All English, all the time in PIR specials
Jun 05, 2012 | 3441 views | 0 0 comments | 10 10 recommendations | email to a friend | print
—Josh Meyers/
for the Tribune-Courier

Helping the winner and PIR trophy girl Mandy VanCura celebrate are Gunner Boatwright, 7, with Tanner English
—Josh Meyers/ for the Tribune-Courier Helping the winner and PIR trophy girl Mandy VanCura celebrate are Gunner Boatwright, 7, with Tanner English
—Josh Meyers/
for the Tribune-Courier

Helping the winner and PIR trophy girl Mandy VanCura celebrate are Terry English’s wife Vicki and nephew Ethan Norwood, 11.
—Josh Meyers/ for the Tribune-Courier Helping the winner and PIR trophy girl Mandy VanCura celebrate are Terry English’s wife Vicki and nephew Ethan Norwood, 11.
By David Green

Tribune-Courier Sports

PADUCAH – Father and son Terry and Tanner English of Benton took top honors in a pair of special Late Model features last week at Paducah International Raceway.

Tanner, 19, sprinted away from the field and won the 20-lap feature during the track’s special NASCAR Night on Tuesday. His father finished second, with veteran professional racer Ken Schrader taking third.

On Friday night, Terry won the $5,000 first-place prize money on the second night of the three-night, three-track Tri-State Challenge, a series sponsored by the Mid-American Racing Series (MARS) dir-track sanctioning organization.

Between them, the two have won three straight Late Model features at the 3/8-mile PIR oval, with Terry winning on May 18. The Late Model class did not compete in the May 25 program.

Each has two victories this season in frequent trips to the Paducah track. They are the only Late Model drivers with more than a single victory this season.

Terry English is second in driver points behind Palma’s Tim Brown, and Tanner English is fourth.

Tri-State Challenge

PADUCAH – Terry English led the last five laps in Friday night’s 30-lap MARS-sanctioned feature after veteran touring professional Billy Moyer of Batesville, Ark., dropped out with a flat right rear tire.

English had closed the gap to Moyer and made a move to take the lead in Turn 3 of the 26th lap.

The pass was wiped out by the third yellow flag of the race, putting Moyer back in front, but he pulled off the track with a flat right rear tire during the caution delay. That put English in front for the restart with five laps to go.

English speculated that the tire problem might have slowed Moyer’s pace in the laps just before the yellow flag.

“His tire might have been going down,” English said. But he added, “I was getting better” as the laps clicked off.

Second-place Jason Feger opted for the outside with third-place Ryan Unzicker inside him, and as English pulled away at the drop of the green, Feger cleared Unzicker and dive-bombed to the inside of the leader in Turn 1. However, English carried the momentum on the outside and pulled clear down the backstretch and rolled on to the win.

Once out front, English said, it was clear sailing.

“If you’re running behind somebody, you lose the front” traction because of aerodynamics, he said, much the same way that NASCAR, Indy and Formula One cars’ handling is affected. “It’s easier when you’re out front,” English said.

Moyers jumped to the early lead from his outside front-row starting spot. He set the pace in the early laps as pole starter English and third-place starter Jason Riggs battled for second place.

Riggs took second on a restart on lap 9 after the first caution flag of the race, gaining the advantage when English opted to start on the inside in the first row of two-abreast cars, behind Moyer’s leading No. 21.

Moyer began to stretch out a big lead, building up an advantage of approximately a third of a lap as the race moved past the halfway mark. But English moved into second and when Riggs hit the backstretch wall on lap 21, bringing out another yellow flag, Moyer’s big lead was erased.

This time English took the outside spot in the first two-wide row for the restart and kept Moyer in sight as the race resumed. On the 25th lap, he closed to Moyer’s rear bumper and dived to the inside in Turn 3 to take the lead on the next lap.

Feger, Unzicker, Shannon Babb and Jesse Stovall rounded out the top five.

PIR regular Randy Sellars of Mayfield took sixth and Calvert City’s Tim Brown, the PIR Late Model points leader, was ninth.

Tanner English was running sixth when a broken rear suspension component sidelined him. He finished 17th in the 24-car field.

In other features on the program, winners included Tyler Nicely (Modified), John Tindal (Crate Late Model), Matt Hodges (Street Stock), Mat Hartman (4-Cylinder Warriors) and Blake Martin (High School Warriors).

n Friday night’s race at PIR was the middle of three dates at tracks in Illinois, Kentucky and Missouri sanctioned by Missouri-based MARS.

Michael Kloos of Trenton, Ill., won the first round of the triple-header Thursday night at Highland (Ill.) Speedway, while Shannon Babb of Mowequa, Ill., won Saturday night’s feature at Federated Auto Parts Raceway in Pevely, Mo.

Terry and Tanner English finished sixth and ninth, respectively, at Pevely. The two did not compete at Highland, nor did Billy Moyer, who finished second at Pevely.


LATE MODEL: 1. Tanner English, Benton; 2. Terry English, Benton; 3. Ken Schrader, Concord, N.C.; 4. Randy Sellars, Mayfield; 5. Jason McBride, Carbondale, Ill.

