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RTJ Strikes Again--Scores Victory In The "Tribute To Don & Billie Gibson"


Lucas Oil MLRA

RTJ Strikes Again--Scores Victory In The "Tribute To Don & Billie Gibson"

WHEATLAND, Mo. (May 24, 2024) – Ricky Thornton Jr. made a daring three-wide pass for the lead on the opening lap from his fourth starting position and went on to lead the rest of the Tribute to Don and Billie Gibson on Friday night at Lucas Oil Speedway. The event was co-sanctioned by the Lucas Oil Late Model Dirt Series and the Lucas Oil MLRA.

Thornton, who won Thursday night’s Cowboy Classic earned $10,000 for his eighth Lucas Oil Late Model Dirt Series win of 2024. Devin Moran finished in second as Jonathan Davenport edged out Max Blair at the line to round out the Big River Steel Podium in third. Blair was fourth and four-time Show-Me 100 winner, Jimmy Owens completed the top five drivers.

On the first lap of the race Thornton split Davenport and pole-sitter Garrett Alberson for the race lead coming off turn number two. Thornton and Davenport later made heavy contact on the front stretch as the duo completed the first lap.

Thornton then pulled ahead of Davenport as the pair ran nose to tail for 11 more laps until Moran drove to second by Davenport on lap 13 which was three laps after the only caution of the race. Moran tried valiantly to chase down Thornton even in heavy traffic, but Thornton on several occasions was able to clear traffic to keep distance between himself and Moran.

Moran had cut into Thornton’s advantage several times, but with no cautions for the last 30 laps of the race Moran could not muster enough momentum in the closing laps to overtake Thornton.

In Lucas Oil Victory Lane for the 36th time in his career, Thornton battled lapped traffic for most of the last half of the 40-lap race as he bought his battle-worn car to his victory lane interview.

“That was definitely all my fault,” said Thornton of the contact between himself and Davenport on the opening lap. “I thought I cleared him in three then I hit the slime off of four. I thought I left him enough room, but clearly I didn’t. So, I was glad it didn’t wreck both of us, like I said it was 100% my fault. I didn’t plan on sliding him like that. This car was really good. I don’t know, we went with a little bit different tire than those other guys again and I think it paid off for us.”

Moran, who ran third in Thursday night’s race improved one more spot to take the runner-up spot .618 seconds behind the winner in Friday’s race. “Yeah, we just can’t catch this dude [Thornton]. I mean they do a great job and have for the last couple of years. So, congrats to them. We are one step in the right direction. I feel like this is the type of track we will see tomorrow night for the 100-lapper. Hats off to the track crew. They were prepping for a down pour, and it never did, and they brought this thing back to life.”

Davenport, who had gone to Victory Lane at Lucas Oil Speedway seven times in the last couple of years barely beat Blair to the finish line to take the third spot.

“It was just the first lap,” said Davenport when asked of his first lap contact with Thornton. “I thought he was going to give me room and I guess he just misjudged it or whatever. I was as far as I could get. I hit the outside wall and him at the same time. It basically knocked the wheel out of my hands. I am just thankful to be up here in the top three. I was trying really hard to get back by Blair there and I thought I had him one other time, but then I missed the corner down there.”

The winner’s Todd and Vickie Burns, SSI Motorsports, Longhorn Chassis is powered by a Clements Racing Engines is sponsored Big River Steel, Hoker Trucking, Coltman Farms, Dyno One, Inc., West Side Tractor Sales Company, Bilstein Shocks, Sunoco Race Fuels, EMD Wraps, and Murty Farms.

Completing the top ten were Garrett Alberson, Carson Ferguson, Tim McCreadie, Mike Marlar, and Spencer Hughes

Lucas Oil Speedway "Tribute To Don & Billie Gibson" MLRA Contingencies 5/24/24
Lap Leaders – Ricky Thornton Jr. (1 - 40),
Cautions – (1)

MyRacePass “Overall Fast Time Award" – Jonathan Davenport (14.864sec.)
Outerwears Crew Chief of the Race – Anthony Burroughs
MD3 "Most Laps Led" – Ricky Thornton Jr. (1 - 40 )
Swift Springs “Move of the Race” – Jonathan Davenport
Sunoco Race Fuel “Rookie of the Race” – Aaron Marrant
PEM Racing "4th Place Finisher" – Max Blair
Fluidyne: "5th Place Finisher: – Jimmy Owens
Sunoco "Engine Builders Challenge" – Clements Racing Engine
Midwest Sheet Metal "Points Leader Spoiler Challenge" – Chad Simpson
MSD Performance Holley: “1st B-Main NON-Qualifier” – Brenden Smith
MD3 Final Finisher: – Dillon McCowan

32nd annual Lucas Oil Show-Me 100 Presented by Missouri Division of Tourism
Lucas Oil Late Models/Lucas Oil MLRA

Tribute to Don and Billie Gibson - 1. 20RT-Ricky Thornton Jr[4]; 2. 99-Devin Moran[3]; 3. 49-Jonathan Davenport[2]; 4. 111-Max Blair[8]; 5. 20-Jimmy Owens[7]; 6. 58-Garrett Alberson[1]; 7. 93F-Carson Ferguson[10]; 8. 1-Tim McCreadie[6]; 9. 157-Mike Marlar[20]; 10. 19M-Spencer Hughes[12]; 11. 32X-Chris Simpson[5]; 12. 18D-Daulton Wilson[16]; 13. 7-Ross Robinson[11]; 14. 71-Hudson O'Neal[18]; 15. 11G-Gordy Gundaker[19]; 16. 25C-Chad Simpson[21]; 17. 6-Clay Harris[13]; 18. 49W-Justin Wells[14]; 19. 90-Brian Rickman[17]; 20. 1X-Aaron Marrant[22]; 21. 15-Payton Looney[15]; 22. 10-Garrett Smith[9]; 23. 7T-Drake Troutman[24]; 24. 8-Dillon McCowan[23]

