Joseph “JoJo” Watson of Milford, Del. took full advantage of his pole starting spot in the NAPA Big Block Modified feature to garner his first win driving as a substitute for his injured uncle, Jamie Mills. Watson led wire to wire in the 30-lap Elk Mooneyham Memorial collecting the $1000 bonus for the victory.
Heats were won by Matt Jester and Scott Ambruster, Jr. Before the first lap was in the books a huge pileup collected most of the field. Drew Simmons got around in the second turn while running in second. Behind him a big pileup developed involving Beau Wilkins, Matt Jester, Howard O’Neal, H.J. Bunting, Eric Kormann, Robert Dutton, Shawn Ward and George Richardson. Ward, O’Neal, Richardson and Kormann were done for the night.
Watson jumped out to the lead on the restart and little did he know that the race would go non stop from that point on. Brad Trice quickly settled into second with Michael White in third. Ambruster held down the fourth spot and Jimmy Chester ran in fifth.
By lap ten Watson was lapping the back of the field. Watson demonstrated a lot of patience as he carefully picked his way through the field. Ambruster worked into third but the car began to smoke and he pulled from the race.
Jester was working his way back through the field after his first lap mishap and took third when Ambruster dropped out. Watson was so dominate though that he was behind the fifth place car of Kenny Brightbill when the checkered fell.
“We’ve been having some bad luck here,” said Watson following the win. “We have a 467 and every body else has a big motor. Somehow we ended up getting that pole position and it was pretty vital or we would probably have been in that big pileup. I’ve always wanted to drive for my grandparents and I finally got that opportunity this year due to Uncle Jamie’s injury.”
Trice posted another good run in second with Jester third. Fourth went to Dale Hawkins and Brightbill rounded out the top five.
NAPA Big Block Finish: 1. Joseph Watson; 2. Brad Trice; 3. Matt Jester; 4. Dale Hawkins; 5. Kenny Brightbill; 6. Dana Walker; 7. Jimmy Chester; 8. Michael White; 9. Robert Dutton; 10. Scott Ambruster Jr; 11. Beau Wilkins; 12. HJ Bunting; 13. Drew Simmons; 14. Eric Kormann; 15. George Richardson; 16. Howard ONeal; 17. Shawn Ward; Did not Start: Kyle Fuller; Bobby Balentine.