Friday, February 5, 2021

1978 – Wolfgang Zips to Southern Title


Doug Wolfgang behind the wheel of the Speedway Motors 4X - Jim Carmichael Photo

Gibsonton, Fla. (February 5, 1978) – The talent of Mother Nature in the form of beautiful weather and the talent of Doug Wolfgang, winning his second feature in three days, made the Southern Sprint Nationals a comfortable and exciting event for some 3,600 spectators at East Bay Raceway Park.

Wolfgang held off strong challenges from Dick Tobias to win the A-main feature.

Wolfgang, from Lincoln, Neb., led from the start of the 50-lap race that brought him $3,000 in purse money plus another $150 in lap money. Tobias, of Lebanon, Penn., finished second and picked up $2,000 for his efforts.

Tobias passed Wolfgang on lap 27 when Rich Vogler of Glen Ellyn, Ill., spun, bringing out the yellow flag. Wolfgang contended he saw the yellow and slowed as Tobias sped by, but Tobias felt he would have had the lead.

“I saw the yellow,” Wolfgang said. “I really didn’t hold him ‘em (Tobias) off. He was faster, but you gotta be a lot of faster to pass on a (short) track like this.”

“We would’ve been leading coming off of turn four,” said Tobias of the 27th lap. Tobias assumed the lead on the back straightaway.

Tom Corbin of Carrollton, Mo., finished third and collected $1,000. Lealand McSpadden of Tempe, Ariz., and Ralph Parkinson Jr., of Kansas City, Mo., finished fourth and fifth respectively.

Dub May of Hanover, Penn., was the only driver to work his way from the C-main to the A-main. May won the opening race and took third in the B-main. Lenard McCarl of Des Moines, Iowa, was second and al Redman of Terre Haute, Ind., finished third.

Another Hanover, Penn., driver, Steve Smith, won the B-main with Mike Brooks of Knoxville, Iowa, second and May in third.

Wolfgang, 25, said the condition of the track was ‘alright’. “It was slick, but you can expect that from an afternoon race.”

Results –

1. Doug Wolfgang, Lincoln, Neb.
2. Dick Tobias, Lebanon, Penn.
3. Tom Corbin, Carrollton, Mo.
4. Lealand McSpadden, Tempe, Ariz.
5. Ralph Parkinson Jr., Kansas City, Mo.
6. Bobby Allen, Hanover, Penn.
7. Mike Brooks, Knoxville, Iowa
8. Bob Kinser, Bedford, Ind.
9. Gary Scott, Holts Summit, Mo.
10.Cliff Cockrum, Benton, Ill.

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