Marriott Cool Under Pressure In Breakout USMTS Triumph

Not only did Hunter Marriott score his initial USMTS victory Friday night at the Ark-La-Tex Speedway, but he did it by fending off two of the most skilled drivers familiar with Gene Boyter’s high-banked speed palace in Vivian, La.

In 14 USMTS main events held here over the past decade, Chris Henigan has two wins and Cade Dillard owns a series-best three, including the last two prior to this weekend, but neither had the goods to get by Marriott in the closing laps as the 27-year-old from Brookfield, Mo., claimed the $3,000 top prize with a wire-to-wire effort.

From the outside of the front row, Marriott distanced himself from the pack right away and picked his way through lapped traffic flawlessly to maintain his advantage while Dillard and Henigan were inching their way forward.

The race’s first caution on lap 29 bunched the field and Dillard threatened Marriott on several occasions over the next eight laps before the yellow flag waved for a second and final time with just three laps remaining.

Restarting inside of Dillard when the green flag returned, Henigan pulled even with Marriott momentarily before settling in for a battle for second place with Dillard while Marriott cruised the final three circuits.

Dillard held off Henigan for his second runner-up finish in as many nights. For his efforts, Henigan earned the FK Rod Ends Hard Charger Award by racing past ten cars from his 13th starting spot.

Ryan Gustin and Lucas Schott came from the fourth row to finish fourth and fifth at the checkered flag. Jason Hughes, Tyler Wolff, Joe Duvall, Terry Phillips and Zack VanderBeek completed the top 10.

Rodney Sanders suffered a flat tire with three laps to go while running third, but continues to sit atop both the USMTS National Championship and Summit USMTS Southern Series points.

Due to impending severe weather including the possibility of tornadoes on Saturday, the third and final night of the 7th Annual Cajun Clash has been canceled.

The USMTS Mid-American Series returns to action for a three-night excursion through Kansas and Oklahoma On Thursday, April 25, it’s the 8th Annual Sunflower State Showdown at the 81 Speedway in Park City, Kan., and then the USMTS makes its maiden voyage to the historic Kansas State Fairgrounds in Hutchinson, Kan., on Friday, April 26. The tripleheader wraps up Saturday, April 27, with the fourth event for the series at the Longdale Speedway in Longdale, Okla.

To learn more about the United States Modified Touring Series, visit USMTS.com or call (515) 832-7944.

OFFICIAL RESULTS
Casey’s General Stores USMTS National Championship
7th Annual Cajun Clash presented by Horseshoe Bossier City – Night 2 of 2
Ark-La-Tex Speedway, Vivian, Louisiana. Friday, April 12, 2019

SIMPSON PERFORMANCE PRODUCTS HEAT RACE #1 (8 laps): 1. (1) 69 Lucas Schott, Chatfield, Minn; 2. (6) 62 Hunter Marriott (R), Brookfield, Mo; 3. (5) 12t Tyler Townsend, Diana, Texas; 4. (9) 75 Terry Phillips, Springfield, Mo; 5. (2) 21 David Winslett, Bossier City, La; 6. (4) 2g Kenny Gaddis, Diana, Texas; 7. (8) 17 Mike Striegel (R), Wheatland, Mo; 8. (7) 7 Sean Gaddis, Diana, Texas; 9. (3) 20 Michael Easley (R), Keithville, La.

FAST SHAFTS HEAT RACE #2 (8 laps): 1. (1) 97 Cade Dillard, Robeline, La; 2. (5) 19r Ryan Gustin, Marshalltown, Iowa; 3. (2) 23 Logan Robertson, Shamrock, Texas; 4. (3) 12 Jason Hughes, Watts, Okla; 5. (4) 24 Manuel Williams Sr. (R), Fouke, Ark; 6. (7) 10w Hunter Wilbanks (R), Lakeland, Tenn; 7. (9) 23 Adam Kates, Tonganoxie, Kan; 8. (6) 34 Noah Daspit (R), Picayune, Miss; 9. (8) 42 Paul Niznik, Medford, Wis.

