Richards Wins Dirt Track World Championship and Clinches First Lucas Oil Title
PORTSMOUTH, OH (October 21, 2017) - Josh Richards completed a dream night at Portsmouth Raceway Park on Saturday night. The West Virginia native won his first-career Rhino Ag Dirt Track World Championship - Presented by Optima Batteries, worth $100,000, and the 2017 Lucas Oil Late Model Dirt Series National Championship, worth $75,000.
Richards became the fourth different leader of the race when he passed race leader and defending DTWC winner, Brandon Sheppard for the lead after a lap 46 restart. Richards led the rest of the way to take his tenth series win of the season over Sheppard, Jonathan Davenport, Mike Marlar, and Jared Hawkins.
Jonathan Davenport started on the pole and led early on. Sheppard took over the point on lap 36, and then began pulling away from the field until a caution on lap 46 slowed his pace. On the restart, Richards; who was running third; went around Sheppard to take over the lead and stayed in front until the checker flag waved.
Tim McCreadie entered the race as the series point leader by 40 points over Richards and 75 ahead of Bloomquist. During the race McCreadie suffered two flat tires and Bloomquist had a tire go down while running second to Richards. Bloomquist finished the race in 12th and McCreadie was credited with a 17th place finish.
In Lucas Oil Victory Lane after the biggest win of his career, the 29-year-old was emotional when being interviewed. “I have to collect my thoughts right now. I can’t thank everyone enough for this opportunity. I made a tough decision last year to switch teams. We didn’t know what was going to happen. We started the year off well, and then we went to a bunch of new tracks and kind of fell off a little. We struggled a little bit, but so did those other guys. We got on a hot streak in July though.”
“Coming into this weekend we felt pretty good and I know Scott [Bloomquist] and Timmy [McCreadie] did too. Thanks to Best Performance Motorsports, Eric and Kelly Brock for giving me this opportunity.
It’s been a crazy year. Randall Edwards has done such a great job as crew chief. There are so many people behind this team and that supported me. I felt everything in the last four or five laps. I have been through this scenario enough to know. I knew the tires were slipping away, but fortunately they held up to the end.”
The Best Performance Motorsports, Rocket Chassis entry is powered by an Andy Durham Racing Engine and sponsored by: Bulk Material Lift.com, Corey Frazier-State Farm Insurance, Alexander Lawn and Landscaping, Ultimate Firepit, Sunoco, Integra, Keyser, and Valvoline.
to take a little break and celebrate our Lucas Oil Championship.”