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UMP DIRTcar Racing National Points Update

Grayville,IL — Sept. 25, 2009 – Jason Feger of Bloomington, Ill. (Super Late Models) and Gary Cook Jr. of Deer Creek, Ill. (Modifieds) remained on top of the UMP DIRTcar Racing national points standings released on Thursday, but their advantages shrank slightly heading into the critical final three weeks of the circuit’s 2009 points season.

With two weekends of weekly points racing and the Oct. 9-10 UMP DIRTcar Racing Nationals at Eldora Speedway in Rossburg, Ohio, remaining for Super Late Model and Modified competitors, Feger holds a seven-point edge (2,944-2,937) over two-time defending national champion Dennis Erb Jr. of Carpentersville, Ill., while Cook has a more comfortable 68-point advantage (2,410-2,342) over teenager Devin Gilpin of Columbus, Ind.

Feger, 31, lost three points from his lead after the MARS DIRTcar Series/UMP DIRTcar ‘USA World 50′ on Sept. 18 at Paducah (Ky.) International Raceway. He finished fifth in the event – one spot behind Erb, whose finish gained him points because it was one of his 40 best points nights of the season.

The two Super Late Model championship contenders put on a show for Paducah’s fans. After Feger charged through the field following an early pit stop to change a flat tire that had knocked him out of second place, he spent the race’s final 15 laps battling for fourth with Erb.

Feger, who is seeking his first-ever UMP DIRTcar national crown, and Erb were set to continue their head-to-head showdown for the championship the next two nights in World of Outlaws Late Model Series events co-sanctioned by UMP DIRTcar, but Mother Nature had other ideas. Saturday’s Pepsi Nationals at I-55 Raceway in Pevely, Mo., and Sunday’s Best Western Illinois Fall Nationals at La Salle (Ill.) Speedway were rained out, keeping Feger and Erb off the track.

Cook, meanwhile, won his 22nd UMP DIRTcar-sanctioned Modified feature of the season during the ‘Big Dawg 100′ preliminary program on Sept. 18 at Twin Cities Raceway Park in Vernon, Ind., but his points lead fell from 73 to 68 points over Gilpin even though the Hoosier State driver followed Cook across the finish line as the runner-up in the same race. With the UMP DIRTcar Modified standings determined using drivers’ best 30 points nights of the season, Cook replaced a low total of 75 points with a 83-point take at Twin Cities (+8 points) while Gilpin replaced a low evening of 65 points with his 78-point runner-up finish (+13 points). They gained no points in the Sept. 19 ‘Big Dawg 100′ at Twin Cities, with Cook finishing 14th and Gilpin placing 16th.

Both Cook, 33, and Gilpin, who turns 19 on Sept. 29, are chasing their first career UMP DIRTcar national Modified championships.

In an interesting side note to the points race, Cook and his Scott’s Extreme Motorsports team fielded a second car at Twin Cities for Dan Hamstra of Wheatland, Ind., who won the 2006 UMP DIRTcar national Modified championship despite missing the last few weeks of the season after suffering serious injuries in a highway accident. Hamstra, who turns 53 on Oct. 18, was inactive from racing for the past three years – save an abbreviated comeback attempt last year – while recovering from his injuries until Cook offered him a chance to get behind the wheel again earlier this month.

After debuting two weeks ago in an event at Kankakee (Ill.) County Speedway, Hamstra felt he was ready to tackle the two-day ‘Big Dawg’ weekend at Twin Cities as a teammate to his close friend. Hamstra finished 10th in Friday night’s preliminary feature and scored a 12th-place finish in the ‘Big Dawg’ headliner.

The top spot in the Pro Late Model national points standings flipped for the second straight week, with defending champion Tait Davenport of West Paducah, Ky., regaining command from Bobby Dauderman of Alhambra, Ill. Davenport turned an 11-point deficit into an eight-point lead, moving him closer to a second consecutive title.

Other UMP DIRTcar national points leaders through Sept. 21 included Jimmy Cummins of Waterloo, Ill. (Sportsman), Chad Boone of Owensboro, Ky. (Limited Modifieds), Rick Thomas of Koehler, Ill. (Stock Cars), Bill May of Muskegon, Mich. (Factory Stocks) and Bob Zbinden of Alhambra, Ill. (Sport Compacts).

