Linkiewicz Leads The Way At Thompson



On Wednesday night, the MRolfeDesigns Pro Late Model Series traveled up to Modified country to take on the Thompson Speedway. The 100-lap event was the 9th race of the Pro Late Model season, and entering the race, the top four cars in points were separated by just 20 points.

In time trials, Bill Martin set the fast lap to pick up his 29th career SARA pole, and led the top 8 cars into the Qualifying Dash. Martin got the jump at the drop of the green and had no issues pulling out to a half-second lead and holding to pick up the Dash win. After the Dash, an invert of 6 would sent Martin back to 6th for the start of the feature, while James Linkiewicz would be inverted to start up front.

When the 21-car field took the green flag, Linkiewicz jumped ahead before a quick caution, but that yellow was the only one of the night as the field would restart with 94 laps to go and they would go the distance under green. Linkiewicz pulled out to about a 1-second lead before Martin reeled him in to battle for the lead. Martin would close in to just a car length of the leader just after halfway, but Linkiewicz was too strong as he extended the lead back out after Martin made contact with the outside wall a couple of times. But without the aid of cautions, no one was touching Linkiewicz at the end of the race as he sailed to victory, leading all 100 laps of the feature to pick up his 5th career SARA win.

After closing up to the back of Linkiewicz, the handling went away on Martin’s car, and he would drop back as Ty Spearman would get by to finish in the 2nd spot, with Martin holding on to a 3rd place finish. Darrell Hamlin dropped outside the top five early in the race but came on strong as the green flag run went on to move up into the 4th spot, and Windell Stratton would recover to finish in the 5th spot after an incident on the early restart dropped him back a couple spots.

Just outside the top five, Blake Brown would take advantage of some other cars getting involved in incidents to move up into a 6th place finish, after running in the 10th spot for much of the race. After missing the initial start, Mike Rhyno charged his way up into a 7th place finish after coming from the back. Matt Rolfe ran inside the top five for the first half of the race before a spin dropped him back to an 8th place finish. Ian Layne ran just outside the top ten but moved up some spots late to grab 9th, just ahead of Todd Sipe who was one of those cars involved in a late incident and dropped back to a 10th place finish.

After a runner-up finish, an with the help of the points leader being involved in an early wreck, Ty Spearman would take over the points lead and now leads the standings by 10 points as the division heads into Phoenix next week for their second Triple Crown event.