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602 Late Models Punch Tickets for World Short Track Championship Feature

by Timothy Zackery

The Chevy Performance 602 Late Models didn’t fail to bring thrills on the first day of the Drydene World Short Track Championship with multiple wrecks as 58 drivers filled out six heat races biding for a Top-3 spot and an automatic transfer to the 25 lap Championship Feature on Saturday night.

The heats started with fast qualifier John Ruggiero Jr punching his ticket to the Feature, winning his heat unchallenged. Michael Smith and Justin Mintz took the other two transfer spots while Lee Cooper came home fourth and will have to make his way into the Feature via the Last Chance Showdowns.

Heat two winner Brian Mullis secured his spot in the Feature along with Rod Tucker and Chris Joyce. 13-year-old Carson Ruark was in the final transfer spot, but a caution on lap four closed the gap and he was unable to seal the deal. Ruark will have to try again on Saturday.

In the third heat Colton Trouille started inside second row and quickly found his way to the front to take the victory. A caution on lap five changed the transferring racers as Chuckie Duncan came from fifth to second in one lap, racing his way into the Feature along with Royce Bray, who took the final transfer spot.

Heat number four had a couple of minor cautions, and when the dust settled Austin Mintz took the victory followed by Seth Wimpey and Mark Wilbanks. Colby Cannon ran fourth but with only three transferring he will have to try again tomorrow to make his way into the Feature.

Heat five for the 602s will be the most talked about race tonight as Booger Brooks rolled his car in between turns one and two, turning it over multiple times. He was running second at the time and would likely have transferred to the Feature. Devon Morgan went on to win, followed by John Price and BooMan Galloway.

The last heat of the night for the 602s was caution-free. Polesitter Dale Timms led flag to flag, winning while Blake Craft and Brandon Dockery took the final two transfer spots.

The Chevy Performance 602 Late Models will continue their battle tomorrow with Last Chance Showdowns and the Championship Feature.

CHEVROLET PERFORMANCE 602 LATE MODEL RESULTS:

Qualifying Flight-A  – 1. 44-John Ruggiero, 16.937; 2. 67-Bryan Mullis, 17.124; 3. 12-Michael Smith, 17.133; 4. 22B-Chase McCormick, 17.151; 5. 19-Jeremy Mayfield, 17.152; 6. O5-Carson Ruark, 17.189; 7. 14R-Jeff Robinson, 17.245; 8. 83-Rod Tucker, 17.293; 9. 54-Justin Mintz, 17.303; 10. 17-Chris Joyce, 17.386; 11. 77-Blake Dill, 17.4; 12. 45-Colt Smith, 17.438; 13. 16W-Nathan Walker, 17.486; 14. 35-Dillon Daves, 17.594; 15. 71C-Lee Cooper, 17.744; 16. 727-Baillie Lowe, 17.797; 17. 104-Chris Cape, 17.943; 18. 22-Randy Pfaff, 18.982; 19. 149-Seth Speed, 26.721; DQ. 21S-JD Strader, 18.165

Qualifying Flight-B – 1. 1-Goose Calvert, 17.014; 2. 18-Austin Mintz, 17.102; 3. 21B-Royce Bray, 17.211; 4. 24-Seth Wimpey, 17.25; 5. 615-Colton Trouille, 17.295; 6. 6W-Mark Wilbanks, 17.392; 7. 5-Robbie Gibson, 17.42; 8. 37-Michael Barnett, 17.469; 9. 12T-Justin Taylor, 17.522; 10. K7-Keaton Smith, 17.525; 11. 21M-Javan Merck, 17.583; 12. 16-Colby Cannon, 17.615; 13. 711-Morgan Alexender, 17.621; 14. 10-Mario Gresham, 17.643; 15. 300-Bill Tesh, 17.903; 16. 71-Bobby Hunter, 18.339; 17. 18D-Riley Dunford, 33.201; 18. 21C-Chris McKeeham, NT; DQ. C1-Chuckie Duncan, 17.241

