Cockrum, McKenzie, Bishop, Headley and Naida Are Big Winners of ‘Jerry Gappens Sr. Memorial’ Friday at Gas City I-69 Speedway

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Cockrum, McKenzie, Bishop, Headley and Naida Are Big Winners of ‘Jerry Gappens Sr. Memorial’ Friday at Gas City I-69 Speedway

Indy Racing Images photo

GAS CITY, Ind., June 27 – The Flying Fireman, Shane Cockrum of Benton, Ill., led all 25 laps of the non-wing sprint car feature to collect its $2,020 first prize during the Jerry Gappens Sr. Memorial, a huge, five-division show honoring the promoter’s late father Friday night at Gas City I-69 Speedway.

Zeke McKenzie of Claypool, Ind. won the 20-lap modified feature, while Andy Bishop of Gas City was victorious in the 15-lap street stock main event. James Headley of Marion, Ind. repeated as the hornet feature winner, this time chased to the line by his son, James Headley Jr. of Wabash, Ind., after 15 revolutions of the quarter-mile dirt oval. Fourteen-year-old Darin Naida of Adrian, Mich. took the top honors in the 15-lap winged outlaw micro-sprint feature followed by a member of the famous Saldana racing family, Reece, of Brownsburg, Ind.

The extremely well run program featured 93 race cars and no red flags, and took just three and a half hours to complete.

Austin Nigh of Greenfield, Ind. started on the pole of the sprint car feature and had a spectacular save after he biked wildly in Turn 2 on the first lap. Cockrum, 38, who started second in Jamie and Michelle Paul’s High ASSpirations Farms DRC Foxco, took advantage of Nigh’s predicament and led the whole race. Scotty Weir of Marion, Ind., chased him most of the way but couldn’t catch him, even after a restart with four laps down due to a spin by Sterling Cling of Indianapolis.

The big battle was for second between Weir, Clinton Boyles of Brownsburg, Ind., and Jarett Andretti of Indianapolis. Andretti went from fourth to third working lap 18 by dipping under Boyles on the frontstretch. Then he swooped under Weir at about the same spot on lap 19 for second, much to the delight of his new sponsor, Indy Truck and Auto Repair.

Boyles used the high line to pass Weir for third in Turn 4 on lap 23. With all that dicing for position Cockrum was long gone. His car, which is also sponsored by Rumpke of Cincinnati in addition to High ASSpirations Farms of Eaton, Ohio, was a half-straightaway ahead of Andretti at the checkered. Boyles, Weir and Chase Jones of Indianapolis, who started 13th, rounded out the top five. The latter is currently enrolled in the Kelley School of Business at IUPUI.

A.J. and Matt Brookmyer contributed an extra $100 for the hard charger in the sprint car feature. That was J.J. Hughes of Indianapolis, who started 16th and finished sixth. Kim Hughes of Columbus, Ind. owns his Triple-X chassis, which has a Williams Precision Engines-prepped engine and is sponsored by Keith Rooney, DDS; Weichert Realtors and Jockish Flowers.

The Brookmyers also awarded a Hoosier right-rear tire to the first sprint car non-quaiifier, which was Ryan Barr of Piqua, Ohio. He drives the bright yellow No. 21B sponsored in part by Medway Tool Corp. and GK Electric.

McKenzie started on the pole in the modified feature in the BZ Enterprises No. 24 and led the whole way despite four caution flags that obliterated his lead. One of them occurred with four laps down when Derek Losh of Rensselaer, Ind., last week’s winner, spun out of second place in Turn 2 and then stopped in Turn 4.

Ryan Sutter of Coldwater, Ohio assumed second with Losh’s misfortune, but dropped one spot when Bub Roberts of Warren, Ind. passed him to the outside in Turn 4 on lap 16. Following McKenzie, Roberts and Sutter at the checkered were Cole Sink of Fort Wayne, Ind. and Dylan Woodling of Warsaw, Ind. The latter started 17th in the 20-car field.

McKenzie’s Vanquish has a Hogue-prepped engine and it’s sponsored by Bar 13 of Pierceton, Ind.; BZ Enterprises of Warsaw, Ind., and Hogue Engines of Akron, Ind.

