4/18/2019 - 2:23:36 PM

It took a second try, but finally the weather cooperated to get in the 2019 season opener for the BRP Modified Tour at Michaels Mercer Raceway.  It was good showing in the pits with 28 cars looking to grab the first win of the season on the Tour.  At the end of the 35-lap feature, it was Rex King Jr., from Bristolville, Ohio and the 2018 BRP Modified Tour Champion, seeing the checkers first.

After the top-12 redraw it was King Jr. and Lonny Riggs starting on the front row.  When the green flag dropped it was King Jr. who darted to the front.  It was one lap in the books when we saw the first caution flag fly for the 29E of Erik Martin, spinning and stopping in turn four.  King Jr. would grab the lead once again when the green flag came back out. He would open a gap over second place Lonny Riggs who was getting a challenge from Jim Rasey in the 32.  We would see two cautions while trying to complete lap six. Before the cautions, we were seeing a great battle for positions third through sixth, as the drivers were all bunched up.

While King Jr. started to gap the cars behind him, battles were tightening up throughout the pack. Brad Rapp and Rex King Sr. battle side by side for fourth. Will Thomas moved up to the fifth spot. By lap eleven, King Sr. was up beside Riggs to battle for second.  A little further back in the pack Murdick and Holden put on a great battle for position as the leader was getting into lapped traffic.

As they started to get into heavier lapped traffic, the Kings held the top two spots but the distance between them would start to shrink. Rapp was also using that traffic to gain ground on the 58 of Riggs, with Thomas and Jeremiah Shingledecker running right behind them.

On lap 26, Murdick and Richard Whitney would tangle and Murdick would be taken back to the pits on the hook. At that time the top five was the 165, 65, 58, 11R, and the 9. On the restart, Rapp would have issues in turn two, Shingledecker and Hoffman would also be caught up in the incident. All drivers were in the top 7 when the wreck occurred. When it went back to green, King Sr. was trying to gain some ground on his son but got a little sideways on the backstretch. On the next lap, King Sr. would have issues in turn two; Riggs and the Thomas would be collected as well. The 65 would be able to get back out on the track after a quick visit to the pits. This really changed up the top five running order. The top five now would be King Jr., Holden, Krummert, Regalski and Fink.

With a couple of laps of green flag racing in the book, the battle now was for second as Krummert was closing in on Holden. The leader, King Jr., would open a half a straightaway lead on the rest of the pack. The final caution came on lap 34 as the 3K of Shawn Kozar spun, creating a green-white-checker situation. On the last lap dash, King Jr. would be able to hold off all challenges for the win.  He would be followed by Holden, Krummert, Regalski, and Fink.   Shawn Kozar wins the Hard Charger Award, courtesy of Ron’s Lawn Service.

The next race for the BRP modified tour will be this Saturday April 20th at Tyler County Speedway in Middlebourne, WV.

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