Outdoorsman Ward Cleans Up on the Dirt; Wins Laps for Muscular Dystrophy 125

No nose? No problem. Jeff Ward wrangled his dirt modified into Victory Lane on Tuesday night, capitalizing on the misfortune of two LPM Group teammates to score his second win of the PGRL season.

The Laps for Muscular Dystrophy 125, presented by Patriot Media & Marketing Services, got underway with three 10-lap heat races. Isaiah Dupre battled past Michael Whiting to take the checkered flag in Heat 1. With the win, Dupre won the Mahan Speed Laboratories You’re Pretty Good on Dirt Pole Award, earning the top starting spot for the feature.

Isaiah Dupre pulled a slider on Michael Whiting to take the lead and the win in Heat 1.

Jeff Ward shot the middle between Don Runkle Jr. and Rich Jette to take the lead in Heat 2 and held on to claim the second sprint of the night. Woody Mahan captured Heat 3, fending off a ferocious charge from Scott Eckrich, who had started on the back row.

Jeff Ward wasted no time getting to the front in his heat, going three wide on the opening lap and taking the top spot from Don Runkle Jr.
Scott Eckrich threw everything at him, but Woody Mahan went fast, didn’t die, and claimed the Heat 3 win.

Though Dupre began the feature from pole position, it was Jeff Ward who jumped out to the early lead. Ward held the top spot until lap 19, when Scott Eckrich put his familiar #70 out front. A fifth win for the Winternode team looked to be in sight, but contact with a lapped car a few laps before the competition caution sent Eckrich to the garage. The Illinois-based driver nicknamed “The Alien” was seen taking off in an unidentified flying object before his team even had a chance to unload its backup car. Eckrich, the points leader, ended the night scored in 17th position.

Jeff Ward, Scott Eckrich, and Woody Mahan dominated the race, the trio leading all 125 laps.

Jeff Ward reassumed the lead, and maintained control of the race through pit stops under the event’s only yellow. Woody Mahan stayed hot on his heels, and rode the cushion around Ward to grab the point on lap 69. Mahan appeared to be in position to win, but a loss of traction over the bumps in turn 2 handed first place back to Ward on lap 105. While Mahan tried valiantly to track Ward down again, contact from another car forced the #84 below the pit road commitment cone. Mahan had to serve a penalty, relegating him to 3rd position.

Woody Mahan shot the top around Jeff Ward, but the win slipped away for the #84 team with just 20 laps remaining.

Ward went on to claim the win, beating pole sitter Isaiah Dupre to the line by 9 seconds. Mahan earned the final spot on the podium. Thomas J. George and Norm Pelletier rounded out the top 5. With his clean race, worthy of a Hard Charger award, George continued to chip away at the points lead. The #2 Ford now sits only 13 points back from Scott Eckrich in the fight for the Season 1 championship.

Jeff Ward claimed his second win of the season.
Thomas George continued to gain ground in the points, closing the gap to Scott Eckrich.

The Pretty Good Racing League heads to Talladega Superspeedway for the *Chuckles* I’m in Danger 250 presented by MC² Editing Services on Tuesday, April 19. The Virtual Grip Network will have all the action covered live beginning at 8:50pm ET. Until then, don’t forget to catch the replay of the Bristol Dirt race at the link below. For every view by season’s end, Patriot Media and Marketing Services will donate $1 to Laps for Muscular Dystrophy.

Laps4MD raises funds for, and awareness of, Muscular Dystrophy – a group of genetic diseases that cause progressive muscle weakness and a loss of mobility. Laps4MD is racing towards a cure, supporting the fundraising efforts of Muscular Dystrophy Canada and the Muscular Dystrophy Association in the US. For more information, including how to donate yourself, please visit laps4md.blogspot.com, muscle.ca, and mda.org.

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