Wednesday, June 16, 2021

1983 – Webb Quickest in Santa Fe ‘Dixieland Challenge’


Gary Webb went wire to wire in winning at Santa Fe Speedway. 

Hinsdale, Ill. (June 16, 1984) – Gary Webb of Davenport, Iowa, was all grins on the winner’s stand Thursday night at Santa Fe Speedway. From the start to the finish, polesitter Webb led the Dixieland Challenge 50-lap race on the quarter-mile.

Competition was tough, as some of the best dirt late model drivers in the Midwest teamed up with Southern-bred Bobby Allison and Buddy Baker.

The first caution appeared as Ken Pohlman spun out on the second lap. The caution tightened the gap between Webb and Jim O’Conner, in second position, but not for long.

The yellow appeared a second time on the fourth lap, once again pulling Webb back into the pack. The flag waved for Dennis Erb and Buddy Baker as they collided in the fourth turn.

Shortly after the green reappeared, Webb shot into a strong lead, which he maintained throughout the endurance of the contest.

On lap 18, with Webb in the lead and Darrell Marmor holding onto a strong second, an awesome battle for third-place ensued between O’Conner and Al Johnson. O’Conner and Johnson drove door-to-door for eight laps until Johnson finally secured the position on lap 25.

Not ready to settle for a third-place finish, Johnson drove on Marmor’s tail by lap 32 and stole second position two laps later. The top seven racers maintained their positions throughout the rest of the race.

Johnson crossed the finish line in second behind Webb. Marmor settled for third with O’Conner in fourth and Tony Izzo and John Provenzano following. Bobby Allison finished a respectable seventh.

Results –

1. Gary Webb, Davenport, Iowa

2. Al Johnson, Justice

3. Darrell Marmor, River Grove

4. Jim O’Conner, Kankakee

5. Tony Izzo, Bridgeview

6. John Provenzano, Aurora

7. Bobby Allison, Hueytown, Ala.

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