AMSOIL Sprints
Monday, 27 February 2017


USAC AMSOIL National Sprint Car point leader Justin Grant. USAC AMSOIL National Sprint Car point leader Justin Grant. Al Steinberg Photo



A washout on Wednesday’s practice night and Thursday’s scheduled opener provided a heavy racetrack for the 22 cars and drivers lined up for Friday’s 30-lap USAC AMSOIL Sprint Car National Championship season-opening feature event at Ocala, Florida’s Bubba Raceway Park for “Winter Dirt Games VIII.”


Pole sitter Dave Darland and inside second row starter Chad Boespflug waged war in a side-by-side battle at the start with Darland able to nip Boespflug at the line to claim the lead at the conclusion of lap one, where he would hold serve throughout much of the first third of the event.


Meanwhile, new one-lap track record holder Justin Grant quickly emerged as a contender in the black #11, springing to the second spot and beginning his pursuit of race leader Darland by lap two from his sixth starting position after C.J. Leary and Boespflug hopped, skipped and jumped their way through turn two.


By lap nine, Grant caught Darland and was able to scoot by as the two encountered the tail end of the field.  Darland refused to go away quietly as he and Grant searched for an avenue to tiptoe their way around the lappers.  The pair split around the lapped car of Isaac Chapple, allowing Darland to ride the rim and reclaim the top spot at the stripe on lap 10. 


The see-saw battle for the lead hit its peak on the 11th lap as Grant returned the favor and took the spot back from Darland in turn one.  Darland was able to storm down the back stretch to briefly capture the position as the two hit turn three, but Grant anticipated the move and dipped back underneath Darland to rip the number one position away with 19 laps to go.


As Grant approached the lapped car of 16th-running Tyler Courtney off of the second turn with five laps to go, the two made contact, putting both cars sideways as they both fought to maintain control.  The two continued after the hair-raising fracas, though Grant would lose a bit of track position, thus allowing second-running Boespflug to close the gap.


With just three laps to go and Boespflug continuing to clamp down on Grant, the caution light shined as the machine of early leader and sixth-running Darland went up in a ball of flame that was quickly extinguished, but would sideline the series’ winningest driver for the final run to the finish.


A three-lap shootout for the victory was in store between Grant and Boespflug on the lap 28 restart.  Boespflug took to the bottom, attempting to slide up in front of Grant as he clung to the cushion up top.  On lap 29, as Grant slid through the middle at the exit of turn four, Boespflug used a big run to draw even with Grant.  Boespflug threw it in even deeper in turn one this time, but was unable to secure the spot as Grant used the high-side momentum to motor away and distance himself from Boespflug heading into the final lap, completing the 30-lap mission in grand fashion and erasing the memories of his last-lap heartbreak from his most recent visit to Ocala one year ago.


After seeing a pair of late-race leads slip through his fingers over the past few seasons, Grant finally captured that elusive first “Winter Dirt Games” victory by more than a half-second over Chad Boespflug for his fifth overall USAC National Sprint Car win, and his second for the Sam McGhee Motorsports team. Carson Short originally finished third, but was repositioned to the 22nd and final position after missing the scales following the feature, moving Chase Stockon up to the final spot on the podium.


One night later at the “Winter Dirt Games VIII” finale, outside front row starter Thomas Meseraull held the point at the drop of the green, fending off a furious challenge from defending USAC Silver Crown titlist Chris Windom for the first pair of laps.


Following an early yellow, Windom used a massive run on the restart to slide up in front of Meseraull and snare the lead away in turn one, instantly stretching his lead as Meseraull and Grant battled for second.


At the feature’s midway point, Schuerenberg and Carson Short made contact battling for fourth, ramping Short’s right rear wheel over the nose of Schuerenberg’s ride.  Short landed on all fours before sliding front-bumper-first into an infield tire marker as Schuerenberg was sent into a 360 spin, but kept his foot on the gas and continued on without harm.


