Hockett an O’Reilly ASCoT Baton Rouge Rocket


Lonnie Wheatley, BATON ROUGE, Lou. (March 10, 2006) – Jesse Hockett proved to be too hot to handle in Friday night’s 30-lap O’Reilly American Sprint Cars on Tour Louisiana Shootout at Baton Rouge Raceway as he scored his first series win of the year over a stellar field with a packed house witnessing the action unfold.


Hockett outdueled Aaron Berryhill in the early rounds then repelled the challenges of Jason Johnson, Gary Wright and Travis Rilat to secure the victory aboard the Wesmar-powered VKCC Motorsports No. 75 DRC-chassis.


“This is an awesome way to start out with our brand new DRC,” an enthused Hockett commented from victory lane after his fourth career ASCS National Tour victory.  “This was my kind of race track, slick through the middle with a good top to lean on, I loved it.”


With Hockett gridding the field fourth beside two-time ASCS Sprints on Dirt champion Dustin Daggett, it was Aaron Berryhill leading the feature field to the green flag with Tim Montgomery alongside.


Returning to the driver’s seat after sitting out a year, Berryhill gunned into the lead at the drop of the green, with Hockett wasting little time taking to the cushion to move into second by the completion of the second lap.


Hockett quickly closed to Berryhill’s rear bumper and slid into the lead entering turn one on the sixth lap.  Berryhill returned the favor though, ducking underneath the Missouri racer exiting turn two to retain command.


The pair swapped slidejobs once again in turns one and two on the eighth round, but Hockett took command for keeps when he dove underneath Berryhill and slid to the cushion off turn four just a half lap later.  Moments later, Berryhill slipped to ninth when he did a quick 360-degree spin in turn two.


Just as Hockett was entering lapped traffic on the eleventh circuit, the race’s first caution flew when Rookie pilot Brad Best looped his mount in turn four.


Hockett led Montgomery, fifth-starter Wright and eighth-starter Johnson on the restart.  While Rilat disposed of Daggett for fifth moments later, Wright and Johnson each climbed a notch when Montgomery surrendered the runner-up slot by spinning in turn four.  Montgomery rejoined the chase at the tail.


While Johnson, Wright and Rilat battled in heated fashion for second on the ensuing restart, Hockett slipped away from the dueling trio.  Rilat had fought his way up to second in front of Johnson and Wright by the time the race’s final caution flew for a Tony Bruce, Jr., spin in turn two, setting up a five-lap dash to the checkered flag.


Rilat stuck his nose underneath Hockett on the restart, but Hockett stayed true to his preferred high line and streaked across the finish line with a six car-length advantage.


Johnson fought his way back into second aboard Lanny Row’s Wesmar-powered The Shop Diesel Service No. 41 Eagle on the 28th round and held the spot to the line, with two-time and defending series champion Wright taking the show position aboard the Wesmar-powered Southwest Express/The Shop Diesel Service/Richwood Construction No. 9 Maxim.  Rilat moved atop the series points chase by finishing fourth in the Motor Mike-powered Hard Eight Racing/F&J Construction No. 29 Maxim, with Rookie of the Year contender Nick Smith rounding out the top five in the Ostrich-powered MPHG Promotions No. 15s J&J.


Former series champion Zach Chappell crossed the stripe sixth, with Darren Stewart racing from 13th to seventh.  Sean McClelland gained several positions to claim eighth, while Joey Montgomery turned in the evening’s top passing performance by charging from 18th to ninth.  Mike Chadd completed the top ten.


Daggett, Stewart, Wright and Chappell each scored heat race wins, with Berryhill, Chadd, McClelland and Tim Montgomery victorious in qualifying race competition for the 37-car field.


Jerrod Hull and Jake Peters split victory honors in the twin “B” Mains.


Tony Bruce, Jr., the 2005 Brodix Rookie of the Year, utilized a provisional starting position for the main event after a turn two flip while lining up for the fourth qualifying race.


Daggett ran among the top five in the “A” Main for 13 laps before retiring to the pit area with mechanical woes.


Action for the O’Reilly American Sprint Cars on Tour resumes with Saturday night’s Leading Edge Lubricants Challenge at Houston Raceway Park in Baytown, TX.


O’Reilly ASCoT Louisiana Shootout Results from Baton Rouge Raceway:


Heat Races and Qualifying Races (Top 14 in Combined Points Advance to “A” Main; balance to Twin “B” Mains)


First Heat (8 Laps):  1. 85-Dustin Daggett, 2. 01-Tim Montgomery, 3. 15-Sam Hafertepe, Jr., 4. 97-Aaron Berryhill, 5. 4-Mike Chadd, 6. 35-Brad Best, 7. 7-Michael Herrington, 8. 12T-Mark Tate, 9. 12-Trey Robb.  DNS: 94-Cody Branchcomb.


Second Heat (8 Laps):  1. 91-Darren Stewart, 2. 75-Jesse Hockett, 3. 15s-Nick Smith, 4. 14w-Sean Walden, 5. 29-Travis Rilat, 6. X-Chuck Swenson, 7. 21c-Joey Montgomery, 8. d12-Doc Sloan.  DNS: 17b-Ryan Bickett.


