STARS Racing Series North-South 100: Report, Results, Standings

26 August 1997

Union, KY - Rick Aukland of Fargo, ND captured the win in the STARS Racing Series sanctioned, $20,000-to win, "15th Annual North-South 100" at Florence Speedway in Union, KY. After starting the race in third place in the 100-lap event, Francis, in the Rayburn/Malcuit/E-Z Crusher Chevrolet took the lead on lap 26 and was never headed as he swept to his first STARS win of 1997. Donnie Moran finished in second with pole sitter Skip Arp third, Bart Hartman and Bob Pierce rounding out the top five.

Starting on the outside of the front row, Steve Francis took the lead as the cars raced into turn one with Arp, Aukland and Steve Smith trailing him. Mike Jewell passed Eddie Carrier Jr for fifth on the third lap as the front three cars went three wide in the battle for the point. Francis was relegated to third by lap four as both Arp and Aukland slid by.

Following a lap 5 caution Arp and Aukland battled fiercely for the lead with Francis sitting in third taking it all in. As the lead trio began to pull away, Jewell was able to get around Smith for fourth and Hartman came from his 13th starting position to crack the top five on lap 13. On the 14th circuit Hartman passed Jewell and just three laps later John Gill was also able to get around Jewell and take fifth.

The leaders began to encounter lapped traffic on lap 22 and this allowed Aukland to get around him on lap 26. The laps quickly wound down, and the only other caution of the race came on lap 51 for a Rod Conley spin. Aukland was able to take advantage of the clear track on the restart to open a gap on the field. After starting in 15th position, Donnie Moran entered the top five on lap 64 and just 20 laps later he was perched in fourth. Francis picked up the pace slightly and passed Arp for second on lap 88 and two laps later Moran also made the pass on Arp as he moved into third. Moran began to pressure Francis and then on lap 94 the two got together as Moran attempted the pass and Francis suffered a flat left rear tire. Despite the flat, Francis elected to stay on the track for the final five laps and limped home in 12th spot.

There were 58 cars on hand to try and grab a portion of the $66,000 purse and the fastest of them was Carrier who set a fast time of 17.135 seconds in qualifying. Heat race wins went to John Gill, Jack Boggs, Darrell Lanigan and Rick Eckert while Arp won the ISKY Racing Cams Fast Dash and Booper Bare and Jim Curry won the PRO SHOCKS 'B' Mains.

John Kaiser -- The Autochannel

 
RESULTS 15th ANNUAL North-South 100
Pos Car Driver                   Laps    Purse   Status   
1.  12  Rick Aukland              100    $20000  Running
2.  99  Donnie Moran              100     10000     "
3.  31  Skip Arp                  100     5000     "
4.  75  Bart Hartman              100     3000     "
5.  32P Bob Pierce                100     2500     "
6.  75G John Gill                 100     2000     "
7.  E1  Mike Balzano              100     1800     "
8.  B4  Jack Boggs                100     1700     "
9.  68  Tim Hitt                  100     1600     "
10. 29  Darrell Lanigan           100     1500     "
11. 24  Rick Eckert               100     1400     "
12. 15  Steve Francis              99     1300     "
13. 30  Steve Shaver               99     1200     "
14. 3S  Steve Smith                98     1100     "
15. 72  John Mason                 98     1000     "
16. 00  Booper Bare                98     1040     "
17. 71R Rod Conley                 98     1040     "
18. 71  Delmas Conley              98     1040     "
19. 30M Mike McWilliams            97     1000     "
20.  1  Eddie Carrier Jr           96     1000     "
21.  7  Jim Curry                  41     1040  Handling
22. 7UP Gary Green                 33     1040  Engine
23.  9  Mike Jewell                25     1000  Cooling
24. 1CJ C.J. Rayburn               18     1040  Engine

 Time of race: 45 min
 Cautions: 2
 Lap Leaders: Francis, Arp, Aukland

 
 1997 STARS Racing Series Points Standings
  
 1.  Steve Francis              7510
 2.  Mike Balzano               6160
 3.  Tim Hitt                   6120
 4.  Rick Eckert                6090
 5.  Steve Shaver               5220
 6.  Rod Conley                 5000
 7.  Bart Hartman               3980
 8.  Barry Bragdon              3580
 9.  Delmas Conley              3480
 10. Todd Andrews               3300
 

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