Lucas300a 05 20 22 (259)mikeruefer
Tyler Erb (Mike Ruefer photo)

Tyler Erb Top Lucas LM Foes

FARLEY, Iowa — Tyler Erb held off Lucas Oil Late Model Dirt Series point leader Brandon Sheppard to win the Truck Country 50 on Friday night at 300 Raceway.

Erb had to withstand two caution flags in the final 10 laps to score his second Lucas Oil Late Model Dirt Series win in the series last three races.

Erb led all 50 laps for his 18th career series win. Sheppard finished in second, followed by Ricky Thornton Jr., Hudson O’Neal and Jimmy Owens.

Erb took the lead at the start of the race as O’Neal pressured him early on. Thornton moved by O’Neal on lap 13 to gain the second spot. Thornton tracked down Erb as he closed right behind the Texas racer.

The race went green for the first 32 laps until Tyler Bruening slowed with a right-rear flat. With the field bunched up, Erb still held the point with Thornton and Sheppard close behind.

Sheppard picked up the second spot, overhauling Thornton on lap 36. Sheppard set his sights on Erb, who was maintaining a steady pace out front despite damage from his right-side spoiler support.

Sheppard got within two cars lengths of Erb, using a lower line in turns three and four. A caution with eight laps to go halted Sheppard’s momentum.

On the restart, Erb pulled a few car lengths ahead of Sheppard, as Sheppard had to regain his line. Sheppard closed briefly on Erb, but another caution with two laps to go would set up a green-white-checkered finish. Erb was able to open just enough breathing room over Sheppard to score his second Lucas Oil Late Model Dirt Series victory of the season.

“I was one of those that finished here last year. I got second. The track was a complete 180 from last year. I really like this place; you never know what you are going to get. It was a really good race; you could change around a lot. It was nerve-racking out there I could tell in three and four I was slowing down. All-in-all it was good night,” Erb said.

Sheppard, who announced last month his intentions to chase the $150,000 to win Lucas Oil Late Model Dirt Series championship, maintained the points lead heading to 34 Raceway on Saturday night.

“The track was awesome tonight. They had a huge crowd and that was awesome. Congratulations to Tyler those guys do a really good job. We had a really fast race car again tonight,” Sheppard said. “I guess we will second them to death for a while. I was really trying to keep my car as straight as possible and keep my tires underneath me and hopefully I would be there at the end. Once I got close to Tyler, he got on the same line I was running. I just followed him around there after that.” 

The finish:

Tyler Erb, Brandon Sheppard, Ricky Thornton Jr., Hudson O’Neal, Jimmy Owens, Garrett Alberson, Spencer Hughes, Billy Moyer Jr., Earl Pearson Jr., Ross Robinson, Tim McCreadie, Chad Simpson, Daulton Wilson, Ashton Winger, Tyler Bruening, Jake Timm, Joel Callahan, Bobby Pierce, Charlie McKenna, Tim Simpson, Chris Simpson, Spencer Diercks, David Webster.

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