Thornton Jr Wins Monday Night at Bubba Raceway Park

Monday, February 1, 2021 at Bubba Raceway Park

Photo: Mike Ruefer

(Ocala, FL) – After starting in the tenth starting spot Ricky Thornton Jr drove to the front and picked up his first Lucas Oil Late Model Dirt Series win of the 2021 season. The start of Ricky’s run for Lucas Oil Rookie of the Year hasn’t been what he would have liked it to be. After struggles at East Bay last week he got the ship back in the right direction with his Ocala win.

Early on it was Brian Shirley who took the lead. Kyle Bronson and Mike Marlar battled in the top three in the early stages of the 40-lap event. 12 laps in is when the race started to get interesting. Jonathan Davenport took the lead from Shirley as they raced down the back straight away. Then it was Thornton Jr who started to reel in second place Shirley. Thornton and Shirley made contact down the back straight away and Shirley spun in front of the field. Luckily no one made contact with the 3S machine.

On the restart leader Jonathan Davenport slowed in turn one and cars piled up. This included Brandon Sheppard, defending series champ Jimmy Owens and Josh Richards. Thornton Jr was able to miss the incident and he would be the new leader as they approached halfway. New players had now put themselves in the mix as Hudson O’Neal was now runner up and Bobby Pierce had broke into the top 5.

Hudson O’Neal did not make the second half of this one easy for Thornton Jr as he stalked his back bumper and keep the pressure on. Thornton would hold on to win the event but had to survive a couple late race restarts from spins by Tyler Erb and Kyle Strickler. Mike Marlar, Hudson O’Neal, Devin Moran, and Brandon Overton all came home with top 5 finishes. This was Ricky Thornton Jr’s second career Lucas Oil series win. His first came last year at the Pittsburgher 100. Ricky leads the rookie of the year points early on in 2021.

The Lucas Oil Late Model Dirt Series will be in action again Tuesday night in Ocala to close out their 2021 Florida Speedweeks.

Race Statistics:

Sanction: Lucas Oil Late Model Dirt Series

Payout: $10,000 to win

Laps: 40

Car Count: 49

Overall Fast Qualifier: Kyle Bronson 13.587 seconds

Heat Winners: Brian Shirley, Mike Marlar, Kyle Bronson, Jonathan Davenport

B-Main Winners: Tyler Erb, Rick Eckert

Feature Winner: Ricky Thornton Jr

Expectant Entrants: Tyler Erb, Kyle Bronson, Shane Clanton, Jonathan Davenport, Zack Dohm, Tanner English, Dennis Erb Jr, Mike Marlar, Frank Heckenast Jr, Tony Jackson Jr, Tim McCredie, Devin Moran, Billy Moyer Jr, Hudson O’Neal, Brandon Overton, Jimmy Owens, Earl Pearson Jr, Josh Richards, Brandon Sheppard, Brian Shirley, Kyle Stickler, Ricky Thornton Jr, Mason Zeigler & more..

Feature Finish:

FinishStart#CompetitorHometown+/-
11020RTRicky Thornton JrAdel, IA9
23157Mike MarlarWinfield, TN1
3871Hudson O'NealMartinsville, IN5
4149Devin MoranDresden, OH10
51276Brandon OvertonEvans, GA7
615385Mark WhitenerMiddleburg, FL9
7240BKyle BronsonBrandon, FL-5
81132Bobby PierceOakwood, IL3
9781ETanner EnglishBenton, KY-2
101939Tim McCreadieWatertown, NY9
112516Tyler BrueningDecorah, IA14
122125Shane ClantonZebulon, GA9
13614Josh RichardsShinnston, WV-7
1451SBrandon SheppardNew Berlin, IL-9
152421Billy Moyer JrBatesville, AR9
16231Earl Pearson JrJacksonville, FL7
17449Jonathan DavenportBlairsville, GA-13
181328EDennis Erb JrCarpentersville, IL-5
19227RRoss RobinsonGeorgetown, DE3
202056JRTony Jackson JrLebanon, MO
21171TTyler ErbNew Waverly, TX-4
22268Kyle StricklerMooresville, NC4
232814BJohn BakerNorman Park, GA5
24180ERick EckertYork, PA-6
252799JRFrank Heckenast JrFrankfort, IL2
261633Jeff MathewsBrandon, FL-10
2713SBrian ShirleyChatham, IL-26
28920Jimmy OwensNewport, TN-19

Feature Lineup: (40 Laps)

FeatureInsideOutside
Row 1Brian ShirleyKyle Bronson
Row 2Mike MarlarJonathan Davenport
Row 3Brandon SheppardJosh Richards
Row 4Tanner EnglishHudson O’Neal
Row 5Jimmy OwensRicky Thornton Jr
Row 6Bobby PierceBrandon Overton
Row 7Dennis Erb JrDevin Moran
Row 8Mark WhitenerJeff Matthews
Row 9Tyler ErbRick Eckert
Row 10Tim McCreadieTony Jackson Jr
Row 11Shane ClantonRoss Robinson
Row 12Earl Pearson JrBilly Moyer Jr

B-Main Results: (Top 3 transfer)

B-Main 1: Tyler Erb, Tim McCreadie, Shane Clanton, Kyle Strickler, Dan Stone

B-Main 2: Rick Eckert, Tony Jackson Jr, Ross Robinson, Earl Pearson Jr, Tyler Bruening

B-Main Lineups: (Top 3 transfer)

