Marcoullier Wins Challenge Series Finale at TCMS - Nate Murphy - Tri-City Motor Speedway - Auburn, MI | Friday Night Dirt Track Racing
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Driver Profile

Marcoullier Wins Challenge Series Finale at TCMS

9/13/2020
Marcoullier Wins Challenge Series Finale at TCMS

9/13/2020: (Auburn, MI): The Tri-City Motor Speedway conducted its final race weekend of the 2020 season this past weekend with the running of the Battle by the Bay. The two-day show ran over the course of two nights, Friday September 11th, and Saturday September 12th. The race program was headlined by the $10,000 to win special for the Allstar Performance Late Model Challenge series presented by American Ethanol. The UMP DIRTcar Modifieds, Lane Automotive B-Mods, Auto Value Pro Stocks, Suspension Maxx Street Stocks, and XLT Engineering were all part of the show as well running for increased payouts and finalizes the 2020 points championships.

The Allstar Performance Mini-Wedges kicked off racing activities on the little Tri-City Motor Speedway. The restrictor plate class Saturday feature was won by Ella Bringer (Saginaw, MI). Jett Gohr won the restrictor plate Friday night feature. In the No restrictor plate class it was Kyron DeShano who got the win. Kyron would go back to back also winning on Saturday night as well. 

The Auto Value Pro Stocks hit the track first in the running of a 30-lap feature event. Chad Bennett (Caro, MI) and Terry Hillard (Houghton Lake, MI) brought the field down to the green. Bennett took the lead after the first lap. He would stay there until lap 3. That was when 2019-track champion Nate Murphy made the pass for the lead. Murphy would never look back from there as he would go on unchallenged the rest of the way until the checkered flag. This was the second win of the year for the 31-year old driver from Coleman, Michigan driving the American Sewer Cleaners #69. 2020 track champion Kendall Morrison finished second. Tim Murphy, Bennett, and Rob Westergard rounded out the top five. The preliminary heat raced were won by Tim Murphy and Morrison. The qualifying feature win went to Morrison. 

The XLT Engineering Bomber Stocks rolled out for their 25-lap feature event. The 4&6 Cylinders started the race in a 3-wide formation 11 rows deep. The 33-car field was led to the green by Brad Treichel (Bay City, MI), Don Frohm (Lakeport, MI) and Brian Kloha (Linwood, MI). Kloha led the first circuit with the fierce position battles going on behind him. The lead would change hands on lap 9 going to Ethan Robarts (Whittemore, MI). On lap 8 Robarts would see Robert Hankinson get by to take the lead for himself. Robarts and Hankinson would trade the lead for several laps. However, when the dust settled, it was Hankinson pulling out the win. This was the first win of the season for Hankinson, the native of Whittemore, MI in his #09. Robarts took second. 2-time track champion Johnny Staszak, Kloha, and Chris Wassmann completed the top five. Staszak, Harrison Rivett, Frohm, and Willie Murray won the heat races. Saszak and Wassman won the Odd/Even qualifiers. 

Mike Vandecar (Caro, MI) and Nick Putman (Kawkawlin, MI) led out the Suspension Maxx Street Stocks for their championship 30-lap A-Main. Vandecar pulled out with the lead after lap 1. Putman would take the lead away on lap 5. Things would not change again until lap 18 when Rick Spencer (Whittemore, MI) grabbed the lead position. However, Jim Miller Jr. (Clio, MI) would take the lead on lap 19. The move of the race would happen on lap 20 with Jake Thompson charging to the lead and never relinquishing it, going on to get the win. The 25-year old Thompson from Birch Run, MI scored his second win of the year in the Diffin Farms #50. Miller finished second. Jason Begeman, Spencer, and 2-time track champion Eric Lake capped off the top five. Thompson, Benjamin Gonzalez, and Tyler Moore won the heat races. Thompson and Lake also won the Odd/Even qualifiers. 

The 30-lap A-Main for the Lane Automotive B-Mods was out next with Timmy Near (Midland, MI) and Jason Begeman (Caro, MI) on the front row. Near notched the lead on the first lap of the race. Near would go unchecked until lap 14. This was when 18-year old Michael Luberda (Au Gres, MI) powered by to take the lead. The battle for the lead heated up again when Collin Thirlby (Traverse City, MI) led the field on lap 19. A fierce battle would take place between Thirlby, Luberda, and Scott Payton (Gaylord, MI). Luberda would hold the lead when the checkered flag waved. This was Luberda’s second win of the year in the Outdoor Adventures R.V. Resorts #1w. Payton finished just behind in second. Thirlby, Near, and Kevin Miller made up the rest of the top five. The heat race victories went to Thirlby, and 2015-track champion Myron DeYoung. Thirlby and Michael Haynes won the Odd/Even qualifiers.

The UMP DIRTcar Modifieds squared off in a 35-lap main. Collin Thirlby (Traverse City, MI) and Brian Brindley (West Branch, MI) kicked off the opening drag race into turn 1. Brindley jumped out in front in the early going. Brindley would hold make a great effort, leading all they way until lap 33. A surging Jeff Erickson Jr. (Muskegon, MI) had weaved his way up through the ranks after starting 8th was able to take the lead. Brindley responded by taking the lead back with one lap to go. However, the night belonged to Erickson who won the battle to the finish on the final circuit. The 31-year old driver from Muskegon, MI won the event in the Salon One Hair & Nail care #1e. Brindley had to settle for second. Thirlby, Chad Bauer, and Jacob Poel completed the top five. Erickson and Caleb Kill won the heats. The Friday night qualifying feature was won by Erickson. 

The season finale for the Allstar Performance Late Model Challenge Series presented by American Ethanol compeated in a 75-lap $10,000 to win main event. Travis Stemler (Ionia, MI) and 2020-track champion Dona Marcoullier (Houghton Lake, MI) led the 25-car field to the green. The battles for position raged throughout the field, with Stemler leading after lap 1. Stemler would hold steady until lap 17. This was when Marcoullier worked his way up to challenge Stemler and take the lead for himself. Marcoullier would hang on from that point to score the win and big payday. The 36-year old Marcoullier from Houghton Lake, Michigan scored his seventh win of the season in the Dennis Craft Construction / Black Diamond Chassis #6m. 3-time UMP DIRTcar National Champion Rusty Schlenk, Stemler, Chad Finley, and Greg Gokey rounded out the top five. Schlenk, Marcoullier, Logan Nickerson, and Finley were the heat race winners. Schlenk was the overall fast qualifier with a 12.598 lap time. Schlenk and Marcoullier picked up the Odd/Even qualifier wins. 
Article Credit: Brian Osborne

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Marcoullier Wins Challenge Series Finale at TCMS
Marcoullier Wins Challenge Series Finale at TCMS
Marcoullier Wins Challenge Series Finale at TCMS
Marcoullier Wins Challenge Series Finale at TCMS
Marcoullier Wins Challenge Series Finale at TCMS
Marcoullier Wins Challenge Series Finale at TCMS
Marcoullier Wins Challenge Series Finale at TCMS
Marcoullier Wins Challenge Series Finale at TCMS

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