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Lovell, Dozier, Merritt & Castleberry Score!
By Bob Burbach
Marysville CA - May 12, 2014... 5–time Marysville Raceway Park Winged Sprint Car champion Korey Lovell of Yuba City stormed under the checkers and won Saturday night’s featured MRP Winged Sprint Car feature event. Marysville’s Rick Dozier grabbed the trophy in the MRP Super Stock feature as Shaun Merritt and Misty Castleberry won in the MRP Mini Stock and Pro 4 Sprint Car features respectively. It was “Mom’s Night Out” at the raceway.

The MRP Winged Sprint Car feature was rocket-fast on the butter smooth MRP clay. Marysville’s Cort Dozier bolted into the lead at the drop of the green flag as former champion Mike Monahan and Korey Lovell wrestled for 2nd. Lovell out-gunned Monahan for the runner-up spot, but by lap 5 Dozier was nearly a straightaway ahead.

But, on lap 6 (keep that in mind) leader Cort Dozier rolled to a stop with electrical woes that KO’d the fleet veteran and Lovell inherited the lead.

The new green saw Lovell, Monahan and Oroville’s Heath Hall secure in positions 1-2-3. Behind them a monumental struggle among seven drivers riveted the noisy, cheering crowd. Woodland ’s Peter Paulson, Korey Lovell’s twin brother Kevin Lovell. Point leader John-Michael Bunch of Paradise, Marysville’s Jeremy Hawes, former champions Billy Wallace and Jeremy Burt of Grass Valley , and a surprisingly quick local product Adam Brenton were wing to wing and wheel to wheel battling for position.

Nearing half-way Bunch and Hawes got together with Bunch spinning to a stop. Then, moments later on the other end of the raceway Kevin Lovell and Wallace got together and Kevin Lovell headed for the sky. Kevin Lovell flipped hard, over and over, in turn three, bringing a hush over the crowd. Lovell was shaken but not badly hurt in the grinding crash.

Both Bunch and Wallace restarted. Kevin Lovell’s car was pretty used up after his crash. The last half of the event featured some more stirring dices mid-field as Korey Lovell and Monahan, once again, easily led the way.

Bunch, who restarted at the back of the field regrouped and started passing right away. He would eventually finish 7th. A late race tussle between Hall and Paulson for 3rd would go to Paulson.

Korey Lovell had 10 car lengths on Monahan at the finish with Monahan a similar distance ahead of Paulson. But the tight knot in the center of the field stayed that way to the end with Hall 4th followed by Brenton and Hawes. The victory was Lovell’s 38th career feature event victory.

Bunch and Wallace scored heat race wins and Hall was the Top This Quick Time qualifier in at 13.938.

Marysville’s Rick Dozier broke into victory lane for the first time in his career in the companion MRP Super Stock finale. Brother Cort Dozier, who was driving in both the MRP Winged Sprint Car and the Super Stock class, rushed into the lead at the start and, as he had in the sprint car feature, easily started to distance himself from the field. Amazingly enough, while leading on lap 6, his car expired and he left the raceway with an undiagnosed problem.

Rick Dozier took advantage of his brother’s misfortune and motored on to his 1st ever victory at MRP. A rejuvenated Jerry Bartlett of Yuba City was 2nd followed by former champion Phillip Shelby.

Championship contender Corey Hall of Yuba City retired from the race with mechanical woes and that may well shake up the point standings. Sacramento ’s Tom Sullivan and James Castleberry finished 4th and 5th respectively.

The Dozier brothers, Rick and Cort won the two heat races.

Defending champion Shaun Merritt of Marysville held off Yuba City ’s Kyle Davey in a great MRP Mini Stock closer. Davey actually got by Merritt only to have a quick yellow flag negate the pass.

Yuba City’s Kyle Cheney, Jimmy Ford and Linda’s James Foster rounded out the top five. Davey won the heat race.

In the Pro 4 finale local lady racer Misty Castleberry made it three in a row in the class. A nice battle developed at half way between early race leader Blake Scroggins of Sutter, and Castleberry.

Lapped traffic got in the mix and Scroggins hit the wall and rode it the entire length of the back straightaway eliminating him from the competition. From then on it was all Castleberry. She also won the heat.

Next Saturday night the mighty MRP Winged Sprint Cars will return along with the Wingless Warriors of the MRP Wingless Sprint Car class. The MRP Hobby Stocks and Mini Stocks will also appear. The gates will open at 5 with racing at 7:00PM. It will be GEICO Insurance Night at the Races. More later.

Look for the latest updates at www.marysvilleracewaypark.com or at the Marysville Raceway Park Facebook page.

Note: Please make this observer aware of any names that are misspelled or incorrect. The text is based on information we have at the time of its release. Complete finishes, stats, assessed penalties and points become official and available at the close of business on Tuesday and will be posted to the web site and facebook pages.