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Contact: Richie Murray - USAC Media /


By: Richie Murray - USAC Media

Ventura, California....November 23, 2017 - Thanksgiving is the day each year when we take a little extra time to realize how fortunate we are.

For those in attendance at Thursday's "Turkey Night Grand Prix," the realization quickly came to how thankful we are to have witnessed Christopher Bell and Kyle Larson duking it out against each other for 98 laps in USAC Midgets at Ventura Raceway.

The three official lead changes listed in the box score aren't indicative of the back-and-forth battle these two titans waged with sliders being exchanged like currency on both ends of the racetrack.

On the 54th lap, Bell ultimately made the winning pass on Larson with a daring outside move on the front straightaway, but would have to endure the relentless persistence of Larson all the way down to turn one of the final lap when he stifled Larson's slider before it even had time to develop.

Christopher Bell celebrates his victory in Thursday night's 77th 'Turkey Night Grand Prix' at Ventura (Calif.) Raceway. (Rich Forman Photo)

Bell, of Norman, Oklahoma, joined the ranks of two-time "Turkey Night" winners just six days after wrapping up his first NASCAR Camping World Truck Series title at Homestead (Fla.) Speedway. Though he and Larson have reached success in the NASCAR ranks in recent years, their home lies in the dirt tracks, just like old times when they were regulars on the USAC trail.

"Oh my god, it's so much fun," Bell exclaimed. "I just told Kyle that if he would've beat me, I would've been, maybe not just as happy, but still happy because it was just that much fun. That race was one of the most fun races I've run in a long time."

Straight from the outset, polesitter Larson had the upper hand as inside second row starter Bell followed in his wake on the bottom.

As Larson ringed around the berm lining the bottom of the racing surface, Bell became the first in line to venture to the top on the 12thlap, using a big bite off turn four to pull to a dead-heat at the line alongside Larson before nudging into the lead by a sliver into the first turn.

Bell never wavered in his decision to go top-shelf and it would pay off one lap later when he slipped by Larson off turn four to secure the lead.

"I could tell that the top was going to be good," Bell theorized. "Watching the sprint car feature, we saw that it got pretty good. They tilled the bottom and I could tell it was going to be really good at the beginning. Once it started going away, I tried the top and it was right there."

On lap 40, Brayton Lynch got sideways in a shuffle for position at the exit of turn four. Facing oncoming traffic, Chad Boat met front-bumper to front-bumper with Lynch, melding the noses of each car together as Boat attempted to peel away to no avail. Courtney Crone and newly-crowned five-time USAC Light Up the World Beverages Western States Midget champ Ronnie Gardner were also involved, but would restart.

When racing resumed on lap 52, Larson went to the bottom and slid his teammate Bell to snare the lead. One lap later, Bell returned the favor and slithered by Larson with just inches to spare as he tunneled between Larson's right-side wheels and the front straightaway wall. Larson attacked again into turn one with a slider, but the motion was denied, and Bell cleared away the Tryptophan after the wake-up call and sprinted back into the lead.

'Oh my god, it's so much fun. I just told Kyle (Larson) that if he would've beat me, I would've been, maybe not just as happy, but still happy because it was just that much fun. That race was one of the most fun races I've run in a long time.' - Christopher Bell - (Rich Forman Photo)

Following a lap 57 tangle between the two most recent USAC National Midget feature winners - Brady Bacon and series champion Spencer Bayston - Larson harassed Bell, putting it all on the line in the prestigious race in an attempt to become just the third driver to win the event three times. On lap 66, Larson got on the bike, lifting the left side wheels as he ripped the edge of the turn three cushion in his tireless pursuit.

With three-quarters of the race in the rearview mirror, it was time to turn up the wick. The bottom became just a distant memory as the two were now inside the barrel, riding the wave in turns three and four above the cushion. On lap 80, Larson slid Bell into turn one momentarily. Bell retaliated by crossing underneath Larson off the second turn to recapture the point. In turn three, the second verse played out the same as the first as Larson slid to the lead and Bell, so Allen Iverson-esque, used a killer crossover to bolt back to the front.

"The majority of drivers understand you have to be good at the end of the race to win the race," Bell said. "At the beginning, you're just cruising and making sure you make It to the end of the race. That's the biggest thing. Kyle and I were both rolling around there about quarter-throttle at the beginning, trying to save our tires and kill some laps. It worked out and we were racing our butts off at the end."

Larson, the five-time NASCAR Monster Energy Cup winner, set up another Hail Mary that was denied as Bell wheelied away off the top of turn two to remain in front. Tyler Courtney, the USAC West Coast/VRA Sprint Car feature winner earlier in the night, slowed to a stop in turn one to bring out the yellow and provide a breather for both the drivers and fans alike.

On the ensuing restart, Bell jetted away from Larson and, with ten to go, held a lead of over one second with a full nest of lappers resting in the distance. Just prior to lapped traffic possibly becoming a factor with a mere four laps to go, Holly Shelton and Bacon performed a synchronized spin between turns one and two that brought out the final yellow and one more stanza that Bell had to deal with Larson.

"The track was so technical," Bell explained. "It was all about hitting your marks and minimizing mistakes because you weren't going to make a mistake-free lap tonight. You just had to make sure when you made a mistake that you could recover from it. Once I got going on those green flag runs, I could get my momentum built up and make good, competitive laps. But after the yellow flags, it was tough to pick your rhythm back up. I knew I was a sitting duck their leading on the restarts. On the final one, Kyle got one last bomb on me and I was able to get him back."

Larson's first lob of a bomb was a success in turn one on the lap 95 restart as he scraped across the surface to snag the race lead from Bell. Bell counter-punched and ripped away the lead back away from Larson with a slider into turn three. Entering turn one with two laps remaining, wheels banged and nerf bars clanged as Larson shot to the lead past Bell once again.

As a uncertain as a game of tug-of-war teetering on a see-saw, Bell launched like a missile on a hellbound train to slide across the nose of Larson and into the lead between turns three and four to capture the lead for good. Larson threw a haymaker entering turn three coming to the white flag, pulling side-by-side with Bell at the exit of four where it momentarily became three-wide with Shane Golobic arriving seemingly out of the clear blue sky to mount a challenge for the lead.

Larson tried once more on the final lap, but Bell savagely, and wisely, took a lower entrance into turn one, thus preventing a final pull of the pin from Larson. Bell carried on with a 0.193 second lead across the finish line as Larson blasted off the top of the final corner to nip Golobic by a wheel at the line for the runner-up spot. Past "Turkey Night" winner Tanner Thorson was fourth and Don Basile "Rookie of the Race" Zeb Wise was fifth in his second-career USAC National Midget start.

Bell was 4 for 7 in USAC National Midget feature appearances in 2017 for a .571 batting average. His 21st career series victory tied him with Steve Cannon, Jimmy Caruthers, Rex Easton and Ken Schrader for 27th all-time.

The fourth-straight "Turkey Night" win for the Keith Kunz/Curb-Agajanian Motorsports team began with Bell's victory in 2014. Firsts are always special in any circumstance, but this one has even more meaning for the 22-year-old, 2013 USAC National Midget titlist.

"I definitely had to work harder for this one. This one was even more fun and more special."

Contingency award winners Thursday night at Ventura Raceway were Kyle Larson (ProSource/Woodland Auto Display Fast Qualifier), Kevin Thomas, Jr. (Simpson Race Products/Extreme Mufflers 1st Qualifier Winner & Wilwood Brakes 13th Place Finisher), Chad Boat (Competition Suspension, Inc./Brown & Miller Racing Solutions 2nd Qualifier Winner), Zeb Wise (Chalk Stix/Keizer Aluminum Wheels/Saldana Racing Products/Indy Race Parts Last Chance Winner) and Ryan Robinson (KSE Racing Products/Esslinger Engineering Hard Charger).


USAC NATIONAL & LIGHT UP THE WORLD BEVERAGES WESTERN STATES MIDGET RACE RESULTS: November 23, 2017 - Ventura Raceway - Ventura, California - 77th "Turkey Night Grand Prix"

PROSOURCE/WOODLAND AUTO DISPLAY QUALIFYING: (Top-12 locked into the Feature) 1. Kyle Larson, 1, Kunz/Curb-Agajanian-11.888; 2. Jake Swanson, 73, Ford-11.909; 3. Christopher Bell, 21, Kunz/Curb-Agajanian-11.933; 4. Shane Golobic, 17w, Clauson-Marshall/Wood-12.060; 5. Justin Grant, 39BC, Clauson/Marshall-12.081; 6. Brayton Lynch, 1K, RKR-12.119; 7. Logan Seavey, 4A, RAMS-12.200; 8. Spencer Bayston, 97, Kunz/Curb-Agajanian-12.210; 9. Tanner Thorson, 67, Kunz/Curb-Agajanian-12.238; 10. Michael Faccinto, 9D, Dodenhoff-12.249; 11. Brady Bacon, 76m, FMR-12.266; 12. Tucker Klaasmeyer, 27, Klaasmeyer-12.269; 13. Kevin Thomas, Jr., 25, Petry/Goff-12.274; 14. Chad Boat, 84, Tucker/Boat-12.276; 15. Brad Sweet, 63x, Dooling/Hayward-12.282; 16. Michael Pickens, 25x, Rodela-12.290; 17. Holly Shelton, 67K, Kunz/Curb-Agajanian-12.326; 18. Courtney Crone, 25, Rodela-12.342; 19. Zeb Wise, 39, Clauson/Marshall-12.391; 20. Chase Briscoe, 5, Briscoe-12.393; 21. Carson Macedo, 73x, Ford-12.460; 22. Ronnie Gardner, 68, Six8-12.471; 23. Frankie Guerrini, 63, Guerrini-12.490; 24. Cory Elliott, 11E, Elliott-12.505; 25. Clayton Ruston, 7R, CR-12.512; 26. Maria Cofer, 57, Cofer-12.520; 27. Tyler Nelson, 47, Mason-12.535; 28. Dustin Golobic, 17G, Wood-12.593; 29. Danny Stratton, 98, Blondel-12.605; 30. David Prickett, 22Q, Neverlift-12.608; 31. Cody Swanson, 17, Swanson-12.680; 32. Ryan Robinson, 71, Kunz/Curb-Agajanian-12.696; 33. Robert Dalby, 4D, Dalby-12.702; 34. Dave Darland, 73T, Ford-12.729; 35. Tanner Carrick, 71K, Kunz/Curb-Agajanian-12.745; 36. Colton Heath, 99, Heath-12.802; 37. Tyler Courtney, 7BC, Clauson/Marshall-12.820; 38. Randi Pankratz, 8, Pankratz-12.847; 39. Daniel Robinson, 56, Fifty6x-12.872; 40. Terry Nichols, 1p, Nichols-12.878; 41. Carson Garrett, 15G, Garrett-12.882; 42. Tyler Edwards, 2JD, Shenanigans/Neverlift-12.894; 43. Mack DeMan, 9E, Dodenhoff-12.924; 44. Jake Vermeer, 87JR, Vermeer-12.938; 45. Ron Hazelton, 15, Hazelton-12.972; 46. Kyle Beilman, 31, Beilman-13.020; 47. Kyle Smith, 55, Smith-13.113; 48. Bryan Drollinger, 71x, Drollinger-13.385; 49. Matt Mitchell, 75, Miller-15.658; 50. Robby Josett, 2, Josett-NT.