Bishop, the defending street stock champion, started second in that feature, passed polesitter Mike Fischer to the outside in Turn 3 working lap two, and led the rest of the way despite a caution that tightened up the field behind his Thompson Trucking/R&R Transmissions No. 14.  Fischer made a bid for the lead on the restart on lap 10 and he and Bishop were abreast in Turns 1 and 2, but Bishop fought him off and still led in Turn 4.

Bishop was able to extend his lead during the last five laps. Fischer finished second followed by Justin Long of Lima, Ohio; Jeffery Jessup of Union City, Ind., and D.J. Holt of Marion, Ind.

The hornet feature was the most entertaining main event of the evening. Young James Headley Jr. started second, got the jump on the polesitter, his father, James Headley, at the start, and led the first five laps. His father led lap six before bowing to his son again on lap seven. The elder Headley made the winning move on the backstretch working lap eight and led the rest of the way for a Headley family one-two. Dudding’s Heating and Cooling, Garriott Electric, Edwards Automotive and TJR Trucking sponsor the Headley cars, among other companies.

Bill Lewis of Fountain City, Ind., substituting for Gabe “Scrappy” Wilkins of Gas City in the COVID-19 car, started third and threw everything he had left at the Headleys with five laps to go, even though his car was missing major pieces of bodywork. Lewis passed Headley Jr. low in Turn 4 for second on lap 10 and held the runner-up spot until the last lap, when Headley Jr. got the position back. Brandon Lines of Marion, Ind. was fourth and Brad Evans of Lafontaine, Ind. finished fifth.

Saldana started on the pole of the winged outlaw micros feature and led the first two laps before Naida charged under him in Turn 3. Naida led the rest of the way in the Ollie’s Bargain Outlet No. 7N, and he had the biggest lead of the evening at the checkered. Saldana placed second over Jon Treadeu of Grass Lake, Mich.; Levi Winget of Wabash, Ind., and Brandon Sweat of Van Buren, Ind.

The track will be dark over the Fourth of July holiday, but the rest of the month is jam-packed.

Friday, July 10, is the “Mid-Season Championship,” which will award double points. Non-wing sprint cars, modifieds, USAC Midwest Thunder SpeeD2 midgets, street stocks and hornets will provide the action when hot laps begin at 6:30 p.m. and the races start an hour later.

Friday, July 17 will be the popular “Beach Night Bash” featuring modifieds, Tony Stewart’s All Star Circuit of Champions TQ midgets, hornets, and the Dirt Track Truck Series.

Gas City will host the opening round of “USAC Sprint Week” on Friday, July 24 with the USAC AMSOIL national sprint cars to round out the month. Non-wing 600cc micro-sprints will support that program.

The complete schedule is on the track’s website at  Fans and competitors can also follow it on Twitter: @GasCitySpeedway; Instagram: @GasCitySpeedway and Facebook: GasCitySpeedwayOnTheGas.

Gas City I-69 Speedway is located on State Road 22, approximately a half-mile west of I-69, exit 259.

The results:

Non-Wing Sprint Group 1 Qualifying: 1. Scotty Weir, 12.372; 2. Issac Chapple, 12.494; 3. Zack Pretorius, 12.500; 4. Lee Underwood, 12.519; 5. Cody White, 12.600; 6. Adam Byrkett, 12.717, 7. Chase Jones, no time.

Non-Wing Sprint Group 2 Qualifying: 1. Max Guilford, 12.839; 2. Ryan Barr, 13.105; 3. Brayden Clark, 13.280; 4. Austin Nigh, 13.324; 5. Derek Crane, 13.331; 6. Paul Dues, 13.898; 7. Shane O’Banion, 14.360

Non-Wing Sprint Group 3 Qualifying: 1. Jarett Andretti, 12.549; 2. Brayden Fox, 12.606; 3. Matt Goodnight, 12.841; 4. Shane Cockrum, 12.981; 5. Tyler Kendall, 13.153: 6. Cole Ketcham, 13.490; 7. Cooper Welch, no time.

Non-Wing Sprint Group 4 Qualifying: 1.  J.J. Hughes, 12.943; 2. Clinton Boyles, 13.000; 3. Dustin Ingle, 13.056; 4. Sterling Cling, 13.148; 5. Aaron Leffel, 13.313; 6. Evan Mosley, 13.630; 7. Aaron Davis, 13.676.

Non-Wing Sprint Heat 1 (8 laps, 4 transferred): 1. Scotty Weir, 2. Lee Underwood, 3. Adam Byrkett, 4. Chase Jones, 5. Cody White, 6. Zack Pretorius, 7. Isaac Chapple.