B-Main 1InsideOutside
Row 1Tyler ErbTim McCreadie
Row 2Frank Heckenast JrShane Clanton
Row 3Dan StoneBilly Moyer Jr
Row 4Kyle StricklerSpencer Hughes
Row 5John BakerBlair Nothdurft
Row 6Doug DrownStewart Friesen
Row 7Clay HarrisJadon Frame
Row 8Jeff RothDanny Snyder
Row 9Joe Godsey 
B-Main 2InsideOutside
Row 1Ross RobinsonRick Eckert
Row 2Tyler BrueningTony Jackson Jr
Row 3Earl Pearson JrBlake Spencer
Row 4Devin DixonMatt Cosner
Row 5Todd BrennanRyan King
Row 6Colton FlinnerStormy Scott
Row 7Johnny ScottJoe Denby
Row 8Jimmy Sharpe JrChris Nash

Heat Race Results: (Top 4 Transfer)

Heat 1: Brian Shirley, Brandon Sheppard, Jimmy Owens, Dennis Erb Jr, Tyler Erb, Frank Heckenast Jr, Dan Stone, Kyle Strickler, John Baker, Doug Drown

Heat 2: Mike Marlar, Tanner English, Bobby Pierce, Mark Whitener, Tim McCreadie, Shane Clanton, Billy Moyer Jr, Spencer Hughes, Blair Nothdurft, Stewart Friesen

Heat 3: Kyle Bronson, Josh Richards, Ricky Thornton Jr, Devin Moran, Ross Robinson, Tyler Bruening, Earl Pearson Jr, Devin Dixon, Todd Brennan, Colton Flinner

Heat 4: Jonathan Davenport, Hudson O’Neal, Brandon Overton, Jeff Matthews, Rick Eckert, Tony Jackson Jr, Blake Spencer, Matt Cosner, Ryan King, Stormy Scott

Heat Race Lineups: (Top 4 Transfer)

Heat 1InsideOutside
Row 1Brian ShirleyJimmy Owens
Row 2Brandon SheppardDennis Erb Jr
Row 3Dan StoneFrank Heckenast Jr
Row 4Tyler ErbJohn Baker
Row 5Kyle StricklerJoe Godsey
Row 6Doug DrownClay Harris
Row 7Jeff Roth 
Heat 2InsideOutside
Row 1Mike MarlarTanner English
Row 2Mark WhitenerBobby Pierce
Row 3Tim McCreadieBilly Moyer Jr
Row 4Shane ClantonStewart Friesen
Row 5Spencer HughesJadon Frame
Row 6Blaie NothdurftDanny Snyder
Row 7  
Heat 3InsideOutside
Row 1Kyle BronsonRicky Thornton Jr
Row 2Josh RichardsDevin Dixon
Row 3Ross RobinsonDevin Moran
Row 4Tyler BrueningColton Flinner
Row 5Todd BrennanJohnny Scott
Row 6Earl Pearson JrJimmy Sharpe Jr
Row 7  
Heat 4InsideOutside
Row 1Jonathan DavenportHudson )’Neal
Row 2Brandon OvertonJeff Matthews
Row 3Tony Jackson JrRick Eckert
Row 4Blake SpencerStormy Scott
Row 5Matt CosnerJoe Denby
Row 6Ryan KingChris Nash
Row 7  

Group A Qualifying Results:

Finish#CompetitorHometownTime
13SBrian ShirleyChatham, IL13.59
2157Mike MarlarWinfield, TN13.69
320Jimmy OwensNewport, TN13.7
481ETanner EnglishBenton, KY13.7
51SBrandon SheppardNew Berlin, IL13.7
6385Mark WhitenerMiddleburg, FL13.75
728EDennis Erb JrCarpentersville, IL13.82
832Bobby PierceOakwood, IL13.86
92DDan StoneThompson, PA13.87
1039Tim McCreadieWatertown, NY13.94
1199JRFrank Heckenast JrFrankfort, IL13.95
1221Billy Moyer JrBatesville, AR14.05
131TTyler ErbNew Waverly, TX14.06
1425Shane ClantonZebulon, GA14.08
1514BJohn BakerNorman Park, GA14.1
1644Stewart FriesenSprakers, NY14.13
178Kyle StricklerMooresville, NC14.17
1811HSpencer HughesMeridian, MS14.19
1914GJoe GodseyEdinburgh, IN14.24
20J8Jadon FrameWinchester, TN14.27
2112Doug DrownWooster, OH14.28
2276BBlair NothdurftRenner, SD14.41
236HClay HarrisJupiter, FL14.5
244SDanny SnyderGreen Lane, PA14.91
2514RJeff RothBentonville, AR15.07

Group B Qualifying Results:

Finish#CompetitorHometownTime
140BKyle BronsonBrandon, FL13.587
249Jonathan DavenportBlairsville, GA13.588
320RTRicky Thornton JrAdel, IA13.733
471Hudson O'NealMartinsville, IN13.768
514Josh RichardsShinnston, WV13.816
676Brandon OvertonEvans, GA13.912
72XDevin DixonApollo Beach, FL13.928
833Jeff MathewsBrandon, FL14.031
97RRoss RobinsonGeorgetown, DE14.041
1056JRTony Jackson JrLebanon, MO14.05
119Devin MoranDresden, OH14.072
120ERick EckertYork, PA14.098
1316Tyler BrueningDecorah, IA14.122
146SBlake SpencerSt Augustine, FL14.129
1548Colton FlinnerAllison Park, PA14.144
162SStormy ScottLas Cruces, NM14.206
1720BTodd BrennanZanesville, OH14.23
1866CMatt CosnerRidgeley, WV14.427
191STJohnny ScottLas Cruces, NM14.451
2027JJoe DenbyWinchester, TN14.492
211Earl Pearson JrJacksonville, FL14.631
221GRyan KingSeymour, TN14.677
2326JRJimmy Sharpe JrLyons, GA15.33
24354Chris NashWhite Pigeon, MI16.001

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