SIMPSON RACE PRODUCTS/EXTREME MUFFLERS FIRST QUALIFIER: (12 laps, top-4 transfer to the Feature, 5-12 transfer to Last Chance Race) 1. Thomas, 2. Wise, 3. Macedo, 4. Sweet, 5. Shelton, 6. C. Swanson, 7. Stratton, 8. Courtney, 9. Ruston, 10. Dalby, 11. Carrick, 12. Nelson, 13. D. Robinson, 14. Smith, 15. DeMan, 16. Garrett, 17. Hazelton, 18. Guerrini. NT

COMPETITION SUSPENSION, INC. (CSI)/BROWN & MILLER RACING SOLUTIONS SECOND QUALIFIER: (12 laps, top-4 transfer to the Feature, 5-12 transfer to Last Chance) 1. Boat, 2. Pickens, 3. Crone, 4. Elliott, 5. Gardner, 6. Briscoe, 7. Cofer, 8. D. Golobic, 9. R. Robinson, 10. Edwards, 11. Pankratz, 12. Heath, 13. Nichols, 14. Prickett, 15. Darland, 16. Beilman, 17. Vermeer, 18. Drollinger. NT

CHALK STIX/KEIZER ALUMINUM WHEELS/SALDANA RACING PRODUCTS/INDY RACE PARTS LAST CHANCE RACE: (12 laps, top-6 transfer) 1. Shelton, 2. Gardner, 3. Courtney, 4. Briscoe, 5. R. Robinson, 6. Edwards, 7. Heath, 8. Ruston, 9. Dalby, 10. Carrick, 11. Cofer, 12. Pankratz, 13. Stratton, 14. Nelson, 15. D. Golobic, 16. C. Swanson. NT

FEATURE: (98 laps, starting position in parentheses) 1. Christopher Bell (3), 2. Kyle Larson (1), 3. Shane Golobic (4), 4. Tanner Thorson (9), 5. Zeb Wise (15), 6. Carson Macedo (17), 7. Justin Grant (5), 8. Ryan Robinson (25), 9. Brad Sweet (19), 10. Michael Faccinto (10), 11. Tanner Carrick (27), 12. Brady Bacon (11), 13. Kevin Thomas, Jr. (13), 14. Holly Shelton (21), 15. Logan Seavey (7), 16. Spencer Bayston (8), 17. David Prickett (29), 18. Ronnie Gardner (22), 19. Jake Swanson (2), 20. Courtney Crone (18), 21. Chase Briscoe (24), 22. Tyler Courtney (23), 23. Chad Boat (14), 24. Brayton Lynch (6), 25. Tucker Klaasmeyer (12), 26. Tyler Edwards (26), 27. Cory Elliott (20), 28. Frankie Guerrini (28), 29. Michael Pickens (16). NT
**C. Swanson flipped during the Last Chance Race.

FEATURE LAP LEADERS: Laps 1-12 Larson, Laps 13-52 Bell, Lap 53 Larson, Lap 54-98 Bell.




FINAL USAC MIDGET NATIONAL CHAMPIONSHIP POINTS: 1-Bayston-1472, 2-S. Golobic-1416, 3-Bacon-1413, 4-Thorson-1392, 5-Grant-1316, 6-Courtney-1290, 7-Boat-1154, 8-Shelton-1055, 9-Carrick-995, 10-Jerry Coons, Jr.-849.

FINAL USAC WESTERN STATES MIDGET POINTS: 1-Gardner-810, 2-Guerrini-693, 3-Prickett-665, 4-Elliott-632, 5-Dalby-580, 6-Crone-562, 7-Faccinto-547. 8-Pankratz-427, 9-Shannon McQueen-424, 10-S. Golobic-416.

Categories : Midgets, News, Short Track, USAC
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The United States Auto Club.









Contact: Richie Murray - USAC Media /


By: Richie Murray - USAC Media

Bakersfield, California....November 18, 2017 - With one of the busiest racing schedules of any driver in the United States, Brady Bacon annually competes in excess of 100 events a year on tracks from coast-to-coast.

In Saturday night's "November Classic," it might've appeared the Broken Arrow, Oklahoma native had been an experienced master of Bakersfield Speedway. But, wouldn't you know it? Saturday night was the first time Bacon had even laid eyes on the track.

Bacon, originally lining up seventh on the grid, worked the outside line to climb to the lead on lap seven. It was a lead he would never relinquish as he picked up his third USAC National Midget victory of the year in his FMR Racing/Brown & Miller Racing Solutions - Black Watch Farms/Beast/Toyota in the National series' first stop at Bakersfield in 17 years.

"At the start, I was on the inside and I saw the outside got a pretty good run," Bacon observed. "The bottom was kind of glazed over from the moisture in the air or something. I knew it would eventually move back down there, but I figured I'd try to make the moves while I could. I went to the top and it worked out. We were the first ones in the front to do it and had a clear lane to the front."

The beginning was tumultuous as Light Up the World Beverages USAC Western States Midget regular Michael Faccinto stepped out to the lead from the outside of the front row on the initial start. Meanwhile, pole sitter Michael Pickens slotted into second. While riding the high side in turn three, contact was made between he and Holly Shelton. As Pickens sat sideways in the middle of the track, he was slammed into by Shannon McQueen, who had nowhere to go. Frankie Guerrini and Dustin Golobic also became involved, but would restart along with Pickens. McQueen headed back to the hauler earlier than she had planned with a hurt racecar.

The ensuing restart would only get back on track for a pair of laps before fifth-running Shelton got the back end loose in turn three. As she slid sideways, Zeb Wise, making his USAC debut, careened in while Ryan Robinson took evasive action to avoid the melee and climbed the outside wall before coming to a stop. Shelton's night was finished, but Wise and Robinson would restart.

Once the race got back on the rails, Faccinto led the way on the bottom with series point leader Spencer Bayston just behind. Glancing behind Bayston, one could see Bacon running a slightly higher line than those he trailed, which took him to second around the outside of Bayston off turn two on the fourth lap. Bayston scrapped back, but Bacon had enough of a head of steam off turns two and four to clamp down on the top spot.

As Bacon and Bayston tussled for the runner-up position, both simultaneously chipped away at Faccinto's lead. Quickly, it became a three-car race for the lead with the top-three appearing in Blue Angels formation exiting turn two. On lap seven, Bacon surged ahead of Faccinto midway down the back straightaway to secure the lead and instantly constructed a one-second gap over Faccinto and Bayston. With an open highway comfort cruise lying in front of him, Bacon was free to run his race as he pleased.

"I ran the middle in (turns) one and two a lot," Bacon explained. "I diamonded three and four and came off as straight as I could. It was really heavy, so it was easy to get pointed in the wrong direction. I just thought it was going to be too far around the top and my car was pretty good on the bottom and in the middle, so I stuck with it. I started feeling a little less grip in one and two, but I moved around and pedaled it a little more."

With Bacon pulling away, Bayston fought Faccinto for second throughout the next four laps until clearing him on lap 12. Bayston would receive a reprieve two laps later when new five-time USAC Western States Midget champion Ronnie Gardner slid sideways to a stop on the front straightaway to bring out the caution. With the substantial lead erased, Bacon would have to get back on the saddle once again. On the first try, Bacon stumbled and Bayston was able to hang in contention. Yet, when Cory Elliott slowed to bring out the yellow moments later, Bacon would get a reprieve and another shot at that restart.

When that chance arrived on lap 14 restart version two, Bacon left Bayston on his own and instantly spurted away to a ten car-length lead that wouldn't get any closer despite Bacon having to fight through traffic in the final five laps. Bacon would race away to his sixth career series victory over two seconds ahead of Bayston, Tanner Thorson, Tyler Courtney and Justin Grant.

In an odd circumstance, following the checkered flag, Courtney found himself on his side in Tommy Tipover fashion in turn two. He was uninjured.

Despite finishing one spot behind Bacon at the finish line at Bakersfield, Bayston extended his USAC National Midget point lead by one to 67 in his Keith Kunz-Curb-Agajanian Motorsports/IWX - Curb Records - TRD/Bullet by Spike/Speedway Toyota. All the Lebanon, Indiana driver has left to do to clinch his first title is to simply sign-in at this Thursday's season-finale at Ventura (Calif.) Raceway's "Turkey Night Grand Prix."

Bayston's teammate, Thorson, of Minden, Nevada set the tone by recording the ProSource/Woodland Auto Display Fast Qualifying time before going on to finish third in his Keith Kunz-Curb-Agajanian Motorsports/JBL Audio - TRD/Bullet by Spike/Speedway Toyota.

Two USAC National Midget track records were broken at Bakersfield. Jimmy Christian's 8-lap mark set in 2000 was surpassed by Shane Golobic in heat race two. The late Kevin Doty's 12-lap record from 1998 was passed by Brady Bacon during the semi-feature.

Contingency award winners Saturday night at Bakersfield Speedway include Tanner Thorson (ProSource/Woodland Auto Display Fast Qualifier), Chad Boat (Simpson Race Products/Extreme Mufflers 1st Heat Winner), Shane Golobic (Competition Suspension, Inc./Brown & Miller Racing Solutions 2nd Heat Winner & KSE Racing Products/Esslinger Engineering Hard Charger), Zeb Wise (Chalk Stix/Keizer Aluminum Wheels/Saldana Racing Products 3rd Heat Winner), David Prickett (Indy Race Parts/Pyrotect Racing Cells 4th Heat Winner), Brady Bacon (Competition Suspension, Inc. Semi Winner) and Courtney Crone (Wilwood Brakes 13th Place Finisher).


