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Webster Races Way To OWM Victory

Citrus County Speedway
Daniel Webster celebrates in victory lane after winning the Open Wheel Modified 50 Saturday night at Citrus County Speedway. TYLER SONTAG/SPEED RACER

Webster Races Way To OWM Victory

Citrus County Speedway

Kimberly Kelly
For the Chronicle

After a week of Legends Cars the focus turned to local stock car action at Citrus County Speedway Saturday night.

The Open Wheel Modifieds highlighted the night with 50 laps of grueling and intense race action throughout the 15-car field. When the battles ended and the checkered flag was thrown, Daniel Webster was the winner.

“Anyone that follows me on facebook knows how rough it’s been lately,” said Daniel Webster. “We’ve shown so much speed, but tonight was the fifth race in a row that I led laps in. And the previous four we did not finish. It feels good to finally get the monkey off our back.”

The race was only his second in the Open Wheel Modified in 10 years, and his first ever win in the division. And it was reminiscent of races long ago.

Webster came from inside the third row and quickly set his sights on early race leader James Ellis. By lap No. 13 he was on his rear deck lid. He only held on to second for a pair of laps before he slid out of the fourth turn and allowed Brad Bowman to get under him.

Once clear of Webster, Bowman moved up to contend with Ellis. First he went high, then low, and then Bowman nailed Ellis’ No. 22 in the rear. On the next lap Bowman attempted to make a pass as they drove in the first turn when Ellis pinched off Bowman’s No. 2. The attempt to keep Bowman from making a pass was enough for Ellis’ car to spin and bring out the caution.

With both Ellis and Bowman relegated to the rear for the restart, Webster claimed the front row alongside of Richie Smith.

“It was a blast for me.” Webster said. “Richie and I we go back all the way back to 2001-2002 racing hobby stocks together and street stocks. I drove his sportsman in ‘07, he drove my dads’ late model in ’08.”

The two would find themselves battling for the lead two more times before the end of 50 laps.

“We go way back so it was really fun to battle it out with him,” Webster said. “And it really feels good to be back in front of my home crowd.”

Smith followed Webster to the line in second. Ellis drove from the rear of the field to finish third. Jesse Henley and Roger Blevins rounded out the top five, respectively.

Kleav Lewis took his first Pure Stock 25 win of the season after coming off the pole and leading a 12-car field all the way to the finish. Behind Lewis included a four-car run between Casey Rounds, Craig Cuzzone, James Peters and Tommy Schnader. In that contest, Peters was able to use the inside lane to drive his way to second. Rounds held off Schaders’ multiple attempts to finish third. Cuzzone drifted back to finish fifth.

Thomas Peet powered through a 17-car field to win the Anything Automotive Mini Stock 25. Peet started inside the seventh row and made his way to the front on lap 18 after a four-lap battle with Robert Anthony. Once out front, Peet drove to a 1.245 second advantage over eventual second place finisher Anthony who was later disqualified from the finishing order for being too light in the mandatory post-race technical inspection. Eric Sharrone dove under Justin Pit on the final lap to finish second. Early race leader Keith Zavrel was fourth, Gary Holliman Jr. fifth.

Sharrone topped the Street Stock 25 after early race leader AJ Waller slid out of the fourth turn and opened the bottom lane for Sharrone to make the pass for the lead just after the half-way mark. Once out front, Sharrone was able to drive off to a 3-second advantage over Geoffrey Blotz, Waller, Jared Stokes, and Paul Fletcher.

In his third event of the night, Sharrone was able to maneuver and squeeze his way through the intersection to win the Ford Outlaw Figure 8. Shawn Senokossoff set the early pace for three laps before Jared Meyer took control. Six laps later Sharrone was out front and threading his way through the intersection, narrowly missing slower and lapped traffic as he drove his way to the win. Rounding out the top five included Neil Herne in second, Meyer third, Senokossoff fourth, and Michael Autenrieth fifth.

The Wheel Man Series returns Saturday, February 29 with 50 laps of action. Included in the night’s race card is the Pure Stock 25, Anything Automotive Mini Stock 25, Modified Mini 25, and the Ford Outlaw Figure 8. Citrus County Speedway will not be any races Saturday, February 22.

