Moyer Wins Baltes Classic as Eldora Speedway Readies for World 100

Staff Writer

Six-time World 100 champion Billy Moyer powered around Canadian Andrew Reaume on lap seven to take the lead and then survived a couple of mid-race restarts to capture Sunday’s 10th annual Baltes Classic presented by Coors Light at Eldora Speedway.

Moyer, of Batesville, Arkansas, showed up at Eldora on Sunday, looking to redeem himself after a disappointing 2016 World 100, which saw him miss the 100-lap main event.  If Sunday is any indication, the 59-year old veteran will be a contender for another globed trophy next weekend.

“Last year was supposed to be my last World 100 but we ran so bad I decided to give it another try,” Moyer said.  “We built this new car and have been tweaking on it but we are getting pretty close with it.  This one will probably be my last World 100.”

Moyer started beside Reaume on the front row and chased the Canadian for six laps before executing a perfect slide-job in turns three and four on lap seven and led at the flagstand.  Reaume returned the favor in turns one and two and momentarily re-took the lead, but Moyer turned under Reaume and took the lead back.

Dale McDowell, the 2005 World 100 winner, moved into second-place just past the 30-lap event’s halfway point.  Despite a couple of restarts, McDowell could never seriously challenge Moyer and Moyer pulled away to his third win in the Baltes Classic.

“The track was just like I figured it would be and gave us a real good idea of what we need to do next week,” Moyer said.  “I was a little worried when we pulled in here today because I thought it looked like it was going to be really wet, but the track was perfect and you could race all over it.”

Heat races were won by Reaume, Moyer, Steve Casebolt and Roberts.  Dustin Nobbe and Brent Larson won the two B-main’s.

Celina car owner Mike Chrisman called Jon Henry earlier this week to see if the 2010 Eldora track champion from Ada would like to drive his UMP Modified.  Henry agreed to crawl back behind the wheel and didn’t disappoint, leading all 20 laps to pick up his 6th career win at the one-half mile, high-banked oval.”

“We really weren’t that good when we first went out but Mike and his guys made some adjustments and the car was really good,” Henry said.  “I think we will be back for the UMP Nationals here in a few weeks.”

While Henry led every lap, the victory was far from easy.  Jacob Hawkins, who had won both of his previous 2017 starts at Eldora, pressured Henry throughout the race but Hawkins had to fight off a late race challenge from Josh Rice in the closing laps and was never able to mount a serious challenge to Henry.

Hawkins held on to finish in the runner-up position over Rice.  Coldwater’s Ryan Sutter completed a strong run with a fourth-place finish, while Brian Ruhlman completed the top five.  Rounding out the top ten were Chris Arnold, Jerry Bowersock, Tony Anderson, Jonathan Taylor and Josh Morton.

After winning three feature events in 2016, New Paris, Ohio’s Paul Pardo picked up his first win of 2017 with a dominating effort in the Eldora Stock Car 15-lap main event.  Pardo took the lead from Brandon Archey on lap three and pulled away from there to a convincing victory.

Eldora officials now begin preparations for the World 100.  “The World’s Biggest Dirt Race” begins on Thursday with twin 25-lap, $10,000 to-win preliminary feature events.  Friday features another set of twin 25-lap, $10,000 main events before Saturday’s traditional six heat races, consolation events and the 100-lap finale paying $50,000 to-win. — Eldora Speedway