Lonnie Wheatley, TAMPA, Fla. (February
1, 2006) –
Kruseman took command from Bryan Clauson on the fourth lap and spent the final laps of the event fending off the charges of Clayton, who had charged through the field from his 20th starting position after winning the evening’s second “B” Main.
“I’m just glad I drive for
some guys that like to race as much as I do,” Kruseman commented from victory
lane after taking the checkered flag aboard Glenn Crossno’s Downing-powered No.
38 Bullet. “We were happy to get a
chance to come race down here in
The top point earner after charging from 16th to fifth in the Tuesday afternoon prelim then topping Tuesday night’s feature event, Kruseman drew the second row inside starting slot while Bryan Clauson and Danny Smith drew the front row. Zach Chappell joined Kruseman in the second row, with Jon Stanbrough and Bud Kaeding in row three.
After the initial start was waved off for a turn one spin by Kyle Nicholas, Clauson gunned into the early lead with Kruseman charging into second as the field raced down the backstretch on the opening round.
Kruseman wasted little time putting the pressure on Clauson’s Kunz Motorsports No. 67, pulling alongside as the pair raced off turn four to complete the third round. The pair raced wheel-to-wheel for the better part of the next lap before Kruseman gained the advantage.
With Kruseman and Clauson
pacing the field, eighth starter Shane Cottle had climbed to third by the time
the caution flew after six laps for
Kruseman led Clauson, Cottle, Chappell and Kaeding on the restart, as Clayton had already climbed to twelfth from his tenth row starting berth. Clayton had climbed to seventh in another handful of laps and cracked the top five by the time Kruseman started working lapped traffic on the 15th round.
Clayton disposed of Chappell for fourth on the 16th circuit, then gained another position when a flipping Kyle Nicholas collected Brandon Petty and second-running Clauson with 21 laps in the books. Clauson rejoined the chase at the tail while Nicholas and Petty, who flipped in the melee as well, were done for the night.
Back under way, Kruseman continued to work the low side masterfully as Clayton raced past Cottle for second on the 25th round. Clayton was reeling in the leader with heavy lapped traffic about to come into play when the race’s final caution flew for Stanbrough’s turn four spin on the 31st lap.
Kruseman got a good jump on the restart, separating himself from Clayton by ten car lengths. But Clayton wasn’t done, as he drew himself to the West Coast ace’s rear nerf bar by the 33rd round.
With Kruseman now on the
cushion, Clayton flirted with the wall while trying to set up a potential
race-winning slide for the point. But
Kruseman adeptly took advantage of a lapped car entering turns one and two on
the final lap to slip away to an eight car length advantage as the checkered
flag flew, denying the young
Clayton settled for a strong runner-up finish, with Kaeding making a late move to snare the show position. Cottle crossed the stripe fourth, with Chappell rounding out the top five.
Utilizing his 360-ci
powerplant, Jason Sides’ wingless
Sides, Hassler, Kevin Briscoe and Cottle each scored heat race wins. Nick Adams won the first “B” Main, while Clayton made a lap eleven pass of Kenny Carmichael to top the second 12-lap “B” Main.
Brent Beauchamp climbed another car’s wheel and flipped into the turn one fence in the evening’s fourth heat race. Beauchamp returned for later action.
In the first “B” Main,
Charles Davis, Jr., hopped a lapped car’s wheel entering turn one while running
second with just two laps to go.
O’Reilly Sprint Bandits Tour ‘N Topless Wednesday Night Results:
Top six in total points from Tuesday
afternoon and Tuesday night preliminary events locked into “A” Main: 38-
Heat Races – Top 3 Advance to “A” Main; Balance to Twin “B” Mains
First Heat (8 Laps): 1. 7s-Jason Sides, 2. 21x-Dickie Gaines, 3. 71-Darren Hagen, 4. 92-Kenny Carmichael, 5. 29p-Terry Pletch, 6. 57-John Heydenreich, 7. 81-Justin Marvel, 8. 93-Scott Townsend, 9. 29-Kyle Nicholas, 10. 22-Mark Weber.
Second Heat (8 Laps): 1. 66h-Ed Hassler, 2. 36-Brady Short, 3. 2k-Roger Rager, 4. 34-Luke Hall, 5. 92x-Daron Clayton, 6. 53x-Casey Shuman, 7. 21-Charles Davis, Jr., 8. 51x-Harley Slotten, 9. 85-Greg Leonard.
Third Heat (8 Laps): 1. 56-Kevin Briscoe, 2. 11x-Dave Darland, 3. 11d-Derek O’Dell, 4. 1-Jake Scott, 5. 3R-Brandon Petty, 6. 4B-Tom Busch, 7. 5-Donnie Maxwell, 8. 5m-Arin McIntosh.
Fourth Heat (8 Laps): 1. 5g-Shane Cottle, 2. 24-Terry McCarl, 3. 10-Mat Neely, 4. 16-Nick Adams, 5. 69x-Mark Cole, 6. 88-Steven King, 7. 52-Mark Broughman, 8. 17T-Jack Helget, 9. 51-John Sauermilch, 10. 11-Brent Beauchamp.
“B” Mains – Top 3 from Each to “A” Main
First “B” Main (12
Laps): 1. 16-Nick Adams, 2. 3R-Brandon
Petty, 3. 29-Kyle Nicholas, 4. 88-Steven King, 5. 53x-Casey Shuman, 6.
29p-Terry Pletch, 7. 52-Mark Broughman, 8. 93-Scott Townsend, 9. 1-Jake Scott,
10. 17T- Jack Helget, 11. 22-Mark Weber, 12. 51-John Sauermilch, 13. 21-Charles
Second “B” Main (12 Laps): 1. 92x-Daron Clayton, 2. 92-Kenny Carmichael, 3. 34-Luke Hall, 4. 57-John Heydenreich, 5. 81-Justin Marvel, 6. 69x-Mark Cole, 7. 4b-Tom Busch, 8. 11-Brent Beauchamp, 9. 51x-Harley Slotten, 10. 5-Donnie Maxwell, 11. 5m-Arin McIntosh. DNS: 85-Greg Leonard.
“A” Main (40 Laps): 1. 38-
Dash (7 Laps): 1. 57-John Heydenreich, 2. 4b-Tom Busch, 3. 11-Brent Beauchamp, 4. 5-Donnie Maxwell, 5. 5m-Arin McIntosh, 6. 69x-Mark Cole, 7. 51-John Sauermilch.