FONDA - Experience paid off for Tim McCreadie on Wednesday night at Fonda Speedway.
McCreadie has a pair of big block modified wins at the Track of Champions and now he can add a third feature win to the list, only this time it came in a late model.
The Watertown native received a positive redraw and started on the pole for the 50-lap main event. He wasted little time getting to the front and led green-to-checkers to cash in on a $10,650 payday.
Tim?McCreadie celebrates in Victory Lane after winning the 50-lap World of Outlaws Late Models A-main on Wednesday at Fonda Speedway. (The Leader-Herald/James A. Ellis)
"I think in the race [experience] mattered a lot," McCreadie said in Victory Lane. "In qualifying or a heat race it doesn't really matter. Just knowing that if I stayed low down the straightaways I could get a good launch. On most modified tracks if you stay low you are going to get some traction. I know to stay low here on my entry, roll up in the middle and try to diamond off. That probably helped me a little bit."
Fort Plain's Jeremy Wilder joined McCreadie with a victory Wednesday as he also turned a front row starting spot into a win in the companion 30-lap, $3,000-to-win modified feature.
McCreadie time-trialed ninth fastest of the 23 late models with a lap of 19.725, well off the fast lap of 18.784 set by Rick Eckert.
The 39-year-old driver battled to a runner-up finish in his heat race to earn a spot among the six drivers to redraw on Victory Lane in front of a packed grandstand.
Young Cole Nelson from the town of Florida was selected by McCreadie to draw for the starting spot, and he leaped into the air as he handed him the pole position.
McCreadie did the rest.
Dan Stone started alongside McCreadie's Sweetners Plus No. 39 on the front row but could not beat him into the first turn. Billy Decker hooked up with McCreadie and Stone as they pulled away from a second pack of contenders that included Eric Wells, Eckert, Shane Clanton and Chub Frank.
"Knowing where to be on the track helped," McCreadie said. "You have to go either way out or way down and with the tire compound we had on we couldn't really get way out there because they [the tires] were a little too hard for that. We just stayed patient. If I was in traffic or behind the leader I don't know if I would have been as patient."
With the race running under the green, McCreadie picked his spots as the leaders made their way through lapped traffic.
However, McCreadie couldn't relax in the lead.
"Any time you see the flash from the camera guys taking pictures it usually means somebody is close," he said. "So I figure they may have gotten close a couple of times. But I was kind of stuck in the middle to bottom groove. I moved up early but it didn't seem to be as good there. So I stayed where I got good traction and didn't spin the tires."
At the finish, McCreadie held a .994-second advantage over Stone for his third series win of the season. Decker, who has two big block wins at Fonda Speedway, placed third in his first late model start of the season.
"This is a new car and tonight was a step in the right direction," Decker said. "We finished third, and I still think we are solid. We are going to run the next three races, and if we are having fun maybe we will run a little more this year."
Wells placed fourth and Eckert closed out the top five. Clanton, Frank, Bub McCool, Clint Smith and Josh Richards, who came into the race leading the series in points, placed 10th.
Wilder also benefitted from a 12-driver redraw as he was the sixth driver to pick and pulled the pole alongside Keith Flach. Danny Varin and Darwin Greene made up the second row.
Varin followed Wilder through turns one and two and came away with the runner-up spot.
The caution flew on the second lap as contact between Josh Hohenforst and Matt DeLorenzo sent the cars scattering in turn four.
Wilder held off a challenge by Varin on the restart and began to pull away when the caution flew for a second time on lap 12 when Mike Mahaney, who was running just outside the top 10, came to a stop in turn two.
Varin and Flach stayed close to Wilder on the restart, but with a clear track in front of him, Wilder developed a rhythm running a high line against the wall in turns one and two to pull away to a straightaway advantage to claim his second career modified checkers.
Varin held off Flach for second, with Elmo Reckner and DeLorenzo recovering from the early-race caution to finish fifth.
Pat Ward, Ronnie Johnson, Jim Davis, Brian Gleason and Jeff Trombley completed the top 10.
Racing returns to Fonda Speedway on Saturday with a regular race program on student night.
World of Outlaws Late Model Series A-Main
1. Tim McCreadie, 2. Dan Stone, 3. Billy Decker, 4. Eric Wells, 5. Rick Eckert, 6. Shane Clanton, 7. Chub Frank, 8. Bub McCool, 9. Clint Smith, 10. Josh Richards, 11. Morgan Bagley, 12. Tim Fuller, 13. Vic Coffey, 14. Darrell Lanigan, 15. Rick 'Boom' Briggs, 16. Andy Haus, 17. John Mason, 18. Dave Zona, 19. Jon Rohacevich, 20. Larry Wight, 21. Ronnie Johnson, 22. Greg Oakes, 23. Alan Sagi, 24. Gil Tegg Jr.
1. Jeremy Wilder, 2. Danny Varin, 3. Keith Flach, 4. Elmo Reckner, 5. Matt DeLorenzo, 6. Pat Ward, 7. Ronnie Johnson, 8. Jim Davis, 9. Brian Gleason, 10. Jeff Trombley, 11. JaMike Sowle, 12. Josh Hohenforst, 13. Mike Mahaney, 14. Darwin Greene, 15. Jeff Rockefeller, 16. Jeremy Pitts, 17. Justin Boehler, 18. C.G. Morey, 19. Josh Flint, 20. Aaron Jacobs, 21. Mark Mortensen, 22. Eric Stumpf, 23. Craig Hanson, 24. Mark Kislowski.