USAC NATIONAL & LIGHT UP THE WORLD BEVERAGES WESTERN STATES MIDGET RACE RESULTS: November 18, 2017 - Bakersfield Speedway - Bakersfield California - "November Classic"

PROSOURCE/WOODLAND AUTO DISPLAY QUALIFYING: 1. Tanner Thorson, 67, Kunz/Curb-Agajanian-12.849; 2. Spencer Bayston, 97, Kunz/Curb-Agajanian-12.912; 3. Holly Shelton, 67K, Kunz/Curb-Agajanian-12.933; 4. Brady Bacon, 76m, FMR-12.973; 5. Ryan Robinson, 71, Kunz/Curb-Agajanian-13.035; 6. Alex Schutte, 28, Schutte/McElwee-13.037; 7. Shannon McQueen, 7, McQueen-13.043; 8. Tyler Courtney, 7BC, Clauson/Marshall-13.059; 9. Michael Faccinto, 9D, Dodenhoff-13.103; 10. Michael Pickens, 25x, Rodela-13.103; 11. D.J. Netto, 88N, Netto-13.181; 12. Courtney Crone, 25, Rodela-13.192; 13. Frankie Guerrini, 63, Guerrini-13.219; 14. Ronnie Gardner, 68, Six8-13.225; 15. Justin Grant, 39BC, Clauson/Marshall-13.230; 16. Cory Elliott, 11E, Elliott-13.253; 17. Maria Cofer, 57, Cofer-13.272; 18. Shane Golobic, 17w, Clauson-Marshall/Wood-13.311; 19. Zeb Wise, 39, Clauson/Marshall-13.344; 20. David Prickett, 22Q, Neverlift-13.357; 21. Chad Boat, 84, Tucker/Boat-13.368; 22. Tanner Carrick, 71K, Kunz/Curb-Agajanian-13.376; 23. Matt Mitchell, 75, Miller-13.400; 24. Dustin Golobic, 17G, Wood-13.460; 25. Mason Daniel, 33m, Daniel-13.559; 26. Terry Nichols, 1p, Nichols-13.587; 27. Robert Dalby, 4D, Dalby-13.591; 28. Scott Pierovich, 35, Pierovich-13.676; 29. Kyle Beilman, 31, Beilman-14.193; 30. Ron Hazelton, 15, Hazelton-NT.

SIMPSON RACE PRODUCTS/EXTREME MUFFLERS FIRST HEAT: (8 laps, top-4 transfer) 1. Boat, 2. Faccinto, 3. Guerrini, 4. Thorson, 5. Robinson, 6. Daniel, 7. Cofer, 8. Beilman. 1:45.13

COMPETITION SUSPENSION, INC. (CSI)/BROWN & MILLER RACING SOLUTIONS SECOND HEAT: (8 laps, top-4 transfer) 1. S. Golobic, 2. Pickens, 3. Bayston, 4. Carrick, 5. Gardner, 6. Schutte, 7. Nichols, 8. Hazelton. 1:44.14 (New Track Record)

CHALK STIX/KEIZER ALUMINUM WHEELS/SALDANA RACING PRODUCTS THIRD HEAT: (8 laps, top-4 transfer) 1. Wise, 2. Mitchell, 3. Grant, 4. Shelton, 5. McQueen, 6. Dalby, 7. Netto. 1:44.78

INDY RACE PARTS/PYROTECT RACING CELLS FOURTH HEAT: (8 laps, top-4 transfer) 1. Prickett, 2. D. Golobic, 3. Courtney, 4. Elliott, 5. Bacon, 6. Crone, 7. Pierovich. 1:46.51

COMPETITION SUSPENSION, INC. SEMI: (12 laps, top-6 transfer) 1. Bacon, 2. Robinson, 3. Schutte, 4. McQueen, 5. Crone, 6. Gardner, 7. Netto, 8. Dalby, 9. Daniel, 10. Pierovich, 11. Cofer, 12. Nichols, 13. Hazelton, 14. Beilman. 2:35.69 (New Track Record)

FEATURE: (30 laps, starting position in parentheses) 1. Brady Bacon (7), 2. Spencer Bayston (5), 3. Tanner Thorson (6), 4. Tyler Courtney (3), 5. Justin Grant (14), 6. Shane Golobic (16), 7. Ryan Robinson (8), 8. Alex Schutte (9), 9. Michael Faccinto (2), 10. Tanner Carrick (20), 11. Frankie Guerrini (12), 12. Chad Boat (19), 13. Courtney Crone (11), 14. Matt Mitchell (21), 15. David Prickett (18), 16. Ronnie Gardner (13), 17. Michael Pickens (1), 18. Cory Elliott (15), 19. Zeb Wise (17), 20. Robert Dalby (23), 21. Mason Daniel (24), 22. Holly Shelton (4), 23. Dustin Golobic (22), 24. Shannon McQueen (10). NT
**Courtney flipped after the checkered flag.

FEATURE LAP LEADERS: Laps 1-6 Faccinto, Laps 7-30 Bacon.



NEW USAC MIDGET NATIONAL CHAMPIONSHIP POINTS: 1-Bayston-1441, 2-Bacon-1374, 3-S. Golobic-1349, 4-Thorson-1331, 5-Courtney-1267, 6-Grant-1262, 7-Boat-1131, 8-Shelton-1020, 9-Carrick-954, 10-Jerry Coons, Jr.-849.

NEW USAC WESTERN STATES MIDGET POINTS: 1-Gardner-783, 2-Guerrini-670, 3-Prickett-636, 4-Elliott-609, 5-Dalby-570, 6-Crone-539, 7-Faccinto-504. 8-McQueen-424, 9-Randi Pankratz-417, 10-Daniel-393.

NEXT USAC NATIONAL & WESTERN STATES MIDGET RACE: November 23 - Ventura Raceway - Ventura, California - 77th "Turkey Night Grand Prix"

Categories : Midgets, News, Short Track, USAC
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The United States Auto Club.









Contact: Richie Murray - USAC Media /


By: Richie Murray - USAC Media

Ventura, California.........The number 1 is an apt number for Kyle Larson to carry on his USAC Midget's tail tank in this year's 77th running of the "Turkey Night Grand Prix." After all, number 1 is the finishing result we've become accustomed to in practically every racecar we've seen him strap into, whether it's Monday, Friday, Sunday or any day of the week that ends in the letter "y" for that matter.

Twice over the last five seasons late in the month of November, Thursday night has been kind to Yung Money's racing career. More on the point, a Thanksgiving night spent at a racetrack has served the Elk Grove, California native well.

As Larson steps into the Keith Kunz/Curb-Agajanian Motorsports No. 1 on Thanksgiving night 2017, Nov. 23rd, at California's Ventura Raceway, the 2012 and 2016 race winner has an opportunity to be included on a few exclusive lists that not even some of the best USAC and AAA Midget drivers of their era can boast about.

With another win in the TNGP featuring USAC's National and Light Up the World Beverages Western States Midgets, Larson would become just the third driver to win at least three Turkey Night midget races in his career. It's something that's only been accomplished twice over the 76 runnings of the prestigious event, first by Ron Shuman, whose incomparable record at Turkey Night includes eight wins in a 15-year span between 1979 and 1993. Billy Boat was the last to do so when he won his third in three years in 1997, the last of which, coincidentally enough, came at Ventura.

Eight drivers have gone back-to-back at "Turkey Night." Just four years into its beginning, Ronney Householder became the first to do the deed in 1936-37 at Gilmore Stadium in Los Angeles, now the home to CBS Television City where such shows at the Price is Right is filmed. Roy Russing repeated the roar at Gilmore in 1940-41. It would be another 20 years before A.J. Foyt christened the new Ascot Park with victories in 1960-61.

Ron Shuman was Grover Cleveland-esque in his dominance for a decade-in-a-half beginning in the late-70s and running through the early-to-mid-nineties, serving two distinct, non-consecutive terms as the man in charge. The "Flying Shu" from Tempe, Arizona won four-straight from 1979-82, picked up two more wins in 1984 and 1987, then put together another two-straight years of victories for his final two in 1992-93.

Chuck Gurney was the first of two drivers to win consecutively near the turn of the decade to the 1990s. Gurney, of Livermore, California, won in 1988-89. Janesville, Wisconsin's Stan Fox closed out Ascot in grand style by winning the finale in 1990, then dominated Saugus Speedway one year later in 1991 to become the first and only driver thus far to win consecutively on dirt and pavement surfaces. Phoenix, Arizona's Billy Boat, whose son Chad will be competing at Turkey Night this year, is the only driver to win consecutively at three different venues: Bakersfield, Perris and Ventura. Bryan Clauson, of Noblesville, Indiana was the last to get the job done in 2009 and 2010.

In 2016, Larson, the reigning winner of the 98-lap race, became the sixth driver to win the TNGP at two different venues following his 2012 score at Perris Auto Speedway, joining the ranks of Mel Kenyon (Ascot & 605), Stan Fox (Ascot & Saugus), Ron Shuman (Ascot & Bakersfield) and Dave Darland (Irwindale & Perris). No one has touched Billy Boat's record of three-straight at three different tracks between 1995 and 1997 (Bakersfield, Perris & Ventura).

Despite a limited USAC Midget schedule over the past few years due to his regular duties as one of Chip Ganassi's top NASCAR pilots, Larson always takes to the dirt like a duck to water when he jumps behind the wheel of a midget. Though he lacks a tally in the USAC win column for 2017, he was the ProSource Fast Qualifier at both of his appearances this season during the first two rounds of Indiana Midget Week at Montpelier and Gas City. He was in contention to win both, finishing 3rd at Montpelier and battling for the lead at Gas City when he spun with 10 laps remaining, ultimately finishing 18th.

The November 23rd "Turkey Night Grand Prix" will be streamed LIVE on Watch it again a day later, on-demand, at http://www.Loudpedal.TV/.



