Shackleford Gets Outlaw Win; Layne, Cullen, Tharp Score Victories
Knightstown driver Jeff Shackelford took advantage of a slip by leader John Hargraves on a restart with 17 laps remaining and went on to capture the International Outlaw Figure 8 season opener.

Shackelford was running fifth after with 20 laps remaining Saturday at Anderson Speedway when problems beset the race leaders. First leader Doug Grieg slowed suddenly on a restart on lap 32 and then Chris Green broke the right front suspension entering turn three on the restart.

Gary Bedell took the lead at the start and led the first 14 laps when he got caught behind lapped traffic, Grieg was able to grab the lead with an inside pass entering turn three.

Fast qualifier Rich Fenwick was knocked from contention on lap six when Charlie Hargraves’ engine let go on the crossover straight. Hargraves made contact with the turn three wall collecting Jason Pitts, Fenwick and Bruce McFall. McFall was the only driver able to continue.

At the finish it was Shackelford, John Hargraves and Bedell the only cars on the lead lap.

“I just tried to be patient,” Shackelford said following the win. “Just let the leaders wear themselves out.

Muncie’s Derrick Layne took the lead in the Street Stock feature on lap 15 when leader Larry Green tangled with second place running Ronnie Rose in turn one. Greene spun to the bottom of the track which collected Rose and allowed Layne to take the high line and grab the point.

For the next 25 laps Layne was chased by Rob Allman and fast qualifier Rich Boyer but was able to pull away over the final ten laps to win by 1.3 seconds. Boyer several times near the halfway point attempted to use the high groove, but was unable to find the traction to complete the pass.

Layne was followed by Allman, Boyer, Josh Myers and Jacob McElfresh. Boyer, Allman made their way to the front of the field after starting in the next to last row for the feature event.

“Did a lot of work on this car over the winter and its paying off,” said the race winner.

Shawn Cullen prevailed in a side by side battle with Rod Phipps to earn the opening WMDH Thunder Car feature. The two veteran drivers battled several laps for the lead position. Cullen first took the top spot by a fender on lap five, that was reduced to a wheel one lap later. Finally on lap 8 Cullen was able to clear Phipps to grab the lead.

Nick Warner grabbed the third position on lap 13 with an outside pass of Sam Folsom. Folsom was later passed on the inside on consecutive laps by fast qualifier Rob Wyman Sr. and Hannah Lundy.

Cullen took the checkers by .404 seconds over Phipps followed by Warner, Wyman and Lundy.

“Rod (Phipps) always races clean,” Cullen said of the side by side racing. “Wanted to put on a good show for the fans.”

Rickie Tharp survived two double-file restarts to hold off defending Anderson Speedway Front Wheel Drive Figure-8 champion to capture the IOFS front wheel drive feature.
Tharp was able to pull away from Warner on the restarts and was never challenged for the victory. Josh Tharp came home third after battling Bill Leisure for the position for the entire 20 laps with Elliott McKinney coming home in fifth.

Donnie Ellis Jr. moved into the third spot halfway through the event, but then lost a right front tire on lap 14.