August 1st, 2010

30 Lap Omni Source Bob Darland Sprint Car Memorial Feature
1.71 Jerry Coons, Jr.
2.27 Andrew Elson
3.2 Hunter Schuerenberg
4.24 Tracy Hines
5.37 Casey Riggs
6.12 Chris Gurley
7.5 Justin Grant
8.51 Mike Hess
9.1 Kent Christian
10.83 Wes McIntyre
11.58 Jamie Fredrickson
12.20 Domain Ramsey
13.39 Dave Darland
14.78 Adam Byrkett
15.2k Brian Karraker
16.53 Jon Stanbrough
17.1x Kurt Gross
18.11 Chris Windom
19.11t Brady Short
20.66 Josh Spencer

15 Lap Speed Queen Racing & Design Street Stocks
1.H0 Lee Hobbs
2.3w Craig Walker
3.9 Glen Gamblin
4.00 Landon Miller
5.2 Brandon Roundtree
6.48 Travis Wolford
7.0t Ervin Turner
8.X John Van Pelt
9.38 Luke Timmerman
10.18 Kevin Kemp
11.89 Bobby Burton
12.3n Kaleb Nutter
13.5 Josh Hotsinpiller

25 Lap Bob Darland Memorial Midget Feature
1.24 Tracy Hines
2.3 Jerry Coons, Jr.
3.86 Dave Darland
4.77 Mike Hess
5.55 Taylor Ferns
6.4 Chris Windom
7.3r Robbie Ray
8.49 Trevor Kobylarz
9.37x Brady Short
10.7 Dalton Armsrtong
11.37 Travis Berryhill
12.21 Kurt Mayhew
13.37t Lynsey Tilton
14.11 Nick Richards
DNS 4b Gary Bradley

15 Lap Thunder Car Feature
1.7 Allen Davis
2.50 Jason Shrout
3.1 Dennis Freeland
4.9 Jason Fritz
5.112 Dick Day
6.38 John Antoine
7.622 Lana Jarvis
8.13 Rick Paul
9.12 Steve Clark
10.11 John Luttrell
11.215 Gerald Armfield
12.6 Junior Williams
13.14 Kris Workman
14.55 Jerry Taylor
15.215a Paul Whittaker
16.31 Frank Downs, Jr.
17.28 David Atkins
DNS 86 Nick Glassburn

Coons Inherits Darland Memorial
Hines, Hobbs and Davis also take wins

By Derek Fisher

In 2008, after never having visited victory lane in the race bearing his late father’s name, Dave Darland took a late lead from an unlucky Jon Stanbrough and outpaced a flipping Robert Ballou to the finish line to win the Bob Darland Memorial.

Sunday night at the Kokomo Speedway in the sprint car portion of this year’s Darland installment, the Lincoln driver narrowly escaped trouble, took a mid-race lead, and looked to be well on his way to a suspense-free second Bob Darland Memorial trophy.

Cue the drama. Again.

Darland broke a rear axle while adding to his sizeable advantage with three laps remaining, shelving his Pallet Builders No. 39 for the rest of the event and handing the victory to second-place Jerry Coons Jr. Darland’s lap 16 contact with early leader Justin Grant and Stanbrough, which eliminated Stanbrough and sent Grant to the rear of the field, was to blame for the broken component: A bent radius rod had ridden against and ground the axle down since the melee.

“The car was a rocket for 27 laps,” a dejected Darland said post-race. “I broke something when I ran over [Grant] and the car felt fine, but I guess it cut the axle in two.”

Darland’s bad luck was a fortuitous break for Coons, who started third in the event and contended for the point often, but led just a single circuit in the 30-lap affair before pacing the final three upon Darland’s exit.

“We were obviously a second-place car [Sunday],” Coons said from the All-Star Performance / Crume-Evans Insurance victory lane. “That was very unfortunate for Dave, but it’s an honor to win this race. I’ve got to thank Steve and Carla Phillips for giving me a great race car.”

For most of the night, Grant was the man to beat. The California driver set the evening’s quickest qualifying time, muscled his way to a heat race win and led the main event’s initial 15 laps from the pole before setting off the chain reaction that altered the race’s course.

Leading Coons and Darland into turn two on the 16th circuit, Grant bicycled his Baldwin Bros. machine on the cushion and came down in the path of Darland, who jumped Grant’s left front tire. That contact sent Darland into the path of Stanbrough, who had advanced to fourth after starting 16th. Stanbrough climbed Darland’s left rear tire and nearly turned over before coming to a stop on the backstretch with terminal damage, while Grant was able to restart and rebounded to claim seventh.

When the green flew again, Coons utilized the low groove to lead the restart lap before Darland made quick work of the Arizona native up top. Navigating lappers with ease, Darland had put a straightaway between himself and Coons before the axle faltered exiting lap 28′s turn four.

“We just didn’t have the car to keep up with Dave,” Coons said. “But we were there at the end.”

Andrew Elson, Hunter Schuerenberg, Tracy Hines and Casey Riggs rounded out the top five.

Coons, attempting to mirror what fellow Arizonian Chad Boat did in the 2009 Darland, nearly completed a sprint and midget sweep on Sunday.

Coons leapt from inside row two to lead the opening circuit in the little cars’ 25-lapper and jumped out to a commanding lead before Hines showed up on lap eight. Running a line half a car-width lower than Coons after starting sixth, Hines nosed inside the leader and narrowly missed leading the ninth circuit before using a backmarker as a pick exiting turn four on lap 10 to steal the point.

While the top five of Hines, Coons, Darland, Mike Hess and Taylor Ferns completed the final 13 laps unchanged, Canton, Ill. pilot Chris Windom was on the move. Windom, who started shotgun on the field in 14th, used the cushion to advance to seventh by lap 15 and eventually settled for sixth in the green-to-checkered affair.

“I’ve got to thank [Coons] for reminding me to come here and race [Sunday],” Hines said post-race. “Now he’s probably mad at me for taking some of his money. I didn’t know Bob Darland all that well but Dave and I are great friends and it means a lot to win this race.”

Lee Hobbs was again the victor in the Speed Queen Racing & Design street stock division. Hobbs has now won seven features at the local oval in 2010.

The Bedford driver started third on the grid and waged a great battle with Glen Gamblin, Craig Walker and Travis Wolford for the lead over the event’s first four laps. Using the high line, the lead was all Hobbs’ by lap five and the series points leader was unchallenged from that point on in the 15-lap race.

“We won on Friday at Gas City and had a good run at Montpelier [Saturday], so we’ve had a real good weekend,” Hobbs said.

Walker, Gamblin, Landon Miller and Brandon Roundtree comprised the rest of the top five.

Allen Davis was a popular winner in the thunder car division.

Davis, starting sixth on the grid, snared the lead from polesitter Jason Shrout on the seventh circuit of 15 after an intense duel and never looked back. Davis, a Kokomo veteran, is running an abbreviated schedule in 2010.

“I got around Jason on the high side and he started catching me,” said Davis. “So I went to the bottom to take his line.”

Shrout and Dennis Freeland were second and third, respectively. Jason Fritz and Dick Day rounded out the top five.