Miller drives to 2nd Top Dog

Published 9:41 pm Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Derek Miller motored into the lead on lap 12 and led the rest of the way to notch his second victory of the season in the 50-lap Top Dog race, the featured event of Saturday’s program for Arena Racing USA’s Hampton Roads series at the Hampton Coliseum.

Cody Carlton drew the pole for the start and shot ahead of Robbie Davis at the drop of the initial green flag to take the lead.

The first caution flag flew on lap 4 when Clayton Parrish spun at the end of the frontstretch. Setting the running order, Carlton was out front, followed by Miller, Jordan Wood, Adam Florian and Davis.

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Miller zeroed in on Carlton and grabbed the lead on lap 12, bringing Wood along with him and kicking Carlton back to third.

The last of the race’s three caution flags waved on lap 36 when Davis overturned in Turns 3 and 4. The accident happened just ahead of race leader Miller, who cut through the infield to avoid Davis’ car.

Setting the lineup for the restart, Miller was out front, followed by Wood, Carlton, Scott Prillaman and Florian.

Under green for the last time, Prillaman went after Carlton for third off the second corner, taking the spot at the end of the backstretch. Florian and Saunders followed Prillaman’s lead and also bypassed Carlton. The shuffle allowed Miller and Wood to pull away by nearly a full straightaway.

At the finish, Miller was the winner by a car-length over Wood. Prillaman tailed the top two to the stripe, in third, followed by Florian and Saunders.

Spencer Saunders grabbed the top spot on lap 17 and sailed to his second feature win in the 50-lap A Main.

Aaron Leach was the pole-sitter for the event, sharing the front row with Saunders. As the race got under way, Leach powered out front, leaving Saunders to battle with points leader Adam Florian for second.

On lap 17, Saunders went after Leach aggressively in Turns 3 and 4, muscling the leader aside to take over the top spot. Florian, Derek Miller, Jordan Wood and Scott Prillaman all followed Saunders’ cue, dropping Leach back in the running order.

At the finish, Saunders was the winner by a car-length over Florian. Miller was third, followed by Wood and Prillaman.

Cody Carlton took the lead from Jason Styron on lap 35 and sped on to his second win of the season in the 50-lap B Main.

Anthony Perez started from the pole and moved out front on the opening circuit. The first yellow flag flew on lap 6 when Mike Dayton smacked the outside wall off Turn 2. That interruption was quickly followed by caution No. 2 as Patrick Morgan and Perez tangled off Turn 4. With Perez and Morgan retreating to the back of the pack, Styron took over the lead.

On lap 34, Carlton poked a fender alongside Styron off Turn 2. The two raced door-to-door for almost a lap with Carlton pulling ahead in Turns 1 and 2 on lap 35. By lap 40, Carlton’s lead had swelled to half a straightaway.

Denver Alvis jumped into the lead on the opening lap and showed the way to his first feature victory in the 50-lap C Main.

Chris Crecelius drew the pole for the start, but gave way to Alvis as the race got under way. By the eighth circuit, Alvis had fashioned a three-length lead over Crecelius. Third-place Ryan Hill was almost a straightaway behind the lead duo.

The third, and final, caution flag appeared on lap 44 when Crecelius spun in Turn 2, handing the runner-up spot to Curtis Hughes.

Under green for a sprint to the checkers, Alvis and Hughes bolted in nose-to-tail formation. Alvis managed to hold Hughes at bay over the closing laps, winning by half a car-length.