The ASCS Warrior Region Sprint Car "Red, White and Blue Tour" came to a close Sunday night at the Double-X Speedway, California, with Sedalia sprint car ace Jonathan Cornell prevailing as the Red, White and Blue champion.
Previously, Cornell captured the opening night at the Double-X Thursday, then followed the win with yet another Friday night at Callaway Raceway, Fulton. Mother nature deterred action at the Randolph County Raceway Saturday, bringing the cars and stars and a legion of fans to XX Speedway Sunday, to see Cornell ultimately clench the title.
With 31 ASCS drivers on hand, it could have been anyone's race. With Topeka, Kan. wheelman Chris Morgan on the pole of the feature event and reigning ASCS National Champion Jason Johnson, Rocky Mount, alongside, the atmosphere was electric as the 25-lap main event took the green.
Using the high line to his advantage, Johnson led from the outset with Cornell, who quickly moved into second, patiently stalking Johnson around the tight quarter mile oval as the duo encountered lapped traffic on Lap 10.
Johnson continued to lead until a lapped car held him up in the first two turns of Lap 22, allowing Cornell to slip by and lead the remaining three laps to claim his third main event of the weekend and to be proclaimed point champion of the Red, White and Blue Tour.
Morgan was able to run a very consistent race to claim third place at the checkered flag, with local shoe Corey Nelson, Eugene, running an impressive fourth. Second generation driver Evan Martin, California, finished fifth, one spot ahead of his father, California's Randy Martin, who claimed sixth. Kyle Bellm, Nixa, placed seventh, past ASCS National champion Zach Chappell, Talala, Okla., who finished eighth after starting 16th. Jay Russell, Elwood, Kan., came in ninth, and Josh Fisher, Jefferson City, finished 10th.
Four qualifying heat races in the ASCS Sprints division helped to set the field. Victories were claimed by Johnson, Savannah's Randy Hibbs, Morgan and Nelson. The B Feature event saw a lot of close racing action as well with California driver Tyler Blank bringing home the victory. Joining Blank in transferring to the main event were Ricky Stangl, Lee's Summit, Clarksburg's Lanny Carpenter, who started 10th, and Nathan Ryun, Higginsville.
The ASCS Warrior region will make one more trip to the Double-X on July 20 for the annual Clyde Wood Memorial race.
The Street Stock division saw California driver John Clancy withstand challenges from Eldon's Steve Beach, Russellville's Cole Henson, and Tuscumbia's Dale Berry before claiming the well-earned victory. Beach would use a late race pass on the high side of the track to claim second place, while Henson and older brother Derek Henson followed in third and fourth, respectively. Berry finished fifth, Steve Dieckman, Centralia, sixth, and California's Chris Dunham seventh. Curt Turpin, Jefferson City, came in eighth place, Jake Dent, California, ninth, and Blake Davidson, Mokane, finished 10th. Heat races were won by Beach and Clancy.
Another large field of 600cc Micro Sprints was on hand to do battle atop the clay track and close out the weekend of racing. Marshall driver Brian Lunsford paved the way by claiming the win over the large field of competitors. Surviving re-starts, Lunsford led the duration of the 20-lap event.
Travis Arnold, Pilot Grove, had another good run to finish in second place. Though Ayrton Gennetten, Versailles, gave Arnold a strong run, he finished third, with Kameron Key, Warrensburg, claiming fourth. Garret Williamson, Columbia, came in fifth place after starting 21st. Jefferson City's Ryan Marsch claimed sixth, Scott Hathman, Columbia, seventh, and Mile Palus, Marshall, finished eighth. Warsaw's Stanley Kreisl, who started 22nd, finished ninth, and Clayton Hisle came from 25th to finish 10th. Heat races were won by Quinton Benson, Sweet Springs, Lunsford and Key. The 600cc Micro Sprints will take a week off before returning to the Double-X Speedway.
The Hobby Stock feature event was all about Gage Wineland, Syracuse, as he claimed another resounding victory in the event. Close racing behind the winner was Mile Schrader, Sedalia, who finished second, while Fulton's Cole Canada placed third in his second visit to the track. Eddie Lavery III, Tipton, came in fourth place. Thursday night victor Will Register, Sedalia, finished fifth. Rounding out the top 10 were Sedalia's Kevin Prall, Windor's Rodger Deatherage and Chuck Coffey, California's AJ Wirts, and Laura Atkinson, Eldon. Heat races were won by Prall and Wineland.
Sunday night, July 13, is "Race for Riley," the Riley Hudson Memorial Races at the Double-X Speedway. The Winged Sprints, Street Stocks and Hobby Stocks will be joined by the ULMA Late Models for their second visit of the season. Riley's favorite class was the Late Models, therefore hopes are high there will be a good field of the visiting stars on hand. There will also be a live auction at intermission, with a portion of the proceeds earmarked to go to the Children's Hospital in Columbia in Riley's memory.
Gates will open at the Double-X at 5 p.m. Sunday, with hot laps to begin at 7 p.m., and racing to follow at 7:30 p.m. For more information, follow the Double-X on Facebook or call the track information line at 573-796-4694.