DUANE HOWARD GAINS REDEMPTION – BECOMES 5TH DIFFERENT FULL THROTTLE WINNER IN BIG BLOCK MODIFIEDS

By Charlie Brown, Delmar, DE – Dwayne Howard of Oley, Pa. bypassed practice for the Freedom 76 at the Grandview Speedway and made the long tow south to the Delaware International Speedway on the southern Delaware line Friday night. Howard was looking for redemption in round five of the Full Throttle series after leading before scraping the wall and ending his night in round four.

Redemption was to be had as Howard worked lapped traffic to perfection and held off Ryan Watt to become the fifth different winner in as many races in the series.

Heats for the 24 Big Block Modifieds were won by Jordan Watson, Jamie Mills and H.J. Bunting. The top four from each heat went into the inversion draw for the start of the main. Jim Britt drew the pole after finishing third in his heat with Scott VanGorder starting in second.

Britt would lead the first five circuits while Howard, who started in fifth, worked his way to the front. Howard eased by Britt to lead lap six while all eyes turned to Watt who had started in eighth and was running in fourth behind Bunting.

By lap nine Watt was up to third and the lead was starting to thread his way through the back of the pack. Watt got by Britt and quickly began to close the gap with the leader. Howard’s almost two second advantage was erased on lap 13 when Michael White came to stop. “ThOn the restart Watt was able to match speed with Howard as the lead duo began to pull away for the field.

At the halfway sign the top five were Howard, Watt, Britt, Jordan Watson and VanGorder. That order remained unchanged until four to go when Britt slowed and pulled to the infield and Jimmy Horton moved into the top five.

Watt at times was able to close to Howard’s back bumper but the high groove had gotten choppy and Watt had to hope for a bobble from the leader. That mistake would never come as Howard drove to the 40-lap, $4000 win. Watt, who has run exceptionally well in the series settled for second with Jordan Watson ending a good run in third. Fourth went to VanGorder and Horton rounded out the top five.

“The track was really bitey,” said Howard. “It’s tough for us to come down here but we have been running good in the series when we come down here. We had a good race car tonight and I knew it was going to be very hard for anyone to go around me with the track kind of chopped up at the top.”

Full Throttle Big Block Modified Finish: 1. Duane Howard; 2. Ryan Watt; 3. Jordan Watson; 4. Scott VanGorder; 5. Jimmy Horton; 6. Matt Jester; 7. Jamie Mills; 8. H.J. Bunting; 9. Richie Pratt, Jr.; 10. David VanHorn; 11. Kevin Sockriter; 12. Dale Hawkins; 13. Scott Hitchens; 14. Brian Hitz; 15. Jim Britt; 16. Shawn Ward; 17. Robert Dutton; 18. Westley Smith; 19. JoJo Watson; 20. Michael White; 21. Matt Hawkins; 22. Brad Trice; 23. Brandon Watkins; 24. Carson Wright.