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Dillard Dominates Opening Night of 22nd annual Rancho Milagro Fall Nationals

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October 21, 2022  |  by Chris Stepan

Cade Dillard won the Rancho Milagro USRA Modified feature.

Cade Dillard won the Rancho Milagro USRA Modified feature.

Dillard Dominates Opening Night of 22nd annual Rancho Milagro Fall Nationals

The $22,000-to-win Rancho Milagro Fall Nationals kicked off on Friday night, October 21st with fifty-one USRA Modifieds in attendance on night # 1 of the three-day extravaganza.

After five heat races and a pair of b-mains set the 24-car starting field for the first preliminary night’s 25-lap feature event, Robeline, Louisiana’s Cade Dillard, who won the 2019 Fall Nationals, hopped out front from the outside of the front row and drove away out front for the majority of the event to draw first blood and put his #97 into Rio Grande Waste Services Victory Lane on the opening night of the highest paying USRA weekend of the season.

Dillard beat Greenville, Texas racer Bo Day into turn one on the opening lap and took the lead and lead every circuit, but not without heavy pressure at times from 4th starting Jake O’Neil, who is looking to win consecutive Fall Nationals events after racing to a $21,000 paycheck a year ago.

Several caution periods kept the field tight throughout the 25-lap sprint, but Dillard maintained control of the event from green to checkered to claim the victory. O’Neil had to battle with Tanner Mullens and Johnny Scott for the runner up spot, which he was able to assume and then he took several stabs at Dillard out front in the closing laps, but was forced to settle for second.

Scott ran third ahead of 14th starting Terry Phillips, who picked up hard charger honors, racing up ten spots to come home fourth, just ahead of Dereck Ramirez, who advanced seven spots forward to round out the top five.

Jesse Haynie rallied from his 18th starting spot to claim top honors in the USRA B-Mod feature event after working his way forward methodically and then out battling Donavon Flores, Justin Allen and Aasa Flores over the final laps to claim the feature win. Donavon Flores got out front early from his pole position starting spot and looked as if he was going to drive away from the field until Aasa Flores rolled up to his inside and took the lead away briefly before a caution flew, putting Donavon back out front.

While the Flores cars were battling out front, Haynie had worked into the top five and began battling with Lucas Ward for fourth, just behind Justin Allen, who was trying to keep pace with the leaders. Haynie was glued to the bottom of the speedway and was able to put his #X15 car in places others couldn’t and got alongside Flores for the lead during the final laps and was able to get through lapped traffic a little better than Donavon on the final lap to secure the victory.

Donavon Flores edged Aasa Flores for second, while Ward got by Allen for fourth at the line as well.

RC Combs started on the pole of the USRA Stock Car feature and lead early before Josh Cain stole the top spot from him mid race, only to see Cain suffer a flat tire under caution handing the lead back to Combs, who then went on to lead the remainder of the 20-lapper to hold off Rob Moseley for his first ever win at Vado.

Combs and Moseley were both good on the bottom of the speedway, while Josh Reynolds and Jonathan Burton were ripping around the top trying to get to the leaders. With a great battle going on out front, Mike Rosales, who started 18th, was working his way forward and was bringing Cain, who changed a tire and restarted at the tail, with him through the field.

Combs was up to the challenge and raced to the win ahead of Moseley, who crossed the finish line in second. Rosales raced from 18th to 3rd with Burton racing home with a fourth-place run. Cain rallied all the way from the tail to nip Reynolds at the line for an impressive fifth place finish.


The Vado Speedway Park is back in action on Saturday and Sunday, October 22nd and 23rd for the second and third nights of the 22nd annual Rancho Milagro Fall Nationals where Modifieds, B-Mods and Stock Cars will be in action both nights.

For fans not able to attend in person, all events held during the 2022 season at the Vado Speedway Park will also be live streamed online by PayPerView at www.WatchFYE.tv.

For upcoming schedule information and tickets, visit www.VadoSpeedwayPark.com.