Log on to www.dirtcar.com for more information on UMP DIRTcar Racing and to view complete points standings for all divisions.

UMP DIRTcar Racing National Points Standings (as of Sept. 21, 2009):

Super Late Models (driver/points/races counted):

1. Jason Feger 2944 40
2. Dennis Erb Jr. 2937 40
3. Rusty Schlenk 2849 40
4. Randy Korte 2741 40
5. Steve Sheppard Jr. 2688 40
6. Ryan Unzicker 2649 40
7. Kevin Weaver 2561 40
8. Jon Henry 2531 40
9. Michael Kloos 2455 40
10. Brandon Sheppard 2454 40
11. Brian Ruhlman 2414 40
12. Frankie Heckenast 2412 40
13. Eric Smith 2386 40
14. Mike Hammerle 2384 40
15. Ed Dixon 2249 40
16. Shannon Babb 2170 37
17. Joe Harlan 2148 40
18. Kyle Logue 2128 40
19. Daren Friedman 2117 39
20. Richie Hedrick 2071 40

Modifieds (driver/points/races counted):

1. Gary Cook Jr. 2410 30
2. Devin Gilpin 2342 30
3. Jeff Leka 2338 30
4. John McCaul 2285.5 30
5. Randle Sweeney 2279 30
6. Mike Spatola 2271 30
7. Jeff Babcock 2248 30
8. Kent Robinson 2248 30
9. Todd Sherman 2240 30
10. Tim Hancock 2234 30
11. Lance Dehm 2190 30
12. Nick Allen 2179 30
13. Marc Kurth 2163 30
14. Clayton Miller 2142 30
15. Marty O’Neal 2128 30
16. Doug Adkins 2126 30
17. Vance Wilson 2117 30
18. Clint DeMoss 2094 30
19. Jeremy Nichols 2074 30
20. Dean Hoffman 2005 30

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

1. Tait Davenport 2206 30
2. Bobby Dauderman 2198 30
3. Dustin Griffin 2109 30
4. Nick Bauman 2084 30
5. Caleb Ashby 2023 30
6. Daniel Heck 1891 30
7. Matt Liner 1890 30
8. Bobby Martintoni 1797 30
9. Rylan Dagg 1756 30
10. Cary King 1726 30

Sportsman (driver/points/races counted):

1. Jimmy Cummins 1848 25
2. Clayton Perry 1832 25
3. Russell Eilers 1798 25
4. Alan Magner 1677 25
5. Brian Williams 1661 25
6. Greg Kimmons 1653 25
7. Troy Clark 1600 25
8. Brad Cummings 1514 25
9. Christy Georges 1494 25
10. Greg Amick 1494 25

Limited Modifieds (driver/points/races counted):

1. Chad Boone 1806 25
2. Jonathan Smith 1735 25
3. Scotty Oliver 1549 25
4. Jansen Morris 1501 25
5. Jeff Brooks 1473 25
6. John Paul Talkington 1348 24
7. Kyle Stolzer 1307 20
8. Shelli O’Bryan 1298 25
9. Chad Sweeney 1291 25
10. Josh Tyler 1280 25

Stock Cars (driver/points/races counted):

1. Rick Thomas 1954 25
2. David Hurst 1884 25
3. Steve Ewing 1872 25
4. Joe Funk 1846 25
5. Stacy Tretter 1806 25
6. Dave Mannise 1787 25
7. Ron Wadforth 1742 25
8. Mike Welch 1731 25
9. Larry Russell Jr. 1728 25
10. Jeff Houchens 1717 24

Factory Stocks (driver/points/races counted):

1. Bill May 1777 25
2. Justin Schuler 1676 25
3. Dean Rake 1625 25
4. Dan Wilson 1614 25
5. Paul Tenbrink 1526 25
6. Loren Peterson 1503 25
7. Tony Weinrick 1438 25
8. Dennis Ponder 1409 22
9. Jim Scout 1351 20
10. Chuck Smith 1280 25

Sport Compacts (driver/points/races counted):

1. Bob Zbinden 2006 25
2. Joe Reed 1984 25
3. Eric Wisher 1788 25
4. Michael Rittenberry 1785 25
5. C.J. Rector 1713 25
6. Richard Ashby 1681 25
7. Todd Meyer 1635 25
8. Mark Farber 1618 25
9. Eric Wilson 1596 25
10. Justin Suhre 1584 25