A full field of Late Models was on hand Saturday, July 21, all ready for battle at the tough bullring.
Bennett GM Pole Qualifying started the evening’s competition off as drivers had just five laps to try and score a track record and earn themselves a top starting position. Brandon Watson looked to have the top spot locked up, but Ryan Kimball stole the pole position with a lap of 15.020 in the last seconds of qualifying. Brandon Watson, Jordan Sims, Shae Gemmell, and JR Fitzpatrick rounded out the top five spots.
GALLERY: COURTESY OF DEREK SMITH / WWW.RACEPULSE.COM
The London Recreational Racing 100 started with Ryan Kimball on the pole but it would be Shae Gemmell emerging with the lead on the high side and leading the opening circuit. The caution flag would fly early as Mark Burbridge went around in turn four on lap five, erasing the early advantage for Gemmell.
Shawn Chenoweth moved into the second position on the restart after several cars made contact. All drivers would continue in the proper direction and the race would continue with Shae Gemmell pacing the field up front. The yellow flag was shown for the second time on lap 15 when Jade Franklin suffered a mechanical failure.
Gemmell would continue to lead the early portion of the race as drivers worked each other over for spots behind. Shawn Chenoweth took the second spot back on lap 28 and set his sights on the race leader, closing the gap fairly quickly. A long green flag run allowed Chenoweth to get within striking distance as Brandon Watson advanced to the third spot on lap 41, moving Junior Farrelly back to the fourth spot.
The race lead changed hands for the first time on lap 43 when Shawn Chenoweth muscled his way around Gemmell. Chenoweth worked through lapped traffic before the yellow flag came out on lap 61 as Junior Farrelly went around off of turn two. The field just settled in after the restart before the caution flag was displayed for the fourth time on lap 64 when Ryan Kimball stopped on the track.
Shawn Chenoweth continued to show the way up front, holding off Brandon Watson before the yellow came out again, this time for Shawn McGlynn on lap 77. Another caution on lap 77 for contact between Ken Schrader and Jordan Sims set up for a wild restart that saw Shae Gemmell and Brandon Watson make contact in turn three. The contact saw Watson fall off the pace and on lap 78 Junior Farrelly drove over top of him with nowhere to go, bringing out the caution for the seventh time in the London Recreational Racing 100. Watson’s night would end as a result of the incident.
The lap 78 restart saw drama up front as contact between the leaders pushed Shawn Chenoweth up the track and outside the top ten. 2017 MacMaster of Orangeville Rookie of the Year, Treyten Lapcevich, found himself in the lead in the aftermath and would lead lap 80 before JR Fitzpatrick took over the lead a lap later. Shae Gemmell followed Fitzpatrick through and applied pressure for several laps before losing him with less than 10 to go. When it looked like the race was over, a caution on the last lap set up a dramatic green-white-checkered finish. Gemmell would squeeze his way in line but would fall short as Fitzpatrick went on to sweep the 2018 events at Flamboro Speedway. Treyten Lapcevich, Matt Pritiko, and Andrew Gresel rounded out the top five spots.
The tour enjoys a week off before heading to Sauble Speedway on August 4th for the Spira Fire Protection Beat the Heat 100. Event information can be found on www.APCRacingSeries.com. The event gets underway at 5:00pm
By Ryan Dyson - APC Series PR