NICK SCHWIEN â ¢ Hays Daily News Shannon Maughlin (17M) battles Tim Watts (11W) during a modified heat race Sunday night at WaKeeney Speedway.
By NICK SCHWIEN
WaKEENEY -- The way things looked, Dylan Sherfick was going to be pulling his modified into victory lane once again, smiling for the camera and posing for the winner's circle shot.
It turned out, looks can be deceiving. And that's just what the crowd and Sherfick found out Sunday night at WaKeeney Speedway.
Sherfick got into the lead and pulled away, only to see Shannon Maughlin find enough moisture up high to drive back around him and into victory lane for the first time this season.
"The car was just good tonight," Maughlin said. "When it's good, it's good."
Maughlin started sixth and led laps three through six before Sherfick -- who started 11th -- bolted to the lead by using the low line.
Through the next few laps, Sherfick used that low groove to move out to a five-car length advantage.
"It didn't seem like it to me because I passed all those guys on the bottom," Sherfick said about the low line going away. "I thought I had it wrapped up by the way the car felt. Then here he came from the top side. From the sounds of it, he just kind of caught something there mid-race and just took off."
By lap 14, Maughlin had closed the margin to just a car length by taking a chance and using the high line around the track.
"When they watered the track before we went out, I knew it would be there for a little bit," Maughlin said. "I tried the top in one and two early in the race, and it was still grease. I didn't want to mess the whole deal up. I went back about 10 laps later, and it was hammer down."
Maughlin made that high line work in turns three and four, pulling onto the front stretch with the lead on lap 15.
"That was kind of a hope and a prayer there," Maughlin said.
Sherfick hung tough, even moving into the higher groove. But Maughlin held his spot while wondering what was going on behind him.
"What I actually was thinking was, 'Where is his brother?' " Maughlin said about Sherfick's brother, Travis, who notoriously likes the high side. "He's usually running the same line I am. I was sitting there wondering where he was at."
Even lap traffic during the final two laps didn't cause a problem for Maughlin.
"I thought for sure I had it wrapped up," Sherfick said. "It's pretty frustrating when that happens. Congrats to him. He had a heck of a run."
Dylan Sherfick was second, with Matt Fabrizius in third and Kyle Rohleder in fourth.
"Any win is good," Maughlin said. "I'm happy."
* Colin Heim led all 15 laps of the caution-filled hobby stock feature, his first win at WaKeeney. Daniel Irwin was second, with Cody Graham in third and Leon Pfannenstiel in fourth.
* The Northern sport mod feature had three leaders, but it was Blaine Walt who passed Austin Walker for the lead on lap seven to win his second feature in a row at the track. Daniel Gottschalk was second, with Walker third and Clay Money fourth.
* Wheat Lippelman led the first four laps of the stock car feature before Jeff Tubbs took the top spot and drove away for the win -- his fourth at the track this year. Nick Tubbs was second, with Lippelman in third and B.J. Wagoner fourth.
* Racing returns to WaKeeney Speedway on July 31.