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DIRTcar UMP Weekly Points Update: Unzicker (Late Models) & Sweeney (UMP Mods) Top National Standings Through Week 16

CONCORD, NC – May 19, 2011 – Ryan Unzicker of El Paso, Ill. (Late Models) and Randle Sweeney of Clifty, Ky. (UMP Modifieds) sit atop the DIRTcar UMP national points standings after Week 16 of the circuit’s 2011 season.

Unzicker, 28, did not compete in a DIRTcar-sanctioned event last weekend due to inclement weather, but he maintained the Late Model national points lead he’s held throughout the spring. He has a 22-point edge over Dewayne Kiefer of St. Genevieve, Mo., and a 26-point advantage over Brandon Thirlby of Traverse City, Mich., in events completed through May 15.

A rising Midwestern star, Unzicker is seeking his first-ever UMP national title. He has 12 counted races (the Late Model standings will be determined using drivers’ best 35 finishes/points nights) and three feature wins in 2011, including two at Peoria (Ill.) Speedway and one at Macon (Ill.) Speedway.

Kiefer closed the gap slightly on Unzicker last weekend after scoring his first victory of the season on May 13 at Tri-City Speedway in Pontoon Beach, Ill. He also finished seventh on May 14 at Thunderbird Speedway in Muskogee, Okla.

Defending DIRTcar UMP Late Model champion Rusty Schlenk of Jackson, Mich., has gotten off to a slow start in 2011 but is beginning to pick up steam. While he did not log a start last weekend, he sits 11th in the national points standings after finishing no worse than second in his last four starts – wins on April 30 at I-96 Speedway in Lake Odessa, Mich., and May 6 at Attica (Ohio) Raceway Park, and runner-up placings on April 29 at Attica and May 7 at Oakshade Raceway in Wauseon, Ohio.

The veteran Sweeney, meanwhile, continued his pursuit of a career-first UMP Modified national championship with a pair of top-five finishes last weekend. He placed second on May 15 at Clarksville (Tenn.) Speedway and fifth on May 14 at Cedar Ridge Speedway in Morgantown, Ky., keeping him atop the open-wheel division’s national rankings by 18 points over Jeff Mathews of Seffner, Fla.

Sweeney’s 14 counted races (the UMP Modified standings are computed using drivers’ best 25 finishes/points nights) are highlighted by three feature wins, while Mathews leads all drivers to date with nine A-Main triumphs in 2011. Six of Mathews’s checkered flags have come at Volusia Speedway Park in Barberville, Fla.

Other national points leaders include Clayton Miller of Elkton, Ky., who has won seven times in 11 starts in the Pro Late Model division at Clarksville Speedway; Troy Clark of North Vernon, Ind. (Sportsman); Texan Johnny Holden (Limited Modifieds); Mike Hodges of Cunningham, Tenn. (Stock Cars); Floridian Tom Hughes (Factory Stocks); and Bradley McGhee of Hopkinsville, Ky (Sport Compacts).

Log on to www.DirtCar.com for more information on DIRTcar Racing’s UMP circuit and to view complete points standings for all divisions, including the current State points rankings.

New for 2011, the weekly DIRTcar UMP points update is powered by www.MotorStats.com. DIRTcar’s affiliation with the Durham, N.C.-based Web site is providing fans and competitors a more timely and detailed look at the points standings. National and State points standings for all divisions are typically updated by Thursday each week, and new features allow visitors to click on each driver’s name to see a complete race-by-race review of their finishes to date.

DIRTcar Racing UMP National Points Standings (as of May 15, 2011):

Late Models (rank/driver/races/points):

1. Ryan Unzicker 12 763

2. Dewayne Kiefer 15 741

3. Brandon Thirlby 15 737

4. Michael Kloos 11 681

5. Jeff Walston 13 677

6. Mike Hammerle 13 627

7. Brandon Sheppard 12 615

8. Mike Spatola III 10 588

9. Jon Henry 9 571

10. Nick Lyons 10 529

11. Rusty Schlenk 8 527

12. Jason Feger 9 522

13. Randy Korte 8 509

14. Terry English 8 504

15. Charles Zimmerman 10 500

16. Caleb Ashby 9 499

17. Mike Schulte 10 493

18. Frankie Martin 9 481

19. Terry Phillips 7 459

20. Dillan White 9 445

UMP Modifieds (rank/driver/races/points):

1. Randle Sweeney 14 869

2. Jeff Mathews 13 851

3. Jamie Lomax 13 731

4. Mike Harrison 11 726

5. Dustin Isom 12 710

6. Clayton Miller 12 709

7. Tim Hancock 11 667

8. Scott Weber 11 653

9. Trent Young 11 647

10. Dave Wietholder 13 646

11. Brett Korves 13 640

12. Brian Bielong 11 634

13. Chad Evans 13 611

14. Kelby Simmons 15 601

15. Nick Allen 9 595

16. Troy Foulger 10 586

17. Michael Long 9 578

18. Ryan Thomas 10 574

19. Brian Lynn 9 568

19. Gabe Menser 11 568

Pro Late Models (rank/driver/races/points):

1. Clayton Miller 10 654

2. Credence Mott 11 639

3. Mark Oller 9 588

4. Daniel Heck 11 548

5. Brent Lewis 11 536

6. Gil Smith 9 505

7. Bobby Martintoni 9 492

8. Tait Davenport 8 484

9. Nick Bauman 7 458

10. Evan Taylor 10 452

Sportsman (rank/driver/races/points):

1. Troy Clark 11 668

2. Nick Macklin 8 560

3. Dave Crawley Jr. 8 529

4. Jeremy Hines 8 496

5. Blaise Hetznecker 8 420

6. Dan Flessner 6 390

7. Aaron Barsness 6 380

8. Corey Holley 6 378

9. Robbie Eilers 7 371

10. Danny Vogel Jr. 5 355

Limited Modifieds (rank/driver/races/points):

1. Johnny Holden 10 594

2. John Wyble 10 591

3. Howard Willis 7 490

4. Jeff Lawson 9 432

5. Kamron Campbell 7 392

6. Haley Westerfield 8 390

7. Clay Settles 8 372

8. Kevin Dupont 6 340

9. Tim Crites 8 332

10. Kent Saucier 6 317

Stock Cars (rank/driver/races/points):

1. Mike Hodges 10 735

2. Nate Zimmer 10 694

3. Joeseph Hamm 10 617

4. Fred Perry Jr. 9 532

5. Joe Belkey II 8 490

6. Mick Kulak 8 476

7. Dustin Rollins 10 474

8. Phillip Brown 8 458

9. Bubba Christian 8 456

10. Scott Semplonius 7 423

Factory Stocks (rank/driver/races/points):

1. Tom Hughes 8 530

2. Fred Traxler 8 453

3. Mike Epplett 8 434

4. Alan Peacock 6 420

5. Donnie Birdwell 7 406

6. Jeff Buss 6 403

7. Rob Sternberg 6 400

8. Jake Hewitt 7 386

9. Brian Schrunk 8 377

10. Alan Lane 8 370

Sport Compacts (rank/driver/races/points):

1. Bradley McGhee 13 825

2. Michael Rittenberry 11 713

3. Casey Feaster 11 673

4. Logan Brown 10 621

5. Kyle Mcmahon 9 537

6. Trevor Isaak 9 532

7. Jordan Suhre 8 518

8. Kenny Butterfield 7 516

9. Hubert Gibbs 11 501

10. Derrick Tillman 9 481

10. Jacob Rexing 8 481