CLAUSON CLAWS TO BLOOMINGTON “INDIANA MIDGET WEEK” WIN
Bloomington, Indiana.……Bryan Clauson turned things around on Friday night at Bloomington Speedway, winning the third leg of “Indiana Midget Week” for the Honda National Dirt Midgets. It was the 26th National Midget win of Clauson’s young career, moving him to 15th all-time.
Rico Abreu jumped from the pole and paced the early rounds on the bottom while Clauson was working his way from the tenth starting spot. He did most of his work early, jumping to the high side to roar into the top-five. Just before a caution at lap ten, Clauson moved by Tracy Hines for third.
After the restart, Clauson sailed around the high side and quickly moved in on Abreu for the lead. The youngster from Rutherford, California did not go down easily, though. After Clauson rolled by him, Abreu pointed the other direction and slid Clauson in the next corner. Clauson was up to the task, though, and took the lead right back.
Again on a restart with nine to go, Abreu threw a big move at Clauson but to no avail. Abreu’s teammate Christopher Bell then moved in to take second ust before the final caution flew with three to go. On the restart, Bell got a run to the inside but Clauson slammed the door and held on to win by .242 seconds in the Honeybaked Ham Company of Bloomington – Curb Records #39 Spike/Esslinger.
“It’s great to get this win tonight in Honeybaked Ham’s hometown, with them here with us tonight. We laid down as good a lap as we could and gave ourselves something to work with. We had (teammate) Dillon Welch running the B and he got going good through the middle, which really helped. I’ve been in Rico and Bell’s position before and had somebody buzz right by me up high here. I was happy we were on the good end tonight,” Clauson said.
Bell took the second spot and an early-season 42-point margin in the standings aboard the Keith Kunz/Curb-Agajanian Motorsports – Toyota TRD #71 Bullet/Speedway Toyota.
“I couldn’t be happier to have three podium finishes after three nights out here. This is the toughest midget racing in the world, so I couldn’t be happier. I kept trying different things with the shocks under yellow. I tried going up there after Clauson went by me, but I just had nothing. On that last restart, I hit on something with the car and got up alongside him, but he came back down to the bottom and I bottomed out, so that killed my run,” Bell said.
Abreu picked up his best finish of the week and vaulted to sixth in points for the week in the Keith Kunz/Curb-Agajanian Motorsports – Toyota TRD #67K Bullet/Speedway Toyota.
“I could see Clauson’s shadow a few times. I was working on keeping my momentum on the bottom. I was gonna stay down there until someone drove by me, and he ended up getting me. I wasn’t as good when I tried to move up, and I actually lost another spot before I got back down. We’re still working, and every race we’ve gotten better. I just need to keep qualifying well to start up front and give myself a chance. As tough as these USAC races are, starting up front is really important,” Abreu said.
Davey Ray ended a solid evening with a fourth-place run in the Mecum Auto Auctions – Ray Pro #33 Spike/Toyota, while Jerry Coons, Jr. rounded out the top-five in the Joe Dooling-owned Westin Packaged Meats #63 Spike/Esslinger. Zach Daum picked up the ProSource “Fast Time Award” before encountering mechanical problems in the Feature, and Alex Bright grabbed the B&W Auto Mart “Hard Charger Award” after driving from 19th to finish ninth.
