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PIECE OF CAKE: Moran Wins 24th Annual Birthday Race at Oakshade

His father Donnie did it in 1999, and now Devin Moran has a big slice of Birthday Race cake cut all for himself.

Moran took the lead from Colin Shipley on Lap 10 and never looked back, leading the final 31 circuits around Oakshade Raceway Saturday night en route to Victory Lane in the 24th running of the Birthday Race.

“To win the Birthday Race is pretty cool,” said Moran, of Dresden, OH. “I never get to come up here, but it’s a home-state track. To come out here and win is definitely a lot of fun.”

Shipley (44) racing with Schlenk (91) (Jim DenHamer Photo)

He and father Donnie Moran now join six-time Hell Tour champion Billy Moyer and son Billy Moyer Jr. as the only two father-son duos to win the coveted Summer Nationals event.

“The crowd and the fanbase here are pretty electric, and it’s a lot of fun to come race in front of these guys,” Moran said. “To win it with my dad is pretty badass.”

Moran took the green from third on the starting grid and wasted zero time in his charge to the front, getting around Payton Freeman for second on Lap 2 and setting his sights on leader Shipley, who was nearly two seconds ahead at one point.

When 16-year-old Shipley, of Weston, OH, reached lapped traffic and overshot Turns 1-2 on Lap 10, Moran was ready to pounce in the bottom lane and zoomed by to capture the top spot.

“I was just being patient and letting [Shipley] go as hard as he could,” Moran said. “I knew eventually, he was going to mess-up a little bit. When he did, I slid underneath him and tried to hold on from there.”

But his fight wasn’t done there. Moran encountered a heavy challenge from six-time Oakshade track champion Rusty Schlenk in the closing stages. Schlenk, of McClure, OH, worked his way up through the top-five after starting eighth and came to life in the second half. He pressured Moran heavily after a restart with 13-to-go, then threw a big slide job at him to take the lead for one turn before Moran crossed him back over in Turn 4 to regain the spot.

Moran (9) holding off challenges from Schlenk (91) (Jim DenHamer Photo)

Despite more pressure from the #91 in the final laps, Moran was able to hold on to score the $10,000 check and his fourth career Summer Nationals Feature win.

Schlenk held on for second while Bobby Pierce crossed in third after dropping as low as eighth at one point early on. Payton Freeman bagged his fifth top-five finish of the season with a fourth-place run, and defending track champion Devin Shiels rounded-out the top-five.

UP NEXT

The DIRTcar Summer Nationals Late Models are back in action Sunday, July 17, for the tour debut at Wayne County Speedway in Orrville, OH. If you can’t be there in person, watch every lap live on DIRTVison.

ABBREVIATED RESULTS (view full results)

Feature 40 Laps | 00:24:33.927

  1. 9-Devin Moran[3]; 2. 91-Rusty Schlenk[8]; 3. 32-Bobby Pierce[4]; 4. F1-Payton Freeman[2]; 5. 51S-Devin Shiels[10]; 6. 44S-Colin Shipley[1]; 7. 71DS-Drew Smith[17]; 8. 27H-Ken Hahn[13]; 9. 30-Mark Voigt[21]; 10. 14G-Joe Godsey[7]; 11. 71- Rusty Smith[23]; 12. 1N-Casey Noonan[22]; 13. 77K-Steve Kester[14]; 14. 21-Billy Moyer Jr[5]; 15. 8-Rob Anderzack[12]; 16. 4D-Doug Tye[15]; 17. 75-Dusty Moore[19]; 18. 22-Brad Eitniear[20]; 19. 63-Terry Rushlow[6]; 20. 55-Jeep Van Wormer[18]; 21. 34-Herb Reich[16]; 22. 53-Hillard Miller[9]; 23. R4-Rich Ruff[11]; 24. 14R-Jeff Roth[24]

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