By Bill Martin
Josh Most and Peyton Taylor started third and finished first in their respective Xtreme Motor Sports IMCA Modified qualifying features on night two of Las Vegas Motor Speedway's Duel in The Desert.
Most led Jordan Grabouski, four-time Duel king Jeremy Payne and Rob Sanders across the stripe in Friday's first 25-lapper, while Taylor won ahead of Jason Noll, Tim Ward and Stormy Scott in the nightcap.
Most and Taylor each earned $777; the top four from each qualifier advance to Saturday's $7,777-to-win Fast Shafts All-Star Invitational ballot qualifying main event.
Most ran the low side off turn four to take the lead from Sanders the second time around the half-mile Dirt Track. Following a lap-seven caution, Most, Sanders and Grabouski pulled away, while Todd Shute had his hands full holding off Payne and Benji LaCrosse for the final transfer position.
Payne took over fourth with 10 laps left. Grabouski closed on the leader as the front pair neared traffic, but Most held on to win by five car lengths.
Ryan McDaniel drew the pole start for the second qualifier and stayed in front before Taylor and Adam Armstrong drove by following a ninth-circuit re-start.
Taylor put some distance between his back bumper and the rest of the field following a re-start two laps later. Noll worked his way back to the second spot, while the 11th-starting Ward was up to third by lap 15.
Scott made his way up from 18th to pass Armstrong for fourth the next time around. Noll maneuvered his way to within a car length of Taylor as the race wound down, but Taylor pulled away again for a half straightaway win.
Curtis Van Der Wal led every lap of the $500 to win qualifier for Northern SportMods, pulling away from the pack after a lap-three caution. Van Der Wal had a half straightaway advantage over Robert Elliott before midway in the 20-lapper and maintained that margin while running through heavy traffic.
Completing the top six and transferring to Saturday's $1,777-to-win main event were 19th-starting Lee Jensen, Brian Cooper, Mark Abouzeid and 14th-starting Chris McKellar.
Last-chance qualifying for both divisions, plus Young Guns and Legends features for Modifieds, precede main events on Saturday. Racing starts at 4 p.m. Pacific Time.
The Duel In The Desert is broadcast by IMCA.TV.
First Modified qualifier
- Josh Most, Red Oak, Iowa; 2. Jordan Grabouski, Beatrice, Neb.; 3. Jeremy Payne, Springfield, Mo.; 4. Rob Sanders, Bakersfield, Calif.; 5. Todd Shute, Des Moines, Iowa; 6. Benji LaCrosse, Green Bay, Wis.; 7. Jason Beaulieu, Campbell River, B.C.; 8. Johnny Scott, Cameron, Mo.; 9. Mark Elliott, Webster City, Iowa; 10. Scott Drake, Joplin, Mo.; 11. Ricky Alvarado, Grand Junction, Colo.; 12. Justin O'Brien, West Union, Iowa; 13. Bill Brack, Mead, Colo.; 14. Clay Daly, Salinas, Calif.; 15. Bruce Nelson, Turlock, Calif.; 16. Christy Barnett, El Paso, Texas; 17. Bricen James, Albany, Ore.; 18. Doug Davenport, Veronia, Ore.; 19. Masen Big Eagle, Manor, Sask.; 20. Darrell Hughes II, Manteca, Calif.; 21. Jason Wolla, Ray, N.D.; 22. Shane DeMey, Denison, Iowa; 23. Bobby Horton, Yuma, Ariz.; 24. Troy Cordes, Dunkerton, Iowa; 25. Randy Brown, Chowchilla, Calif.; 26. Brad Pounds, Bakersfield, Calif.; 27. Duane Cleveland, Plumas Lake, Calif.; 28. Nick DeCarlo, Martinez, Calif.; 29. Ethan Dotson, Bakersfield, Calif.; 30. Chase Allen, Midlothian, Texas.
Second Modified qualifier
- Peyton Taylor, Batesville, Ark.; 2. Jason Noll, Peoria, Ariz.; 3. Tim Ward, Chandler, Ariz.; 4. Stormy Scott, Cameron, Mo.; 5. Jeff Taylor, Cave City, Ark.; 6. Cody Laney, Torrance, Calif.; 7. Collen Winebarger, Corbett, Ore.; 8. Adam Armstrong, Carlisle, Iowa; 9. Alex Stanford, Chowchilla, Calif.; 10. Ryan Ruter, Kanawha, Iowa; 11. Eddie Belec, Arvada, Colo.; 12. Ryan McDaniel, Olivehurst, Calif.; 13. Joshua Vogt, Santa Maria, Calif.; 14. Bob Moore, Sioux City, Iowa; 15. John Hansen, Brush, Colo.; 16. Dominic Ursetta, Arvada, Colo.; 17. Zane DeVilbiss, Farmington, N.M.; 18. Justen Yeager, Green River, Wyo.; 19. Kyle Brown, Madrid, Iowa; 20. Logan Drake, San Obispo, Calif.; 21. Paul Stone, Winton, Calif.; 22. Rex Merritt, Billings, Mo.; 23. John Parmeley, Phoenix, Ariz.; 24. Jeff Stafford Sr., New River, Ariz.; 25. Lawrence O'Connor, Port Hardy, B.C.; 26. Rodney Sanders, Happy, Texas; 27. Chaz Baca, Mesa, Ariz.; 28. Jeremy Frenier, Fort Morgan, Colo.; 29. Kyle Strickler, Mooresville, N.C.; 30. Steven McCollough, Imperial, Calif.
Northern SportMod qualifier
- Curtis Van Der Wal, Oskaloosa, Iowa; 2. Robert Elliott, Clinton, Okla.; 3. Lee Jensen, Bakersfield, Calif.; 4. Brian Cooper, Yuba City, Calif.; 5. Mark Abouzeid, Durham, Calif.; 6. Chris McKellar, Bakersfield, Calif.; 7. Ron Tex Jr., Papillion, Neb.; 8. Nick Spainhoward, Bakersfield, Calif.; 9. Levi Kiefer, Pahrump; 10. Jessie Hoskins, Longdale, Okla.; 11. J.R. Herrera, Price, Utah; 12. Brian Pearce, Oakley, Calif.; 13. Arie Schouten, Blair, Neb.; 14. Matt Lewis, Bakersfield, Calif.; 15. Shawn Pudwill, Piedmont, S.D.; 16. Anthony Giuliani, Morgan Hill, Calif.; 17. Jordan Hagar, Bakersfield, Calif.; 18. Matthew Hagio, Prunedale, Calif.; 19. Chase Rudolf, Norwalk, Iowa; 20. James Cecil, Bakersfield, Calif.; 21. Clint Reichenbach, Santa Maria, Calif.; 22. Lance Borgman, Beatrice, Neb.; 23. Jorddon Braaten, Medford, Ore.; 24. Jared Schweitzer, Bakersfield, Calif.