Keith Kunz Curb-Agajanian Motorsports/Walker Filtration Systems/Bullet by Spike/Speedway Toyota

® 1K BRAYTON LYNCH/Springfield, IL
Rusty Kunz Racing/Adam Lopez Country Financil - Snap Fitness/Spike/Stanton SR-11

Terry Nichols/BSC - Masters Design & Construction/Spike/Chevy

2 ROBBY JOSETT/Santa Clarita, CA
Robby Josett/RL & Sons Construction - JHC Heating & Air/Spike/Esslinger

Shenanigans-Neverlift Motorsports/Shenanigans Bar & Grill - Western Performance Parts/Spike/AMS Chevy

® 3F GEOFF ENSIGN/Sebastopol, CA
Ted Finkenbinder/Western Industrial X-Ray/ Bullet/Warrior

RAMS Racing/Rockwell Security/BOSS/Speedway Toyota

Ken Dalby/R-D Spring & Stamping - Monster Seal/Spike/Esslinger

® 5 CHASE BRISCOE/Mitchell, IN
Chase Briscoe/Big Tine - Tex-a-Con Cut Stone/Spike/Honda

® 7BC TYLER COURTNEY/Indianapolis, IN
Clauson-Marshall Racing/Driven 2 Save Lives - Indiana Donor Network/Spike/Stanton SR-11

CR Motorsports/S & J Service Inc. - Alumin/Spike/Esslinger

Wally Pankratz/HASA Pool Products - Trench Shoring/Edmunds/Fontana

Sean Dodenhoff/Torco Oil - Rocket Sports & Entertainment/Spike/Fontana

® 9E MACK DeMAN/Mississauga, ON
Sean Dodenhoff/Torco Oil - Rocket Sports & Entertainment l/Spike/Fontana

11E CORY ELLIOTT/Bakersfield, CA
Mitch Elliott/Capital E Trucking - FK Indy/Spike/Esslinger

Swanson Family/West Evans Motorsports - Lucas Oil/Spike/Esslinger

Clauson-Marshall-Matt Wood Racing/Elk Grove Ford - Driven 2 Save Lives/Spike/Stanton SR-11

Shon Deskins Racing/Performance Plus Engines - Simpson Racing/Spike/Chevy

Keith Kunz-Curb-Agajanian Motorsports/DeWalt - TRD/Bullet by Spike/Speedway Toyota

Neverlift Motorsports/Crysalli Artesian Water - Mt. Rose Cocktail Mixes/Spike/AMS Chevy

25 KEVIN THOMAS, JR./Cullman, AL
Petry-Goff Motorsports/Petry Excavating - Gray Auto/Spike/Stanton Toyota

Jerome Rodela/Trench Shoring - Ed Pink Racing Engines/Breka/Ed Pink Toyota

Jerome Rodela/Trench Shoring - Ed Pink Racing Engines/King/Ed Pink Toyota

Dale Klaasmeyer/WCI - Boss Chassis/Boss/Speedway Toyota

® 31 KYLE BEILMAN/Santa Monica, CA
Bill Beilman/Stong Surety/Beast/Mopar

® 33m MASON DANIEL/Visalia, CA
Scott Daniel/Young's Racing - Dylon Risk Management/Spike/Esslinger

® 39 ZEB WISE/Angola, IN
Clauson-Marshall Racing/ Driven 2 Save Lives - Priority AviationSpike/Stanton SR-11

Clauson-Marshall Racing/NOS Energy - Driven 2 Save Lives/Spike/Stanton SR-11

® 47 TYLER NELSON/Kansas City, KS
Cappy Mason/IMM - Wilwood Disc Brakes/Spike/Mopar

Tony Everhart/Everhart Construction/Ellis/Ford

Fifty6x Racing/Automatic Garage Door, Inc. - Precision Driveline & Fabrication/Boss/Fontana

® 56x MARK CHISHOLM/Cheyenne, WY
Fifty6x Racing/Automatic Garage Door, Inc. - Precision Driveline & Fabrication/Boss/Stanton Toyota

57 MARIA COFER/Macdoel, CA
Johnny Cofer/Tule Vista Ranches - Edmunds Auto Research/Spike/Esslinger

63 BRAD SWEET/Grass Valley, CA
Dooling-Hayward Motorsports/Dooling Machine/Spike/Stanton SR-11

Frank Guerrini/F & F Racing - Davis Motorsports/Spike/Esslinger

Keith Kunz-Curb-Agajanian Motorsports/JBL Audio - TRD/Bullet by Spike/Speedway Toyota

67K HOLLY SHELTON/Sacramento, CA
Keith Kunz-Curb-Agajanian Motorsports/Black & Decker - TRD/Bullet by Spike/Speedway Toyota

Six8 Motorsports/PAC Springs - Wilwood Brakes/Stewart/Esslinger

71 RYAN ROBINSON/Foresthill, CA
Keith Kunz-Curb-Agajanian Motorsports/Abreu Vineyards - TRD/Bullet by Spike/Speedway Toyota

Keith Kunz-Curb-Agajanian Motorsports/Spike Chassis - CVC Concrete/Bullet by Spike/Speedway Toyota

Drollinger Bros. Racing/Simpson Race Products - Walker Air Filtration/Stealth/Arias

Keith Ford/Walker Filtration Systems - King Racing Products/TCR/Esslinger

Keith Ford/Walker Filtration Systems - King Racing Products/TCR/Esslinger

73x DAVE DARLAND/Lincoln, IN
Keith Ford/Walker Filtration Systems - King Racing Products/TCR/Esslinger

75 MATT MITCHELL/Yorba Linda, CA
Wiley Miller/Roy Miller Freight Lines - Campbell Bros. Storage/TCR/Esslinger

76m BRADY BACON/Broken Arrow, OK
FMR Racing/Brown & Miller Racing Solutions - Black Watch Farms/Beast/Toyota

84 CHAD BOAT/Phoenix, AZ
Tucker-Boat Motorsports/ - K & C Drywall/Spike/Speedway Toyota

® 87 JAKE VERMEER/Bakersfield, CA
Johnny Vermeer/Richmar Farms - Mobile AG/TCR/Esslinger

Keith Kunz-Curb-Agajanian Motorsports/Curb Records - TRD/Bullet by Spike/Speedway Toyota

Ron Blondel/American Motorsports - Orange County Muffler/Edmunds/Fontana

Categories : Midgets, News, Short Track, USAC
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Tyler Courtney won his first career USAC Silver Crown race Saturday night
in the 36th '4-Crown Nationals' at Eldora Speedway. (Vince Vellella Photo)


By: Richie Murray - USAC Media

Rossburg, Ohio.........In a year of firsts for Tyler Courtney, the pickings continue to get sweeter as the Indianapolis, Indiana driver led all 50 laps to win his first career USAC Silver Crown Champ Car Series presented by TRAXXAS main event in Saturday night's 36th "4-Crown Nationals" at Eldora Speedway.

Earlier this season, Courtney won his first USAC National Midget feature at Montpelier (Ind.) Motor Speedway. In August, he won his first ever Sprint Car feature at Kokomo (Ind.) Speedway and backed it up a night later with a big payday victory at Kokomo again in "Sprint Car Smackdown VI."

This time around, it was in the Silver Crown car where, by the letter of the law, he was still considered a series rookie this season. But a "4-Crown" Silver Crown rookie he was not. In 2016, he set ProSource quick time and finished 3rd. In 2017, he returned as a true contender despite not having seen the results he and car owner Hans Lein had anticipated when the team made its initial foray into the series this season.

"Hans called me in May and said he's putting a Crown car together," Courtney recalls. "We got rained out at the 'Hoosier Hundred,' then went to Williams Grove and had some mechanical problems there, then went to Springfield and was going to have a top-three finish and had something else go wrong. We finally had everything go our way tonight. (Crew Chief) Greg Nelson really had this thing on point all night."

On the start, Courtney ripped the top around pole sitter Kody Swanson to snare the lead as the 50-lap race got underway with the night's USAC Sprint Car feature winner C.J. Leary and Dave Darland fighting for second just behind.

Courtney led a five-car breakaway that separated itself from the rest of the field by the tenth lap. By lap 20, Courtney himself had created his own separation as he navigated through the lap traffic.

Meanwhile, third-running Leary saw a chance to take second back away from Darland on lap 23 when Darland found himself hung up behind the lapped car of Aaron Pierce entering turn three. Like a bulldog on a porkchop, Leary saw an opportunity and went on the attack. As Leary tried to slide both Darland and Pierce in one fell swoop, contact was made between he and Pierce. The end result was Pierce tagging the outside wall hard while Darland and Leary continued on.

The lineup on the next restart had multiple lapped cars between leader Courtney and second-running Darland, allowing Courtney a clean getaway.

On lap 32, Swanson tagged the turn two wall while running sixth, sending him into a wild series of flips through turn one - a sight not usually seen by the three-time series champion whose feats were celebrated earlier in the night on a front straightaway presentation for clinching the 2017 title.
Once again on the restart, Courtney scooted away from defending race winner and series champ Chris Windom who took second from Darland and now had only Courtney in his sights as Cottle disposed of Darland for third off turn four.

Soon after, with 15 laps remaining, Leary entered turn three running fourth when his right rear tire went flat, sending him hard into the outside wall. Leary was okay, but would not return to action.

Down the stretch, Courtney maintained about an eight car-length lead, but with a couple to go, Windom began to close rapidly to present a challenge for the lead as Cottle blanketed Windom just behind.

On the final lap, Courtney got a bit sideways at the exit of turn two, resulting in Windom's rapid charge that saw him close to within just a couple car lengths entering turn three and four with Cottle in tow. Courtney gathered it up, put all four wheels back in the groove to finish off a wire-to-wire performance to join Justin Grant as the second driver to win USAC National features in all three divisions in 2017. Windom was second ahead of Cottle, Darland and Brady Bacon, who finished in the top-five of all four "4-Crown" features Saturday night.

Courtney rewarded car owner Hans Lein with his first USAC National win since a 2007 Midget event at Angell Park Speedway, won by Michael Pickens. It was also Lein's second career "4-Crown" triumph following a 2005 Midget win with Danny Stratton.

"The tires started going away a little bit at the end," Courtney admits. "I knew if I could gap myself on the starts and restarts and give myself a little cushion to be able to run hard on the start, then save a little bit, we'd have something at the end there. It held together. I could see Chris (Windom) there behind me on the (video board) screen. I'm just trying to hit my marks, but it was pretty tricky down in (turns) one and two to hit the same spot on the wall twice to get you going down the back straight. But, everything went our way tonight."

Contingency award winners Saturday night at Eldora Speedway included Kody Swanson (ProSource Fast Qualifier), Brady Bacon (KSE Racing Products/Larry Rice High Performance Hard Charger) and Joe Liguori (Wilwood Brakes 13th Place Finisher).


