WINDOM, COURTNEY, BELL TAKE NATIONAL ROOKIE HONORS;
MOST IMPROVED DRIVER OF 2013 IS KEVIN THOMAS JR.
Chris Windom, Tyler Courtney and Christopher Bell have been named USAC National “Rookies of the Year and Kevin Thomas Jr. is USAC’s 2013 “Most Improved Driver.”” They will be honored as such at the December 13 USAC “Night of Champions” celebration in Indianapolis, Ind. The function will be held at the Indiana Roof Ballroom in downtown Indianapolis.
Windom, of Canton, Ill., won the TRAXXAS Silver Crown honor with his runner-up point ranking. He won the series closer, the “4-Crown Nationals” at the Eldora Speedway in Rossburg, Ohio, and scored “top-10” finishes in seven of the eight series races. He was second in the “Tony Bettenhausen 100” at Springfield, Ill. and third after winning the pole at Gateway Motorsports Park in Madison, Ill.
Courtney, of Indianapolis, Ind., recorded nine “top-10” finishes in the AMSOIL National Sprint Car series. A stellar second-place finish behind Tracy Hines at Ocala, Fla. in the early-season races was followed by another second-place finish behind Chad Boespflug at Lincoln Park Speedway in Putnamville, Ind. in July. He was also the fastest qualifier and finished third at West Memphis, Ark.
Bell, of Norman, Okla., exploded on the Honda National Midget scene this year, claiming the dirt championship while raking in numerous career highlights along the way. He scored a pair of wins on his way to the Indiana Midget Week crown, added wins in the “Chad McDaniel Memorial” at Beloit, Kans. and the “Belleville Midget Nationals” in Kansas and the “Gold Crown Midget Nationals” at Pontoon Beach, Ill. His sixth and final dirt win came in a prelim at the “Western World” in Peoria, Ariz. On the pavement, he scored a victory at Illiana Motor Speedway in Schererville, Ind. In addition to his six dirt wins he added seven other “podiums.”
Windom’s Silver Crown success came with car owner RW/Curb-Agajanian Motorsports of Lederach, Pa. Courtney fielded his own Sprint car and Bell led the Keith Kunz/Curb-Agajanian Motorsports team of Columbus, Ind.
Thomas, of Cullman, Ala., was one of three drivers who recorded seven AMSOIL USAC National Sprint races this year. In climbing from 11th place in points in 2012 to fifth this year he won three straight early races at Lawrenceburg, Gas City and Haubstadt, then put together three straight Indiana Sprint Week races at Kokomo, Lawrenceburg and Terre Haute. His final win came at Haubstadt in September.