MERIDIAN, Idaho — Chuck Youngblood proved that it never matters how many laps you lead, as long as you lead the final lap.
The Meridian, Idaho driver led the final lap, and only for about 10 feet, pushing a lapped car across the start-finish line to inch ahead for the victory in the second installment of the Tates Hornets 100 Series at ASA-sanctioned Meridian Speedway during Wednesday’s Cricket Dairy Days Races and Carnival.
“Right there on the last lap? Smash the car and win it,” Youngblood said when asked what was going through his mind when he ran out of Turn 4 in his pursuit of then-race leader Joe Ransom of Boise, Idaho.
Youngblood bulled to the victory on the high side of the track, pushing the lapped car of Sharlet Pataro of Mountain Home, Idaho enough to nose past Ransom at the checkered flag. He was the seventh and final leader of the 100-lap race, which saw long stretches of green-flag segments despite 32 cars crammed on the narrow quarter-mile oval.
The win was the last for Youngblood in his No. 60 racecar. He gave it up for $700 when track officials invoked the Hornets claim rule. Ransom also surrendered his car, leaving third-place Colton Nelson of Meridian as the only driver in the top three who emerged without a claimer.
By giving up their racecars, Youngblood and Ransom both were able to keep their series points. Nelson entered the night leading the Hornets 100 Series and the Hornets division standings.
In other main events:
Randy Keckley of Boise, Idaho collected his first career victory in the B Modifieds.
Kuna, Idaho’s Casey Tillman in the Pepsi Sprintcars
Jim Bailey of Middleton, Idaho in the Project Filter Pro-4s
Vulgar Display, driven by Joe Volm of Meridian, brought home the victory in a typically unusual Thunder Dogs 20-lap main
In the B Modifieds, Pork Chop found the gravy Wednesday night.
Keckley survived a 30-lap side-by-side duel with Josh Jackson of Payette, Idaho to win his first main event, taking the checkered flag in the B Modifieds at ASA-sanctioned Meridian Speedway.
Keckley thanked his family before turning his attention to the man who has dominated the modified division at the paved quarter-mile.
“Thanks to Shelby Stroebel for selling me an awesome car,” Keckley said.
Stroebel, who has won all seven ASA Modifieds features at Meridian this year, watched the awesome car go around the track for all 30 laps. He was locked in a door-to-door battle with Nampa, Idaho’s Jentry Pisca for third place as four of the six cars on the track ran door-to-door and bumper-to-bumper for the duration of the feature.
Pisca started his night by setting the track record in qualifying. He ran a 14.148-second lap to shatter Stroebel’s mark of 14.726 set on May 5.
In the Pepsi Sprintcars, Tillman bounced back from losing the trophy to a protest in Saturday night’s Domino’s Pizza Legends. He also found victory lane after a rough-and-tumble beginning to his sprintcar season in April.
“I’ve got to thank my sponsors,” he said. “They came through to the car back together after that crash in Turn 1. And they just pounded it into me: Patience, patience, patience.
“Well, patience paid off.”
Tillman pulled off the Chillo Challenge, pulling off the fast qualifying time of 13.619 seconds and winning the Fast Dash before grabbing the 30-lap feature race’s checkered flag.
Bailey also worked his way into the win column in the 30-lap Pro-4 main event, continuing a solid season in the four-cylinder stock car class.
“It’s been a great year. We’ve made some changes to the car, and it’s been really fast,” he said. “These guys are great to race with. They race you clean, and I hope they we do the same.”
The speedway is closed Saturday to make way for Meridian Dairy Days.
The next races at Meridian Speedway come Saturday, June 23 when the ASA Pro Trucks Series comes to town.
For more information about the races, visit www.meridianspeedway.com or call (208) 888-2813 .
Cricket Dairy Days Races and Carnival
Wednesday’s unofficial results
Project Filter Pro-4s (30 laps) – 1. Jim Bailey, Middleton, Idaho; 2. Jordan Fitch, Meridian, Idaho; 3. Dayne Amyx, Boise, Idaho; 4. Joe Barton, Nampa, Idaho; 5. Phil Dugan, Meridian
Pepsi Sprintcars (30 laps) – 1. Casey Tillman, Kuna, Idaho; 2. Jamie Ransom, Boise; 3. Josh Allen, Meridian; 4. Ryan Widerich, Nampa; 5. Tristen Spiers, Adrian, Ore.
B Modifieds (30 laps) – 1. Randy Keckley, Boise; 2. Jentry Pisca, Nampa; 3. Josh Jackson, Payette, Idaho; 4. Jay Cook, Nampa; 5. Shelby Stroebel, Meridian
Tates Hornets 100 No. 2 – 1. Chuck Youngblood, Meridian; 2. Joe Ransom, Boise; 3. Colton Nelson, Meridian; 4. Thomas Harrod, Nampa; 5. Chad Barker, Kuna, Idaho
Thunder Dogs winner (20 laps) – Vulgar Display (Joseph Volm, Meridian)
(Eight laps each)
Fast Dash – 1. Pisca; 2. Stroebel; 3. Jackson; 4. Keckley; 5. Cook
Fast Dash – 1. Tillman; 2. Allen; 3. Ransom; 4. Erik Miller, Caldwell
B Heat – 1. Wiederich; 2. Mike Anderson, Nampa; 3. Spiers; 4. Cody Huddleston, Meridian
Project Filter Pro-4s
Fast Dash – 1. Barton; 2. Dugan; 3. DJ Lyons, Nampa; 4. Bailey; 5. Fitch
B Heat – 1. Terry Lawrence, Boise; 2. Terry Sherman, Boise; 3. Rob Taylor, Meridian; 4. Chet Thorson, Nampa; 5. Dayne Amyx, Boise
(Six laps each)
Fast Dash – 1. Lynn Sharp, Nampa; 2. Nelson; 3. Youngblood; 4. Harrod; 5. Cody Garrett, Boise
B Heat – 1. Monica Heath, Caldwell, Idaho; 2. Kris Carson; 3. Donovan Parker, Garden City, Idaho; 4. Brenden Fries, Meridian; 5. Kent Smith
C Heat – 1. Barker; 2. Art Heath, Nampa; 3. Stacy Heath, Nampa; 4. Fred Nagele, Boise; 5. Blake Coria, Boise
D Heat – 1. Alex Duda, Boise; 2. Jason Rupp, Boise; 3. Jack Martin, Caldwell; 4. Michael Capps, Meridian; 5. Scott Thomas, Garden City
Heat No. 1 – 1. Bulldacious (James DeMello, Boise); 2. Sledgehammer (David Jolley, Nampa); 3. Catfish (John Pinkston, Meridian); 4. No Mercy (Dan Wylie, Nampa); 5. Surfer (James Cloud, Boise)
Pepsi Sprintcars – Casey Tillman, 13.619 seconds
Project Filter Pro-4s – Jim Bailey, 14.238
B Modifieds – Jentry Pisca, 14.148 (track record; previous – Shelby Stroebel, 14.726, May 5, 2012)
Thunder Dogs – Buzz Lightyear, 16.059