Broom time: Feger dusts field, wins UMP Nationals
ROSSBURG, Ohio (Oct. 6) — When Jason Feger loaded his hauler for Saturday’s UMP Nationals at Eldora Speedway, he didn’t forget a broom.
The 34-year-old driver from Bloomington, Ill., used the broom to sweep the day-long action at the Big E as he set fast time, took the Race of Champions, won his heat race, then dominated the 40-lap feature for a $5,000 payday. | Video | Slideshow
The pole-starting Feger notched his eighth victory of the season paying at least $5,000 in a race slowed by two cautions as second- and third-starting Dennis Erb Jr. and Matt Miller suffered flat tires.
Seventh-starting Wayne Chinn of Bradford, Ohio, scored a second-place finish while 13th-starting Brian Shirley of Chatham, Ill., at Eldora to celebrate his UMP weekly crown, was third. Andrew Reaume of Blenheim, Ontario, advanced four spots to finish fourth and Jeep Van Wormer of Pinconning, Mich., rounded out the top five in the race that served as the Sunoco American Late Model Series finale.
Feger held off the charge of Chinn, whose No. 1 worked its way into the second spot.
“I kept looking up at the scoreboard and was wondering who the No. 1 car was behind me, because there were a few of them out there,” Feger said. "During the double-file start I saw it was Wayne, so I knew he must have been doing pretty good.
“I was trying to be as good and smooth as I could. ... Thanks to Feger Nation and to all the fans for braving the cold, the rain and for the ones who are still here for sticking it out. We couldn’t do it without them.”
Feger tripped the clock with 15.6-second laps in high-speed action at Eldora.
“Any time you stand in victory lane at Eldora it’s a good thing,” Feger said after his Race of Champions victory. “I felt like I was driving a sprint car we were going around there so fast.”
The race was originally scheduled for Friday and Saturday, but rain scrapped the first day of action, forcing a one-day program that lasted until the wee hours. Nick Hoffman won the modified feature for a division that drew 130 cars.
Other drivers earning honors during the long day of racing were Van Wormer (Eldora track champion) and seventh-finishing Brian Ruhlman (his fourth Sunoco ALMS title).
Notes: Feger's Pierce Race Car is powered by a Rhyne Competition Engine and sponsored by Chizmark Larson Insurance, Pro Tire & Automotive, Jaxon Chase Steel Detailing, Box Seat Motorsports, Mulligans and Stearn Ironworks. ... Jacob Hawkins tipped Andrew Reaume in the photo finish to win the final heat. ... First heat polesitter Jerry Bowersock was an early retiree in the prelim but got . ... Brian Shirley’s UMP DIRTcar title pays $20,000 during the off-season banquet. ... Late Models return to Eldora one final time for the Blue Collar Bash on Oct 27. ... Among drivers failing to make the feature lineup: Tim Rivers, Dusty Moore, Gregg Haskell, Jason McBride, James Rice, Hillard Miller, Jerry Lierly, Steve Kester, Chris Keller, Adam Thrush, Chad Smith and Chris Ross.
UMP Nationals: (1) Jason Feger, (2) Wayne Chinn, (3) Brian Shirley, (4) Andrew Reaume, (5) Jeep Van Wormer, (6) Frank Heckenast Jr., (7) Brian Ruhlman, (8) Jerry Bowersock, (9) Casey Noonan, (10) Mason Ziegler, (11) Curtis Roberts, (12) Jeff Babcock, (13) Justin Coulter, (14) Dennis Erb Jr), (15) Scott Schmitt, (16) Nick Latham, (17) Devin Shiels, (18) Don Gordon, (19) Jason Riggs, (20) Richard Neiser, (21) Matt Miller, (22) Jacob Hawkins, (23) Scott James, (24) Duane Chamberlain, (25) Ryan VanderVeen, (26) Jeff Walston, (27) Phil Ausra, (28) Bill Lewis. Fast qualifier (among 43 cars): Feger, 15.340 seconds. Heat race winners: Feger, Erb, Miller, Hawkins. Consolation winners: Heckenast, Coulter. Race of Champions winner: Feger. Provisional starters: Bowersock, Sheils, Gordon, Lewis.
Correction: Removes Scott Schmitt from list of non-qualifiers.