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Home-state driver Payton Looney captures 28th annual Show-Me 100

Show-Me 100
Payton Looney celebrates with son Baylor after capturing Saturday night’s Show-Me 100 at Lucas Oil Speedway. (GS Stanek Racing Photography)

Home-state driver Payton Looney dominates in capturing Show-Me 100 at Lucas Oil Speedway

By: Lyndal Scranton

WHEATLAND, Mo. (July 18, 2020) – Driving a race for the ages, Payton Looney etched his name into exclusive dirt-track company Saturday night at Lucas Oil Speedway.

Looney, a 26-year-old from Republic, became only the second Missouri driver to win the Show-Me 100 Presented by ProtecttheHarvest.com with a flawless performance in the 28th annual edition of the event.

Payton Looney (15) passes Shannon Buckingham (50) for the lead on lap 21 of the Show-Me 100 Presented by ProtecttheHarvest.com Saturday night at Lucas Oil Speedway. (GS Stanek Racing Photography)

Looney led 87 of the 100 laps, beating Kyle Strickler of Mooresville, North Carolina, by 1.677 seconds for the biggest win of his career. It was his fourth win the last six outings for the Lucas Oil MLRA points leader, but clearly the most-impactful.

“No, not really,” Looney said in victory lane, when asked if he could believe what just happened. “I changed my mind-set a lot this year. I put a lot of pressure on myself the past couple of years. I just realized that the sun’s coming up tomorrow.

“I have a beautiful wife and kids. There’s always more races. I’m just thankful to win this one.”

Prior to Saturday night, Springfield’s Terry Phillips in 1999 was the only Missouri driver to win the state’s biggest dirt-track race.

There were 48 entries representing 19 states for the race, postponed from its planned three-day event in May due to the COVID-19 pandemic. But it was Looney, in a star-studded field, who emerged with the $20,000 triumph.

The Lucas Oil Late Model Dirt Series and Lucas Oil MLRA again will be in action on Sunday night with the $12,000-to-win 14th annual CMH Diamond Nationals Presented by Super Clean.

Looney outraced fellow front-row starter Shannon Buckingham at the drop of the green and paced the first seven laps, when Buckingham went past for the lead going down the backstretch.

Buckingham led until Looney, working the high side as the leaders worked lapped traffic, regained the point coming to the line to complete lap 21. He went on top open a 1.7-second lead when the race’s first caution waved, on lap 28 when Tyler Bruening slowed to a halt.

That would be the only caution of the race. Looney, who didn’t win his first MLRA race until June 26 – two nights after finishing runner-up in a heartbreaker at Lucas Oil Speedway after leading 38 of 40 laps – was up to the challenge.

Strickler passed Buckingham on lap 83 and, after Looney had opened a 3.5-second lead with 10 laps remaining, was cutting into the lead as the laps clicked down.

“I was fading really bad. I was kind of a sitting duck,” Looney said. “I guess I burned up my right rear. I needed to be able to use the race track and momentum. That’s kind of what I did early. I was riding around there and I saw Shannon get by me.

“I didn’t really change anything I was doing, I just kind of ran my race. Once that top cleaned up a little bit, I knew I could circle back by him.”

Looney praised crew chief Lake Mooneyham, not only for helping prepare the Capital Race Car, but in signaling him throughout the race.

“I knew the whole time what kind of a lead I had and where to be on the race track,” Looney said. “There at the end, I knew if I didn’t miss that bottom they were gonna have to wreck me to get by me. It just all worked out.”

Strickler, a top-level Modified racer who’s moved into Late Models, was thrilled with his run.

“First of all, this is an absolutely amazing facility,” Strickler said. “So much of this is patience. Being a Modified guy, who don’t get too many 100-lappers. I said to (Tim) McCreadie before the race, I wish you could ride around with me and help me conserve some tires because he’s so good at it.”

Buckingham finished third with Chris Ferguson fourth and Ricky Thornton Jr. fifth. Rick Eckert, after starting 16th, advanced to sixth and four-time Show-Me 100 winner Jimmy Owens was seventh.

Looney set fast qualifying time in Group A and overall with a lap of 15.537 seconds. Chad Simpson had fast time in Group B at 15.629.

Looney went on to earn the pole for the 100-lap feature by winning the first heat. Ricky Thornton Jr. captured the third heat race to grab the outside front-row starting position.

Strickler and Buckingham also won heats to fill row two of the main event.

Phillips finished 21st with Billings’ Jesse Stovall in 22nd and Crane’s Will Vaught was 24th. Another Missouri driver ,Tony Jackson Jr. from Lebanon, was sidelined after hot laps with a motor failure. He did start the feature, using an MLRA provisional, in Mason Oberkramer’s car and finished 26th.