USAC SILVER CROWN CHAMPIONSHIP RACE RESULTS Presented by TRAXXAS: September 23, 2017 - Rossburg, Ohio - Eldora Speedway - 36th "4-Crown Nationals" - Presented by NKT.TV

PROSOURCE QUALIFICATIONS: 1. Kody Swanson, 63, DePalma-19.570; 2. Tyler Courtney, 97, Lein-19.611; 3. C.J. Leary, 30, Leary-19.816; 4. David Byrne, 40, Byrne-19.876; 5. Hunter Schuerenberg, 120, Nolen-19.903; 6. Chris Windom, 92, Kazmark-19.955; 7. Dave Darland, 27, Phillips-19.985; 8. Shane Cottle, 81, Williams-19.985; 9. Justin Grant, 91, Carli/Hemelgarn-20.109; 10. Jerry Coons Jr., 20, Nolen-20.118; 11. Robert Ballou, 6, Klatt-20.257; 12. Mark Smith, 54, Lane-20.283; 13. Joe Liguori, 4, Liguori-20.302; 14. Dakota Jackson, 201, Nolen-20.434; 15. Aaron Pierce, 26, Pierce-20.495; 16. Steve Buckwalter, 53, SET-20.678; 17. Matt Goodnight, 39, Goodnight-20.712; 18. Brady Bacon, 199, RPM/Gormly-20.891; 19. Johnny Petrozelle, 08, Cornell/Petrozelle-21.116; 20. Chris Fetter, 89, Fetter-21.452; 21. Joss Moffatt, 32, Williams & Wright-NT; 22. Austin Nemire, 16, Lesko-NT; 23. Patrick Bruns, 95, Full Throttle-NT.

FEATURE: (50 laps) 1. Tyler Courtney, 2. Chris Windom, 3. Shane Cottle, 4. Dave Darland, 5. Brady Bacon, 6. Justin Grant, 7. Hunter Schuerenberg, 8. David Byrne, 9. Robert Ballou, 10. Jerry Coons, Jr., 11. Matt Goodnight, 12. Steve Buckwalter, 13. Joe Liguori, 14. Dakota Jackson, 15. Joss Moffatt, 16. Austin Nemire, 17. Mark Smith, 18. Chris Fetter, 19. C.J. Leary, 20. Kody Swanson, 21. Aaron Pierce, 22. Johnny Petrozelle. NT
**Bruns flipped during qualifying. Swanson flipped on lap 32 of the feature.

FEATURE LAP LEADERS: Laps 1-50 Courtney.



FINAL USAC SILVER CROWN CHAMPIONSHIP (Presented by TRAXXAS) POINTS: 1-Swanson-650, 2-Coons-562, 3-Windom-525, 4-Grant-470, 5-Byrne-436, 6-Pierce-402, 7-Bobby Santos-350, 8-Moffatt-302, 9-Liguori-295, 10-Damion Gardner-248.


C.J. Leary won his fourth USAC AMSOIL National Sprint Car feature of the season, and his first at Eldora Speedway, in Saturday's 36th '4-Crown Nationals.' (Vince Vellella Photo)


By: Richie Murray - USAC Media

Rossburg, Ohio.........On a night when temperatures were more akin to the sweltering summer than a cool, crisp fall September evening, perhaps it came as no surprise that the hottest driver, in terms of USAC AMSOIL National Sprint Car wins since the month of July, would feel right his comfort zone.

Yet, he would have to get the job done in circumstances that were all too familiar this season - with Brady Bacon's black No. 63 draped all over his tail tank during the final laps.

But, for the fourth time this season, Leary stood his ground to capture the victory Saturday night in the 36th "4-Crown Nationals" at Eldora Speedway, a track that had been cruel to him on occasion over the past few years, including being denied on the final lap for the win in May of 2015.

The driver who passed him that very night was Justin Grant, who, on this night, wasted no time getting to the front on the opening lap as he raced from his outside second row position to split between both Robert Ballou and Chase Stockon on the start to snag the lead. One lap later, fellow second row starter Leary made his surge, sliding by Grant for the lead in turn two.

After getting by Stockon for third, Bacon worked on Grant where they swapped the second spot back and forth until Bacon secured the position with a turn two slider on the 11th lap.

At that point, Leary had begun to gap the field, but as soon as Bacon moved into second, that gap routinely shrunk. With ten to go, Bacon searched high and low in turns three and four while Leary stuck to his guns on the top. However, Leary's lead soon shrunk to a mere car-length in the ensuing laps with a pod of lappers on the not-so-distant horizon.

With two laps remaining, it was gut-check time and thoughts of previous Leary v. Bacon battles from Grandview, Lawrenceburg and Kokomo came rushing back to the mind as both encountered the lapped car of Tyler Thomas in the first turn. Both slid Thomas without hesitation, yet Leary was unrattled in his maneuver and maintained his distance from Bacon as they cleared Thomas, thus preventing the best shot Bacon had at tacking on a second-career "4-Crown" win.

Leary finished strong in the caution-free affair to defeat Bacon by half a second while Ballou, Kevin Thomas, Jr. and Grant rounded out the top-five.

"This place has been escaping me for three years now," Leary exclaimed. "I've run second here it seems like every year. It feels good to finally park this thing down here in victory lane. I can't thank (crew chief) Donnie Gentry, my dad and everybody whose helped us put this operation together."
"These races are tough, especially when you don't really know where the second-place guy is," Leary continued. "I was on cruise control there and, luckily, I had a little bit left in the tank. I had a really good racecar. This is a new DRC. We just built the car this week and, man, is it fast!"

Contingency award winners Saturday night at Eldora Speedway included Brady Bacon (ProSource Fast Qualifier), Brady Bacon (Simpson Race Products Heat 1 Winner), Tyler Courtney (Competition Suspension, Inc. Heat 2 Winner), Thomas Meseraull (Chalk Stix Heat 3 Winner), Chris Windom (Indy Race Parts Heat 4 Winner), Matt Westfall (KSE Racing Products/Larry Rice High Performance Hard Charger) and Nick Bilbee (Wilwood Brakes 13th Place Finisher).


USAC AMSOIL SPRINT CAR NATIONAL CHAMPIONSHIP RACE RESULTS: September 23, 2017 - Rossburg, Ohio - Eldora Speedway - 36th "4-Crown Nationals" - Presented by NKT.TV

PROSOURCE QUALIFYING: 1. Brady Bacon, 63, Dooling/Hayward-16.893; 2. Dave Darland, 40, Hery-16.932; 3. Justin Grant, 11, McGhee-17.097; 4. C.J. Leary, 30, Leary-17.221; 5. Chase Stockon, 32, 32 TBI-17.269; 6. Robert Ballou, 12, Ballou-17.349; 7. Kyle Cummins, 3c, Cummins-17.440; 8. Chad Boespflug, 69, Dynamics-17.554; 9. Scotty Weir, 22s, Simon-17.558; 10. Kevin Thomas Jr., 9k, KT-17.636; 11. Shane Cottle, 57, Hazen-17.663; 12. Tyler Thomas, 17GP, Dutcher-17,667; 13. Josh Hodges, 74x, Hodges-17.733; 14. Nick Bilbee, 17N, Bilbee-17.754; 15. Dallas Hewitt, 18, Keen-17.767; 16. Chris Windom, 5, Baldwin-17.779; 17. Aric Gentry, 10, Gentry-17.820; 18. Tyler Courtney, 23c, TOPP-17.831; 19. Thomas Meseraull, 9x, SC-17.854; 20. Kody Swanson, 20, Nolen-17.939; 21. Isaac Chapple, 52, LNR/Chapple-17.946; 22. Gage Etgen, 99, Etgen-18.002; 23. Matt Westfall, 54, Westfall-18.033; 24. Bill Rose, 320, Kissel-18.118; 25. Matt Goodnight, 39, Goodnight-18.250; 26. Cooper Clouse, 14, Clouse-18.361; 27. Chad Wilson, 14x, Wilson-18.535; 28. Jake Scott, 4, Scott-18.569; 29. Kirk Jeffries, 59J, Jeffries-18.601; 30. Austin Nemire, 16, Nemire/Yager-18.618; 31. Riley VanHise, 96, VanHise-18.663; 32. Robert Bell, 71, Bell-18.687; 33. Dustin Smith, 77, Gagliardi-18.699; 34. Michael Fischesser, 44s, Fischesser/Owen-18.742; 35. Ty Tilton, 42, Tilton-18.812; 36. Brandon Moore, 1m, Moore-19.109.

SIMPSON RACE PRODUCTS FIRST HEAT: (8 laps) 1. Bacon, 2. Chapple, 3. Gentry, 4. Stockon, 5. Weir, 6. Hodges, 7. Fischesser, 8. Jeffries, 9. Goodnight. 2:27.46

COMPETITION SUSPENSION (CSI) SECOND HEAT: (8 laps) 1. Courtney, 2. K. Thomas, 3. Ballou, 4. Darland, 5. Bilbee, 6. Nemire, 7. Clouse, 8. Etgen, 9. Tilton. 2:29.78

CHALK STIX THIRD HEAT: (8 laps) 1. Meseraull, 2. Cottle, 3. Hewitt, 4. Grant, 5. Wilson, 6. Westfall, 7. Cummins, 8. VanHise, 9. Moore. 2:32.78

INDY RACE PARTS FOURTH HEAT: (8 laps) 1. Windom, 2. Leary, 3. Boespflug, 4. Rose, 5. T. Thomas, 6. Bell, 7. Swanson, 8. Scott. 2:37.20

SEMI: (12 laps) 1. Weir, 2. Swanson, 3. Bilbee, 4. Westfall, 5. Cummins, 6. T. Thomas, 7. Hodges, 8. Fischesser, 9. Clouse, 10. VanHise, 11. Jeffries, 12. Tilton, 13. Etgen, 14. Moore, 15. Goodnight, 16. Scott, 17. Nemire, 18. Bell.

FEATURE: (30 laps) 1. C.J. Leary, 2. Brady Bacon, 3. Robert Ballou, 4. Kevin Thomas, Jr., 5. Justin Grant, 6. Scotty Weir, 7. Chris Windom, 8. Thomas Meseraull, 9. Chase Stockon, 10. Matt Westfall, 11. Shane Cottle, 12. Tyler Courtney, 13. Nick Bilbee, 14. Josh Hodges, 15. Tyler Thomas, 16. Kyle Cummins, 17. Chad Boespflug, 18. Isaac Chapple, 19. Bill Rose, 20. Kody Swanson, 21. Aric Gentry, 22. Dave Darland, 23. Dallas Hewitt. NT
FEATURE LAP LEADERS: Lap 1 Grant, Laps 2-30 Leary.



