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INDEPENDENCE — Decades into a Hall of Fame career, Billy Moyer still is getting it done in a Super Late Model.
The Batesville, Ark., native more than got it done on Saturday night at Independence Motor Speedway. Moyer led flag-to-flag and won by nearly a half-lap in the Lucas Oil MLRA Late Model main event. Qualifying, heat race and main event, there was no touching him.
It was career win No. 818 for Moyer. Well, at least he thinks so. When you get that high, it’s hard to keep track.
“I think it’s 818, maybe?” Moyer said through a smile in Victory Lane. “It never gets old when you’re running good. It makes you want to keep going forever.”
Moyer’s win capped off the three-race MLRA swing through Iowa. Oxford’s Chris Simpson won Thursday at Lee County Speedway in Donnellson and Oakwood, Ill., driver Bobby Pierce won Friday at Davenport Speedway.
Moyer was fifth on Thursday night and didn’t make the main event Friday, which underscored a point he made in Victory Lane about where he’s at with this Victory Chassis. Moyer builds and sells the racecars out of the Karl Chevrolet shop in Ankeny, and said the first part of this season has been a little research and development.
Whatever he found for Saturday night is going in the notebook, to be certain.
“It was pretty good right off the bat,” Moyer said. “We’ve done a lot of different stuff on this car to get it where it’s supposed to be. We’ve had a couple not-so-good runs trying stuff and experimenting with stuff. Sometimes you have to do worse before you do better. Maybe we’ve got the worst part behind us.”
Moyer won ahead of Rodney Sanders, Simpson, Brent Larson and Jimmy Mars.
The race ran caution-free, and just passed halfway the racing surface took rubber to the point where passing was incredibly difficult. Moyer had built his large lead by that point already, and while working lapped traffic, felt like he could take it easy — even without signals from his pit crew.
He said there was no reason to risk it at that point, unless he saw a nose underneath him or someone working the top.
With the many thousands of laps under his belt, experience met speed for Moyer to leave Independence with the $3,000 winner’s check.
“When the rubber came and kind of got one groove, I kind of backed off so I didn’t blow through my tires,” Moyer said. “I could’ve gotten up on the outside and done something, but you can’t see anything here pit-guy-wise, so I didn’t know how much room I had and didn’t want to risk it.”
While Moyer capped off the three-race swing with the win, the most consistently successful driver through the three races was Simpson.
Thursday’s winner ran second at Davenport Speedway on Friday and finished up with another podium on Saturday. Three runs like that would be enough to make anybody happy with a weekend, but it also eased some pain for a guy who spent Thursday afternoon in the ER in Iowa City.
Regardless, Simpson was understandably excited about what his runs this weekend mean going forward.
“Really what we can take away is we have a hell of a baseline setup and the car is really balanced,” Simpson said. “They definitely knew we were here. The track took rubber so quick, there wasn’t much we could do. Top three each night is better than anyone else here, so we’ll take it.”
INDEPENDENCE MOTOR SPEEDWAY
1. 21m Billy Moyer, Batesville, Ark.; 2. 20s Rodney Sanders, Happy, Texas; 3. 32s Chris Simpson, Oxford; 4. B1 Brent Larson, Lake Elmo, Min.; 5. 28m Jimmy Mars, Menomonie, Wis.; 6. 32p Bobby Pierce, Oakwood, Ill.; 7. 20rt Ricky Thornton Jr., Chandler, Ariz.; 8. 56j Tony Jackson Jr., Lebanon, Mo.; 9. 16t Tyler Bruening, Decorah; 10. 25c Chad Simpson, Mount Vernon; 11. 00s Jesse Stovall, Billings, Mo.; 12. 58e Dave Eckrich, Cosgrove; 13. 29d Spencer Diercks, Davenport; 14. 4w J.C. Wyman, Griswold; 15. 75p Terry Phillips, Springfield, Mo.; 16. 4g Brantlee Gotschall, Nevada, Mo.; 17. 5t Randy Timms, Wheatland, Okla.; 18. 12m Raymond Merrill, Sallisaw, Okla.; 19. 15L Payton Looney, Republic, Mo.; 20. 77a Justin Asplin, Birch Tree, Mo.; 21. 77y Jordan Yaggy, Rochester, Min.; 22. 9e Evan Hubert, Cross Timbers, Mo.; 23. 6h Al Humphrey, Giltner, Neb.; 24. 10p Paul Parker, DePere.
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