By Kevin Posival
Killeen Daily Herald
P.J. Egbert has a record-setting advantage over Keith White this season, but both have 11 wins thus far in their respective IMCA classes and are simply running away with track championships.
Egbert, who had his track record nine-straight feature wins ended by 2007 track champion Pat McGuire last week, returned to the winner's circle after the IMCA Modifieds race while White, who had an eight-week stretch ended just two weeks ago, won for the second straight week.
And, for the second straight week, White finished one place better than his brother-in-law, Brandon Stewart, who drives White's old No. 2 car, which makes all three of their 1-2 finishes this season fitting.
"It's good in a way," Stewart said of racing against and working with family. "But he usually doesn't let anyone else get the win."
When Stewart made his 2008 SportMods debut at the speedway on April 26, White was in the midst of his eight-week stay on the winner's circle. When White's streak ended three weeks ago with a third-place finish, Stewart finished sixth. For the last two weeks, White has finished first and Stewart second.
"I did like that my brother-in-law came in second," White said. "Especially since he works more on my car that his own."
Stewart did best White in their heat race, but Mike Autrey got the best of Stewart with his winning finish. White finished fourth in the heat race and started fifth in the feature, but as the field went high coming out of the Turn 4 start, White kept to the groove to jump out front and never trailed after that. Stewart overtook Kenny Ware on lap one and trailed only White for the remainder of the 15-lap race.
"He's there to help me," Stewart said. "He's been doing this 20-something years while I'm only on my fifth year. If I need to know something about the track, he's there to tell me."
Stewart, who played football for Mary Hardin-Baylor, said racing was something his grandfather did and then something he himself got into after getting injured. He jumped right into a SportMod and said the first couple of years were rough.
"It was a pretty rough two years for me being in a car, but I got with Keith and we've stepped it up a level."
White, who won the SportMod national title in the event's first two years, lost his title last year to Jeff Turner, whom White beat in the first race of the 2008 season at the speedway, and has since been on a tear, winning 11 of the Speedway's 14 races this season as well as a handful at Heart 'O Texas Speedway in Elm Mott on Friday nights.
"I try not to look at the field," White said. "I'm just trying to take care of what I need to be doing."
Likewise, Egbert, who failed to defend his 2006 IMCA Modified track title last year against the veteran McGuire and White (who finished second to McGuire in total points), has also won 11 of this year's races at TTS and had won nine straight until McGuire's win last week.
"It feels good to be back in the winner's circle," Egbert said.
Egbert, who started 12th, quickly moved up the field to eighth after two straight opening-lap cautions dwindled the field. He moved into fourth before lap three and was third on lap four but couldn't get any closer until a lap-eight caution.
"Everybody wanted to win on the first lap instead of being cautious," Egbert said. "Patience pays off."
Egbert got around Ben Ketteman and trailed polesitter Rick Green after nine laps before he took the momentum on the high side around Turn 4 coming into lap 11 and finished way ahead of McGuire, who finished second, and the rest of the field.
Michael Walter finished ahead of the IMCA Stock car class, but Eric Jones still leads the field with 504 points this season after an eighth-place finish. David Dunn, who is behind Jones in the standings, finished second and Chris Ochoa finished third.
Tim Carman Jr. won his second straight Street Stocks feature and leads Jones 507-497 in those season points. Jones finished third and Dunn, who's fourth in the points standings behind Chris Florio, finished second.
Randy Doyle pulled to within a single point of T.J. Jacobs in the Texas Twisters class with a feature win. Jacobs placed third in his feature. T.J. Yagalla, who's fourth in the standings, placed just behind Jacobs, and Gage Fuller won Yagalla's feature.
Contact Kevin Posival at firstname.lastname@example.org or (254) 501-7562.