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FUTURE AT 14: Moore soaking in rookie season at speedway

Jamestown's Greg Moore (14) battles LaMoure's Hayden Aberle (10) and Jamestown's Lane Stoppleworth (79) for position during a bomber heat race on July 14 at Jamestown Speedway. Michael Savaloja / The Sun1 / 2
Greg Moore (14) battles Billy Carow (7c) down the backstretch earlier this season at Jamestown Speedway. Michael Savaloja / The Sun2 / 2

Greg Moore has the type of unbridled passion for racing that only a 14-year-old rookie can bring to the sport.

Just hearing the lad discuss his dirt-track future for 15 minutes and it's easy to forget the well-spoken young man will only be a freshman this fall at Jamestown High School.

"The big dream for me, honestly, would be to race late models sometime in the future," said Moore, who's close to wrapping up season No. 1 in the bombers at Jamestown Speedway. "But realistically in the next few years I'd like to drive either B-mods or streets. Just work my way up and maybe I'll be able to do what I really, really want later on."

Like all newbies, Moore has witnessed the highs and lows on Saturday nights this summer at the local high-banked oval. But the season has largely been positive after making the leap to the big track from go-kart racing.

Moore has motored to one top five and five top 10s in six feature races so far in Jamestown. His only DNF came July 21, the last time cars turned circles at the speedway.

"It was just a racing thing," said Moore, who finished 12 of 12. "I got hit from behind and blew out both rear tires."

The bad luck, however, followed a pair of early milestones achieved on July 14. Moore started the 15-lap feature here that night on the pole, led the first few laps and crossed in a career-high fifth.

The rookie is currently sitting seventh in the bomber track standings, 85 points off leader Leann Christensen, with four nights of points racing remaining on the 2018 schedule. Clay Gentzkow has a pair of feature wins and is four points off the pace in second, while Billy Carow, the 2016 bomber track champion, is 23 points back in third.

Prior to making the move to the bombers, Moore's local go-karting career with Buffalo City Karting produced a pair of second-place points finishes and approximately a dozen wins.

"I still have higher expectations of myself," Moore said. "But at the same time I understand that it's still my first year. I'm expecting struggles and that kinda stuff. It's a learning curve."

Moore's bomber has witnessed its fair share of success, being Monango, N.D. native Jason Miller's old ride. Miller won four features with the machine last summer, including Jamestown Speedway's 2017 season opener.

Moore credits Miller, and Jamestown bomber driver Tony Smith, for showing him some of the early tricks to the trade. Moore also said he receives plenty of support from his family, which includes father, Scott; mother, Monica; grandmother, Diane Witzig; and brother, Zach.

"My dad's involved a lot. We put a lot of time in on the car together and if we think of anything to make it faster, we'll do it," Moore said. "My mom and my grandma like to come out to the races and watch, and my brother, Zach, helps a ton, too."

The driver also couldn't forget his sponsors: Bat Cave Performance, Dakota Engine Builders, Hanson Tire Service, Buffalo City Drywall and Paint, Papa Cow's Ranch and 913 Graphics.

In the coming weeks Moore will be trying out for the Jamestown High School football team. The freshman played on both the offensive and defensive lines last year as an eighth-grader for Jamestown Middle School.

But football won't be the only thing Moore will be looking forward to this fall. The first Stock Car Stampede of his life awaits starting Sept. 21 at Jamestown Speedway.

"It's going to be more intense than all the races we've had so far combined," Moore said. "We've been progressively getting better. I think I'm going to be able to do something pretty good with this final half of the season."

Jamestown Speedway returns to action this Saturday at 7 p.m. hosting the NLRA late models and all regular classes.

Jamestown Speedway

Points Standings

Top 10

Bombers

1. Leann Christensen, Eckelson, 602; 2. Clay Gentzkow, LaMoure, 598; 3. Billy Carow, Jamestown, 579; 4. Tony Smith, Jamestown, 575; 5. Lane Stoppleworth, Jamestown, 534; 6. Erik Busche, Jamestown, 529; 7. Greg Moore, Jamestown, 517; 8. Brandon Michel, Jamestown, 413; 9. Hayden Aberle, LaMoure, 361; 10. Travis Edinger, Jamestown, 340.

WISSOTA Midwest Modifieds

1. Nate Reinke, Lisbon, 622; 2. Jim Morlock, Pettibone, 552; 3. Kelly Hagel, Carrington, 534; 4. Arin Beyer, Jamestown, 517; 5. Zach Reinke, Lisbon, 505; 6. Brennon Weight, LaMoure, 499; 7. Andy Kapp, Jamestown, 497; 8. Travis Traut, Jamestown, 483; 9. Lucas Rodin, Marion, 476; 10. Jay Sahr, Jamestown, 445.

WISSOTA Street Stocks

1. Bob Banish Jr, Milnor, 595; 2. Jerry Lamb, Lisbon, 568; 3. Kyle Anderson, Jamestown, 565; 4. Rory Opp, Hannaford, 558; 5. Jonny Carter, Lisbon, 554; 6. Dustin Erickson, Ypsilanti, 549; 7. Kasey Ussatis, Nome, 546; 8. Royce Jawaski, Adrian, 504; 9. (tie) Chris Ritter, Jamestown, 490; Charlie Christ, Jamestown, 490.

IMCA Modifieds

1. Eric Edwards, Edgeley, 205; 2. (tie) John Nord, Enderlin, 197; Marlyn Seidler, Underwood, 197; 4. Greg Friestad, Valley City, 189; 5. Josh Eberhardt, Jamestown, 187; 6. John Corell, Jamestown, 185; 7. Jarrett Carter, Lisbon, 184; 8. Lucas Rodin, Marion, 168; 9. Crist Pittenger, Bismarck, 152; 10. Dale Mathison, Clearwater, Minn., 144.

Michael Savaloja

Hometown: Churchs Ferry, N.D.; College: North Dakota

A recipient of the NDHSCA Award of Merit, Savaloja has been reporting sports for The Sun since 2008.

Follow on Twitter: @MichaelSavaloja

(701) 952-8461
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