43rd Running of Prestigious weekend kicks off at fast 1/4 mile of Anderson Speedway
Anderson, Indiana (Friday, July 17, 2015): The Vore’s Welding CRA Late Model Sportsman Series Powered by JEGS kicked off the prestigious 43rd Running of the Stoops Freightliner Redbud 300 Weekend on Friday, July 17th. The series was the first race of the weekend at Anderson Speedway in Anderson, Indiana during the race weekend. The Anderson 75 was at the fast 1/4 (0.250) mile high-banked paved oval and also served as the third of four appearances by the series at its adoptive home track in Central Indiana. The JEGS/CRA All-Stars Tour Presented by Chevrolet Performance were also a part of the program and ended the first night of an all full-fendered weekend at the historic facility.
The CRA Late Model Sportsman Series’ 30th all-time appearance at Anderson, the most of any track in series history would see the reigning series champion reestablish himself as a contender for a second straight title. Anderson’s own, Greg Van Alst, who won his first ever Feature in this event last year, backed that effort up and took over the points lead in the process by winning the Anderson 75. The 34-year-old driver in his #35 Top Choice Fence & Deck / McGunegill Engine Performance / Ford passed early race leader, Tony Brutti on lap five and would then fend off a consistent charge from point’s leader going into the night, Jason Atkinson for his first victory of the season.
“We busted our butts before the feature to figure out why the car went to junk before the race. We got it figured out though and once we got the lead, we never looked back.” The elated hometown favorite remarked in victory lane after the race. “We got a new engine two races back and that MEP power has gotten us a fast qualifier award and we haven’t finished out of the top three. A big thanks to everyone on this team who makes this all happen. I’m also dedicating this win to the guy that gave me my “Boots” nickname, Jeff Richardson who passed away earlier this week.” He added.
After 2014 CRA Late Model Sportsman Series Rookie of the Year and reigning track champion, 16-year-old Jack Dossey III drew a five for an inversion, 2015 Rookie title contender, Tony Brutti and Van Alst leading the field to the green flag. After a complete restart, Brutti paced the field for the first four laps before Van Alst drove by the Western Indiana freshman to grab the point. He was soon followed by Jason Atkinson, the all-time career leader in wins within the series. The top two in the point’s standings would then pull away from the rest of the pack to battle amongst themselves.
Three more cautions before the halfway marker briefly slowed things down. On each restart, Van Alst would wind his machine up and get away from Atkinson and the rest of the pack. Atkinson tried in vain to keep pace with the home track favorite, but Van Alst was up to the task and never let the familiar white #7 get close enough to mount a serious challenge and would cross the start / finish line first en route to the victory. Van Alst’s race winning pass of Brutti early in the race earned him the AR Bodies Cool Move of the Race award and he now leads Atkinson by a slim two-point margin in the chase for the 2015 Championship.
Atkinson’s #7 Oak Motors / Ford would settle for second. However, the 38-year-old driver from near-by New Castle, Indiana didn’t leave his home track empty handed as he did get the Racing Electronics Second to None award. The Hoosier State veteran who is also the 2014 CRA Street Stock Series Champion and is chasing after titles in two CRA divisions throughout the year, is also either at the top or in second place in every statistical category in CRA Late Model Sportsman Series history.
Columbus, Ohio freshman, Matthew Parsons rounded out the podium finishers with a career high third place finish in his #27 Ohio State Pallet / Ford. The current Rookie of the Year point’s leader and graduate of Columbus Motor Speedway’s NASCAR Whelen All-American Series Late Model division also advanced to fourth overall in the CRA LMS points and the 30-year-old received the Racing Electronics Hard-Charger award for his efforts.
Finishing in the fourth position would be 19-year-old Billy Van Meter who also advanced two spots in the points standings from eighth to sixth in his #23 EDCO Welding / Chevrolet. The Indianapolis, Indiana teenager would watch his Father, Eddie Van Meter win the JEGS/CRA All-Stars Tour race later in the evening. Van Meter fended off the #83 Jim’s Automotive / Chevrolet of J.P. Crabtree who completed the top five. The 20-year-old also advanced his position in the point’s standings as the Muncie, Indiana competitor now sits third in the title chase.
Chris Brann would score a sixth place finish ahead of rookie, Jeremy Everding who collected a career high seventh place finish. Brutti would fall back to eighth at the end of the event while Dossey III, who earlier in the evening broke the CRA Late Model Sportsman Series Track Record in Allstar Performance Qualifying, struggled to a ninth place finish. Ronnie Rose would complete the top 10.
Earlier in the evening in Allstar Performance Qualifying, Dossey III broke the Track Record with a 12.839 which equals out to 70.099mph. His mark would also tie his own overall Late Model Sportsman Track Record he set back on June 6th, 2015. The old CRA Late Model Sportsman Series Track Record in Anderson, Indiana was previously held by Billy Van Meter who, back on September 13th, 2014 turned a 12.858.
After a mini vacation, the Vore’s Welding CRA Late Model Sportsman Series Powered by JEGS will head right back to Anderson Speedway for a special Sunday afternoon showdown on Sunday, August 16th. The Anderson 75 will be the fourth and final appearance of the year at the fast 1/4 (0.250) mile high-banked paved oval in Anderson, Indiana before the series moves to the legendary high-banks of Winchester Speedway and the immaculate Circle City oval of Lucas Oil Raceway for the remainder of the 2015 racing season.
In the 30 all-time CRA LMS races at Anderson, Jason Atkinson leads the way with the most victories at the Central Indiana speed plant with six career wins. Two-Time Series Champion (2011 & 2006) Keith Sterkowitz is next on the list with four total victories. Defending Series Champion, Greg Van Alst, the most recent winner at Anderson, as well as another Two-Time Series Champion, (2010 & 2009) Charlie Hanna and the late Al Cook Jr., both have two wins each.
Chris Hacker and Trey Craig also have two trips to the winners circle while Scott Tomasik and 2014 Rookie of the Year, 16-year-old Jack Dossey III have scored wins during the 2015 racing season in addition to Van Alst while 2008 Series Champion, Tony Dager has a single victory while Quinnton Bear, Danny Trent, Jeff Marcum, Ronnie Rose, Brett Robinson, Steve Stacy and Steve Blair also have one trip to victory lane each.
For more information about the remainder of the 2015 racing season for all four touring series’ within Champion Racing Association Powered by JEGS, head over to the series website at: www.cra-racing.com You can also follow along with all of CRA’s touring series’ all season long on Facebook at: www.facebook.com/ChampionRacingAssociation and on Twitter at www.twitter.com/CRAracing Finally for more information about Anderson Speedway, the host track for the seventh race of the 2015 racing season, go to the track website at: www.andersonspeedway.com