Josh Oakley returned to his hometown track on a mission Saturday night as he outdueled Stacy Puryear to win the 75-lap Late Model Stock Car feature at Orange County Speedway.
Oakley came into the race fresh off the CARS Tour Old North State Nationals earlier this month where he was disqualified from his heat race due to the height of his fuel cell. Oakley frustrated with the decision by officials to throw him out for that call, loaded up and didn’t compete in the $30,000 to win event.
Puryear was the fastest qualifier but was only able to lead a few laps after a restart during the midportion of the event. He finished a close second to Oakley with Camden Gullie taking the final podium spot in an uneventful race.
Daryl Carver led all the way from the pole to take the 35-lap Limited Late Model race. Daniel Schadt finished second and said that on the first lap he and Carver made contact, which knocked the toe out on his car. Schadt was unable to compete with Carver after that and settled for second. Tracey Chambers finished third in an 11-car Limited field.
Carver was expected to make another run at the Limited Late Model championship this season but made an unexpected announcement after winning.
“We’re going to run next Friday night at Ace and then we’re going to probably take a month off,” Carver stated.
Richard Hayden won the Charger feature after a late race battle with Brent Evans, Jr. Evans finished second with Austin Purnell third in the 14 car field. Evans led most of the race but Hayden was able to get by him late for the victory.
Former Orange County Speedway Late Model Stock Car competitor, Jason Gullie returned to the seat of a car for the first time in 16-years subbing for Chris Mincey and took home the win in the Vintage Sportsman division. Gullie, the father of Late Model Stock Car driver Camden Gullie, won a thrilling race ahead of Corey Agee and James Brown.
Other winners included Greg Autry in Pure Stock, Harold Summey in Mod 4 and Chris Lamb in USAC Eastern Midgets.
Racing returns to Orange County Speedway on May 11.
Cover photo by Richard Doss.