2022 Rumble by the river in Port Royal


Lucas Oil veteran Earl Pearson Jr. snapped a two-year losing streak by winning the Rumble by the River in Port Royal.

As a step

2022 Rumble by the river (Lucas Oil Late Model Dirt Series)
Where: Port Royal Speedway – Port Royal, Pennsylvania (aired by Flo Racing)
Winner’s bag: $50,000 (Saturday)

Earl Pearson Jr. is a four-time LOLMDS champion, but on Saturday night (Aug 27) the driver nicknamed “The Hurricane” wound up taking his first win in 114 starts. Pearson persevered, withstanding no fewer than three banzai attacks from last year’s Rookie of the Year Ricky Thornton Jr.

Thornton, who led the first eight laps of the feature after starting on the outside pole, passed Thornton with nine laps to go as Pearson battled past Tyler Erb. The two traded moves, with Pearson holding the lead until the feature’s only caution flew on lap 46 when Erb slowed into Turn 4.

The caution sparked a five-lap shootout in which Thornton threw several sliders at Pearson that didn’t stick, leaving Pearson to score the race win. As Thornton explained after the race, the yellow didn’t help his car’s handling as he tried to make a race-winning pass.

Brandon Sheppard and Jonathan Davenport won the preliminary showings on Friday.

The points race in LOLMDS remained largely deadlocked, with Sheppard making up some ground on leader Tim McCreadie, finishing ninth to McCreadie’s 11th on Saturday night. Preliminary showings on Friday did not count towards series points.

Success stories

One more note about Pearson Jr. Port Royal was a fitting place for his losing streak to end, as he was in contention for victory the last time the LOLMDS were at the Palace of Speed ​​in April, only to fall victim to an incident with Kyle Larson.

Clements, MD Dale Hollidge he stole the first heat race from Sheppard on Saturday on the final lap with a stellar low-side pass that earned him a surprising pole position for the Rumble by the River feature.

It was not a duplicate victory. Gregg Satterlee scored with the LOLMDS tour in April, but nonetheless, a third-place finish for the driver nicknamed “the Truth” was a strong showing for a driver who has proven to be one of the strongest regional champions in super late-model racing this season.

Current Port Royal Speedway points leader colton flinner he had to rely on the provisional of a promoter to start the Rumble by the River function. But he made the most of it, earning hard charger honors by improving from 25th to 15th in the 50 laps.

Annoyers, Villains and Victims

spencer hughes he ended up having to withdraw from preliminary action on Friday night after bending the front of his car during fast laps, and then suffered a mechanical failure in his backup car during qualifying. The resulting workload kept his team on the track until 4am on Saturday, where they were able to get their car repaired, but were still forced to take a temporary LOLMDS to start the Rumble by the River feature. Hughes finished the lead lap in 19th place.

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Current candidate LOLMDS ROTY ross-robinson he also had to rely on an interim series to start the Rumble by the River feature after starting both his heat run as B-main in one transfer spot, only to miss out on transfer in both races by one position.

It may seem hard to include Shepherd in this section, but despite a win in Friday night’s preliminary feature, falling to ninth in Saturday’s running order minimized the ground Sheppard regained over McCreadie in the battle for the series points crown. . McCreadie’s No. 39 team was surprisingly off the mark this weekend, making Sheppard’s result a missed opportunity.

young pennsylvania drake troutman he broke just a handful of laps in Saturday’s modified feature while running third.

NASCAR Regulars

Former Cup Series regular David Stremme he won his heat races in the Mid-Atlantic Modified Series support class on both Friday and Saturday nights, including a win over the nation’s top modified driver in Nick Hoffman on Friday. He led laps in the feature en route to finishing third, but had to be disappointed after sliding hard going into the ladies.

fanning the flames

Watching Thornton Jr. pass Davenport under green during Saturday’s second heat race was the happiest thing I remember seeing the late models. Not because I am for Thornton or against Davenport, but because hopefully, that demo should put to rest any notions of horrible topless recent models that are necessary to put the competition to sleep.

It was a good weekend to be associated with the Clements family. 24 hours after Jeremy Clements, a former late-model dirt driver, scored an unlikely victory in the NASCAR Xfinity Series at Daytona, an engine his father built powered Pearson Jr. to victory Saturday night.

Social media was awfully quiet during the Rumble by the River, and there really wasn’t much controversy to note over the weekend. That’s largely a credit both to Flo Racing for ridding LOLMDS viewers of the constant technical difficulties of the previous MAVTV Plus platform, and to Port Royal Speedway itself. Every weekend, they remind dirt racing why their track is now in the conversation with Knoxville and Eldora Raceway as the best in the country.

If there was something to be angry about, it was the only precaution that interrupted the late-model show Saturday night when Erb slowed down, ran the yellow light, and immediately picked up the throttle as he drove to the work area for what appeared to be a tune-up (all four tires on his car were up) .

Erb, who finished 17th in Saturday’s race, was already off the lead lap when he brought out the caution. I don’t blame LOLMDS officials here, because dirt cars only have one-way spokes, which means a slow car on the track really needs to wave the caution flag. but it seems there has to be a more serious consequence for drawing a yellow, especially if the race car is not actually disabled. At least one racing fan noticed this fact.

That said, I can’t support a points review that stops awarding points going back on the field.. It might sound great on paper for the lagging cars to be off the track in the final laps so they don’t get cautioned, but that also means there’s no incentive for the cars in the middle of the field to stay on track. It would be a big mistake if there was no lap traffic to make the race leaders work harder and make it easier to pass. I’m more inclined to suggest that if a car has a problem big enough to get a yellow, it needs to lose a lap.

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Since most of the student-age people are imminently going back to school (if they haven’t already), let the great broadcaster James Essex be a lesson to you… Flash cards are a surefire route to success.

numbers game


Super late models entered for Rumble by the River weekend.


Davenport’s streak of consecutive featured race laps was snapped in Friday night’s second preliminary showing.


Pay to start Saturday’s Rumble by the River feature.

Where it was rated (on a scale of one to six cans with one stinky and one six pack an instant classic): We will give the Rumble by the River four Yuenglings. The final lap battle between Thornton and Pearson was really good, but the middle of the show was delayed and the stories of the underdogs in the field quickly disappeared. The night went from three and a half to four cans after the insane finale to the modified feature.

Until next time: Over the course of three nights, the Skagit Nationals will pay $45,000 to win the World of Outlaws speed cars, so thinking dirty will head to the Pacific Northwest for Labor Day weekend. Coverage can be found at DirtVision.

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