Do the math. With two Modified classes involving three Egberts, only two could win at Texas Thunder Saturday night and two did park on the Winner's Circle.
Once the 18-car Automax IMCA Southern SportMod feature went green, Crawford driver Jimmy Helona's 21x car led the parade for nine circuits. Trevor Egbert fans were watching and waiting for their hero to make his move and, like one of those Discovery Channel Shark Week Great Whites (his 78 car is white, by the way), the class points leader made the pass and took over. Belton-based Egbert was well aware of the hard-charging Sid Kiphen of Gatesville, but was able to reach paydirt just ahead of his closest challenger.
Later, 22 IMCA Modifieds lined up and this one turned out to be a cousins battle.
Former national champion P.J. Egbert wrested the top spot from Coupland's Doyle Massa by lap two and it looked like he might have an easy time of it. Trouble is, it's never easy to win, racing in this class.
After a dustup between Copperas Cove's Cham Savage Jr. and Hardy Henderson of Taylor bunched up the field, things got real competitive between cousin P.J. and cousin G.W.
The pair proceeded to lock horns, going doorhandle to doorhandle down the straightaways and rubbing in the corners, until points leader G.W., racing out of Salado, moved ahead with three to go. After another caution flag, P.J. spun into the infield, opening the door just wide enough for his cousin to outlast the now-second place car of Belton's Pat McGuire, adding one more notch to the family's racing history.
Fans of the IMCA Stock Car class were wondering if Lampasas racer Tony Hamil could put his car back in Victory Lane after scoring a first-ever feature win a week ago.
For most of the run, another Hamil was in charge. Former class champion Anthony Otken of Killeen took his car around leader Justin Wierenga and seemed poised to break a winless drought dating back to early in the season.
Hamil caught up on lap 12 and after some contact on the front straightaway that didn't set well with Otken, but which Hamil later characterized as "That's racing," the Lampasas driver did make it two in a row.
In the IMCA Hobby Stock feature event, last week's winner Jarrett Roberts got off to a good start and led for two laps, then points-leading Charles Cosper of Belton nosed his car around the Temple-based Roberts on a right-side pass and was never challenged after that.
Lately, Killeen driver Zach Riley has taken charge in the Street Stock class and he kept the heat on with another flag-to-flag winning sprint Saturday night. Riley had some anxious moments when points leader Tristan Carman was closing fast, but Riley held off Carman and what was left of a 22-car field to put his car into Victory Lane for the third straight week.
A pair of 10's decided a hotly contested Outlaw Twister race. Ricky Hardcastle of Harker Heights was up front, until a caution put the field close together. On the restart, Kempner driver Chris Bruner passed the leader and at the finish, it appeared that Hardcastle had won, but the electric eye said no, that it was Bruner by less than one-thousand of a second.
The Texas Twisters went green a couple of races earlier and the early lead was taken by Belton driver Larry Underwood. Out of the pack came Taylor racer Stephanie Henderson, where she got around Underwood and brought it home for her third win this season.
Claim court then went into session and for, it seems like, the umpteenth time, points leader Vavette Blevins had her 24 car bought out from under her. She accepted and we'll be looking for her in a new ride this week.
It wasn't over for the Twister classes yet, however. Several car owners entrusted their rides to spouses or significant others for the annual Powder Puff Derbies. Jamie Marnill won the original Twister segment, while Shannon Acker took the Outlaw derby.
Then, the two winners went head-to-head in a two-lap King, or Queen in this case, of the Hill showdown. Acker won it and was crowned Queen of the Twisters.
With just six race nights left, Texas Thunder is rocking.
Weekly car counts have been phenomenal, with one exception.
I'd like to see more participation in the Hobby Stock arena. The track is averaging seven to eight cars a week, when you need at least 10 for a full field. It's a really good entry-level class and it carries a national sanction. Hopefully, some of our Twister drivers and even some Street Stock racers will make the move up next year.
After one win this season, points leader Charles Cosper even made an appeal from Victory Lane for more folks to get involved. This from a guy who's competing for a championship. Like the rest of us, he wants to see the class live long and prosper. Can you tell I'm a Trekkie?