The Joplin Globe, Joplin, MO

July 9, 2013

Coats, Sheets finish strong at Mid-Season Championships

By Anvil Welch
Globe Sports Writer

— Joplin’s John Coats and Nevada’s Jon Sheets finished second in their respective stock car racing classes as Lucas Oil Speedway held Mid-Season Championships on Saturday night.

Coats, with 328 points, wound up runner-up to Lebanon’s Brian Schutt (398) in the factory stock class.

Sheets was clipped 788-781 by Sedalia’s Terry Schultz in the USRA modified division.

Schultz won the A feature on Saturday night at the Wheatland track by beating Jason Pursley of Wheatland and Sheets.

Sheets ironically won the second heat by beating both Schultz, who was second, and No. 4 Pursley.

Completing the A feature winners, all from Missouri, were Schutt, Lebanon’s Kris Jackson (B modified) and Henley’s Jason Russell (ULMA late model).

Russell and Jackson also claimed first-half titles during the program presented by Casey’s General Stores.

Colt Pruente, Verona, placed third in the first-half B modified standings. Late model rookie leader Payton Looney, Republic, also was third in points.

The Lucas Oil Late Model Dirt Series will make its final visit of the season Saturday night with the races following hot laps at 7. The program also will have competition in the late model Lucas Oil MLRA and USRA modified.

First place in the LOLMDS main event will pay $10,000 and a diamond ring in the seventh annual CMH Diamond Nationals.

Jimmy Owens, Newport, Tenn., has been tough to beat in recent seasons at Lucas Oil Speedway and is seeking a third straight national points championship.

Owens, 41, is the current leader with 3,120 points. Completing the top five are John Blankenship, W.Va., 3,055; Steve Francis, Ashland, Ky., 2,985; Don O’Neal, Martinsville, Ind., 2,965, and Earl Pearson Jr., Jacksonville, Fla., 2,950.