EDELBROCK HEAT RACE #3 (8 laps): 1. (2) 4m Bobby Malchus, Red Oak, Texas; 2. (1) 8 Jeremy Vaughn (R), Pocola, Okla; 3. (5) 4r Dereck Ramirez, Woodward, Okla; 4. (6) 16 Chris Henigan, Marshall, Texas; 5. (7) 15 Kale Westover (R), Blair, Okla; 6. (3) 11n Gene Nicholas, Lowell, Ark; 7. (8) 6* Dillon Pike, Waxahachie, Texas; 8. (9) 31m Travis Mosley (R), Bearden, Ark; 9. (4) 8¢ Colby O’Neal (R), Midlothian, Texas.

MSD PERFORMANCE HEAT RACE #4 (8 laps): 1. (2) 65x Carlos Ahumada Jr. (R), El Paso, Texas; 2. (1) C8 Timothy Culp, Prattsville, Ark; 3. (4) 33z Zack VanderBeek, New Sharon, Iowa; 4. (6) 5a Brandon Ball (R), Texarkana, La; 5. (8) 24m Manuel Williams II (R), Fouke, Ark; 6. (3) J17 Jake Gallardo, Las Cruces, N.M.; 7. (7) 24z Zane Ferrell (R), Hermitage, Ark; 8. (5) 55 Nathan Hagar (R), Adair, Okla; 9. (9) 20t Brent Tidwell (R), Harleton, Texas.

VP RACING FUELS HEAT RACE #5 (8 laps): 1. (3) 20 Rodney Sanders, Happy, Texas; 2. (2) 91 Joe Duvall, Claremore, Okla; 3. (6) 4w Tyler Wolff, Fayetteville, Ark; 4. (4) 4 Bo Day (R), Greenville, Texas; 5. (5) 8 Skip O’Neal (R), Midlothian, Texas; 6. (8) G17 Fito Gallardo, Las Cruces, N.M.; 7. (7) 12 Jason Ingalls, Longview, Texas; 8. (9) 10 Tye Clampitt (R), Henderson, Texas; 9. (1) 14z Zach McMillan (R), Gladewater, Texas.

REAL RACING WHEELS “B” MAIN #1 (12 laps, top 6 advance): 1. (3) 16 Chris Henigan, Marshall, Texas; 2. (2) 33z Zack VanderBeek, New Sharon, Iowa; 3. (4) 24m Manuel Williams II (R), Fouke, Ark; 4. (8) 10w Hunter Wilbanks (R), Lakeland, Tenn; 5. (10) 23 Adam Kates, Tonganoxie, Kan; 6. (6) 21 David Winslett, Bossier City, La; 7. (5) 4 Bo Day (R), Greenville, Texas., MBCustoms/Mullins, $90; 8. (12) 12 Jason Ingalls, Longview, Texas., IRP/PTS, $90; 9. (7) 8 Skip O’Neal (R), Midlothian, Texas., Rocket/Wells, $75; 10. (13) 10 Tye Clampitt (R), Henderson, Texas., GRT/Sput’s, $75; 11. (17) 14z Zach McMillan (R), Gladewater, Texas., Hughes/Mullins, $75; 12. (16) 8¢ Colby O’Neal (R), Midlothian, Texas., Rocket/Wells, $75; 13. (11) 6* Dillon Pike, Waxahachie, Texas., Hughes/Allard, $75; 14. (15) 20 Michael Easley (R), Keithville, La., GRT/Phillips, $75; 15. (14) 34 Noah Daspit (R), Picayune, Miss., Hughes/Wall2Wall, $90; 16. (9) 11n Gene Nicholas, Lowell, Ark., Hughes/Kelly, $90; 17. (1) 12t Tyler Townsend, Diana, Texas., MBCustoms/PTS, $90.