NEW USAC AMSOIL SPRINT CAR NATIONAL CHAMPIONSHIP POINTS: 1-Grant-1842, 2-Windom-1765, 3-Courtney-1669, 4-Thomas Jr.-1655; 5-Boespflug-1628, 6-Stockon-1568, 7-Leary-1465, 8-Bacon-1410, 9-Ballou-1337, 10-Darland-1191.



Saturday night at Eldora Speedway, Spencer Bayston became the first driver since Kasey Kahne in 2000 to win the 'Bellvelle Midget Nationals' and the '4-Crown Nationals' midget race in the same season. (Ryan Sellers Photo)


By: Richie Murray - USAC Media

Rossburg, Ohio.........Spencer Bayston's banner year reached a new zenith Saturday night at Eldora Speedway after wiring all 25 laps to win the USAC Midget National Championship portion of the 36th "4-Crown Nationals" presented by NKT.TV.

A day following his 19th birthday, the Lebanon, Indiana resident celebrated in grand style by becoming the first driver to win the "Belleville Midget Nationals" and the Midget feature at the "4-Crown" in the same season since Kasey Kahne in 2000.

After being "high-point man" in his heat race, Bayston earned a spot on the pole position for the main event. On the opening lap, Bayston emerged from a brief four-wide fray in turn one to secure the lead.

Quickly, though, action was halted when fifth-starting Tyler Courtney slowed with an apparent electrical issue to bring out the caution. Courtney attempted to restart, but returned to the pit area moments later just prior to the field taking the green flag with one lap in the books.

On the ensuing restart, Bayston appeared as comfy as could be running the high line that so many had experienced issues without throughout the night. Similar to Belleville, the outside wall served as the cushion and Bayston ran it to within a hair of a whisker's distance from the edge.

Bayston's nearest pursuant just before the midway point was Justin Grant. That is, until he encountered the turn one concrete, climbing up the wall before rotating and landing back on the track's surface. Grant climbed out of the wreckage uninjured, but finished for the event.

The restart saw Bayston break away from second-running Dave Darland who was overtaken by both Shane Golobic, then Brady Bacon who made a valiant charge on the inner rail, getting past Darland exiting turn four to scale his way into the top-three.

Bacon continued to claw on his low-side crawl while Golobic maintained a higher line. Despite roping in Golobic little-by-little over the last several laps and even taking a glimpse at second in turn two on the final lap, Golobic was able to nail down the second position for good.

Yet, up front, nobody else was game for Bayston's flawless rim-riding performance for 25 consecutive laps, taking the victory in front of a massive crowd over Golobic, Bacon, Darland and Tanner Thorson.

With the knocking down of a few key pins on his quest to a possible first series title, Bayston swiftly extended his lead in the championship race to 66 over Bacon with just three races remaining in Wayne City, Ill., Bakersfield, Cal. and Ventura, Cal. On Saturday night, it was all a showcase for Bayston as he dominated from start to finish for his third series victory of the year.

"It makes it easy when you have a good group of guys working behind you. They know what they're doing and it definitely shows," Bayston praises. "I felt so comfortable. We raced here last night in the wing car and didn't do that great, but I really think it helped me. Coming here tonight in the midget, it felt like everything was in slow motion for me."

Contingency award winners Saturday night at Eldora Speedway included Dave Darland (Simpson Race Products/Competition Suspension, Inc. Heat 1 Winner), Shane Golobic (Chalk Stix/Indy Race Parts Heat 2 Winner), Holly Shelton (KSE Racing Products/Larry Rice High Performance Hard Charger) and Adam Pierson (Wilwood Brakes 13th Place Finisher).


USAC MIDGET NATIONAL CHAMPIONSHIP RACE RESULTS: September 23, 2017 - Rossburg, Ohio - Eldora Speedway - 36th "4-Crown Nationals" - Presented by NKT.TV

SIMPSON RACE PRODUCTS/COMPETITION SUSPENSION (CSI) FIRST HEAT: (8 laps) 1. Dave Darland (#91BT Thomas), 2. Tyler Courtney (#7BC Clauson/Marshall), 3. Justin Grant (#39BC Clauson/Marshall), 4. Brady Bacon (#76m FMR), 5. Tanner Thorson (#67 Kunz/Curb-Agajanian), 6. Chase Jones (#22 Petry/Goff), 7. Tanner Carrick (#71k Kunz/Clauson/Marshall), 8. Brayton Lynch (#1k RKR), 9. Adam Pierson (#76E Mancini). 2:29.81

CHALK STIX/INDY RACE PARTS SECOND HEAT: (8 laps) 1. Shane Golobic (#17w Clauson/Marshall/Wood), 2. Spencer Bayston (#97 Kunz/Curb-Agajanian), 3. Chad Boat (#84 Tucker/Boat), 4. Tyler Thomas (#91T Thomas), 5. Jerry Coons Jr. (#25 Petry/Goff), 6. Holly Shelton (#67k Kunz/Curb-Agajanian), 7. Alex Bright (#77 Bright), 8. Bear Wood (#8jr LW), 9. Rico Abreu (#97k Kunz/Curb-Agajanian).

FEATURE: (25 laps) 1. Spencer Bayston, 2. Shane Golobic, 3. Brady Bacon, 4. Dave Darland, 5. Tanner Thorson, 6. Holly Shelton, 7. Chad Boat, 8. Tanner Carrick, 9. Tyler Thomas, 10. Alex Bright, 11. Jerry Coons Jr., 12. Brayton Lynch, 13. Adam Pierson, 14. Bear Wood, 15. Chase Jones, 16. Justin Grant, 17. Tyler Courtney. NT
**Abreu flipped at the start of the second heat.

FEATURE LAP LEADERS: Laps 1-25 Bayston.



NEW USAC NATIONAL MIDGET POINTS: 1-Bayston-1363, 2-Bacon-1297, 3-Golobic-1286, 4-Thorson-1256, 5-Courtney-1200, 6-Grant-1198, 7-Boat-1084, 8-Shelton-988, 9-Carrick-906, 10-Coons-846.

NEXT USAC NATIONAL MIDGET RACE: October 22 - Wayne City, IL - Wayne County Speedway - "Jason Leffler Memorial"

Rico Abreu returns to Eldora Speedway this Saturday night to defend
his '4-Crown Nationals' USAC National Midget victory. (Rich Forman Photo)


By: Richie Murray - USAC Media

Only one event brings together USAC's best of the best from a variety of disciplines. Only one event brings all three of USAC's national divisions together at one venue. Only one event showcases what race fans could only dream of: a racer's delight featuring a pit overflowing with the baddest racing machines on planet earth.

All converge on Eldora Speedway this Saturday night, September 23rd for the 36th running of the "4-Crown Nationals" - a grand event that's seen its share of heroes instantly become legends at this fabled dirt track stadium. You could say to win one of these is a feather in a driver's cap or, in this case, a prong on their crown.

At press time, the only one anticipated to go for all four crowns is Brady Bacon. The Broken Arrow, Oklahoma native picked up a sprint car win on this weekend under the sunshine on his way to the series title in 2014.

Among his arsenal this weekend is the Fred Gormly/RPM Auto Enterprise No. 199, the very same team that's won the last three 4-Crown Silver Crown events with drivers Jerry Coons, Jr. in 2014, Christopher Bell in 2015 and Chris Windom in 2016. Bacon is still seeking career Silver Crown victory number one.

4-Crown weekend last year was the beginning of Justin Grant and Sam McGhee Motorsports' winning ways. After capturing the victory in the 2016 sprint portion, the team has carried the momentum into 2017 where they won at Eldora earlier this May and have been at the top of the USAC AMSOIL National Sprint Car standings since day one.

Chris Windom trails Grant by 70, but Eldora and, specifically the 4-Crown, have been kind to him over the years. The Canton, Illinois driver picked off both the Sprint Car and Silver Crown features in 2013, the most recent driver to win both of those particular features in the same night.

Rocklin, California's Robert Ballou followed up Grant's victory in May at Eldora with a win the next night in the series' last visit to the Big E. Five of Ballou's 28 career USAC National Sprint Car victories have come at Eldora, including his first three as well as the 4-Crown a decade ago back in 2007.

Fellow Californian Thomas Meseraull finally broke through for his first USAC National Sprint Car win at the 2015 "4-Crown." Since then, he's become one of the series' most spectacular, highly-acclaimed drivers. This Saturday, he's aboard the SC Racing No. 9x, which he started last year's event in from the front row.

Only Jack Hewitt owns more 4-Crown victories than Dave Darland's 14, half of which have come at the 4-Crown. The "People's Champ" from Lincoln, Indiana aims to make this weekend's stop the place to extend his record streak of consecutive seasons with a USAC National win from 24 to 25.

Like Darland, the versatile Jerry Coons, Jr. has also won his fair share at the 4-Crown with four victories in the midget, sprint and Silver Crown divisions and currently runs second in the Silver Crown standings aboard Gene Nolen's #20 behind Kody Swanson.

Swanson has yet to win a USAC race at Eldora, last scoring a pair of runner-up finishes during the 2015 4-Crown in both DePalma Motorsports' sprint car and Silver Crown car. This Saturday, he makes his USAC debut under the Nolen Racing banner behind the wheel of the team's new Maxim Sprint Car with which he recorded a victory with in a non-sanctioned event at Lawrenceburg Speedway last weekend.

As the Kingsburg, California native closes out another banner season by wrapping up his third Silver Crown title in a four-year span, another past USAC champ and two-time 4-Crown winner makes his 4-Crown return in Keith Kunz's top-notch midget as well as his own sprinter in the Arctic Cat All Star Circuit of Champions portion of the program.

The always-exciting Rutherford, California native swept last year's midget program with fast time, a heat win and a stirring drive in the feature to back up his victory in 2013.

Spectator gates open Saturday at noon. An autograph session featuring USAC's drivers will begin in the fan zone located between turns three and four. The drivers meeting will take place at 4pm with cars hitting the track at 4:30pm. Racing is scheduled to start at 8pm.

Adult general admission tickets are $30. General admission for children age 12 and under is FREE! Reserved seating for adults is $34 with reserved tickets for children age 12 and under just $14.

All drivers competing in the 4-Crown Nationals at Eldora Speedway this Saturday must fill out a membership. NO COST! Please fill out the driver info portion of the sheet, print off and bring with you to the track. The form can be found at

The United States Auto Club.









