Sanders Collects Opening Night Checkers At USMTS Cajun Clash

Photo by Tyler Rinken.

The fans in attendance at the Ark-La-Tex Speedway and those watching live on RacinDirt.com witnessed a barn-burner of a main event Thursday to kick off the 7th Annual USMTS Cajun Clash, but Rodney Sanders missed out on all of the excitement going on behind him.

After disposing of polesitter Lucas Schott on the first lap, Sanders raced out to a big lead and stayed there for 33 laps before the first caution of the race with seven to go erased his advantage.

Despite a charging Cade Dillard, Schott, Ryan Gustin and Zack VanderBeek right behind, the Casey’s General Stores USMTS National Championship points leader never faltered and, in fact, survived another caution with five laps remaining to garner his second straight Summit USMTS Southern Series victory.

Early in the race, Dillard and Gustin put on a whale of a battle for the third spot with Dillard eventually able to secure the position and then getting by Schott with 13 laps to go.

But event with the pair of late-race cautions, Dillard—the defending Cajun Clash champ—was unable to reel in Sanders and a final-lap drive came up about a car-length short.

Schott held off VanderBeek and Gustin for the third position while Carlos Ahumada Jr., Terry Phillips, Hunter Marriott, Jason Hughes and Dereck Ramirez completed the top 10.

Another complete show of qualifying heat races and main events is on tap for Friday and Saturday for the USMTS Modifieds as well as the USRA Factory Stocks and USRA Limited Mods.

On Friday, the pits open at 2 p.m., grandstands open at 5, drivers meeting at 6:30 and racing at 7 p.m. On Saturday, the pits open at 2 p.m., grandstands open at 4:30, drivers meeting at 5:30 and racing at 6 p.m. sharp.

The Ark-La-Tex Speedway is located 0.6 mile south of SR 2 on SR 1, then 0.7 mile west on Airport Rd., then 2.2 miles south on Boyter Lane Rd. For race day information, call the track hotline at (318) 375-3470 or check out arklatexspeedway.net to visit them online.

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 powered by Summit
7th Annual Cajun Clash presented by Horseshoe Bossier City – Night 1 of 3
Ark-La-Tex Speedway, Vivian, Louisiana. Thursday, April 11, 2019

Showing finishing position, car number, driver and starting position in brackets. The top 12 in heat race passing points advance to the Summit Racing Equipment “A” Main with the top 8 redrawing for the first 8 starting spots.

SIMPSON PERFORMANCE PRODUCTS HEAT RACE #1 (8 laps): 1. 23R-Logan Robertson, [3]; 2. 16-Chris Henigan, [7]; 3. 65X-Carlos Ahumada Jr., [9]; 4. 12T-Tyler Townsend, [4]; 5. G17-Fito Gallardo, [8]; 6. 17-Mike Striegel, [6]; 7. 31M-Travis Mosley, [1]; 8. (DNF) 91-Joe Duvall, [5]; 9. (DNF) 34-Noah Daspit, [2].

FAST SHAFTS HEAT RACE #2 (8 laps): 1. 69-Lucas Schott, [3]; 2. 20-Rodney Sanders, [6]; 3. 4M-Bobby Malchus, [2]; 4. 10C-Tye Clampitt, [5]; 5. 2G-Kenny Gaddis, [7]; 6. 21W-David Winslett, [9]; 7. 11N-Gene Nicholas, [1]; 8. 8¢-Colby O’Neal, [4]; 9. (DNF) 55-Nathan Hagar, [8].

EDELBROCK HEAT RACE #3 (8 laps): 1. 12-Jason Hughes, [3]; 2. 75-Terry Phillips, [1]; 3. 20E-Michael Easley, [4]; 4. 12I-Jason Ingalls, [7]; 5. J17-Jake Gallardo, [5]; 6. 24-Manuel Williams Sr., [9]; 7. 4W-Tyler Wolff, [6]; 8. 62-Hunter Marriott, [2]; 9. 6*-Dillon Pike, [8].