Windom was unable to breakaway on the lap 21 restart as Grant challenged low and a surging Schuerenberg ripped the top-side to remain within the shadows of the orange number 5 up front.  As Windom’s right rear tire appeared to be going flat, his determination refused to deflate when Grant clawed his way along the bottom of turn three to briefly occupy the top spot.  Windom ducked back under Grant out of turn four to retain a one-car-length lead at the stripe. 


Schuerenberg dove to the bottom, banging wheels with Grant in the process to grab second as he put the chase on leader Chris Windom.  Schuerenberg hit the top in three and four, propelling himself right to Windom as both stood on the throttle, lifting their left fronts to the sky as they battled for supremacy.  But, as soon as Schuerenberg took the point, Windom’s quest for victory vanished as the tread on his right rear tire gave way, resulting in a yellow with just seven laps to go.


A seventh-place starting position and a 360-degree spin were not enough to deter Hunter Schuerenberg on the path to victory on this night.  When racing resumed, Schuerenberg was the class of the field as he constructed a lead that grew to nearly two seconds on the final lap to score his first USAC victory in nearly three seasons as well as the first USAC win for the Roof Bolt Racing team.  Justin Grant followed up the previous night’s victory with a second while Thomas Meseraull took third.


Since joining forces last August, Justin Grant and the Sam McGhee Motorsports team have been stellar in USAC competition.  After two events in 2017, their dreams of a USAC championship appear are off to a solid start with Grant holding down an 11-point lead over Hunter Schuerenberg with Chad Boespflug, Chase Stockon and Brady Bacon rounding out the top-five.  Standing six through ten are Thomas Meseraull, Jarett Andretti, C.J. Leary, Chris Windom and Jerry Coons, Jr. leading into the series’ next event on Saturday, April 1 at southeastern Indiana’s Lawrenceburg Speedway.






1.   (155) Justin Grant (Ione, CA)


2.   (144) Hunter Schuerenberg (Sikeston, MO)


3.   (141) Chad Boespflug (Hanford, CA)


4.   (139) Chase Stockon (Fort Branch, IN)


5.   (128) Brady Bacon (Broken Arrow, OK)


6.   (120) Thomas Meseraull (San Jose, CA)


7.   (99) C.J. Leary (Greenfield, IN) & Jarett Andretti (Mooresville, NC)


9.   (96) Chris Windom (Canton, IL) & Jerry Coons, Jr. (Tucson, AZ)






