By CHARLIE BROWN, DELMAR, DE – Beau Wilkins of Milford, Del. came ever so close on more than one occasion to picking up a feature win but is was not to be. Over the winter the team regrouped and went over the car from top to bottom. Their work proved to be worthwhile as the second generation driver led wire-to-wire to capture the William J. & Juanita Cathell Memorial 25-lap NAPA Big Block Modified Feature.
Right from the drop of the green the race was in Wilkins’ hands as he jumped out front from the pole. Jeff Brown held on to second until H.J. Bunting took the spot on lap five. Opening night winner, Matt Jester worked from eighth to fourth and Robert Dutton held fifth.
Brad Trice was on the move taking fourth on lap seven. By lap 12 he had gotten by Jester and was running in third. Four cautions spread through the final eight laps would keep Wilkins from building any momentum. Howard O’Neal was putting on a good drive getting by both Brown and Dutton for fifth .
Wilkins controlled the high groove and made no mistakes on the restarts to drive to the victory in the Blairview Farms/Dan Denny/Bicknell. “I knew H.J. was right behind me,” said Wilkins. “So I knew I couldn’t make any mistakes.”
Bunting finished in the second spot with Trice third. Fourth went to Jester and O’Neal rounded out the top five. Heats were won by Bunting and O’Neal.
NAPA Big Block Finish: 1. Beau Wilkins; 2. H.J. Bunting; 3. Brad Trice; 4. Matt Jester; 5. Howard O’Neal; 6. Robert Dutton; 7. Dana Walker; 8. Scott VanGorder; 9. Shawn Ward; 10. Matt Hawkins; 11. Jeff Brown; 12. Kyle Fuller; 13. Dale Hawkins; 14. Jamie Mills; 15. Duane Rust; 16. Art Valdesere, Jr. DNS: Bobby Watkins.