Non-Wing Sprint Heat 2 (8 laps, 4 transferred): 1. Austin Nigh, 2. Brayden Clark, 3. Max Guilford, 4. Paul Dues, 5. Ryan Barr, 6. Derek Crane, 7. Shane O’Banion.

Non-Wing Sprint Heat 3 (8 laps, 4 transferred): 1. Shane Cockrum, 2. Jarett Andretti, 3. Matt Goodnight, 4. Tyler Kendall, 5. Cole Ketcham, 6. Brayden Fox, 7. Cooper Welch (DNS).

Non-Wing Sprint Heat 4 (8 laps, 4 transferred): 1. Dustin Ingle, 2. Clinton Boyles, 3. Sterling Cling, 4. J.J. Hughes, 5. Aaron Leffel, 6. Aaron Davis, 7. Evan Mosley (DNS).

Non-Wing B Main (10 laps, 4 transferred): 1. Cody White, 2. Aaron Leffel, 3. Brayden Fox, 4. Zack Pretorius, 5. Ryan Barr, 6. Aaron Davis, 7. Isaac Chapple, 8. Cooper Welch, 9. Derek Crane, 10. Shane O’Banion, 11. Cole Ketcham, 12. Evan Mosley (DNS).

Non-Wing Sprint Feature (25 laps, with starting position in parenthesis): 1. Shane Cockrum (2), 2. Jarett Andretti (7), 3. Clinton Boyles (5), 4. Scotty Weir (3), 5. Chase Jones (13), 6. J.J. Hughes (16), 7. Dustin Ingle (4), 8. Adam Byrkett (9), 9. Braydon Clark (6), 10. Tyler Kendall (15), 11. Lee Underwood (8), 12. Brayden Fox (19), 13. Aaron Leffel (18), 14. Paul Dues (14), 15. Max Guilford (10), 16. Matt Goodnight (11), 17. Zach Pretorious (20), 18. Sterling Cling (12), 19. Cody White (17), 20. Austin Nigh (1).

Lap leaders: Cockrum, 1-25.

Modified Group 1 Qualifying: 1. Jordon Conover, 13.511, 2. Bub Roberts, 13.565, 3. Ryan Sutter, 13.797, 4. Jason McCoy, 14.142, 5. Kayeleb Bolton, 14.143, 6. Andy Bishop, 14.192, 7. Terry Grilliott, 14.428.

Modified Group 2 Qualifying: 1. Zeke McKenzie, 13.504, 2. Tony Anderson, 13.774, 3. Todd Sherman, 13.830, 4. Garrett Rons, 13.934, 5. Bill Griffith, 14.001, 6. Chris Ullery, 14.276, 7. Braxton Strait, 15.113.

Modified Group 3 Qualifying: 1. Derek Losh, 13.360, 2. Dillon Nusbaum, 13.523, 3. Shane O’Conner, 13.573, 4. Cole Sink, 13.583, 5. Dylan Woodling, 13.669, 6. Scott Orr, 13.792,7. Jimmy Watters, 14.104.

Modified Group 4 Qualifying: 1. Aaron Orr, 13.829, 2. Michael Tarlton, 13.908, 3. Percy Gendreau, 14.002, 4. Josh Betts, 14.063, 5. Clayton Bryant, 14.102, 6. Bill Lewis, 14.569, 7. Nick Richards, no time.

Modified Heat 1 (8 laps, 4 transferred): 1. Bub Roberts, 2. Ryan Sutter, 3. Andy Bishop, 4. Jordan Conover, 5. Terry Grilliot, 6. Jason McCoy, 7. Kayeleb Bolton, 8. Adam Schaeff.

Modified Heat 2 (8 laps, 4 transferred): 1. Zeke McKenzie, 2. Todd Sherman, 3. Tony Anderson, 4. Garrett Rons, 5. Chris Ullery, 6.  Braxton Strait, 7. Bill Griffith.

Modified Heat 3 (8 laps, 4 transferred): 1. Derek Losh, 2. Cole Sink, 3. Shane O’Connor, 4. Dillon Nusbaum, 5. Dylan Woodling, 6. James Watters, 7. Scott Orr.