28th annual Show-Me 100 Presented by ProtecttheHarvest.com
Lucas Oil Show-Me 100 (100 Laps): 1. 15L-Payton Looney[1]; 2. 8-Kyle Strickler[3]; 3. 50-Shanon Buckingham[4]; 4. 22F-Chris Ferguson[5]; 5. 20RT-Ricky Thornton Jr[2]; 6. 0E-Rick Eckert[16]; 7. 20-Jimmy Owens[11]; 8. 1T-Tyler Erb[7]; 9. 81E-Tanner English[15]; 10. 1C-Chad Simpson[6]; 11. 1-Earl Pearson Jr[17]; 12. 49-Jonathan Davenport[21]; 13. 25-Shane Clanton[10]; 14. 14-Josh Richards[18]; 15. 40B-Kyle Bronson[24]; 16. 1ST-Johnny Scott[13]; 17. 21-Billy Moyer Jr[19]; 18. 58-Jeremiah Hurst[27]; 19. 39-Tim McCreadie[14]; 20. 16-Tyler Bruening[25]; 21. 75-Terry Phillips[8]; 22. 00-Jesse Stovall[9]; 23. 9-Devin Moran[23]; 24. 1V-Will Vaught[22]; 25. 21M-Billy Moyer Sr[20]; 26. 56-Tony Jackson Jr[28]; 27. 15V-Kolby Vandenbergh[12]; 28. 2S-Stormy Scott[26]


 B-Main 1 Tiger Rear Ends (12 Laps): 1. 1-Earl Pearson Jr[2]; 2. 21-Billy Moyer Jr[3]; 3. 49-Jonathan Davenport[4]; 4. 40B-Kyle Bronson[1]; 5. 93-Mason Oberkramer[9]; 6. 2S-Stormy Scott[5]; 7. 57-Mike Marlar[6]; 8. 50X-Kaeden Cornell[7]; 9. 1X-Aaron Marrant[12]; 10. F15-Jeremy Conaway[15]; 11. 91P-Jason Papich[11]; 12. 59-Garrett Alberson[13]; 13. 9-Devin Moran[10]; 14. 16-Tyler Bruening[8]; 15. 53-Andrew Kosiski[14]


 B-Main 2 Fast Shafts (12 Laps): 1. 14-Josh Richards[2]; 2. 21M-Billy Moyer Sr[3]; 3. 1V-Will Vaught[1]; 4. 32B-Cody Laney[7]; 5. 15D-Justin Duty[8]; 6. 12D-Doug Drown[6]; 7. 91T-Tony Toste[4]; 8. 78S-Steve Stultz[10]; 9. 21F-Johnny Fennewald[12]; 10. 12C-Scott Crigler[9]; 11. 3W-Brennon Willard[5]; 12. 22H-Daniel Hilsabeck[13]; 13. 14M-Reid Millard[14]; 14. 6H-Al Humphrey[11]; 15. (DNS) 71-Hudson O’Neal; 16. (DNS) 58-Jeremiah Hurst

 Heat 1 Penske Shocks (10 Laps): 1. 15L-Payton Looney[1]; 2. 22F-Chris Ferguson[5]; 3. 00-Jesse Stovall[2]; 4. 1ST-Johnny Scott[4]; 5. 40B-Kyle Bronson[7]; 6. 21-Billy Moyer Jr[9]; 7. 2S-Stormy Scott[6]; 8. 50X-Kaeden Cornell[11]; 9. 93-Mason Oberkramer[8]; 10. 91P-Jason Papich[3]; 11. 59-Garrett Alberson[10]

 Heat 2 FK Rods (10 Laps): 1. 8-Kyle Strickler[2]; 2. 1T-Tyler Erb[1]; 3. 81E-Tanner English[3]; 4. 20-Jimmy Owens[5] 5. 1-Earl Pearson Jr[8]; 6. 49-Jonathan Davenport[4]; 7. 57-Mike Marlar[7]; 8. 16-Tyler Bruening[10]; 9. 9-Devin Moran[6]; 10. 1X-Aaron Marrant[9]; 11. (DNS) 53-Andrew Kosiski

 Heat 3 Simpson Race Products (10 Laps): 1. 20RT-Ricky Thornton Jr[3]; 2. 1C-Chad Simpson[1]; 3. 25-Shane Clanton[4]; 4. 39-Tim McCreadie[6]; 5. 1V-Will Vaught[5]; 6. 21M-Billy Moyer Sr[2]; 7. 3W-Brennon Willard[10]; 8. 32B-Cody Laney[9]; 9. 12C-Scott Crigler[11]; 10. 6H-Al Humphrey[12]; 11. 22H-Daniel Hilsabeck[7]; 12. 58-Jeremiah Hurst[8]