Contact: Richie Murray - USAC Media /


By: Richie Murray - USAC Media

Jonestown, Pennsylvania..... August 17, 2017 - The Keystone state suited Chad Boat like a glove during "Pennsylvania Midget Week" as the Phoenix, Arizona native capped the four-race series with his second victory of the week in the USAC Midget National Championship's debut at Linda's Speedway.

Like last year, Boat got into the flow when the calendar flipped to the month of August. In 2016, he won three of four to begin the month while this year, it was three of six with a "Belleville Midget Nationals" prelim win serving as a prelude to his two wins in Pennsylvania.

Chad Boat won Thursday night's USAC National & ARDC Midget event at Linda's Speedway in Jonestown, PA, his second victory of the week.(Steve Koletar Photo)

Boat's ownership of the month of August over the past two seasons may seem like a strange, coincidental anomaly, but to him, it makes perfect sense considering their racing schedule.

"Obviously, you'd like to start the season out faster," Boat acknowledges. "We were trying some different things at the beginning of the year, but now we've figured out what we like. I think a lot of it is because we run so few times a year. A lot of these guys will race 60 times this year while this is only our 21st race. That puts us at a little bit of a disadvantage and it takes us a little while to catch up."

From the get-go, Boat was silky smooth through the middle in his Tucker-Boat Motorsports/ - K & C Drywall/Spike/Speedway Toyota as he powered away to an eventual one-and-a-half second lead by the 11th lap over Shane Golobic and Tyler Courtney as the front of the field began to wade into lapped traffic. Every car on the track ahead of Boat seemed to be involved in a furious, side-by-side battle for position, making navigating inside, outside or between them a treacherous chore that allowed Golobic to get close enough to stick his foot in the door.

However, a substantial break came to Boat just prior to the halfway point in the form of two simultaneous spins involving teammates Alex Bright and Andrew Layser at opposite ends of the racetrack to bring out the yellow. That instantly cleared out the traffic for Boat to provide him clear sailing ahead.

"Traffic was tricky," Boat admits. "I got to traffic and I wasn't that much better than them. They were kind of holding me up, so when that caution came, it fell at the right time."

Cautions inherently bring restarts and nobody was in the same zip code as Boat when it came to that category. Time-and-time again, Boat used a monstrous surge when the green flag dropped to capture a healthy advantage.

"It goes back to our engines that make us take off so well," Boat praised. "I definitely wanted to find the grip and I knew if I put my car where the grip was, I'd have a great restart. Usually, you can tell if you're having a good restart or not. I also tried to change it up as much as I could to keep Shane guessing on what I was going to do. I felt comfortable with Shane behind me. He's one of the cleanest drivers in the field. If he was better than me, he'd get by me. If he wasn't better than me, we'd race it out to the end."

'Obviously, you'd like to start the season out faster. We were trying some different things at the beginning of the year, but now we've figured out what we like. I think a lot of it is because we run so few times a year. A lot of these guys will race 60 times this year while this is only our 21st race. That puts us at a little bit of a disadvantage and it takes us a little while to catch up.' - Chad Boat (Michael Fry Photo)

On a lap 20 restart following a yellow brought about for a flat left rear tire on the car of ninth-place-running/ARDC point leader Ryan Greth, Golobic was able to stay within shirt-tugging distance of Boat for the first lap. Gradually, Boat got away, this time to a seven-tenths of a second clip two laps following the restart until action relented again when Eric Heydenreich flipped on the back straight entering turn three. He would walk away.

On the final restart with nine to go, Golobic was able to stick a nose underneath and pull even with Boat entering turn one. Boat was unfazed and remained on his line through the middle to inch ahead by the time the pair exited the second turn.

"I knew I could run as hard as I possibly could for nine laps, just like a heat race," Boat relayed. "I felt really good, especially in the first two laps after a restart. I started getting a little bit loose on entry and then slid up. I didn't know exactly where I wanted to be. I just knew if I kept running it hard and he showed me a nose, I could move down. He showed me a little bit of nose, so I moved down slightly in (turns) one and two."

Yet, in the final three laps, Golobic found new life as Boat's line began to fade slightly. Golobic dug out two-tenths per lap on the interval between he and Boat and, on the final lap, entering turn three for the final time, was able pull side-by-side briefly with Boat through the middle of the corner. Boat had the momentum higher up on the surface to clear Golobic and win his third of the month over Golobic, Spencer Bayston, Courtney and Justin Grant.

While many of the ARDC regulars have extensive experience at Linda's with it being a regular stop on their season schedule, it was the first appearance by USAC's National Midget contingent. You often hear a driver explain the difficulties of leading, which creates a situation behind them where they are not fully aware of how their closest competition is running and how they are adapting to the changes in the track.

That becomes doubly complicated when competing on a track for the initial time, yet it also evens the playing field when the track is an unknown quantity to everyone, as was the case Thursday night at Linda's.

"I just tried to stay aggressive, run it as hard as I could and not let the car slip," Boat explained. "I knew if I was driving forward, I had good bite and I could keep running there. I tried to move around; there was a hole in turn three that made it a little bit tricky. Shane (Golobic) was running below it and I was running above it. My line started wearing out a little bit in the end. I could feel myself getting looser and sliding up more on entry, so I was definitely glad to see the race coming to an end."

Contingency award winners Thursday night at Linda's Speedway include Brady Bacon (ProSource Fast Qualifier), Adam Pierson (Simpson Race Products 1st Heat Winner), Tanner Carrick (Competition Suspension, Inc. 2nd Heat Winner), Tyler Courtney (Chalk Stix/Indy Race Parts 3rd Heat Winner), Landon Simon (KSE Racing Products Hard Charger) and Trevor Kobylarz (Wilwood Brakes 13th Place Finisher).


USAC MIDGET NATIONAL CHAMPIONSHIP & EASTERN REGIONAL MIDGETS PRESENTED BY ARDC RACE RESULTS: August 17, 2017 - Linda's Speedway - Jonestown, Pennsylvania - "Pennsylvania Midget Week"

PROSOURCE QUALIFYING: 1. Brady Bacon, 76m, FMR-12.084; 2. Justin Grant, 39BC, Clauson/Marshall-12.091; 3. Tyler Courtney, 7BC, Clauson/Marshall-12.114; 4. Spencer Bayston, 97, Kunz/Curb-Agajanian-12.117; 5. Shane Golobic, 17w, Clauson-Marshall/Wood-12.131; 6. Chad Boat, 84, Tucker/Boat-12.149; 7. Holly Shelton, 67K, Kunz/Curb-Agajanian-12.219; 8. Tanner Carrick, 71K, Kunz/Curb-Agajanian-12.252; 9. Ryan Greth, 4R, Lesher-12.255; 10. Brayton Lynch, 1K, RKR-12.290; 11. Tanner Thorson, 67, Kunz/Curb-Agajanian-12.420; 12. Tony DiMattia, 50, TDM-12.428; 13. Adam Pierson, 76E, Mancini-12.534; 14. Brett Arndt, 46, Arndt-12.550; 15. Timmy Buckwalter, 29s, Seymour-12.551; 16. Kenny Miller, III, 23m, Miller-12.626; 17. Andrew Layser, 77L, Bright-12.631; 18. Landon Simon, 29, Clover-12.677; 19. P.J. Gargiulo, 5, JHG-12.773; 20. Eric Heydenreich, 11, Heydenreich-12.792; 21. Rob Marhefka, 99, FM-13.437; 22. Trevor Kobylarz, 14, RT-16.916; 23. Josh Heckman, 12, Heckman-NT; 24. Alex Bright, 77, Bright-NT.

SIMPSON RACE PRODUCTS FIRST HEAT: (10 laps) 1. Pierson, 2. Shelton, 3. Bayston, 4. Bacon, 5. Lynch, 6. Miller, 7. Kobylarz, 8. Gargiulo. 2:09.39

COMPETITION SUSPENSION, INC. (CSI) SECOND HEAT: (10 laps) 1. Carrick, 2. Thorson, 3. Grant, 4. Golobic, 5. Layser, 6. Heydenreich, 7. Arndt. 2:05.13

CHALK STIX/INDY RACE PARTS THIRD HEAT: (10 laps) 1. Courtney, 2. Boat, 3. Buckwalter, 4. Simon, 5. Greth, 6. DiMattia, 7. Marhefka. 2:07.38

FEATURE: (30 laps) 1. Chad Boat, 2. Shane Golobic, 3. Spencer Bayston, 4. Tyler Courtney, 5. Justin Grant, 6. Tanner Thorson, 7. Brady Bacon, 8. Holly Shelton, 9. Tanner Carrick, 10. Landon Simon, 11. Brayton Lynch, 12. Adam Pierson, 13. Trevor Kobylarz, 14. Brett Arndt, 15. Alex Bright, 16. Ryan Greth, 17. Kenny Miller III, 18. P.J. Gargiulo, 19. Timmy Buckwalter, 20. Eric Heydenreich, 21. Tony DiMattia, 22. Andrew Layser. NT

KSE RACING PRODUCTS HARD CHARGER: Landon Simon (18th to 10th)


NEW USAC MIDGET NATIONAL CHAMPIONSHIP POINTS: 1-Bayston-1293, 2-Bacon-1233, 3-Golobic-1219, 4-Thorson-1198, 5-Courtney-1171, 6-Grant-1167, 7-Boat-1032, 8-Shelton-933, 9-Carrick-857, 10-Jerry Coons, Jr.-808.

NEXT USAC MIDGET NATIONAL CHAMPIONSHIP RACE: September 23 - Eldora Speedway - Rossburg, Ohio - "4-Crown Nationals"

Categories : Midgets, News, Short Track, USAC
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The United States Auto Club.









Contact: Richie Murray - USAC Media /


By: Richie Murray - USAC Media

Newmanstown, Pennsylvania.....August 15, 2017 - One year ago at Lanco's Clyde Martin Memorial Speedway, Tanner Thorson needed all the heroics he could muster to pull off a last-lap, last corner pass to take the victory.

In Tuesday night's third round of "Pennsylvania Midget Week" with the USAC Eastern Midgets presented by ARDC at the 1/8-mile bullring, it was a relative comfort cruise for Thorson as he led all 40 laps to take his second USAC National Midget victory of the year in his Keith Kunz-Curb-Agajanian Motorsports/JBL Audio - TRD/Bullet by Spike/Speedway Toyota.

