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Division points races are starting to show the possible outcome

Published Sep. 1, 2005

With four months of Sunshine Speedway's season completed, the points race has taken definite shape in some classes.

The standings remain unchanged since the June 28 events. There were no races over the July 4 weekend, a traditional track holiday due to the date's coincidence with NASCAR's Pepsi 400 in Daytona.

Ralph Bowman, driver of the No. 2 car, leads the Open Wheel Modified division.

Though he is without a feature win, Bowman has clicked off more than 10 top-5 finishes and is in command with 627 points.

Bowman has been the front-runner since early in the season. He captured the lead from Chris Robbins (No. 88) of Indian Rocks Beach in the second month of the schedule.

Trailing Bowman is Tommy Bower (No. 51), who has 582 points.

Posting consistently high finishes, Bower has held off Pinellas Park's Herman Brame (No. 55), who's in third.

In search of his second straight Outlaw Late Models championship, Clearwater's Robert Crisp heads the class by eight points.

Crisp, operator of the black No. 2 machine, dominated the division in the 2002 season with 20-plus feature victories.

But this year competition has emerged for Crisp in Clearwater's Wendell Overstreet (No. 78). Overstreet made sporadic appearances at Sunshine last season, taking several wins.

A regular driver in 2003, Overstreet has become the preeminent threat to Crisp's title.

Overstreet has kept their margin low compared to the 97-point gap he has forced third-place racer Scott Holly (No. 1) of Dunedin to overcome.

Brothers Robbie and Darryl Hage, drivers of the No. 74 and 8 cars, respectively, have livened up the points quest in the Figure 8 division, keeping the top two positions locked since early in the season.

Robbie has a six-point lead. But each has been in front multiple times since Robbie, the oldest of the two, snatched the lead from 2002 champion Cliff Rousseau in March.

St. Petersburg's Wayne Calkins (No. 4) trails Darryl by 14 points.

Hot on the trail of a third consecutive title, Roger Welch (No. 98) heads the Street Stock class by 32 points. His possible three-peat is something of a marvel in perhaps the speedway's most competitive division.

Dave Cleary (No. 07), a teammate of Welch, maintains second with 534 points. Gulfport's Jackie Ashley (No. 72) is secure in third at 517.

Driver of the red No. 88 Mini Stock, Ronnie Larson has occupied the top the majority of the season.

He leads 2002 runner-upMacky Mongold (No. 6) by 43 points. Glenn Kelly (No. 16) of New Port Richey is in third place, 25 points shy of Mongold.

JUNE 28 NOTES: Largo's Tommy Schnader, driver of the No. 19 machine, took the victory in the Modified division by edging Robbins (No. 88).

Teddy Nelson (No. 8) was third.

St. Petersburg's Rick Haugh (No. 77) captured the top spot in Outlaws.

Steve O'lone followed in his No. 20 car. Trailing were Overstreet, Crisp and Holly.

Robbie Hage posted the victory in Figure 8s, and Rousseau (No. 3) claimed second.

Pinellas Park's Ron "Hollywood" Davis (No. 89) took third, and Calkins placed fourth.

Dave Ochsenwald (No. 61) of St. Petersburg won the Street Stock race.

St. Petersburg's Chris Escott (No. 8) was the runner-up, and Joe Freitas (No. 5) finished third.

Larson was the Mini Stock winner.

Following were Jay Zolciak (No. 69) and St. Petersburg's Matt Rotkis (No. 3).