 Heat 4 Ohlins Shocks (10 Laps): 1. 50-Shanon Buckingham[1]; 2. 75-Terry Phillips[3]; 3. 15V-Kolby Vandenbergh[2]; 4. 0E-Rick Eckert[4]; 5. 14-Josh Richards[5]; 6. 91T-Tony Toste[10]; 7. 12D-Doug Drown[6]; 8. 15D-Justin Duty[8]; 9. 78S-Steve Stultz[11]; 10. 21F-Johnny Fennewald[9]; 11. 14M-Reid Millard[12]; 12. 71-Hudson O’Neal[7]

 Group A Time Trials (2 Laps): 1. 15L-Payton Looney, 00:15.537[4]; 2. 1T-Tyler Erb, 00:15.626[2]; 3. 00-Jesse Stovall, 00:15.636[5]; 4. 8-Kyle Strickler, 00:15.658[1]; 5. 91P-Jason Papich, 00:15.662[24]; 6. 81E-Tanner English, 00:15.672[3]; 7. 1ST-Johnny Scott, 00:15.723[17]; 8. 49-Jonathan Davenport, 00:15.756[8]; 9. 22F-Chris Ferguson, 00:15.783[9]; 10. 20-Jimmy Owens, 00:15.817[7]; 11. 2S-Stormy Scott, 00:15.856[13]; 12. 9-Devin Moran, 00:15.895[10]; 13. 40B-Kyle Bronson, 00:15.932[14]; 14. 57-Mike Marlar, 00:15.993[18]; 15. 93-Mason Oberkramer, 00:16.004[22]; 16. 1-Earl Pearson Jr, 00:16.012[20]; 17. 21-Billy Moyer Jr, 00:16.018[19]; 18. 1X-Aaron Marrant, 00:16.038[6]; 19. 59-Garrett Alberson, 00:16.194[11]; 20. 16-Tyler Bruening, 00:16.209[23]; 21. 50X-Kaeden Cornell, 00:59.900[15]; 22. 53-Andrew Kosiski, 00:59.900[16]

 Group B Time Trials (2 Laps): 1. 1C-Chad Simpson, 00:15.629[7]; 2. 50-Shanon Buckingham, 00:15.687[8]; 3. 21M-Billy Moyer Sr, 00:15.777[22]; 4. 15V-Kolby Vandenbergh, 00:15.809[13]; 5. 20RT-Ricky Thornton Jr, 00:15.814[2]; 6. 75-Terry Phillips, 00:15.888[10]; 7. 25-Shane Clanton, 00:15.914[12]; 8. 0E-Rick Eckert, 00:15.972[20]; 9. 1V-Will Vaught, 00:15.978[5]; 10. 14-Josh Richards, 00:15.990[14]; 11. 39-Tim McCreadie, 00:16.001[23]; 12. 12D-Doug Drown, 00:16.009[6]; 13. 22H-Daniel Hilsabeck, 00:16.151[16]; 14. 71-Hudson O’Neal, 00:16.229[9]; 15. 58-Jeremiah Hurst, 00:16.262[19]; 16. 15D-Justin Duty, 00:16.267[11]; 17. 32B-Cody Laney, 00:16.281[3]; 18. 21F-Johnny Fennewald, 00:16.327[17]; 19. 3W-Brennon Willard, 00:16.339[18]; 20. 91T-Tony Toste, 00:16.360[21]; 21. 12C-Scott Crigler, 00:16.366[15]; 22. 78S-Steve Stultz, 00:16.473[1]; 23. 6H-Al Humphrey, 00:16.731[24]; 24. 14M-Reid Millard, 00:16.853[4]


Action continues on Sunday with the 14th annual CMH Diamond Nationals Presented by Super Clean. The first 250 fans through the grandstand gates will receive a free 32-pound bottle of Super Clean.

Gates will open at 4 p.m. with hot laps at 6:30 and time trials at 7:05.

Diamond Nationals tickets:

Adults (16 and over) $30

Seniors (62 and over)/Military $27

Youth (ages 6-15) $10

Kids (5 and under) FREE

Family pass $70

Pit pass $40

For ticket questions or information for any event at Lucas Oil Speedway, contact Admissions Director Nichole McMillan at (417) 282-5984 or email her at nichole@lucasoilspeedway.com for more information.