Mundie, Mallory and Chase Randall winning their heats.

“They gave us those quick warm-up laps before we went green, and the car felt real good,” Thomas told announcer Joe Spillman in Victory Lane. “I knew once the track took some rubber I would have to be in the lead. I kind of forced the issue a little with Chase (Randall), I can't thank my guys enough.”

Finishing sixth through 10th in the BOSS A Main were Dale Wester, Claude Estes III, Jeb Sessums, Gary Floyd and Briley Stone. Five cautions slowed the pace, none for serious incidents. Thomas' margin of victory was just .299 of a second, about the blink of an eye.

Once again the Sprint cars kept fans on the edge of their seats as they hurtled around the high-banked 1/4-mile oval.

Cogburn, of Robinson, triumphed in a splendid battle with Billy Gould Jr. for the top spot all race long. Gould gave it everything he had yet settled for second, while Robert Scrivner wheeled a beautiful new car to third at the line. GW Egbert and Jonathan Beard finished fourth and fifth, respectively.

“I have to thank all of my great sponsors on this car, Donnie Shipp at Wicked Race Cars, just all the folks who helped me get here. A win here at Heart O' Texas is something to savor.”

Finishing sixth through 10th in the IMCA Sport Mod A Main were Garrett Rawls, Trey Votaw, James Hanusch, Brandon Geurin and Pat McGuire. Only one caution slowed the pace at lap six when Sid Kiphen spun his machine in Turn 3 and came to a stop. A solid 19 cars took the green, a sign of good health for the mighty Southern Sport Mods.

Hopkins, of Waco, won his third straight Factory Stock feature with a flawless performance. George Egbert made a late-race charge yet settled for the runner-up position, while Tommy Williams finished third. Shannon Dulock pressured Hopkins early before fading to fourth, while James Schoenrock rounded out the top five.    

“I knew it was going to be a good race with me and Shannon on the front row,” Hopkins said. “I didn't really know who was driving the 70 car there earlier on; I just knew it was time to go. I made a little slip down there in Turn 1 but got lucky, I'll take lucky every time. I'm so glad my wife made it here.”

Finishing sixth through 10th in the Factory Stock A Main were Jeff Blackwood, Michael Guenat, Eric Tomlinson, Shelbi Baker and Justin VanMatre. Only one caution slowed the pace, brought out when Eliot Black slowed at the top of Turn 3 and came to a stop.

Hopkins' margin of victory over Egbert was just under one second. A solid field of 19 cars took the green flag Friday evening.

Heart O' Texas Speedway returns to action on Friday, May 21, when the Lone Star Dwarf Cars make an appearance and Kids will race on bicycles. On Memorial Day weekend, track officials will induct their 12th class into the Heart O' Texas Speedway Hall of Fame as the Red River Modified Tour pays a visit.

You can replay every exciting lap from Friday's races at Heart O' Texas by subscribing to SpeedPass at today. With over 100 races streamed Live in 2021, Race On Texas is the region's most active, comprehensive and inclusive media outlet. Sign up today to catch all of the action.

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