Drivers Start New Year with Wins; Warner Claims Two Victories

Local driver Nick Warner started the 2009 racing season with multiple wins during the 12th annual New Year’s Day Bash at Anderson Speedway.

A good crowd of fans dressed more for a football game then racing enjoyed sunny skies with temperatures approaching 40 degrees to get their winter racing.

More than 60 teams racing in six different divisions showed up to compete on the first day of 2009.

The regular season at Anderson Speedway starts on March 28 with a 200-lap Enduro race for Thunder Cars.

Warner scored wins in the Front Wheel Drive division features on the oval and figure 8 and was in position to capture the Thunder Car feature when he tangled with Rob Allman while battling for the lead.

In addition to the two feature wins Warner took the checkers first in four heat races in three different divisions. He was only shut out in the Figure-8 division on the day.

Dustin Burge inherited the lead in the Thunder Car feature when front runners Rob Allman and Nick Warner tangled going down the back straight, which sent Allman into the Turn three wall.
The incident ended Allman’s day and Warner was sent to the rear of the field for his involvement.

Early in the race Allman was challenged by Jason Thompson. Thompson got caught behind three lapped cars on the eleventh circuit which allowed Allman to open his lead.
On the next lap Thompson made contact with David Byrd entering the first corner. Bryd and Mike Kirk spun. Officials sent Thompson and Byrd to the rear of the field for the contact in Turn one.

Burge was followed to the checkers by Frankie Oakes and Jeff Herbert.

Nick Warner overcame a crash in the crossover with Tim Smith during a practice session but still went on to capture the Front Wheel Drive Figure 8 feature event.

Warner started on the outside of the second row and challenged early leader Josh Tharp from the start. The caution waved at the start of the second lap when Dennis Faver Sr. made contact with the Turn one wall.

On the restart Warner looked inside of Tharp for several laps before finally making the pass at the start/finish line on the fourth circuit. Tharp brushed the wall and was done for the day.
Warner pulled away for the victory followed by Andy Keller and Chad Sizemore.

In the oval feature Warner started on the outside of the fourth row and used the high groove to fall into line behind Johnny Greer on the first lap and then grabbed the top spot with an outside pass down the back straight.

From that point on Warner was unchallenged with Ronnie Phipps and Cassidy Worden rounding out the top three.

Josh Burton led all 30 laps to capture the Street Stock feature and was chased the entire distance by Rod Phipps. The two front runners lapped the remainder of the field.

Phipps tried to make a move on the inside but was never able to make the pass.

“I knew he would race me clean,” Burton said. “It’s been about three years since I won a race at Anderson Speedway.”

There was plenty of action in the Figure-8 Division feature with Ricky Tharp claiming the victory after he got together with Jeff Swinford with two laps remaining.

Tharp led early in the race and barely missed disaster in the crossover on the 12th circuit which gave Swinford the lead. The two raced hard on lap 18 the two drivers got together entering Turn one.

As the two cars slid through the infield, Tharp took the lead with Swinford falling back to the third spot. Swinford recovered to finish second with Mike Riddle coming home in third.