First 30 Spots Locked in for Sunday’s Bud Light 300
Varin, Friesen and Haers dominate Friday Night Lights Triple 30s
by Mandee Pauch
OSWEGO, NY — Oct. 7, 2016 — Camping World Friday Night Lights came to a head almost an hour into Saturday with the culmination of the Super DIRTcar Series Big Block Modified Triple 30s that locked in another 24 spots for Sunday’s Bud Light 300, the flagship of NAPA Auto Parts Super DIRT Week.
On Thursday, the first six spots were sealed during the Big Block Modified Time Trials: Matt Sheppard, Tim McCreadie, Justin Haers, Danny Varin, Carey Terrence, and Brett Hearn. And unlike the Sportsman division — in which only one of the guaranteed-spot drivers chose to run the Triple 15s — all of the drivers ran in the Triple 30s. Varin and Haers each picked up wins, along with $4,000 checks.
But more importantly, four-time Big Block Modified Super DIRT Week Champion Stewart Friesen — who missed the cut in Time Trials, in which he came in eighth — secured his spot immediately following the top six.
First Big Block Modified Triple 30
Danny Varin swept the field in the first Triple 30 over Keith Flach and Larry Wight.
“I have to thank the guys behind me; they’re the ones doing all the work. I learned something every lap around this place, and I hope to put that towards the 300,” Varin said in victory lane.
The first Triple 30 saw Matt Sheppard and Danny Varin take the 22-car field to the green. Sheppard jumped to an early start as Varin and Tim Fuller followed in pursuit.
A caution was brought out on lap three due to a car spinning in turn one. Sheppard forfeited the lead as he went pit side to fix a broken right rear shock.
Keith Flach dove under Dave Blaney entering turn one and took over the third spot on lap four. Dave Blaney then came to a stop on lap 10 with a left front flat, forfeiting his top-five position.
Varin swept the field and took the checkers over Flach and Weight for the first Triple 30 of the night.
“I think the biggest hurdle will be finishing the 300, not even try to be fast but to just finish it,” Varin said.
Second Big Block Modified Triple 30
Stewart Friesen showed a great run in the second Triple 30 by leading the entire race.
“It’s a challenging race track right now, but we have a great race car. The Halmar guys have worked very hard. We made some good adjustments, will go back to work now and hope for the best for the 300 on Sunday,” Friesen said in the winners’ circle.
Stewart Friesen shot down from his outside starting spot and slid out of turn two to take the lead on lap one over Carey Terrance. Friesen then set his No. 44 machine on cruise control and pulled away from the field. With six laps to go, Friesen showed a strong run with half-a-track lead over Terrance.
Meanwhile, behind him, Peter Britten put pressure on Phelps for third and passed Phelps with five to go.
Friesen dominated the field as he led all 30 laps of the second Triple 30 qualifier.
“This has been a pretty cool event. The DIRTcar staff have been doing a great job. They definitely recreated the Syracuse atmosphere. We’re having a good time. Thanks to everyone for supporting it,” Friesen said.
Third Big Block Modified Triple 30
Like Friesen, Haers showed his dominance by leading all thirty laps of the third Triple 30 qualifier.
“I’ll tell you what. I really had to move through the holes and try not to hit them,” Haers said in victory lane. “We got into some lap traffic there, and the radio guys said I had a pretty good lead, but you can’t really waste any time.”
Frank Cozze and Marc Johnson battled side-by-side for several laps as Cozze took fourth on lap two.
Haers was a man on a move as he led by half a straightaway early over Hearn. But he caught lap traffic just nine laps in.
Dunn passed Hearn off the bottom of two for second. And Haers drove away to take the checkers in the third Triple 30.
“The car really held together. I can’t thank my crew, family and my sponsors enough. It was a long day, but I think they made the right choice by running these later on tonight. This is my first time ever winning. To get the win is just awesome. We will be partying tonight; that’s for sure,” Haers said.