Modified Heat 4 (8 laps, 4 transferred): 1. Josh Betts, 2. Michael Tarlton, 3. Aaron Orr, 4. Percy Gendreau, 5. Bill Lewis, 6. Clayton Bryant, 7. Nick Richards (DNS).

Modified B-Main 1 (10 laps, 4 transferred): 1. Dylan Woodling, 2. Terry Grilliot, 3. James Watters, 4. Kayeleb Bolton, 5. Scott Orr, 6. Chris Ullery, 7. Adam Schaeff, 8. Jason McCoy, 9. Braxton Strait, 10. Bill Griffith, 11. Bill Lewis, 12. Clayton Bryant, 13. Nick Richards (DNS).

Modified Feature (20 laps, with starting position in parentheses): 1. Zeke McKenzie (1), 2. Bub Roberts (2), 3. Ryan Sutter (5), 4. Cole Sink (6), 5. Dylan Woodling (17), 6. Dillon Nusbaum (15), 7. Jordan Conover (13), 8. Michael Tarlton (8), 9. Percy Gendreau (16), 10. Tony Anderson (10), 11. James Watters (19), 12. Kayeleb Bolton (20), 13. Garrett Rons (14), 14. Terry Grilliot (18), 15. Aaron Orr (12), 16. Andy Bishop (9), 17. Todd Sherman (7), 18. Josh Betts (4), 19. Derek Losh (3), 20. Shane O’Connor (11).

Lap leaders: McKenzie, 1-20.

Street Stock Heat 1 (8 laps): 1. Mike Fischer, 2. Gerald Owens, 3. Luke Timmerman, 4. Eric Sandlin, 5. Jeffrey Jessup, 6. Mark Wooten, 7. Bill Bradley, 8. Marty Harkinson.

Street Stock Heat 2 (8 laps): 1. Andy Bishop, 2. Justin Long, 3. D.J. Holt, 4. Brent McMillan, 5. Daniel Hay, 6. Dalton Bishop, 7. Derick Howell.

Street Stock Feature (15 laps, with starting position in parentheses):

1. Andy Bishop (2), 2. Mike Fischer (1), 3. Justin Long (4), 4. Jeffery Jessup (9), 5. D.J. Holt (6), 6. Brent McMillan (8), 7. Luke Timmerman (5), 8. Gerald Owens (3), 9. Mark Wooten (11), 10. Daniel Hay (10), 11. Bill Bradley (13), 12. Dalton Bishop (12), 13. Eric Sandlin (7), 14. Derick Howell (DNS), 15. Marty Harkinson (DNS).

Lap leaders: Lap 1, Fischer; laps 2-15, Bishop.

Hornet Heat 1 (8 laps): 1. James Headley, 2. Bill Lewis, 3. Eddie Tucker Jr., 4. Kolton Sollars, 5. Brandon Lines, 6. Billy Fritch, 7. Robbie White.

Hornet Heat 2 (8 laps): 1. James Headley Jr., 2. Brad Evans, 3. Seth Trissel, 4. Charlie Teegarden, 5. Joey Eastes, 6. Alexis Spaulding, 7. Tyler Ray.

Hornet Feature (15 laps, with starting position in parentheses):

1. James Headley (1), 2. James Headley Jr. (2), 3. Bill Lewis (3), 4. Brandon Lines (9), 5. Brad Evans (4), 6. Seth Trissel (6), 7. Eddie Tucker Jr. (5), 8. Charlie Teegarden (8), 9. Joey Eastes (10), 10. Robbie White (13), 11. Alexis Spaulding (12), 12. Kolten Sollars (7), 13. Billy Fritch (DNS), 14. Tyler Ray (DNS).

Lap leaders: Laps 1-5, Headley Jr.; lap 6, Headley, lap 7, Headley Jr.; laps 8-15, Headley.

Winged Outlaw Micros Heat  (8 laps): 1. Reece Saldana, 2. Darin Naida, 3. Jon Treadeu, 4. Levi Winget, 5. Brandon Sweat, 6. Brock Miller, 7. Malachi Sweat.

Winged Outlaw Micros Feature (15 laps, with starting position in parentheses): 1. Darin Naida (2), 2. Reece Saldana (1), 3. Jon Treadeu (3), 4. Levi Winget (4), 5. Brandon Sweat (5), 6. Brock Miller (6), 7. Malachi Sweat (DNS).

Lap leaders: Laps 1-2, Saldana, laps 3-15, Naida.