1.   (155) Sam McGhee Motorsports #11


2.   (144) Roof Bolt Racing #2


3.   (141) Dynamics, Inc. #69


4.   (139) 32 TBI Racing #32


5.   (128) Dooling/Hayward Motorsports #63


6.   (120) Rick Pollock #21


7.   (99) Leary Racing #30 & Andretti Autosport Short Track #18


9.   (96) Baldwin Brothers Racing #5 & Gene Nolen Racing #20






Feb 23: Ocala, FL - Bubba Raceway Park


WINNER: Rained Out


Feb 24: Ocala, FL - Bubba Raceway Park


WINNER: Justin Grant


Feb 25: Ocala, FL - Bubba Raceway Park


WINNER: Hunter Schuerenberg


Apr 1: Lawrenceburg, IN - Lawrenceburg Speedway


Apr 14: Bloomington, IN - Bloomington Speedway


Apr 15: Haubstadt, IN - Tri-State Speedway


Apr 21: Plymouth, IN – Plymouth Speedway


Apr 22: Montpelier, IN - Montpelier Motor Speedway


May 12: Rossburg, OH - Eldora Speedway


May 13: Rossburg, OH - Eldora Speedway


May 19: Granite City, IL – Tri-City Speedway


May 20: Pevely, MO – Federated Auto Parts Raceway at I-55


May 24: Terre Haute, IN - Terre Haute Action Track


Jun 2: Greenwood, NE – I-80 Speedway


Jun 3: Knoxville, IA – Knoxville Raceway


Jun 13: %%% Bechtelsville, PA - Grandview Speedway


Jun 14: %%% Abbottstown, PA - Lincoln Speedway


Jun 15: %%% Mechanicsburg, PA – Williams Grove Speedway


Jun 17: %%% Port Royal, PA – Port Royal Speedway


Jun 18: %%% York Haven, PA - Susquehanna Speedway


Jun 30: Putnamville, IN - Lincoln Park Speedway


Jul 7: *** Gas City, IN - Gas City I-69 Speedway


Jul 8: *** Kokomo, IN - Kokomo Speedway


Jul 9: *** Lawrenceburg, IN - Lawrenceburg Speedway


Jul 12: *** Terre Haute, IN - Terre Haute Action Track


Jul 13: *** Putnamville, IN - Lincoln Park Speedway


Jul 14: *** Bloomington, IN - Bloomington Speedway


Jul 15: *** Haubstadt, IN - Tri-State Speedway


Jul 28: TBA - TBA


Jul 29: Kansas City, KS – Lakeside Speedway


Jul 30: Moberly, MO – Randolph County Raceway


Aug 23: (SE) Kokomo, IN - Kokomo Speedway


Aug 24: Kokomo, IN - Kokomo Speedway


Aug 25: Kokomo, IN - Kokomo Speedway


Aug 26: Kokomo, IN - Kokomo Speedway


Sep 15: Terre Haute, IN - Terre Haute Action Track


Sep 16: Haubstadt, IN - Tri-State Speedway


Sep 23: Rossburg, OH - Eldora Speedway


Sep 30: Lawrenceburg, IN - Lawrenceburg Speedway


Oct 6: TBA – TBA


Oct 7: TBA – TBA


Nov 3: ### Queen Creek, AZ - Arizona Speedway


Nov 4: ### Queen Creek, AZ - Arizona Speedway


Nov 9: ### Perris, CA - Perris Auto Speedway


Nov 10: ### Perris, CA - Perris Auto Speedway


Nov 11: ### Perris, CA - Perris Auto Speedway




Races noted with (SE) represent a non-points-paying "Special Event"


Races noted with %%% represent Eastern Storm


Races noted with @@@ represent California Sprint Week.


Races noted with *** represent Indiana Sprint Week


Races noted with ### represent a race with the USAC AMSOIL National Sprint Car Series.








1.   (1) Justin Grant (Feb. 24 at Bubba Raceway Park)


      (1) Hunter Schuerenberg (Feb. 25 at Bubba Raceway Park)






1.   (21) Justin Grant & Chris Windom


3.   (9) Dave Darland


4.   (7) Hunter Schuerenberg


5.   (2) Thomas Meseraull






1.   (2) Brady Bacon, Chad Boespflug & Justin Grant


4.   (1) C.J. Leary, Thomas Meseraull, & Chase Stockon






1.   (2) Brady Bacon, Chad Boespflug, Justin Grant, Thomas Meseraull, Hunter Schuerenberg & Chase Stockon


7.   (1) Jarett Andretti, Jerry Coons, Jr., Kyle Cummins, Dave Darland, Josh Hodges, C.J. Leary, Carson Short & Chris Windom






1.   (1) Justin Grant & Carson Short




HEAT RACE WINS (Presented by Simpson Race Products, Competition Suspension (CSI), Chalk Stix & Indy Race Parts):


1.   (2) Chase Stockon


2.   (1) Max McGhee, Landon Simon, Carson Short & Chris Windom






1. (1) Dave Darland & Max McGhee






1. (2) Jarett Andretti, Brady Bacon, Jeff Bland, Jr., Chad Boespflug, Isaac Chapple, Jerry Coons, Jr., Shane Cottle, Tyler Courtney, Kyle Cummins, Dave Darland, Aaron Farney, Justin Grant, Josh Hodges, C.J. Leary, Max McGhee, Thomas Meseraull, Hunter Schuerenberg, Carson Short, Landon Simon, Chase Stockon & Chris Windom


22. (1) Rob Caho, Jr., Dallas Hewitt & Joe Liguori






2/24: Bubba Raceway Park – Brady Bacon (12 positions)


2/25: Bubba Raceway Park – Brady Bacon (8 positions)






