Three days of racing at Kokomo Speedway for the USAC National Sprint Car Series concluded on Saturday night where Bryan Clauson would earn the win at the first ever “Sprint Car Smackdown.”
At the drop of green flag on the 40-lap feature event it was Thomas Meseraull who shot out to an early lead from his outside pole starting spot. On the ninth lap it was Tracey Hines who tracked down Meseraull and threw a slidejob for the lead. The first caution flag flew on lap 12 and bunched the field with Bryan Clauson who had moved into the runner-up spot trailing Hines for the lead.
On the restart Clauson would hunt down Hines and eventually make a move for the lead on lap 16 and never really look back. The late laps of the feature included a scary incident where Jon Stanbrough would hit the pit entrance and end up in the path of Robert Ballou who would plow into Stanbrough and collect Chad Boespflug as well. All drivers involved would exit their cars with Ballou being transported to a local hospital. Clauson would lead the final six laps after the incident to claim the $10,000 win in his Curb Records/R&B Truckers/Maxim/Fisher #7 machine.
In victory lane Clauson said, “Heck yeah! I can’t thank Kokomo Speedway enough for the great place they give us and stepping up to put on this big program. I was just as excited as everyone else when they announced this was coming back next year, because this is one of the best events we’ve ever had. I was talking to some guys and they said it wouldn’t count if we won it on the bottom, so we did what we had to do and showed them we can run anywhere tonight.”
Hines came home in the runner-up spot with Kevin Thomas Jr. in third, Dave Darland in fourth, and Kyle Larson rounded out the top-five. The USAC National Sprint Car Series will return to action on August 31st at Tri-City Speedway. For more information on the series fans can visit www.usacracing.com.