Fast Shafts B Main 1 - 1. 11G-Gordy Gundaker[2]; 2. 1X-Aaron Marrant[5]; 3. 17SS-Brenden Smith[3]; 4. 11T-Trevor Gundaker[1]; 5. 21-Billy Moyer Sr[4]; 6. 78S-Steve Stultz[6]; 7. 12-Scott Crigler[9]; 8. 7W-Cole Wells[12]; 9. 3-Brennon Willard[13]; 10. 65-Jon Binning[8]; 11. 82-Jace Parmley[7]; 12. 26P-Glen Powell[14]; 13. 93-Cory Lawler[10]; 14. (DNS) 10M-Jacob Magee

Wieland B Main 2 - 1. 157-Mike Marlar[1]; 2. 8-Dillon McCowan[3]; 3. 96-Tanner English[6]; 4. 46-Earl Pearson Jr[7]; 5. 22H-Dustin Hodges[2]; 6. 0X-Jason Sivils[12]; 7. 36-Logan Martin[4]; 8. 7D-Dusty Leonard[5]; 9. 15C-Clayton Stuckey[8]; 10. USA1-Chris Hawkins[11]; 11. 14R-Jeff Roth[10]; 12. 6H-Al Humphrey[13]; 13. 26M-Matt Menzie[14]; 14. (DNS) 777-Jared Landers

MyRacePass B Main 3 - 1. 25C-Chad Simpson[1]; 2. 7T-Drake Troutman[3]; 3. 25-Tony Jackson Jr[5]; 4. 21XXX-Neil Baggett[4]; 5. 1S-Jeremy Shaw[6]; 6. 128-Kylan Garner[8]; 7. 93O-Mason Oberkramer[11]; 8. 2-Tyler Stevens[7]; 9. 11-Jeff Herzog[9]; 10. 74X-Ethan Dotson[2]; 11. 67-Jimmy Vanzandt[13]; 12. 1/4J-Jaxon Ertel[12]; 13. 7J-Ryan Johnson[10]

Flo Sports Heat 1 - 1. 58-Garrett Alberson[1]; 2. 20-Jimmy Owens[4]; 3. 6-Clay Harris[2]; 4. 11T-Trevor Gundaker[3]; 5. 17SS-Brenden Smith[5]; 6. 1X-Aaron Marrant[7]; 7. 82-Jace Parmley[10]; 8. 12-Scott Crigler[6]; 9. 10M-Jacob Magee[9]; 10. 3-Brennon Willard[8]

Simpson Race Products Heat 2 - 1. 99-Devin Moran[2]; 2. 10-Garrett Smith[1]; 3. 15-Payton Looney[6]; 4. 11G-Gordy Gundaker[3]; 5. 21-Billy Moyer Sr[5]; 6. 78S-Steve Stultz[4]; 7. 65-Jon Binning[9]; 8. 93-Cory Lawler[7]; 9. 7W-Cole Wells[8]; 10. 26P-Glen Powell[10]

Earnhardt Technologies Heat 3 - 1. 32X-Chris Simpson[1]; 2. 7-Ross Robinson[4]; 3. 90-Brian Rickman[2]; 4. 157-Mike Marlar[5]; 5. 8-Dillon McCowan[6]; 6. 7D-Dusty Leonard[3]; 7. 46-Earl Pearson Jr[8]; 8. 777-Jared Landers[10]; 9. USA1-Chris Hawkins[7]; 10. 6H-Al Humphrey[9]

Lucas Oil Products Heat 4 - 1. 49-Jonathan Davenport[1]; 2. 111-Max Blair[3]; 3. 49W-Justin Wells[7]; 4. 22H-Dustin Hodges[2]; 5. 36-Logan Martin[4]; 6. 96-Tanner English[5]; 7. 15C-Clayton Stuckey[6]; 8. 14R-Jeff Roth[8]; 9. 0X-Jason Sivils[9]; 10. 26M-Matt Menzie[10]

Midwest Sheet Metal 5 - 1. 20RT-Ricky Thornton Jr[1]; 2. 93F-Carson Ferguson[2]; 3. 18D-Daulton Wilson[5]; 4. 25C-Chad Simpson[8]; 5. 7T-Drake Troutman[6]; 6. 25-Tony Jackson Jr[4]; 7. 2-Tyler Stevens[3]; 8. 11-Jeff Herzog[7]; 9. 93O-Mason Oberkramer[10]; 10. 67-Jimmy Vanzandt[9]

Protect The Harvest Heat 6 - 1. 1-Tim McCreadie[2]; 2. 19M-Spencer Hughes[1]; 3. 71-Hudson O'Neal[3]; 4. 74X-Ethan Dotson[7]; 5. 21XXX-Neil Baggett[4]; 6. 1S-Jeremy Shaw[5]; 7. 128-Kylan Garner[8]; 8. 7J-Ryan Johnson[6]; 9. 1/4J-Jaxon Ertel[9]

Article Credit: LOLMDS Staff

Submitted By: Billy Rock

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Lucas Oil MLRAas of 6/7/2024
  • 1.Chad Simpson 955pts
  • 2.Gordy Gundaker 945pts
  • 3.Chris Simpson 940pts
  • 4.Trevor Gundaker 865pts
  • 5.Dillon McCowan 860pts
  • 6.Tony Jackson Jr830pts
  • 7.Earl Pearson Jr815pts
  • 8.Jeff Herzog 740pts
  • 9.Clayton Stuckey 685pts
  • 10.Aaron Marrant 665pts
Full Points