2/24: Bubba Raceway Park – Tyler Courtney


2/25: Bubba Raceway Park – Tyler Courtney






1. [59 wins] Dave Darland


2. [52 wins] Tom Bigelow


3. [47 wins] Tracy Hines


4. [46 wins] Jack Hewitt


5. [45 wins] Larry Dickson


6. [42 wins] Pancho Carter


7. [41 wins] Bryan Clauson


8. [40 wins] Gary Bettenhausen


9. [37 wins] Sheldon Kinser


10. [35 wins] Jon Stanbrough & Rich Vogler


12. [32 wins] Rollie Beale


13. [28 wins] Levi Jones & J.J. Yeley


15. [26 wins] Robert Ballou, Tony Elliott & Dave Steele


18. [25 wins] Steve Butler & Jay Drake


20. [23 wins] A.J. Foyt & Roger McCluskey


22. [22 wins] Rick Hood, Bubby Jones & Sam Sessions


25. [21 wins] Greg Weld


26. [17 wins] Brady Bacon, Jerry Coons, Jr., Parnelli Jones & Bud Kaeding


30. [16 wins] Damion Gardner


31. [15 wins] Bobby East, Cory Kruseman, Jud Larson & Brian Tyler


35. [14 wins] Billy Cassella, Jim Hurtubise, Lee Kunzman, Bruce Walkup & Chris Windom


40. [13 wins] Don Branson & Steve Chassey


42. [12 wins] Eric Gordon & Kevin Thomas Jr.


44. [11 wins] Daron Clayton & Greg Leffler


46. [10 wins] Tony Stewart


47. [9 wins] Mario Andretti, Hunter Schuerenberg & Robbie Stanley


50. [8 wins] Mike Bliss, Chet Fillip, Johnny Rutherford, Joe Saldana, & Chase Stockon


55. [7 wins] Kevin Doty, Darren Hagen, Kenny Irwin, Jr., Doug Kalitta, Jim Keeker, Bobby Santos, Brady Short, Kevin Thomas, Bobby Unser & Josh Wise


65. [6 wins] Kevin Briscoe, Jac Haudenschild, Jason McCord, Jan Opperman, Tom Sneva, George Snider & Dick Tobias


72. [5 wins] Chad Boespflug, Larry Cannon, Dana Carter, Derek Davidson, Gene Lee Gibson, Jeff Gordon, Justin Grant, Chuck Gurney, Shane Hmiel, Kevin Huntley, Frankie Kerr, Kelly Kinser, Eddie Leavitt, Jim Mahoney, Andy Michner, Johnny Parsons, Bill Puterbaugh & Cole Whitt


90. [4 wins] Rob Chaney, Cary Faas, Jesse Hockett, Steve Kinser, Michael Lewis, Thomas Meseraull, Don Nordhorn, Lee Osborne, Red Riegel, Ken Schrader, Al Smith & Danny Smith


102. [3 wins] Chuck Amati, Sonny Ates, Jeff Bloom, Mark Cassella, Shane Cottle, Jerry Daniels, Bob East, Bob Frey, Dickie Gaines, Wayne Hammond, Tray House, Kenny Jacobs, Tony Jones, Kyle Larson, Ralph Liguori, Charlie Masters, Mike Mosley, Larry Rice, Ron Shuman, Mitch Smith & Doug Wolfgang


123. [2 wins] Chad Boat, Marvin Carman, Ed Carpenter, Kyle Cummins, Brad Doty, Nic Faas, Cy Fairchild, Brad Fox, Arnie Knepper, Danny Lasoski, Mack McClellan, James McElreath, Lealand McSpadden, Danny Milburn, Mat Neely, Ryan Newman, Jerry Poland, Casey Riggs, Bill Rose, Mickey Shaw, Terry Shepherd, Dean Shirley, Brad Sweet, Kevin Swindell, Sammy Swindell, Mike Spencer, Bud Tingelstad, Billy Vukovich, Mike Ward & Carl Williams