Third Heat (8 Laps):  1. 9-Gary Wright, 2. 57x-Jake Peters, 3. 46-Jan Howard, 4. 9L-Lane Whittington, 5. 55L-Dustin Lindquist, 6. 1-Sean McClelland, 7. 81au-Gavin Punch, 8. 94c-Stephen Chevallier, 9. 99-Ray Stevison.


Fourth Heat (8 Laps):  1. 50z-Zach Chappell, 2. 41-Jason Johnson, 3. 94h-Jerrod Hull, 4. 01m-Shane Morgan, 5. 44J-Abe Sherwood, 6. 18-Tony Bruce, Jr., 7. 49-Ty Johnson, 8. 45-Josh Howard, 9. 17c-Greg Coleman.


First Qualifying Race (8 Laps):  1. 97-Aaron Berryhill, 2. 55L-Dustin Lindquist, 3. 85-Dustin Daggett, 4. 46-Jan Howard, 5. 91-Darren Stewart, 6. 01m-Shane Morgan, 7. 12T-Mark Tate, 8. 81au-Gavin Punch.  DNS: 12-Trey Robb.


Second Qualifying Race (8 Laps):  1. 4-Mike Chadd, 2. 29-Travis Rilat, 3. 75-Jesse Hockett, 4. 15s-Nick Smith, 5. 57x-Jake Peters, 6. 44J-Abe Sherwood, 7. 49-Ty Johnson, 8. d12-Doc Sloan, 9. 99-Ray Stevison.


Third Qualifying Race (8 Laps):  1. 1-Sean McClelland, 2. 9L-Lane Whittington, 3. 41-Jason Johnson, 4. 9-Gary Wright, 5. 35-Brad Best, 6. 94h-Jerrod Hull, 7. 7-Michael Herrington, 8. 94c-Stephen Chevallier.  DNS: 17c-Greg Coleman.


Fourth Qualifying Race (8 Laps):  1. 01-Tim Montgomery, 2. X-Chuck Swenson, 3. 21c-Joey Montgomery, 4. 50z-Zach Chappell, 5. 15-Sam Hafertepe, Jr., 6. 17b-Ryan Bickett, 7. 45-Josh Howard, 8. 14w-Sean Walden, 9. 18-Tony Bruce, Jr.


Twin “B” Mains – Top 4 from each advance to “A” Main


First “B” Main (10 Laps):  1. 94h-Jerrod Hull, 2. 46-Jan Howard, 3. 35-Brad Best, 4. 01m-Shane Morgan, 5. 7-Michael Herrington, 6. 49-Ty Johnson, 7. d12-Doc Sloan.  DNS: X-Chuck Swenson, 81au-Gavin Punch, 12-Trey Robb, 99-Ray Stevison, 94-Cody Branchcomb.


Second “B” Main (10 Laps):  1. 57x-Jake Peters, 2. 21c-Joey Montgomery, 3. 15-Sam Hafertepe, Jr., 4. 14w-Sean Walden, 5. 45-Josh Howard, 6. 17b-Ryan Bickett, 7. 94c-Stephen Chevallier, 8. 44J-Abe Sherwood, 9. 12T-Mark Tate.  DNS:  18-Tony Bruce, Jr., 17c-Greg Coleman.


“A” Main


A Feature (30 Laps):  1. 75-Jesse Hockett, 2. 41-Jason Johnson, 3. 9-Gary Wright, 4. 29-Travis Rilat, 5. 15s-Nick Smith, 6. 50z-Zach Chappell, 7. 91-Darren Stewart, 8. 1-Sean McClelland, 9. 21c-Joey Montgomery, 10. 4-Mike Chadd, 11. 97-Aaron Berryhill, 12. 94h-Jerrod Hull, 13. 9L-Lane Whittington, 14. 55L-Dustin Lindquist, 15. 01-Tim Montgomery, 16. 46-Jan Howard, 17. 15-Sam Hafertepe, Jr., 18. 57x-Jake Peters, 19. 18-Tony Bruce, Jr., 20. 14w-Sean Walden, 21. 85-Dustin Daggett, 22. 35-Brad Best, 23. 01m-Shane Morgan.


Lap Leaders:  Aaron Berryhill 1-7, Jesse Hockett 8-30.


Note:  Tony Bruce, Jr., utilized a provisional starting position for the “A” Main.


O’Reilly ASCoT presented by Love’s Travel Stops & Country Stores Points (Top Fifteen:  1. Travis Rilat 266, 2. Nick Smith 265, 3. Darren Stewart 258, 4. (tie) Gary Wright and Tim Montgomery 254, 6. Jesse Hockett 251, 7. Zach Chappell 222, 8. Jerrod Hull 219, 9. Mike Chadd 209, 10. Jan Howard 198, 11. Dustin Lindquist 195, 12. Sean McClelland 191, 13. Sam Hafertepe, Jr. 189, 14. Tony Bruce, Jr. 183, 15. Dustin Daggett 177.