By Cody Morris
Corpus Christi, Texas (5-27-2012) – The Griffith Truck & Equipment ASCS Gulf South Region dashed to Corpus Christi’s South Texas Speedway for the third and final installment of their Memorial Holiday Weekend tripleheader.
In front of a raucous packed house for the highly anticipated Gulf South venture deep into the southern Texas coastline, Channin Tankersley powered to his second consecutive ASCS Gulf South victory with a last lap pass of former Gulf South champ Brandon Berryman.
Starting inside second row for the 25 lap Griffith Truck & Equipment ASCS Gulf South Region main event, Tankersley watched as two-time and reigning Gulf South champ Ray Allen Kulhanek powered into the early lead.
A great battle for the lead developed immediately between Berryman and Kulhanek, before Kulhanek slowed to a stop with engine woes on the fifth lap. Not long after the restart, Tankersley joined Michael McNeil in attack of Berryman’s leading pace, as the three sliced and diced throughout the midway stages of the main event until a red flag for a Beau Smith tumble slowed the heated action down on the 17th circuit.
Berryman took advantage of a strong restart and a McNeil exit for mechanical issues, but Tankersley steadily began to reel in the leader before pulling alongside several times in the final five laps.
The Highlands, Texas gasser dove low in turn one on the final lap and pulled off a sensational last lap pass, crossing the finish line with South Texas fans on their feet in support of the sensational finish.
Tankersley’s South Texas score made it two in a row following his Gator Motorplex victory Saturday night, and two for three in the Gulf South triple header; earning the Highlands pilot a $500 bonus from the partnered sponsorship of Griffith Truck & Repair, Laney Boring Services, and Jim Wingfield Truck & Equipment.
The $500 bonus added to consecutive $2,000 scores, as well as 6th place earnings in Friday‘s event at Beaumont — leaving the Tankersley team thrilled and flush with over $5,000 in winnings’ over the ASCS Gulf South tripleheader.
Berryman settled for a bewildered runner up effort with Friday night Beamont winner Tommy Bryant claiming show position honors at the finish line. Travis Elliott and Wes Miller completed the top five finishing order. Klint Angelette took Hard Charger honors with a drive from 15th to 8th. Kulhanek, Tankersley, and Elliott took heat race wins over the 16 car field.
Griffith Truck & Equipment ASCS Gulf South Region / 16 cars
May 27th, 2012 / Event 12 of 26 (finale of Memorial Weekend tripleheader)
South Texas Speedway/ Corpus Christi, Texas
A Feature (25 Laps): 1. 0-Channin Tankersley; 2. 31-Brandon Berryman; 3. 28-Tommy Bryant; 4. 15T-Travis Elliott; 5. 2-Wes Miller; 6. 12-Logan Bledsoe; 7. 69-Larry Howery; 8. 19-Klint Angelette; 9. 35-Greg Rilat; 10. 17-Bruce Griffith Jr; 11. 24-Brandie Jass; 12. 15-Andrew VanBlarcum; 13. 25M-Michael McNeil; 14. 51-Beau Smith; 15. 21T-Ray Allen Kulhanek; 16. 66-J.J. Simmons
Lap Leaders: Kulhanek 1-4, Berryman 5-24, Tankersley 25-30
(8 Laps): 1. 21T-Ray Allen Kulhanek; 2. 12-Logan Bledsoe; 3. 2-Wes Miller; 4. 17-Bruce Griffith Jr; 5. 15-Andrew VanBlarcum; 6. 24-Brandie Jass
(8 Laps): 1. 0-Channin Tankersley; 2. 25M-Michael McNeil; 3. 28-Tommy Bryant; 4. 66-J.J. Simmons; 5. 69-Larry Howery
(8 Laps): 1. 15T-Travis Elliott; 2. 31-Brandon Berryman; 3. 51-Beau Smith; 4. 35-Greg Rilat; 5. 19-Klint Angelette
2012 Griffith Truck & Equipment ASCS Gulf South Region point standings (top ten):
1. Ray Allen Kulhanek 1508; 2. Michael McNeil 1419; 3. Brandon Berryman 1409; 4. Travis Elliott 1360; 5. Wes Miller 1306; 6. Beau Smith 1298; 7. Larry Howery 1274; 8. Greg Rilat 1265; 9. Klint Angelette 1238; 10. Tommy Bryant 1237