Qualifying Flight-C – 1. 12D-Devon Morgan, 16.999; 2. O7-Dale Timms, 17.052; 3. 148-Booger Brooks, 17.134; 4. 121-Blake Craft, 17.175; 5. 27-Mike Davidson, 17.223; 6. 17S-Brandon Stroud, 17.231; 7. P4-John Price, 17.258; 8. OO-Brandon Dockery, 17.283; 9. 6J-Jacob Brown, 17.351; 10. 92-Tanner Fortune, 17.368; 11. 4-Kyle Beck, 17.446; 12. 7J-Dalton Jacobs, 17.454; 13. 42-BooMan Galloway, 17.589; 14. 14-Baron McDowell, 17.595; 15. T2-Travis Sharpe, 17.822; 16. 10E-Patrick Evatt, 18.461; 17. 15-Bron Rutledge, NT; DQ. 114-Jordan Koechler, 17.065; DQ. 17K-Kale Steele, 19.031

Drydene Heat #1 – Flight (A) (6 Laps) – Top 3 Transfer – 1. 44-John Ruggiero [1]; 2. 12-Michael Smith [2]; 3. 54-Justin Mintz [5]; 4. 71C-Lee Cooper [8]; 5. 14R-Jeff Robinson [4]; 6. 104-Chris Cape [9]; 7. 77-Blake Dill [6]; 8. 16W-Nathan Walker [7]; 9. 19-Jeremy Mayfield [3]; 10. 149-Seth Speed [10]

Drydene Heat #2 – Flight (A) (6 Laps) – Top 3 Transfer – 1. 67-Bryan Mullis [1]; 2. 83-Rod Tucker [4]; 3. 22B-Chase McCormick [2]; 4. O5-Carson Ruark [3]; 5. 21S-JD Strader [10]; 6. 727-Baillie Lowe [8]; 7. 45-Colt Smith [6]; 8. 35-Dillon Daves [7]; 9. 22-Randy Pfaff [9]; 10. 17-Chris Joyce [5]

Drydene Heat #3 – Flight (B) (6 Laps) – Top 3 Transfer – 1. 615-Colton Trouille [3]; 2. C1-Chuckie Duncan [10]; 3. 21B-Royce Bray [2]; 4. 21M-Javan Merck [6]; 5. 711-Morgan Alexender [7]; 6. 5-Robbie Gibson [4]; 7. 1-Goose Calvert [1]; 8. 12T-Justin Taylor [5]; 9. 18D-Riley Dunford [9]; 10. 300-Bill Tesh [8]

Drydene Heat #4 – Flight (B) (6 Laps) – Top 3 Transfer – 1. 18-Austin Mintz [1]; 2. 24-Seth Wimpey [2]; 3. 16-Colby Cannon [6]; 4. 37-Michael Barnett [4]; 5. 10-Mario Gresham [7]; 6. 21C-Chris McKeeham [9]; 7. 71-Bobby Hunter [8]; 8. K7-Keaton Smith [5]; 9. 6W-Mark Wilbanks [3]

Drydene Heat #5 – Flight (C) (6 Laps) – Top 3 Transfer – 1. 12D-Devon Morgan [1]; 2. P4-John Price [4]; 3. 4-Kyle Beck [6]; 4. T2-Travis Sharpe [8]; 5. 27-Mike Davidson [3]; 6. 17K-Kale Steele [10]; 7. 6J-Jacob Brown [5]; 8. 148-Booger Brooks [2]; 9. 15-Bron Rutledge [9]; 10. 42-BooMan Galloway [7]

Drydene Heat #6 – Flight (C) (6 Laps) – Top 3 Transfer – 1. O7-Dale Timms [1]; 2. 121-Blake Craft [2]; 3. OO-Brandon Dockery [4]; 4. 92-Tanner Fortune [5]; 5. 14-Baron McDowell [7]; 6. 114-Jordan Koechler [9]; 7. 17S-Brandon Stroud [3]; 8. 7J-Dalton Jacobs [6]; 9. 10E-Patrick Evatt [8]