Triple Qualifier 1 (30 Laps) – 1. 93-Danny Varin, 2. 43-Keith Flach, 3. 99L-Larry Wight, 4. 19-Tim Fuller, 5. 27J-Danny Johnson, 6. 28P-Eldon Payne, 7. 7M-Mike Maresca, 8. 91-Billy Decker, 9.115-Kenny Tremont, 10. 39T-Ryan Bartlett, 11. 7S-Michael Sabia, 12. 22C-Mario Clair, 13. 21-Yan Bussiere, 14. 88-David Allen, 15. 88M-Mike Mahaney, 16. 10H-Dave Blaney, 17. 60-Brian Berger, 18. 77-Dan Wiesner, 19. 9s-Matt Sheppard
Triple Qualifier 2 (30 Laps) – 1. 44-Stewart Friesen, 2. 66x-Carey Terrance, 3.18H-Peter Britten, 4. 14J-Alan Johnson, 5. 98H-Jimmy Phelps, 6. 1RJ-Ronnie Johnson, 7. 7X-Steve Paine, 8. 6H-Max McLaughlin, 9. 30-Jamie Mills, 10. 99-Ryan Phelps, 11. 7-Rick Laubach, 12. 8-Rich Scagliotta, 13. 63R-Adam Roberts, 14. 02-Roy Bresnahan, 15. 32C-Vic Coffrey, 16. 48T-Dave Rauscher, 17. 72-Cass Bennett, 18. 23-Joey Ladouceur, 19. 02-Roy Bresnahan, 20. 3B-Scott Boudinot, 21. 30-Jamie Mills, 22. 7-Rick Laubach, 23. 21D-Ryan Darcy, 24. 72-Cass Bennett
Triple Qualifier 3 (30 Laps) – 1. 3-Justin Haers, 2. 49-Billy Dunn, 3. 20-Brett Hearn, 4. 35-Frank Cozze, 5. 25R-Eric Rudolph, 6. 3J-Marc Johnson, 7. 6M-Matt Williamson, 8. 42P-Pat Ward, 9. 84-Gary Tomkins, 10. 51M-Dominick Bifflalino, 11. 126-Jeff Strunk, 12. 109-Billy Whittaker, 13. 3K-Tommy Kinsella, 14. 71-Pierre Hebert, 15. 96-Jean-Francois Corriveau, 16. 43H-Jimmy Horton
Line-up for Bud Light 300:
1. 9S Matt Sheppard
2. 39 Tim McCreadie
3. 3 Justin Haers
4. 93 Danny Varin
5. 66x Carey Terrance
6. 20 Brett Hearn
7. 44 Stewart Friesen
8. 43 Keith Flach
9. 49 Billy Dunn
10. 99L Larry Wight
11. 18H Peter Britten
12. 19 Tim Fuller
13. 14J Alan Johnson
14. 35 Frank Cozze
15. 27J Danny Johnson
16. 98H Jimmy Phelps
17. 25R Eric Rudolph
18. 28P Eldon Payne
19. 1RJ Ronnie Johnson
20. 6M Mat Williamson
21. 7M Mike Maresca
22. 7X Steve Paine
23. 42P Pat Ward
24. 91 Billy Decker
25. 6H Max McLaughlin
26. 84 Gary Tomkins
27. 115 Kenny Tremont Jr
28. 30 Jamie Mills
29. 51M Dominick Buffalino
30. 126 Jeff Strunk
31. Non-Qualifiers Race (1st)
32. Non-Qualifiers Race (2nd)
33. Non-Qualifiers Race (3rd)
34. Non-Qualifiers Race (4th)
35. Non-Qualifiers Race (5th)
36. Non-Qualifiers Race (6th)
37. Provisional Position 1
38. Provisional Position 2
39. Provisional Position 3
40. Provisional Position 4
41. “Win and You’re In” from Fulton Speedway
42. Past Champion Provisional