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Illinois driver holds off York's Rick Eckert to win Outlaws' late-model race at Lincoln

STEVE HEISER
717-505-5446/@ydsports
Brandon Sheppard is shown after his win at Lincoln Speedway on Thursday night.

Illinois' Brandon Sheppard continued his stellar season on Thursday night with his 12th win on the World of Outlaws late-model circuit.

Sheppard’s victory came at the second Billy Vacek & Paul “Huey” Wilcoxon Memorial at Lincoln Speedway in Adams County and earned the driver a $12,000 payday. The Outlaws' late models, sponsored by Morton Buildings, were making their first visit to Lincoln in 15 years. It was the beginning of a three-day Pennsylvania swing for the late-model touring drivers.

The 27-year-old Sheppard is now up to a series-high 12 victories on the 2020 campaign and continues to inch closer to the most wins in series history (Josh Richards, 77) with his 67th career win.

"This was a really fun track, Lincoln Speedway puts one heck of a race," said Sheppard, who won in his first-ever appearance at the 3/8th-mile Abbottstown-area facility. "I could race every day of the week right now if they'd let me. This thing is so much fun to drive. We've just been so good, it's hard to miss any of these races. I'm glad to be back out here on tour, especially at new places like this. I had never been here before, so I like checking new tracks off my list."

Sheppard started on the pole of the 50-lap feature, with Pennsylvania native, Dan Stone, lined up second. Last year’s Billy Vacek Memorial winner, York's Rick Eckert, lined up 10th for the main event. Sheppard was credited for leading all 50 laps.

In the end, Sheppard crossed the finish line .790 seconds ahead of Eckert. Ricky Weiss was third, followed by Cade Dillard and Chase Junghans.

"I knew he would be good here," Sheppard said of racing Eckert to the finish. "When he got to second, I was just concentrating on hitting my marks and doing my job."

Eckert, for his part, was pleased with the performance of his team.

"We dug ourselves in a hole, but boy we rebounded there at the end," said Eckert, who took $6,000 for second. "Hats off to this track crew, they did an amazing job. You could race all over this place, it's little, but somehow feels almost five lanes wide."

Ashton Winger was sixth, followed by Trever Feathers, Darrell Lanigan, Ross Robinson and Dan Stone;

Heat winners were Weiss, Sheppard, Stone and Lanigan.

The Outlaws' late models continue the Pennsylvania weekend with a Friday night appearance at Williams Grove Speedway in Cumberland County. On Saturday night, the weekend concludes with a trip to Eriez Speedway in Erie.

The World of Outlaws and Lincoln Speedway provided information for this report.