Winternationals Beat Raindrops In Orlando Wednesday by Amy Hayes and Jason Buckley
Bassett Repeats While Rodenbeck and Stancill Finally Get Theirs
The bad luck of the event fell on two-time winner Clay Hair and Cotton Spry. Hair was involved in an accident in the heat race that resulted in him bringing out a backup car for the feature. He moved up through the field in the feature event but was never to get up to the leader as another incident took him out.
Cotton Spry had started on the outside pole and led every single lap of the feature until the last lap. His car suffered a broken coil and he quickly fell back through the field. That allowed Brockhouse, who was running second at the time, to take the checkered flag first.
“Today was just really great,” added Brockhouse. “I was fortunate for someone else’s misfortune. It was great to win one here again, I won one last year too. I came all the way from Minneapolis Minnesota, and this makes last night seem a lot better. As long as we can make it through tech again, it is definitely one for me.”
John Stancill was no "turkey" on Thursday night in Semi-Pro action.
The warm and sunny weather that has been hanging around Orlando Speedworld this week decided to take a break on Thursday. The sky was overcast, cold and dreary, but the racing at the Winternationals Legends and Bandoleros events was anything but dull.
Bassett Dominates Young Guns Feature
Ronnie Bassett, Jr. made it two in a row at Orlando Speedworld as he dominated the Young Guns Bandolero feature event. He went into the event tied in the points standings with fellow driver Ryan Glenski.
Brockhouse Finds Himself in the Right Place at the Right Time in Masters
The Masters Division feature event was one that included a lot of luck. Some of that luck was bad, but for others in the field, it was good.
The good luck was shown on Tim Brockhouse, who found that luck after a disappointing Wednesday feature. He was disqualified after finishing second on Wednesday, but this time he came home with the win.
“Today definitely went my way,” said Brockhouse. “I had some ball joints that I wasn’t supposed to have yesterday. It is just one of those things. It was an honest mistake. It wasn’t one of those deals where I was intentionally trying to cheat or anything.”
Brockhouse showed the way on the last lap for the Masters win.
Fittingly, those two finished up front in the heat race for the feature and were set to start side by side. That wouldn’t last too long though.
Once the race was underway, Bassett wasn’t planning on cutting this race as close as the two previous ones had been. He jumped out to a commanding lead that he held all the way to the checkered with Glenski following a few car lengths behind him.
“This is pretty cool,” said Bassett. “I just want to thank Ryan again for racing me clean at the start. We were able to get a good start at the beginning of the race and just go on to win from there.
“The guys on my team have given me a great car for this week. Now we are the points leader and hopefully we can keep that going for the rest of the week. We just have to finish in front of Ryan and keep our car in one piece”
And Brockhouse didn’t have too much to worry about. This time his car made it through the inspection without any problems and victory was his.
Third Time is the Charm For Stancill
John Stancill had finished second in both of the previous two Semi-Pro Legends features of Winternationals. But on Thursday, he wasn’t planning on having to settle for second-place for the third time. For Stancill, the third time was the charm that put him in victory lane.
“I won,” laughed Stancill. “I am very happy. This is my first win in Orlando. It feels different winning out here. I have been running up front ever since I got here. The Nick Pistone crew, they set me up with a really good car. They set it up and I just drive it.”
Stancill sure did show the field and the fans in the stands just how well he could drive it. He started on the pole and led the first lap and from then on he wasn’t going to let this one slip by him. He strung out a lead of several car lengths early in the feature and left the rest of the competitors to duke it out for the second position.
Going into this event, Stancill’s two second-place finishes already had him with the Winternationals points lead, but the win helped him out even more in extending that points lead over the rest of the Semi-Pro field.
“This definitely helps out in points,” added Stancill. “It extends our lead a little bit and that is what we came down here to do. We should be set pretty good in points for tomorrow.”
Senter Racing Tag-Teams Competition
"We always have fun like that racing side by side," said Senter. "I think he was a bit faster than me, but I do not think he would have passed me."
Senter complimented his teammate Britt.
"He races trucks up at Lanier National Speedway," said Senter. "He won the championship at Peach State last year in the trucks. He works for me on my Legends cars. He helps me a bunch and he wanted to just have some fun out here with me today.
"We do that all the time, racing side by side. It is fun with him."
Van Wingerden Wins Two In A Row
Four cars took to the track again Tuesday for the Thunder Roadsters feature race. Just like the previous night, it was a two-car race between Thomas Van Wingerden and Jesse Bunnell with Van Wingerden taking the checkered flag.
"He (Bunnell) was running real quick," said Van Wingerden. "We were both about the same speed. He just messed up in a corner one time and I was able to get underneath him and stay that way. It was a good run and it was fun."
It wasn't as easy as it sounded for Van Wingerden. On the white flag lap going into turn three, Bunnell got into Van Wingerden and spun him out. The officials decided to throw the yellow flag and reset the race with Bunnell in the back.
"That last lap was crazy," said Van Wingerden. "He ran in there, got me sideways and we spun out. We just had to redo it and hold off for the win."
Nick Stroupe Enters Victory Lane In Bandits
The always entertaining Bandolero Bandits put on another great show Thursday at Orlando, but it was Nick Stroupe starting from the pole position, leading every lap and winning.
It wasn't easy for Stroupe as a late-race restart put the win up for grabs. The field went into the third turn three wide, but Stroupe managed to squirt out ahead and take the win.
"The car was good there from the beginning," said Stroupe. "We had a caution there and on the restart I thought I was going to lose it. I was able to pull away from the other two and they never caught me again. That was a good race for us."
Stroupe had struggled with handling since he arrived in Florida. But a few changes to the car helped him win.
"My confidence went up a lot," said Stroupe. "I really wasn't liking this track very much, but now I do."
Paddy Rodenbeck Wins From The Pole
The Pro Division of Legends took to the track with Paddy Rodenbeck leading the field down to the green flag. Although both Brandon Thompson and Nick Pistone took their shots at Rodenbeck for the lead throughout the race, neither could catch the fast #129 machine as he led start to finish to win.
"That was a great car," said Rodenbeck. "I've got to hand it to my crew. I put this thing into the wall on Tuesday night - my fault. But we got it back together. I had some good racing out there with Brandon Thompson and Nick Pistone. They were both fighting me for the win."
Rodenbeck dedicated the race to a family member, who did not make the trip to Florida for Speedweeks.
"I would like to dedicate this win to my little sister," said Rodenbeck. "She is back at home."
Ronnie Bassett, Jr. has been hot in Bandolero Young Guns so far in Orlando. (51 Photos)
Britt beat out his teammate for the Chargers win.
Stroupe was all smiles in Bandits victory lane.
Rodenbeck found the checkered flag one night after crashing his #129.
Many drivers thought they were seeing double at the start of the Legends Chargers race, but their eyes were fine. The two identically painted Senter Racing cars occupied the front row, with RS Senter on the pole and Curt Britt starting next to him.
At the drop of the green flag, both cars took off and left the field. Matthew Stover tried to get into the mix, but slowed due to mechanical issues. That left Senter and Britt to battle side by side for many laps on the way to the finish. The last few laps were run doorhandle to doorhandle, but Senter was able to nose ahead for the win.