The veteran Dave Darland showed everyone that he still knows how to get it done at Eldora Speedway when he earned the USAC National Sprint Car win and the big $10,500 payday that came along with it on Saturday night. The “Summer Sprint Car Shootout” marked USAC’s 5oth year at Eldora Speedway and also featured the NRA Sprint Invaders in their winged 360ci sprint cars.
At the drop of the green flag in the USAC feature it was young gun Coleman Gulick who led the first few laps. By the 4th circuit Bryan Clauson put the pressure on Gulick and got around him for the lead. Clauson would enjoy a comfortable lead for some time until Dave Darland ran him down right around the halfway point of the 50-lap feature.
Darland would make a slidejob stick on Clauson on the 23rd lap for the lead. From that point Darland would lead the final 28 laps on the way to the huge victory. After the win Darland said, “Eldora’s a great place, has some great fans, and I just love racing here. The track preparation tonight was great. You could definitely do some good racing out there. I was glad to see that late caution just to clear the lapped cars. I was having trouble seeing the cushion with those guys running right there. Bryan’s (Clauson) a great race car driver, so you have to be ready for him, but it was nice to have clear track. Jeff Walker gives me a great car, and our fresh Claxton Engine was strong.”
Next up was the NRA Sprint Invaders where Jared Horstman led early in the 20-lap feature race. Kyle Sauder would soon get around Horstman and start to build a healthy lead through lapped traffic. In the mean time Tony Stewart had been marching his way to the front from his 7th place starting spot. On lap 15 Stewart battled around Horstman for second spot and set his sights on the Sauder for the lead. It only took Stewart two more laps to reel Sauder in and pass him for the lead and win. Sauder had to settle for second spot followed by Horstman in 3rd, Randy Hannagan in 4th, and Hud Horton completed the top-five. Fans can visit www.nrainvaders.com for more information on the NRA Sprint Invaders.