Contact: Kayla May (World of Outlaws Craftsman Late Model Series PR)
SELINSGROVE, PA – Jeff Rine made the short trip to Selinsgrove Speedway from his nearby hometown of Danville, PA to claim his first ever career win with the World of Outlaws Craftsman® Late Model Series in a flag-to-flag victory during the Late Model National Open.
“Man, this is just freaking awesome,” said Rine. “I kind of felt like the race was going to be won on the first lap so I knew I wanted to do whatever I could to get up there…It doesn’t get much better than this. This is where we grew up racing and I get an awful lot of boos here on a Saturday night but I don’t care how many of you all boo me here tonight because this is awesome.”
Rine, who started on the outside of the pole, was able to claim the lead on the first lap from pole sitter and fellow Pennsylvanian, Rick Eckert. Neither Rine nor Eckert are strangers to the half-mile dirt oval. Eckert cut his teeth in Late Model racing at Selinsgrove Speedway while Rine has won 10 consecutive points championships (2007-2016) with 12 total (1998 and 2004) at the track.
By lap 13, Brandon Sheppard and Chris Madden were able to find their way around Eckert pushing him back to fourth. On lap 26, Madden got out of the groove and nearly into the guardrail allowing Eckert to sneak past to reclaim third.
Simultaneously, Sheppard began to gain ground on the race leader who had once held nearly three seconds over the field. The young dominate driver found himself at Rine’s bumper on lap 28. Rine slammed the door on the hard charging Rocket #1 as the pair came out of turn four only being separated by 0.265 at the flag stand.
On that same lap, Eckert slowed on the backstretch bringing out the caution. He then hopped out of his Paul Crowl Racing Longhorn and onto the track to check out the damages. Eckert suffered from a broken drive shaft which forced him to retire early from the race.
Sheppard was next to bring out the caution on lap 29 with a right rear flat which sent him from second to the tail of the field. Then uncharacteristically for the Rocket Chassis House car, on lap 33 Sheppard began to overheat which sidelined him for the rest of the event.
For the remainder of the feature, Rine was never seriously challenged for the lead.
Madden held onto second from a sixth position start finishing 1.354 seconds behind Rine by the time the checkers fell.
“Congratulations to Jeff and them guys,” said Madden. “It’s awesome for them to be able to win a race like this in front of the fans that support him and thanks to everyone who came out here to support all of us.”
Rookie of the Year contender, Devin Moran rounded out the podium at Selinsgrove Speedway, totaling three top-five finishes in the last three Series races for the young gun.
“We just have to keep working,” said Moran. “If you don’t keep working everyone else will start pulling away from you in a week or two.”
The World of Outlaws Craftsman Late Model Series is taking a break for the World 100 at Eldora Speedway on Sept. 7-9 and will return to action on Sept. 22-24 for a swing through Kansas and Oklahoma.
Selinsgrove Speedway Abbreviated Results:
Craftsman Club Feature (40 laps): 1. 2J- Jeff Rine; 2. 44- Chris Madden; 3. 9- Devin Moran; 4. 99jr- Frank Heckenast Jr; 5. 14m- Morgan Bagley; 6. 0- Coleby Frye; 7. 1*- Chub Frank; 8. 24- Dylan Yoder; 9. 119- Bryan Bernheisel; 10. 91- Tyler Erb; 11. 55- Gary Stuhler; 12. 14z- Dave Brouse Jr.; 13. 76- Andy Haus; 14. 1- Brandon Sheppard; 15. C33- Chris Casner; 16. 7- Rick Eckert; 17. 25- Shane Clanton; 18. 86- Austin Berry; 19. 90- Kyle Rhoads; 20. 18- Eric Wells; 21. 10- Dave Stamm; 22. 66c- Matt Cosner; 23. 9m- Hayes Mattern; 24. ’06- Mike Lupfer; 25. 4-Ds- Chad Hollenbeck
Qualifying: 1. 1- Brandon Sheppard, 19.266; 2. 7- Rick Eckert, 19.436; 3. 44- Chris Madden, 19.452; 4. 9- Devin Moran, 19.496; 5. 2J- Jeff Rine, 19.498; 6. 25- Shane Clanton, 19.498; 7. 99j- Frank Heckenast Jr, 19.593; 8. 14m- Morgan Bagley, 19.653; 9. 1*- Chub Frank, 19.701; 10. 66c- Matt Cosner, 19.795; 11. 24- Dylan Yoder, 19.831; 12. 55- Gary Stuhler, 19.9; 13. C33- Chris Casner, 19.918; 14. 119- Bryan Bernheisel, 19.925; 15. ’06- Mike L tupfer, 20.08; 16. 18- Eric Wells, 20.081; 17. 91- Tyler Erb, 20.5; 18. 76- Andy Haus, 20.602; 19. 86- Austin Berry, 20.609; 20. 24y- Jim Yoder, 20.71; 21. 9m- Hayes Mattern, 20.76; 22. 4-Ds- Chad Hollenbeck, 21.271; 23. 14z- Dave Brouse Jr., 21.275; 24. 90- Kyle Rhoads, 21.286; 25. 10- Dave Stamm, 21.863; 26. 0- Coleby Frye, NT; DNS. 3- Tim Wilson, NT