MSD PERFORMANCE HEAT RACE #4 (8 laps): 1. 97-Cade Dillard, [3]; 2. 33Z-Zack VanderBeek, [5]; 3. 4R-Dereck Ramirez, [7]; 4. 24Z-Zane Ferrell, [1]; 5. 24M-Manuel Williams Jr., [9]; 6. C8-Timothy Culp, [2]; 7. 10W-Hunter Wilbanks, [4]; 8. 4D-Bo Day, [8]; 9. 20T-Brent Tidwell, [6].

VP RACING FUELS HEAT RACE #5 (8 laps): 1. 19R-Ryan Gustin, [7]; 2. 5A-Brandon Ball, [2]; 3. 23-Adam Kates, [3]; 4. 7-Sean Gaddis, [4]; 5. 8S-Skip O’Neal, [8]; 6. 15-Kale Westover, [6]; 7. 42-Paul Niznik, [5]; 8. 8-Jeremy Vaughn, [1].

REAL RACING WHEELS “B” MAIN #1 (12 laps, top 6 advance): 1. 24M-Manuel Williams Jr., [3]; 2. 4M-Bobby Malchus, [2]; 3. 62-Hunter Marriott, [13]; 4. G17-Fito Gallardo, [4]; 5. C8-Timothy Culp, [9]; 6. 21W-David Winslett, [7]; 7. 34-Noah Daspit, [16]; 8. 31M-Travis Mosley, [11]; 9. 20E-Michael Easley, [1]; 10. J17-Jake Gallardo, [8]; 11. 4D-Bo Day, [14]; 12. 42-Paul Niznik, [12]; 13. 11N-Gene Nicholas, [10]; 14. (DNF) 12T-Tyler Townsend, [5]; 15. (DNF) 7-Sean Gaddis, [6]; 16. (DNF) 55-Nathan Hagar, [15].

REAL RACING WHEELS “B” MAIN #2 (12 laps, top 6 advance): 1. 12I-Jason Ingalls, [1]; 2. 23-Adam Kates, [2]; 3. 4W-Tyler Wolff, [10]; 4. 8S-Skip O’Neal, [4]; 5. 10C-Tye Clampitt, [3]; 6. 24Z-Zane Ferrell, [5]; 7. 91-Joe Duvall, [13]; 8. 10W-Hunter Wilbanks, [11]; 9. 17-Mike Striegel, [8]; 10. 15-Kale Westover, [9]; 11. 24-Manuel Williams Sr., [7]; 12. 20T-Brent Tidwell, [16]; 13. 8-Jeremy Vaughn, [14]; 14. 8¢-Colby O’Neal, [12]; 15. 2G-Kenny Gaddis, [6]; 16. 6*-Dillon Pike, [15].

SUMMIT RACING EQUIPMENT “A” MAIN (40 laps): 1. 20-Rodney Sanders, [2]; 2. 97-Cade Dillard, [8]; 3. 69-Lucas Schott, [1]; 4. 33Z-Zack VanderBeek, [9]; 5. 19R-Ryan Gustin, [6]; 6. 65X-Carlos Ahumada Jr., [4]; 7. 75-Terry Phillips, [11]; 8. 62-Hunter Marriott, [17]; 9. 12-Jason Hughes, [3]; 10. 4R-Dereck Ramirez, [10]; 11. 23-Adam Kates, [16]; 12. C8-Timothy Culp, [21]; 13. 12I-Jason Ingalls, [14]; 14. 23R-Logan Robertson, [7]; 15. 91-Joe Duvall, [25]; 16. 8S-Skip O’Neal, [20]; 17. G17-Fito Gallardo, [19]; 18. 17-Mike Striegel, [26]; 19. 24Z-Zane Ferrell, [24]; 20. 10C-Tye Clampitt, [22]; 21. (DNF) 4W-Tyler Wolff, [18]; 22. (DNF) 24M-Manuel Williams Jr., [13]; 23. (DNF) 4M-Bobby Malchus, [15]; 24. (DNF) 21W-David Winslett, [23]; 25. (DNF) 5A-Brandon Ball, [12]; 26. (DNF) 16-Chris Henigan, [5].

Lap Leader: Sanders 1-40.
Total Laps Led: Sanders 40.
Margin of Victory: 0.403 second.
Time of Race: 16 minutes, 12.870 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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