(PETERSEN MEDIA)- Fans were treated to a thrilling Dirt Classic Showcase presented by Leffler Energy on Saturday night at Lincoln Speedway, as Greg Hodnett made a move on the final turn of the final lap to score the $7,000 win and earn the coveted Golden Ticket into September’s $20,000-to-win, $1,000-to-start Dirt Classic.
Hodnett and Lucas Wolfe would bring the field to green on Saturday night, and it was Wolfe winning the battle into turn one as he jumped out to the early lead and set a strong pace with Hodnett in tow.
As Wolfe continued to lead the way, deep in the field a couple of drivers were moving their way forward as Brent Marks worked his way from the 14th starting spot, and Ryan Smith took the Pay To Pass Challenge and was fighting through traffic from 24th.
The lead pack would enter lapped traffic on the 10th circuit and Wolfe would take advantage of a two second lead he had built up as he made quick work of traffic and extended his lead up to nearly 2.5 seconds over the next 10 circuits.
While Hodnett worked to keep Wolfe in striking distance he would feel pressure from third running Stevie Smith, and a charging Marks who had worked his way up into fourth as the race drew to a close.
Continuing to work in traffic, Hodnett would close in on Wolfe’s bumper as the laps clicked down. With Wolfe working the high side of the speedway, Hodnett would try to sneak under the leader, and would show him his nose wing on the 27th lap.
With Wolfe taking the white flag, Hodnett would use a full head of steam out of turn two to close in drastically as the duo raced down the backstretch. With the crowd on their feet, Hodnett would make his race winning move in turns three and four as he moved up in front of Wolfe as the two came ever so close to making contact.
Beating Wolfe to the checkered flag, Hodnett would pick up the win, and lock into the Dirt Classic that returns to Lincoln Speedway on September 24th.
“We never touched,” Hodnett said in victory lane to a crowd full of mixed reactions. “I had a great car and we were lucky enough to pass him on the last lap. Heading into three I thought we were better, but I knew I had to get off of four better. When he got caught up behind lapped cars, I knew I had to make my move. I have been on the receiving end of that pass, so we just put ourselves in position to get in front of him, and make him back off.”
Wolfe would hang on to finish second, while inaugural Dirt Classic winner, Stevie Smith completed the podium. Brent Marks would cap his strong charge off by finishing fourth, with Gerard McIntyre, Danny Dietrich, Adam Wilt, Chase Dietz, Aaron Ott, and Brian Montieth rounding out the Top-10.
Slated to start in the third spot, Ryan Smith opted to take the Pay-To-Pass Challenge that was in place on Saturday night, and his run from 24th to 15th saw him take home $2,050.
34 cars were in attendance for the Dirt Classic Showcase presented by Leffler Energy and it was Brandon Rahmer setting the standard in qualifying time trials.
A four heat race program was in place with wins going to Montieth, Wolfe, Stevie Smith, and Robbie Kendall, while Brandon Rahmer won the B-Main, and Hodnett won the Dash.