Massey, Battles Keith Hackney and James Murphy for Stock Car Win

February 18th 2024, Words by Danny Krueger; Photos by James & Jared Murphy, Thomas Levister, AJ Hunsinger

The battle between Jamie Massey and James Murphy continues at Lernerville as the LoO IMCA Style Stock Cars for the ESD Performance 30. With each driver winning their heat race, they sat on the front row for the feature. James Murphy had the early advantage but Massey would come through with the win at the conclusion of the 30 lap event.

Rod Tucker (#912), made his first League of Outlaws start from the from the pole position for heat race 1. He would lead the opening lap before James Murphy would pass him on lap 2 in route to a heat race victory. There was some great racing throughout the field. Sliders, crossovers, door banging, everything you would hope for right out of the gate for the night. The race went caution free with Murphy taking the win, Chris Cox 2nd, Tucker 3rd, Christian White 4th, Thomas Levister 5th, Jared Murphy 6th, Hunsinger 7th, and Matt Taghon 8th.

Heat race number 2 would have Taylor Wineland and Jamie Massey on the front row. Massey, would quickly take the top spot. On lap 2, Keith Hackney would throw a slider heading into turns 3 & 4 on Robert Floyd causing a stack up of cars behind them with drivers finding themselves 4 wide off of turn 4. The 4 cars made contact, resulting in the #25 of Coltin Ghumm sideways with the front bumper of Jordan Lafon at his driver door.

Green flag back out with Jamie Massey in the lead but that wouldn’t last long with Keith Hackney doing some amazing driving to make several passes for the lead with sliders and crossovers. In the end, it would be Massie holding off Hackney for the race win, Hackney 2nd, Windland 3rd, Floyd 4th, Pridgen 5th, Lafon 6th, Doyle 7th, and Ghumm 8th.

Feature race time, Murphy on the pole, Massey outside pole. There was contact on lap 1 between a few drivers in turns 1 & 2, but everyone gathered it up and kept on racing. Murphy jumped out to the early lead but Massey would not let him get too far ahead as he was within striking distance of Murphy. Massey struck early with a slider in turns 3 & 4 for the lead. Murphy tried battling back on the inside but could not pass Massey back. Taylor Windeland, would have a great run early on as he put the pressure on Murphy for 2nd place.

On lap 11, our first yellow flag would fly as Jared Murphy made contact with the left rear of Lafon, sending Lafon around in the middle of turns 1 & 2. Trevor Doyle, had nowhere to go and hit the rear end of Lafon, spinning Lafon the rest of the way around.

Green flag back out and off of turn 2, a massive battle for 2nd place would ensue as Murphy, Chris Cox, and Wineland would slug it out 3 wide. Heavy contact was made down the backstretch, causing Murphy and Wineland to get a bit sideways going into turn 3. With a very bad angle going into corner entry, Windeland would push up the track into Tucker causing Wineland to half spin out. With his car sideways and slow, Matt Taghon coming in quickly on the bottom would run into the side of Wineland, sending Taghon up the track in a spin, and allowing for our 2nd caution flag of the night to wave. This would end a great run for Taylor Wineland as he would be sent to the rear of the field for being involved in the wreck.

The first few laps after the restart, Chris Cox would get freight trained as cars were making their way around on the top side of the track. Finally a gap would open up behind Floyd in 5th place so Cox would slide up into the high groove on the front straightaway. Hunsinger, had a great run off the top side and went for a slider in turns 1 & 2 but couldn’t quite clear it. Slight contact was made with Hunsinger and Cox and Cox would slide off the top of the track in turn 2. Hunsinger would claim the 6th spot for the time being after starting back in 13th after a poor heat race finish. Cox would re-enter the track in 14th.

With just 6 laps remaining, Doyle would full send it on the top side of turn 3 but a couple slower cars battling each other ahead, Doyle made contact with Wineland sending himself and Wineland around for our 3rd caution of the night. On the restart, Hackney would find his way back up towards the front and battled for 2nd place with James Murphy. Hackney would complete the pass for 2nd and begin running down Massey for the race win.

Just 2 laps remaining, some contact with drivers in 5th, 6th, and 7th would cause Hunsinger to go for a wild spin at the end of the backstretch as Hunsinger made a move low to try and regain the 5th position from the #144 of Lafon, but Jared Murphy had a nose under Hunsinger and Hunsinger would spin heading into turn 3. After Hunsinger slid to a stop after a long slide, Wineland would come in and not be able to check up in time and would make hard contact with the #33A of Hunsinger. This would send Hunsinger pitside for repairs.

Green flag back out, one last chance for Hackney to make a pass for the win but would come up short as Massey would hold off the win, his teammate Keith Hackney 2nd, James Murphy 3rd, Jordan Lafon 4th, and Rob Floyd rounding out the top 5.

Full Results

National Points Standings

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