Despite falling short to World of Outlaws Craftsman Late Model Series 2017 Rookie of the Year Devin Moran at last weekend’s Prairie Dirt Classic, defending series champion Brandon Sheppard was back on top last night at Plymouth Dirt Track in Plymouth, WI.
During the first leg of the World of Outlaws Craftsman Late Model Series current tour through Wisconsin dirt tracks, Sheppard and his fellow competitors put on one heck of a show for the first time at the 1/3-mile located at Sheboygan County Fair Park, located east of Fond du Lac in Plymouth, WI.
Monday night’s 50-lap Wisconsin Refrigerated 50 began with the No. 91 of Tyler Erb leading the way alongside the No. 20 of Jimmy Owens and No. 1 of the Rocket Brandon Sheppard. Erb beat Owens to the first corner to set the pace as Sheppard, who started right behind Erb in third, was also able to slip past Owens to take the second spot. Within five laps, Sheppard began to prove that he and his dirt racing rocket would be the team to beat as he took the lead and began the same type of battle that he experienced at Fairbury American Legion Speedway last weekend, after pole sitter Tyler Erb was forced to relegate second place to Prairie Dirt Classic feature winner Devin Moran.
Hot off his recent $30,000 payday, Moran wasted no time in reeling in his former nemesis. Regardless of the driver of the No. 9’s efforts to repeat his recent legendary win, Sheppard was able to maintain the top spot utilizing lapped traffic to his advantage to score his ninth Feature win of the season and 33rd of his Outlaws career.
“It was a fun race, but the track was really bottom dominant and that made lapped traffic really tricky. I knew three and four were decent on top, but I wasn’t too sure about going up there and trying to pass lapped cars, since this track is new to both me and my team,” said Sheppard. “When you are racing against this type of competition, though, you have got to be on your game all the time. It is always good to gain a few points, but at the end of the day, as long as we are winning races we are happy.”
This victory moves Sheppard within four Feature Wins of fifth place on the all-time wins list, currently held by 2011 series champion Rick Eckert, who has 37. Additionally, Sheppard was 60 points out of the points lead and 38 markers behind second coming into the night. After this victory, the Rocket 1 Racing driver was able to cut both disadvantages down to 44 out of first and 30 out of second spot in his own personal bid to repeat as series champion and give his team their third consecutive title.
Sheppard, Moran and all their fellow competitors are now making the 110-mile drive northwest to the big ½-mile of Shawano Speedway, located west of Green Bay in Shawano, WI for the $10,000 to win Sundrop Shootout tonight. Three-time series champion Darrell Lanigan leads all drivers with three wins at the sprawling ½-mile, while 2015 series champion Shane Clanton has two, with the latest coming in 2016. Eckert, Gregg Satterlee (another three-time series champion), Billy Moyer and Rick Egerstorf have won at Shawano as well, with Egerstorf’s win coming in the first ever appearance at Shawano back in 1989, while Moyer’s victory was in the Outlaws triumphant return to the track in 2010.
Stay tuned to RacingJunk.com for all of your World of Outlaws Craftsman Late Model Series 2018 racing action.