Heat race winners: Tanner English; Jason Riggs, Harrisburg, Ill.

MODIFIED: 1. Jacob Poel, Spring Lake, Mich.; 2. Kenny Wallace, Concord, N.C.; 3. Bryan Higgerson, Pinckneyville, Ill.; 4. Collin Thirlby, Traverse City, Mich.; 5. Dustin Isom, Hopkinsville

Heat race winners: J.R. Mason, Paducah; Poel

CRATE LATE MODEL: 1. Steve Cole, Benton, Ill.; 2. Troy English, Calvert City; 3. Cameron Brown, Calvert City; 4. Jeff Patterson, hometown no listed; 5. Credence Mott, Vienna, Ill.

Heat race winners: Patterson, English

STREET STOCK: 1. Mike Hodges, Cunningham, Tenn.; 2. Joseph Hamm, Dover, Tenn.; 3. Steve Hobbs, Benton; 4. Keaton Downing, Gilbertsville; 5. Mike Lentz, Carterville, Ill.

Heat race winners: Hodges, Hamm


PADUCAH – Tanner and Terry English sped past pole starter Jason Riggs on the third lap and pulled way to a 1-2 finish in Tuesday night’s 20-lap NASCAR Night feature at PIR.

Nationally known drivers from NASCAR were supposed to be the stars of the evening, but all were upstaged by short-track regulars. Ken Schrader, a four-time race winner in the Sprint Cup Series, took third in the late model feature and Kenny Wallace, a veteran of the Cup and Nationwide series, was second behind Jacob Poel in the Modified feature.

Reigning Cup Series champion Tony Stewart, who like Schrader is a part-owner of PIR, finished seventh in the Modified main event. Wallace was second and Stewart third in a six-car field in the first Modified heat race, won by J.R. Mason of Paducah.

Schrader finished fourth in the first Late Model heat, behind Tanner English, Kevin Cole and Calvert City’s Tim Brown.

In the Late Model feature, PIR regular Randy Sellars of Mayfield was fourth, followed by Jason McBride of Carbondale, Ill.

Winners of other feature races on the program were Steve Cole (Crate Late Model) and Mike Hodges (Street Stock).

n NOTES: Tri-State Challenge winner Terry English dedicated his victory Friday night to the four young people who were injured in a highway crash near Calvert City the evening of May 28. His son Tanner, a 2011 graduate of Marshall County High School and a former classmate of the wreck victims, took up a collection from fans during intermission...

Tuesday night’s NASCAR Night feature was the second race in a row in which Tanner and Terry English finished 1-2. On Memorial Day weekend, Tanner English passed his dad to win a $3,000 first prize in a race at Duck River Speedway in Wheel, Tenn., on Sunday night. The night before, Tanner finished second in a race at Summertown, Tenn., while Terry was winning the Late Model feature at Clarksville, Tenn...

Tait Davenport of Benton competed in Crate Late Model events last week at Clayhill Motorsports in Atwood, Tenn. He won heat races on Monday and Saturday night last week and finished third behind Ricky Wagner and Chase Washington in the Memorial Day feature, but had problems and finished 12th in Saturday night’s feature race.


LATE MODEL: 1. Terry English, Benton; 2. Jason Feger, Bloomington, Ill.; 3. Ryan Unzicker, El Paso, Ill.; 4. Shannon Babb, Mowequa, Ill.; 5. Jesse Stovall, Galena, Mo.

Heat race winners: Terry English; Billy Moyer, Batesville, Ark.; Jason Riggs, Harrisburg, Ill.

MODIFIED: 1. Tyler Nicely, Owensboro; 2. Jeff Elliott, Mayfield; 3. J.R .Mason, Paducah; 4. Ron Wall, Mt. Vernon, Ill.; 5. Joe Mahlosky, Central City

Heat race winner: Elliott

CRATE LATE MODEL: 1. John Tindal, Mayfield; 2. Troy English, Calvert City; 3. Steve Cole, Benton, Ill.; 4. Evan Taylor, Woodlawn, Tenn.; 5. Jeff Patterson, Paducah

Heat race winners: Tindal, English

STREET STOCK: 1. Mike Hodges, Cunningham, Tenn.; 2. Mike Watson, West Paducah; 3. Steve Hobbs, Benton; 4. Keaton Downing, Gilbertsville; 5. Mike Lentz, Carterville, Ill.

Heat race winners: Watson

4-CYLINDER WARRIORS: 1. Mat Hartman, Paducah; 2. Kyle Clark, Calvert City; 3. Michael Watson, West Paducah; 4. Donnie Whited, Paducah; 5. Jordan Brown, Paducah

Heat race winner: Hartman

HIGH SCHOOL WARRIORS: 1. Blake Martin, Paducah; 2. A.J. Keeling, Paducah; 3. Justin Burgess, Paducah; 4. Daniel Edwards, Paducah; 5. Glenn Forrester, Paducah

Heat race winner: Martin
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