Lanco winner Tanner Thorson (#67) leads Brady Bacon in Tuesday night's 'Pennsylvania Midget Week' feature at Lanco's Clyde Martin Memorial Speedway. (Michael Fry Photo)

After a tumultuous 48-hour period that saw him lose his lead on the final restart on Sunday at Susquehanna, then some, shall we say, fireworks on the final lap of Monday's feature at Path Valley Speedway Park, Thorson was champing at the bit to return to the seat after seeing near victories go by the wayside the last two nights.

"Very, very eager." Thorson exclaimed. "I've learned to put my past races behind me. If you keep worrying about the stuff that happened the last couple of nights, you lose focus and forget what you're doing here today. The best thing you can do is go out there and do what you do best and put it behind you."

Thorson was the beneficiary of an outside front row starting position after an opening lap tangle between Clauson/Marshall Racing teammates Tyler Courtney and Justin Grant. Exiting turn two, Grant ramped over the right rear tire of Courtney's car, sending him flipping wildly, ending his night. After winning the "PA Midget Week" opener on the last lap at Susquehanna, Grant has found himself upside down on consecutive nights.

A double-file complete restart would move Thorson up a row from the outside of row two to the outside of row one alongside Courtney. Immediately, Thorson was gone and quickly dove down the bottom in front of Courtney to secure the position. The bottom would prove to be the place to stay on a heavy surface that was doused with moisture from Mother Nature over the past several days that didn't require the use of a water truck at any point in the track's preparation.

In most cases, you'd hear a driver describe the benefits of starting up front, but Thorson has a unique perspective contrary to the norm regarding where he prefers to begin his races. But after watching the prelims leading up to the 40-lap main event, Thorson changed his perspective, at least for this night.

"I was kind of glad I got to start on the outside of the front row," Thorson admits. "I had a feeling the track was going to stay on the bottom based on watching the micro sprint heats and B-mains. I'm not one who usually likes to start on the front row. I seem to lose more races starting on the front row than I do starting in the second or third row on back."

'I'm not here to race for points,' Thorson (middle) said. 'I'm going to take each race by itself as it comes. If I win, I win. If I don't, I want to run the best that I possibly can. I'm not going to dwell over worrying about points. Last year, I didn't do it one bit until the last couple of races. That's the plan this year and we'll see how it plays out. We come here to win and Keith (Kunz) has a lot of expectations for us because of his past success and the equipment that we're in. I'm really fortunate to be with the group of people I'm with.' (Rich Forman Photo)

"Last night, Brady (Bacon) ran a little different line than I was and that made me a sitting duck, not knowing what was going on behind me," Thorson expounds. "I like to be in that 2nd or 3rd row spot so I can have room to move around and find out which line is faster. I was kind of upset at first having to move up to the front row until we started and I saw that the track was moving down toward the bottom."

On the fourth lap, Brady Bacon got to the inside of Spencer Bayston entering turn three and was able to stick it on the bottom to claim second. Bacon led a combined 18 laps over the first two nights of "PA Midget Week" and put himself in position to make a bid for the lead if opportunity knocked.

Thorson would have to endure restart after restart, the last of which came after Holly Shelton and Kenny Miller, III got together on the back straightaway on lap 21, sending Shelton flipping multiple times. She walked away.

Consistency is the key when track position is so substantial. One slip up is all it takes and all could be lost as a freight train of cars drive by for the position. Thorson wasn't keen on letting that happen to him tonight.

"When the track's that heavy, the biggest thing is hitting your marks," Thorson notes. "The closer you could get to the infield tires, the better and not let anybody get underneath you. The way you could see the track forming up, nobody was running up there at all. It was rough and crumbly up there. It helps your mindset coming back from a yellow knowing that nobody's going to blow around you. I think that's a huge part of knowing the track and looking at it as you're rolling around there under the yellow."

With 19 to go, Thorson, Bacon and Courtney ran nose-to-tail, but gradually, Thorson kicked open the lead ever so slightly to leave Bacon and Courtney no chance down the stretch as Thorson drove away to his 12th career USAC National Midget win, tying him with a list of drivers that includes Danny Caruthers, Gene Force, Russ Gamester, Jeff Gordon, Bobby Grim and Ron Shuman. Bacon, Courtney, Bayston and Shane Golobic rounded out the top-five.

It was the second year in a row for Thorson to claim victory at Lanco, a place that he took to right from the get-go due to the similarities it shares with a track he grew up competing on regularly.

"It kind of reminds me of a go-kart track I raced at back home called Cycleland Speedway," Thorson explains. The track layout itself is the same, just a little bigger car and a little bigger track this time around."

Coming into August, Thorson stood 6th in the USAC Midget National Championship standings, 132 points out of the lead. After rattling finishes of 1st, 4th, 3rd, 2nd and 2nd in his first five starts of the month, and now another victory, Thorson finds himself 4th and 84 points back as he steadily makes a charge to become a back-to-back series champ, yet the Minden, Nevada native admits that hasn't played on his mind just yet.

"I'm not here to race for points," Thorson said. "I'm going to take each race by itself as it comes. If I win, I win. If I don't, I want to run the best that I possibly can. I'm not going to dwell over worrying about points. Last year, I didn't do it one bit until the last couple of races. That's the plan this year and we'll see how it plays out. We come here to win and Keith (Kunz) has a lot of expectations for us because of his past success and the equipment that we're in. I'm really fortunate to be with the group of people I'm with."

Contingency award winners Tuesday night at Lanco's Clyde Martin Memorial Speedway include Shane Golobic (ProSource Fast Qualifier), Justin Grant (Simpson Race Products 1st Heat Winner), Tim Buckwalter (Competition Suspension, Inc. 2nd Heat Winner), Alex Bright (Chalk Stix/Indy Race Parts 3rd Heat Winner), Landon Simon (KSE Racing Products Hard Charger) and Andrew Layser (Wilwood Brakes 13th Place Finisher).


USAC MIDGET NATIONAL CHAMPIONSHIP & EASTERN REGIONAL MIDGETS PRESENTED BY ARDC RACE RESULTS: August 15, 2017 - Lanco's Clyde Martin Memorial Speedway - Spring Run, Pennsylvania - "Pennsylvania Midget Week"

PROSOURCE QUALIFYING: 1. Shane Golobic, 17w, Clauson-Marshall/Wood-10.554; 2. Brady Bacon, 76m, FMR-10.672; 3. Tony DiMattia, 50, TDM-10.678; 4. Spencer Bayston, 97, Kunz/Curb-Agajanian-10.687; 5. Tanner Thorson, 67, Kunz/Curb-Agajanian-10.715; 6. Brayton Lynch, 1K, RKR-10.740; 7. Justin Grant, 39BC, Clauson/Marshall-10.751; 8. Tyler Courtney, 7BC, Clauson/Marshall-10.752; 9. Alex Bright, 77, Bright-10.858; 10. Chad Boat, 84, Tucker/Boat-10.871; 11. Timmy Buckwalter, 29s, Seymour-10.963; 12. Andrew Layser, 77L, Bright-11.005; 13. Ryan Greth, 4R, Lesher-11.020; 14. Tanner Carrick, 71K, Kunz/Curb-Agajanian-11.047; 15. Holly Shelton, 67K, Kunz/Curb-Agajanian-11.073; 16. Kenny Miller, III, 23m, Miller-11.175; 17. Landon Simon, 29, Clover-11.195; 18. Adam Pierson, 76E, Mancini-11.275; 19. Eric Heydenreich, 11, Heydenreich-11.437; 20. Shawn Jackson, 7J, Jackson-11.483; 21. Jimmy Glenn, 07, Glenn-11.672; 22. Tommy Kunsman, Jr., 21, Kunsman-11.859; 23. Kenney Johnson, 46x, Johnson-NT.

SIMPSON RACE PRODUCTS FIRST HEAT: (10 laps) 1. Grant, 2. Golobic, 3. Bayston, 4. Miller, 5. Boat, 6. Heydenreich, 7. Greth. NT

COMPETITION SUSPENSION, INC. (CSI) SECOND HEAT: (10 laps) 1. Buckwalter, 2. Carrick, 3. Thorson, 4. Simon, 5. Courtney, 6. Bacon, 7. Johnson, 8. Jackson. 1:51.30

CHALK STIX/INDY RACE PARTS THIRD HEAT: (10 laps) 1. Bright, 2. Pierson, 3. Layser, 4. Lynch, 5. Shelton, 6. DiMattia, 7. Glenn. NT

FEATURE: (40 laps) 1. Tanner Thorson, 2. Brady Bacon, 3. Tyler Courtney, 4. Spencer Bayston, 5. Shane Golobic, 6. Chad Boat, 7. Timmy Buckwalter, 8. Tanner Carrick, 9. Tony DiMattia, 10. Landon Simon, 11. Kenny Miller, III, 12. Ryan Greth, 13. Andrew Layser, 14. Eric Heydenreich, 15. Holly Shelton, 16. Adam Pierson, 17. Brayton Lynch, 18. Alex Bright, 19. Tommy Kunsman, Jr., 20. Shawn Jackson, 21. Kenney Johnson, 22. Justin Grant. NT
**Greth flipped during the first heat. Grant flipped on the opening lap of the feature. Shelton flipped on lap 21 of the feature.

FEATURE LAP LEADERS: Laps 1-40 Thorson.

KSE RACING PRODUCTS HARD CHARGER: Landon Simon (17th to 10th)


NEW USAC MIDGET NATIONAL CHAMPIONSHIP POINTS: 1-Bayston-1220, 2-Bacon-1170, 3-Golobic-1145, 4-Thorson-1136, 5-Grant-1098, 6-Courtney-1098, 7-Boat-954, 8-Shelton-877, 9-Jerry Coons, Jr.-808, 10-Carrick-803.

NEW USAC EASTERN REGIONAL MIDGETS PRESENTED BY ARDC POINTS: 1-Greth-1317, 2-Bright-1174, 3-Miller-1102, 4-Pierson-1044, 5-Jackson-1019, 6-Layser-810, 7-Trevor Kobylarz-764, 8-Brett Arndt-754, 9-Josh Heckman-705, 10-Kunsman, Jr.-678.

NEXT USAC MIDGET NATIONAL CHAMPIONSHIP RACE: August 17 - Linda's Speedway - Jonestown, Pennsylvania - "Pennsylvania Midget Week"

Categories : ARDC, Midgets, News, Short Track, USAC
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