153. [1 win] Donnie Adams, A.J. Anderson, Brad Armstrong, Tony Armstrong, Tommy Astone, Dick Atkins, Brent Beauchamp, Jeff Bland Jr., Stan Bowman, Alan Brown, Karl Busson, Johnny Capels, David Cardey, Bob Cicconi, Henry Clarke, Troy Cline, Duke Cook, Mel Cornett, Tyler Courtney, Allen Crowe, Bill Engelhart, Cotton Farmer, Aaron Farney, Gary Fedewa, Blake Fitzpatrick, Joe Gaerte, Russ Gamester, Rickie Gaunt, Elmer George, Brian Gerster, Todd Gibson, Ron Gregory, Richard Griffin, Garrett Hansen, Jerry Hansen, Jim Hemmings, Josh Hodges, Bob Hogle, Jackie Howerton, Chuck Hulse, Logan Jarrett, Marc Jessup, Gordon Johncock, Chet Johnson, Page Jones, Bob Kinser, Mike Kirby, C.J. Leary, Fred Linder, Steve Long, Hank Lower, Brett Mann, Bobby Marshman, Larry Martin, Mike Martin, Brad Marvel, Justin Marvel, Rusty McClure, Bob McCoy, Jim McElreath, Bobby Olivero, Gary Patterson, Billy Pauch, Dave Peperak, Jiggs Peters, Aaron Pierce, Paul Pitzer, Terry Pletch, Billy Puterbaugh Jr., Bud Randall, Byron Reed, Boston Reid, Rodney Ritter, Jr., David Roahrig, Carson Short, Billy Shuman, Jimmy Sills, Smokey Snellbaker, Wib Spalding, Greg Staab, Randy Standridge, Ron Standridge, Ricky Stenhouse Jr., Kody Swanson, Tanner Swanson, Mike Sweeney, Jeff Swindell, Clark Templeman, Bill Tyler, Rick Ungar, Lennie Waldo, Tyler Walker, Scotty Weir, Kenny Weld, Bob Wente, Matt Westfall, Johnny White, Rip Williams, Jacob Wilson & Eddie Wirth






1956: Pat O'Connor (Midwest) & Tommy Hinnershitz (Eastern); 1957: Elmer George (Midwest) & Bill Randall (Eastern); 1958: Eddie Sachs (Midwest) & Johnny Thomson (Eastern); 1959: Don Branson (Midwest) & Tommy Hinnershitz (Eastern); 1960: Parnelli Jones (Midwest) & A.J. Foyt (Eastern); 1961: Parnelli Jones; 1962: Parnelli Jones; 1963: Roger McCluskey; 1964: Don Branson; 1965: Johnny Rutherford; 1966: Roger McCluskey; 1967: Greg Weld; 1968: Larry Dickson; 1969: Gary Bettenhausen; 1970: Larry Dickson; 1971: Gary Bettenhausen; 1972: Sam Sessions; 1973: Rollie Beale; 1974: Pancho Carter; 1975: Larry Dickson; 1976: Pancho Carter; 1977: Sheldon Kinser; 1978: Tom Bigelow; 1979: Greg Leffler; 1980: Rich Vogler; 1981: Sheldon Kinser; 1982: Sheldon Kinser; 1983: Ken Schrader; 1984: Rick Hood; 1985: Rick Hood; 1986: Steve Butler; 1987: Steve Butler; 1988: Steve Butler; 1989: Rich Vogler; 1990: Steve Butler; 1991: Robbie Stanley; 1992: Robbie Stanley; 1993: Robbie Stanley; 1994: Doug Kalitta; 1995: Tony Stewart; 1996: Brian Tyler; 1997: Brian Tyler; 1998: Tony Elliott; 1999: Dave Darland; 2000: Tony Elliott; 2001: J.J. Yeley; 2002: Tracy Hines; 2003: J.J. Yeley; 2004: Jay Drake; 2005: Levi Jones; 2006: Josh Wise; 2007: Levi Jones; 2008: Jerry Coons, Jr.; 2009: Levi Jones; 2010: Levi Jones (Dirt) & Shane Hmiel (Pavement); 2011: Levi Jones (Dirt) & Bobby Santos (Pavement); 2012: Bryan Clauson; 2013: Bryan Clauson; 2014: Brady Bacon; 2015: Robert Ballou; 2016: Brady Bacon