Michael Long stood atop the UMP Modified world Friday night, winning an incredible battle with two of the best St. Louis-area racers in Kenny Wallace and Rick Conoyer to score his seventh career DIRTcar Summit Racing Equipment Modified Nationals Feature win.
Conoyer led early from the pole but was soon engaged in a side-by-side battle with 2012 tour champion Wallace for the top spot. A caution just past the halfway point cooled the intensity, but opened the door for Long, who was only starting to heat up.
Long rolled off fifth on the starting grid but had dropped to as low as eighth at one point in the opening laps. However, that may have been by design.
“The car was a little tight there at the beginning,” Long said. “Once my hard tire came in and burned a little bit of fuel off, the car came to me – which I knew it would here.”
Now running third with slightly under half the race distance to go, Long mashed the throttle on the restart and made a beeline for the leaders. He caught Conoyer and Wallace in about five laps – just in time to see Conoyer bobble hard on the cushion as he snuck by to his inside.
“I kinda found a line where I could get almost in between them,” Long said. “Conoyer finally messed up on the cushion and I was able to get a run and slide him.”
Long continued to rip to the high side and powered his way around Wallace with only five laps remaining. One final caution with three laps left on the board restacked the field and gave Wallace one final shot for the lead, but it was not to be. Long cruised around to the checkers to win his first Summit Modified event of the season.
The DIRTcar Summit Modified action continues Saturday night with a visit to Fairbury Speedway in Fairbury, IL. Get a ticket to watch in person at the gate or stream all the action live on DIRTVision.
ABBREVIATED RESULTS (view full results)
Feature (25 Laps): 1. 18L-Michael Long; 2. 36-Kenny Wallace; 3. 14C-Rick Conoyer; 4. 8-Kyle Steffens; 5. 51-Timmy Hill; 6. 25-Tyler Nicely; 7. 13-Charlie Mefford; 8. 66-Cole Falloway; 9. 25W-Allen Weisser; 10. 10Y-Trent Young; 11. 8K-Levi Kissinger; 12. 1A-Steve Meyer Jr; 13. 77-Ray Bollinger; 14. 39-Don Grimm; 15. 51M-Joe Mercurio; 16. 15-Chris Smith; 17. 121-Caleb Slaughter; 18. T9-Ryan Thomas; 19. 19-Trey Harris; 20. J82-Treb Jacoby; 21. 12L-Lucas Lee; 22. 1-Michael Barrett; 23. 24Z-Zeke McKenzie; 24. 71S-Dakota Smith