REAL RACING WHEELS “B” MAIN #2 (12 laps, top 6 advance): 1. (4) 12 Jason Hughes, Watts, Okla; 2. (1) 4r Dereck Ramirez, Woodward, Okla; 3. (2) 23 Logan Robertson, Shamrock, Texas; 4. (8) 2g Kenny Gaddis, Diana, Texas; 5. (5) 15 Kale Westover (R), Blair, Okla;6. (7) G17 Fito Gallardo, Las Cruces, N.M.; 7. (11) 24z Zane Ferrell (R), Hermitage, Ark; 8. (3) 5a Brandon Ball (R), Texarkana, La., GRT/Best, $75; 9. (9) J17 Jake Gallardo, Las Cruces, N.M., LG2/ProPower, $90; 10. (15) 42 Paul Niznik, Medford, Wis., Rocket/Niznik, $90; 11. (13) 7 Sean Gaddis, Diana, Texas., MBCustoms/PTS, $90; 12. (10) 17 Mike Striegel (R), Wheatland, Mo; 13. (6) 24 Manuel Williams Sr. (R), Fouke, Ark., Bandit/Kraft, $75; 14. (16) 20t Brent Tidwell (R), Harleton, Texas., /, $75; 15. (14) 55 Nathan Hagar (R), Adair, Okla., Shaw/BlueDiamond, $90; 16. (12) 31m Travis Mosley (R), Bearden, Ark., GRT/Mullins, $90.

SUMMIT RACING EQUIPMENT “A” MAIN (40 laps): 1. (2) 62 Hunter Marriott (R), Brookfield, Mo., Rage/KSE, 40, $3000; 2. (6) 97 Cade Dillard, Robeline, La., MBCustoms/Knowles, 40, $1700; 3. (13) 16 Chris Henigan, Marshall, Texas, GRT/Stoen, 40, $1100; 4. (7) 19r Ryan Gustin, Marshalltown, Iowa, Hughes/TriStar, 40, $800; 5. (8) 69 Lucas Schott, Chatfield, Minn., MBCustoms/Hill, 40, $700; 6. (14) 12 Jason Hughes, Watts, Okla., Hughes/Mullins, 40, $650; 7. (4) 4w Tyler Wolff, Fayetteville, Ark., MBCustoms/Hill, 40, $600; 8. (11) 91 Joe Duvall, Claremore, Okla., MBCustoms/ChevPerf, 40, $550; 9. (12) 75 Terry Phillips, Springfield, Mo., GRT/Durham, 40, $500; 10. (15) 33z Zack VanderBeek, New Sharon, Iowa, VanderBuilt/Stoen, 40, $450; 11. (1) 4m Bobby Malchus, Red Oak, Texas, Rocket/Wells, 40, $425; 12. (16) 4r Dereck Ramirez, Woodward, Okla., Hughes/Cornett, 40, $400; 13. (21) 23 Adam Kates, Tonganoxie, Kan., LG2/Speedway, 40, $375; 14. (3) 65x Carlos Ahumada Jr. (R), El Paso, Texas, GRT/BMS, 40, $350; 15. (18) 23 Logan Robertson, Shamrock, Texas, MBCustoms/Hatfield, 40, $325; 16. (25) 17 Mike Striegel (R), Wheatland, Mo., GRT/ChevPerf, 40, $300; 17. (19) 10w Hunter Wilbanks (R), Lakeland, Tenn., MBCustoms/Mullins, 40, $300; 18. (5) 20 Rodney Sanders, Happy, Texas, MBCustoms/Hatfield, 40, $300; 19. (9) 8 Jeremy Vaughn (R), Pocola, Okla., Hughes/BMS, 40, $300; 20. (20) 2g Kenny Gaddis, Diana, Texas, MBCustoms/PTS, 38, $300; 21. (10) C8 Timothy Culp, Prattsville, Ark., Shaw/Performance, 37, $300; 22. (17) 24m Manuel Williams II (R), Fouke, Ark., Bandit/Kraft, 30, $225; 23. (26) 24z Zane Ferrell (R), Hermitage, Ark., MBCustoms/ASI, 28, $300; 24. (23) 21 David Winslett, Bossier City, La., GRT/TwinCity, 28, $300; 25. (24) G17 Fito Gallardo, Las Cruces, N.M., GRC/ProPower, 23, $300;
26. (22) 15 Kale Westover (R), Blair, Okla., GRT/Knowles, 22, $225.

(R) = Grant Junghans USMTS Rookie of the Year contender

Lap Leader: Marriott 1-40.
Total Laps Led: Marriott 40.
Margin of Victory: 0.632 second.
Time of Race: 19 minutes, 46.512 seconds (2 cautions).

About the author

USMTS Admin

The United States Modified Touring Series (USMTS) is a fast growing and very popular open-wheel dirt Modified touring series in the United States.
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