HONDA USAC NATIONAL DIRT MIDGET RACE RESULTS: June 14, 2013 – Bloomington, Indiana – Bloomington Speedway – “Indiana Midget Week”
QUALIFICATIONS: 1. Zach Daum, 5D, Daum-12.304; 2. Bobby East, 4, Klatt-12.324; 3. Caleb Armstrong, 7c, C & A-12.403; 4. Andrew Felker, 11a, Felker-12.480; 5. Michael Pickens, 1nz, Buckley-12.481; 6. Christopher Bell, 71, Kunz/Curb-Agajanian-12.490; 7. Tracy Hines, 24, Parker-12.496; 8. Rico Abreu, 67k, Kunz/Curb-Agajanian-12.527; 9. Dalton Armstrong, 7a, C & A-12.544; 10. Davey Ray, 33, Team RAYPRO-12.580; 11. Bryan Clauson, 39, CTR/BCI/Curb-Agajanian-12.588; 12. Darren Hagen, 3, RFMS-12.630; 13. Austin Brown, 7, Brown-12.661; 14. Brad Kuhn, 10, Cook-12.688; 15. Jerry Coons Jr., 63, Dooling-12.691; 16. Ryan Criswell, 11R, Criswell-12.716; 17. Brady Bacon, 11, Wilke-Pak-12.731; 18. Dave Darland, 2x, Lein-12.734; 19. Tanner Thorson, 67, Kunz/Curb-Agajanian-12.760; 20. Alex Bright, 17, RW/Curb-Agajanian-12.812; 21. Shane Cockrum, 14c, Cockrum-12.819; 22. Tyler Thomas, 2s, Lein-12.847; 23. Jaimie McKinlay, 42ua, Fedrizzi-12.857; 24. Taylor Ferns, 55, Ferns-12.859; 25. Levi Jones, 56, 5IVE-6IX-12.863; 26. Steve Buckwalter, 25, Buckwalter-12.908; 27. Seth Motsinger, 2M, Brown-12.923; 28. Matt Jackson, 97au, Jackson-12.966; 29. Dillon Welch, 98, CTR/BCI/Curb-Agajanian-12.967; 30. Blake Edwards, 17E, Koontz-12.975; 31. Ross Rankine, 39R, Rankine-12.986; 32. Brenden Bright, 92, Bright-12.989; 33. Lynsey Liguori, 6rr, Liguori-13.103; 34. Colten Cottle, 5c, Cottle-13.138; 35. Thomas Meseraull, 16, Sandy-13.139; 36. Billy Lawhead, 35, Three 5 Racing-13.146; 37. Nick Lucas, 6, Isenhower-13.197; 38. Michael Koontz, 17x, Koontz-13.268; 39. Justin Dickerson, 21D, Dickerson-13.541; 40. Johnny Murdock, 0, Murdock-13.927; 41. Brad Mosen, 7nz, Buckley-NT.
FIRST HEAT : (10 laps) 1. Bacon, 2. A.Brown, 3. Pickens, 4. Daum, 5. Cockrum, 6. Jones, 7. D.Armstrong, 8. Welch, 9. Mosen, 10. Liguori, 11. Lucas. 2:11.83
SECOND HEAT : (10 laps) 1. Darland, 2. Bell, 3. Ray, 4. Kuhn, 5. T.Thomas, 6. Edwards, 7. C.Cottle, 8. Koontz, 9. East, 10. Buckwalter. 2:14.33
THIRD HEAT : (10 laps) 1. Thorson, 2. Clauson, 3. Hines, 4. Coons, 5. C.Armstrong, 6. Dickerson, 7. McKinlay, 8. Rankine, 9. Motsinger. 2:14.03
FOURTH HEAT : (10 laps) 1. A.Bright, 2. Hagen, 3. Abreu, 4. Felker, 5. Criswell, 6. B.Bright, 7. Lawhead, 8. Ferns, 9. Jackson, 10. Murdock. NT
SEMI: (12 laps) 1. C.Armstrong, 2. D.Armstrong, 3. Jones, 4. Cockrum, 5. Criswell, 6. Welch, 7. Buckwalter, 8. McKinlay, 9. Jackson, 10. Ferns, 11. Rankine, 12. B.Bright, 13. Mosen, 14. Cottle, 15. Edwards, 16. Koontz, 17. Liguori, 18. Lucas, 19. Motsinger, 20. Dickerson, 21. T.Thomas, 22. Lawhead, 23. Murdock. NT
FEATURE: (30 laps) 1. Bryan Clauson, 2. Christopher Bell, 3. Rico Abreu, 4. Davey Ray, 5. Jerry Coons Jr., 6. Michael Pickens, 7. Darren Hagen, 8. Caleb Armstrong, 9. Alex Bright, 10. Austin Brown, 11. Levi Jones, 12. Tanner Thorson, 13. Brad Kuhn, 14. Brady Bacon, 15. Ryan Criswell, 16. Dalton Armstrong, 17. Andrew Felker, 18. Dave Darland, 19. Dillon Welch, 20. Tracy Hines, 21. Zach Daum, 22. Shane Cockrum. NT
FEATURE LAP LEADERS: Laps 1-12 Abreu, Laps 13-30 Clauson.
NEW HONDA NATIONAL DIRT MIDGET POINTS: 1-Bell-193, 2-Clauson-151, 3-Hines-141, 4-Felker-136, 5-Abreu-135, 6-Kuhn-119, 7-Coons-117, 8-Hagen-117, 9-Jones-99, 10-C.Armstrong-97.
NEW “INDIANA MIDGET WEEK” POINTS: 1-Bell-193, 2-Clauson-151, 3-Kyle Larson-142, 4-Hines-141, 5-Felker-136, 6-Abreu-135, 7-Pickens-127, 8-Kuhn-119, 9-Coons-117, 10-Hagen-117.
NEXT HONDA NATIONAL DIRT MIDGET RACE: June 15 – Lawrenceburg, Indiana – Lawrenceburg Speedway – “Indiana Midget Week”