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David Smith, Jr.
NCRA Public Relations
2012 NCRA Modified Season Review!
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE – Midwest City, Oklahoma – November 13, 2012 - The 15th consecutive season for the National Championship Racing Association of Park City, Kansas presented by Precise Racing Products modified division has been completed and after a very diverse 2012 schedule which saw two new venues and one return trip after a couple years hiatus it was Wichita, Kansas driver Marc Hurd claiming his second career series championship.
81 Speedway in Park City played host to the season opener the first Saturday in April where Jason McGehee of Wichita claiming his first career series victory. McGehee took advantage of race long leader Hurd’s mechanical gremlins with two laps to go to pick up the win. A.J. Brochu, Ken Sweet, Brian Franz and Mickey Lassiter rounded out the top five. Thirty-five cars were on hand for the first event of the season.
The next stop occurred on Saturday night of Memorial Day weekend at 81 Speedway where Johnny Bone, Jr. took the lead on lap two and never looked back in claiming the 30 lap victory. Franz, Tyler Davis, John Allen and Ross Shipman rounded out the top five at race number two of the season with thirty-six cars in the pit area. From there it was on to Humboldt Speedway in Humboldt, Kansas and while it was a non-regular track it was a series regular taking the victory with Tyler Davis getting the best of the locals and a 37 car field. Hurd and Tanner Mullens gave the tour second and fourth place positions at the finish line while Bone (third) and Nathan Mayes (fifth) rounding out the top five.
It was Father’s Day and the Ken Sweet Memorial up next at 81 Speedway and fittingly it was Ken Sweet, Jr. taking the lead on lap two and led the rest of the way to claim the emotional victory over Ryan McAninch, McGehee, Don Hodge and Davis were the top five. Once again a strong field of over thirty cars was on hand, thirty-three to be exact.
After several years hiatus it was on to Enid Speedway, located atop the Garfield County Fairgrounds in Enid, Oklahoma the next stop on the tour. A field of twenty-seven cars were on hand and on this night it was Travis Johnson, fresh off two series sport modified victories the two previous nights, picking up his second career series modified victory in front of the home town crowd. Davis and Hurd continued to finish next to each other (second and third respectively) while John Allen finished fourth and Dan Powers rounding out the top five.
The 56th annual Hutchinson Grand Nationals at the Kansas State Fairgrounds played host to two nights of racing action with Friday night’s prelims setting up Saturday night’s championship feature finale. After all the qualifying and last chance features were complete for the twenty-eight drivers who made the trip it was third generation driver Tanner Mullens picking up the wire to wire, twenty lap victory and Hutch Nationals modified championship. McAninch, Brian Franz, Hurd and Josh Lanterman rounded out the top five.
Much anticipated when the schedule was released back in January, it was then time for the tour’s first ever appearance at the Western Oklahoma track of Elk City Speedway in Elk City, Oklahoma on a Friday night before their first ever appearance at Route 66 Motor Speedway in Amarillo, Texas the following night. The August 17th event in Elk City was won by Hurd, his first and only win of the season over a strong field of 30 cars. Greg Burt, Dusty Mayfield, Lanterman and Tyler Davis rounded out the top five. Then on Saturday night 32 cars were on hand in Amarillo where former NCRA modified south inaugural champion Gene Weaver picked up the victory for the home town crowd, taking the lead with ten laps go and go unchallenged the rest of the way. Race long leader Hurd and Davis would let the tension of their two car battle for the championship get the best of them as both made contact down the backstretch, causing Hurd to finish back in tenth. Davis would finish second at the finish, followed by Dan Powers, Alan Sharpensteen and Jon Thompson.
A couple weeks off to regroup paid dividends for Dan Powers as he not only picked up his first career series modified victory, he actually tamed the high banks of Belleville in Belleville, Kansas on their traditional Sunday night over Labor Day weekend. Eventual rookie of the year winner Jon Thompson finished second, followed by Hurd, Brochu and Lanterman.
The season would wrap up on October 20th at 81 Speedway and with 36 cars in the pit area, Ryan McAninch wired the field to take the twenty-five lap feature finale and while Davis would come home second, Hurd’s fourth place finish would be enough to claim the championship by 120 points. Franz finished third while Thompson rounded out the top five.
Modified veteran Jon Thompson of Superior, Nebraska spent the entire season on the NCRA modified tour for the first time in his career and held off Dustin Belcher by just two points to pick up rookie of the year honors.
Below are a few facts and figures from the 2012 race season for the NCRA modified tour:
121 different drivers from five different states competed in at least one event on the 2012 schedule. Among the states represented were: Kansas, Nebraska, Oklahoma, Texas and Arkansas.
9 drivers competed in all eleven events that were held. There were the following: Marc Hurd, Tyler Davis, Josh Lanterman, Dan Powers, Jon Thompson, Dustin Belcher, Don Hodge, Justin Moler and Kirk Coleman.
Drivers who reaching NCRA modified winner’s circle were: Jason McGehee, Johnny Bone, Jr., Tyler Davis, Travis Johnson, Marc Hurd, Ryan McAninch, Ken Sweet, Tanner Mullens, Gene Weaver and Dan Powers.
McGehee and Powers were first time winners with the series.
Elk City Speedway and Route 66 Motor Speedway hosted their first ever NCRA modified event in 2012 with Hurd and Weaver winning at those tracks respectively.
Average car count was 31 cars with the highest coming at Humboldt Speedway (37) and the lowest at the Belleville High Banks (17).
Final 2012 NCRA modified point standings:
1) Marc Hurd 2930, 2) Tyler Davis, 3) Josh Lanterman 2680, 4) Dan Powers 2625, 5) Jon Thompson 2590, 6) Dustin Belcher and Don Hodge 2445, 8) Justin Moler 2190, 9) Kirk Coleman 2160, 10) AJ Brochu 2070.
Final 2012 NCRA modified rookie of the year standings:
1) Jon Thompson 1175, 2) Dustin Belcher 1172, 3) AJ Brochu 1046
2012 NCRA Modified Completed Schedule
April 7 Saturday 81 Speedway Park City, Kansas Jason McGehee
May 28 Saturday 81 Speedway Park City, Kansas Johnny Bone, Jr.
May 29 Sunday Humboldt Speedway Humboldt, Kansas Tyler Davis
June 17 Sunday 81 Speedway Park City, Kansas Kenny Sweet
June 24 Sunday Enid Speedway Enid, Oklahoma Travis Johnson
July 13 Friday 56th Hutch Nationals Hutchinson, Kansas
July 14 Saturday 56th Hutch Nationals Hutchinson, Kansas Tanner Mullens
Aug 17 Friday Elk City Speedway Elk City, Oklahoma Gene Weaver
Aug 18 Saturday Route 66 Motor Speedway Amarillo, Texas Marc Hurd
Sept 2 Sunday Belleville High Banks Belleville, Kansas Dan Powers
Oct 6 Saturday 81 Speedway Park City, Kansas Ryan McAninch
For more information on the 42nd anniversary season for the National Championship Racing Association of Park City, Kansas or the series modified division, find them at their online address www.racencra.com or call the series office (316) 755-1781. Race schedules as well as additional partners and contingency sponsors are currently being obtained and will be officially released after the annual NCRA banquet on Saturday night, January 26, 2013.