Kimberly Kelly covers race action at Citrus County Speedway. This story first appeared in the Citrus County Chronicle Tuesday, February 18, 2020.

Citrus County Speedway
Official Results

Saturday, February 15, 2020

Pure Stock 25
4 Kleav Lewis
5 James Peters*
AK47 Casey Rounds
91 Tommy Schnader*
888 Craig Cuzzone
M16 Wesley Rounds
00s Billy Smith
45 James Johnston
65 Happy Florian
82 Danny Maddox
94 Sport Wilson
8 Dakota Dinkins
DIVISION STATS: 12 cars. 25 laps. Margin of Victory: 1.302 seconds. Avg. Speed: 55.683 mph. Best Lap by 5 James Peters, 15.793 sec., 56.987 mph. DISQUALIFICATIONS: none. *Heat Race Winner

Anything Automotive Mini Stock 25
21s Eric Sharrone*
1 Geoffrey Blotz
8 AJ Waller
52 Gary Holliman Sr.*
98 Chris Larson
60x Richard Henick
78 Mike Ledford
35x Neil Herne
15 Brian Potvin
88 Jason Simons
35 Brayden Boardman
4 John Murphy
10 Gregory Dick
DIVISION STATS: 17 cars. 25 laps. Margin of Victory: 1.245 sec. Avg. Speed 17.226 mph. Best Lap by: 5 Thomas Peet, 16.726 sec., 53.808 mph. DISQUALIFICATIONS: 51 Robert Anthony, too light in post-technical inspection. *Heat Race Winner.

Outlaw Street Stocks
21s Eric Sharrone
1 Geoffrey Blotz*
8 AJ Waller
52 Jared Stokes
74 Paul Fletcher
07 Jeff Prescott
06 Josh Wise
38 Sal DeFranco
2 Zack Heimann
DIVISION STATS: 9 cars. 25 laps. Margin of Victory: 3.070 sec. Avg. Speed: 59.157 mph. Best Lap by 21s Eric Sharrone, 14.855 sec., 60.586 mph. DISQUALIFICATIONS: None. *Heat Race Winner.

Ford Outlaw Figure 8
59 Eric Sharrone
13 Neil Herne*
42 Jared Meyer
21 Shawn Senokossoff
32 Michael Autenrieth
15 Justin Pittman
18 James Beach
48 Dora Thorne
551 Jesse Veltman
1x Mark Cooper
88 Joe Brooks
6 Thomas Peet
DIVISION STATS: 12 cars. 20 laps. DISQUALIFICATIONS: none. *Heat Race Winner.

Sunoco Race Fuels Open Wheel Modified 50
54 Daniel Webster (Qualifying Position: p3. Qualifying Time: 13.943 sec., 64.549 mph )
42 Richie Smith (p4, 14.024 sec., 64.176 mph)
22 James Ellis (p7. 14.185 sec. 63.447 mph)
421 Jesse Henley (p2. 13.942, 64.553 mph)
1 Roger Blevins (p8, 14.230 sec., 63.247 mph)
03 Kyle Bookmiller (p9, 14.271 sec., 63.065 mph)
84 Ricky Anderson (p6, 14.110 sec., 63.785 mph)
101 Jason Swilley (p 11, 14.308 sec., 62.902 mph)
43 Steve Hise (p10, 14.287 sec., 62.994 mph)
27 Kipp McVey (p13, 14.704 sec., 61.208 mph)
78 Cory Lane (p14, 14.710 sec., 61.183 mph)
2 Brad Bowman (p1, 13.918 sec., 64.664 mph)*
0 Troy Robinson (p5, 14.030 sec., 64.148 mph)
16m Patrick Mennenga (p12, 14.408 sec., 62.465 mph)
5 Chris Graernea (failed to qualify)
DIVISION STATS: 15 cars. 50 laps. Margin of Victory: 01.455 sec. Avg. Speed: 20.219 mph. Best Lap by: 421 Jesse Henley, 14.021 sec., 64.189 mph. DISQUALIFICATIONS: none. *Fast Qualifier.