Clanton wins World of Outlaws Late Model feature at Fonda

FONDA – DIRTCar modified series veteran Billy Decker set a new track record of 17.135 seconds in time trials for Thursday’s World of Outlaws Late Models show at Fonda Speedway.

However, Decker would not be around for the feature as engine trouble sidelined the Gypsum Express No. 91.

Josh Richards set second-fastest time with a 17.156 but also suffered engine trouble and had to switch to a back up car for the main event.

That left the door open for Shane Clanton, who qualified for the program with a lap of 17.165 before shattering the mark with a 16.970 in his heat race.

Clanton remained fast in the feature, passing Brandon Overton for the lead on lap eight and holding off challenges from Chubb Frank and Chase Junghans to claim victory in the 40-lap, $8,000-to-win main event that kicked off the four race Great Northern Tour for the traveling series.

Frank and Overton brought the field of 24 late models to the green with Overton taking the early lead. Clanton settled into second before taking the lead on lap eight when Overton began to slow with a flat tire.

Junghans used the restart to slip past Frank and put pressure on the leader before the caution flew on lap 19 for Bryan Bernheisel who made hard contact with the fourth turn wall.

The race was red flagged on lap 23 after contact between Jimmy Bernheisel and Dan Stone pushed Stone up the tack and into the second turn wall before rolling over on his roof. Bernheisel walked away from the accident but both drivers were finished for the night.

Frank moved into the runner-up spot on lap 25 but could not get close enough to mount a serious challenge as Clanton pulled away in the final 10 laps to lock up the victory.

Frank held off Junghans for second, while Frank Heckenast Jr. and defending race champion Tim McCreadie finished fifth.

Darrell Lanigan, Richards, who started last, finished seventh, while Eric Wells was eighth, Morgan Bagley ninth and Rick Eckert was tenth.

For Clanton, of Zebulon, Ga, it was his fifth win of the season and helped build a 98 points lead over Richards of Shinnston, W. Va., and 122 over Darrell Lanigan of Union, Ky.

The series now heads to Canada for a Saturday race at Brighton Speedway in Brighton, Ontario and Sunday at Cornwall Speedway before heading back to New York to race at Weedsport Speedway on Tuesday. The Northern Tour concludes with the three-day Firecracker 100 Weekend at Lernerville Speedway on June 25, 26, and 27.