Falks look to extend records

Published 11:07 pm Thursday, May 3, 2012

By Gary Daughtrey

Special to the News-Herald

Brothers C.E. and Wes Falk will look to continue their checkered flag fiesta this Saturday, when the EZ Auto in Newport News Late Model Stock Cars take to Langley Speedway’s .395-mile oval for the Whelen/USG Twin 50s, the featured events of the track’s fourth NASCAR Whelen All-American Series program of the 2012 season.

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In addition to the Late Model Twins, slated for first and last on the five-race schedule, Saturday’s feature lineup includes: Cycle City Corp. INEX Legends (25 laps); SavitaPets.com UCARs (25 laps); and, Standard Welding Pro Sixes (30 laps).

The Falk brothers have combined to win the last 12 Langley Late Model features. C.E. posted victories in the final nine races of ’11 and swept a pair of 50-lappers on April 21. In this year’s opener, on April 7, Wes stepped up to rescue the streak after C.E. and Greg Edwards locked horns in the closing laps.

C.E. Falk brings an eight-point lead into this Saturday’s Twins, 75-67, over Edwards. Casey Wyatt ranks third, just one behind Edwards, while Mark Wertz and Shayne Lockhart are deadlocked for fourth, three points behind Wyatt.

Already a two-time Langley pole winner this season, Greg Edwards got an extra boost of momentum with a fine performance in last Thursday’s Denny Hamlin Short Track Showdown at Richmond International Raceway. Wheeling Randy Spears’ #34 Ford, he led the first 31 laps from the pole before giving way to eventual race winner (and defending NASCAR Sprint Cup Series champ) Tony Stewart.

At the end of the 75-lap contest, Edwards was the runner-up, picking up the second spot when Jeff Burton stumbled on the final restart. Longtime Late Model ace Brandon Butler was third, ahead of Cup Series stars Burton and Joey Logano.

After starting near the front, C.E. Falk briefly slipped outside the top 10, but rallied in the waning circuits to take eighth. With Edwards and Falk both having competitive runs, their Langley battles became a topic of conversation for announcers on the SPEED Channel telecast.

Woody Howard was 18th in the 36-car rundown, while Nick Smith retired to a 33rd-place finish after losing an engine on lap 36. Smith also had a hand in the event’s first caution flag as he and NASCAR K&N Pro Series East standout Sergio Pena tangled on lap 1, triggering a multi-car melee in Turns 1 and 2.

After a win in the April 14 opener, Nick Smith heads the INEX Legends standings. Defending champ Brad Hancock, Steve Keesee, Spencer Saunders and Jamie Price complete the current top five.

In the UCAR division, Sammy Gaita and Bill Eaker have split the season’s first two races. Gaita holds a one-point lead over Eaker in the current standings, 51-50. Michael Joyner and Jon Largena are tied for third, seven behind the leader, followed by Kevin Morgan, who is 10 out of the top spot.

Bobby Hall leads Nelson Moody by two points in the Pro Six standings, 50-48. Two-time pole winner Steve Williams is third, one behind Moody, while Anthony Perez is fourth, one behind Williams. Landon Florian, who was on the verge of a victory on April 21 before missing a shift on the last restart, ranks fifth.