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National Dirt
Monday, 21 September 2015




Three races remain in the 2015 Honda USAC National Midget Championship and Saturday’s “4-Crown Nationals” at the Eldora Speedway in Rossburg, Ohio will be pivotal in the battle for the series title.

A USAC “Triple Crown” championship is on the line for Tracy Hines, who holds a 23-point lead in the standings entering Saturday’s race. A title would enable him to join Pancho Carter, Dave Darland, Tony Stewart, J.J. Yeley and Jerry Coons Jr. as the only drivers in USAC history to take all three National championships (Silver Crown, Sprint and Midget). Hines, who finished just one point behind Cole Whitt in the 2008 Midget chase, won the 2000 Silver Crown and 2002 Sprint Car championships.

Teammates Kevin Thomas Jr. and Tanner Thorson are the closest pursuers in the standings entering Eldora. Thomas trails by 23 points, while Thorson is just one point behind his teammate after sweeping the recent “Gold Crown Midget Nationals” at Granite City, Ill.

Hines has compiled 11 “top-10” finishes in 14 starts this season and could feasibly become only the second USAC driver to claim the National Midget crown without a victory. Kevin Olson earned the 1982 title without the aid of a feature win. Not that Tracy’s any stranger to victory lane, owning 35 career wins, including “4-Crown” Midget wins in 1996 and 2006.

Bryan Clauson won last year’s “4-Crown” Midget race and former race winners expected to compete include Rico Abreu (2013), and Dave Darland (1999 and 2004).