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Friday, 8 May 2020


Bubby Jones on the gas during the 1985 USAC National Sprint Car season. Bubby Jones on the gas during the 1985 USAC National Sprint Car season. John Mahoney Photo


By: Richie Murray – USAC Media

Ten dates, ten different winners mark USAC's National racing history on May 8 throughout the years.

Mel Kenyon, USAC’s winningest USAC National Midget driver of all-time with 111 wins, picked up victory number 16 at the Sportsdrome in Jeffersonville, Ind. on this date in 1965.

After winning the week before at the Indianapolis Speedrome, Jeff Nuckles repeated the feat on May 8 of 1981, winning the USAC National Midget feature at Indiana’s Anderson Speedway.

Rick Hood, who’d go on to win the 1985 USAC Silver Crown driver title, delivered his first career win with the series on this date in 1982 in the Hulman Hundred at the Indiana State Fairgrounds.

Jack Hewitt would eventually rack up 46 career USAC National Sprint Car feature wins, fourth all-time, but the Tony Hulman Classic in 1983 marked just his second career series win aboard the Powers & King No. 51.

During the USAC vs. CRA Challenge of 1985, the series converged on a tour throughout the United States that led to 81 Speedway in Wichita, Kans. on May 8 of that year, with Bubby Jones, now representing the CRA after being one of the top USAC drivers of the late-1970s, winning the 21st of his 22 career USAC Sprint Car victories.

During an early-season string of three ESPN-televised USAC National Midgets in as many weeks during the 1993 campaign, Kenneth Nichols rose to the occasion to collect the win in his Mike Nowicke-owned machine.

Tracy Hines’ third of his 47 career USAC National Sprint Car victories was a milestone of sorts, as it was his first win on dirt with the series, at the Terre Haute Action Track in 1999.  Plus, it was the start of a five win in seven race stretch for Hines in a breakout year.  Furthermore, it was also the first series win for car owner Pete Willoughby, the same team that has evolved into Keith Kunz/Curb-Agajanian Motorsports today.

Dave Steele, like he had done during his first career USAC Silver Crown victory in 1998, recaptured the same glory by emerging victorious in the series’ return to the Memphis Motorsports Park ¾-mile paved D-shaped track en route to his first of back-to-back Silver Crown titles in 2004 and 2005.

In 2010, the famed Hut 100 moved to its newest locale, Tri-State Speedway in Haubstadt, Ind.  Bryan Clauson, who easily adapted to any track and any type of surface, was the victor in the 100-lap USAC Midget event.

Robert Ballou put on a masterpiece performance in his domination of the field on May 8, 2015 at Eldora Speedway, much as he did most anywhere that year on his way to a 13-win season (tied for 2nd best all-time) and a USAC National Sprint Car championship.



(1) Robert Ballou, Bryan Clauson, Jack Hewitt, Tracy Hines, Rick Hood, Bubby Jones, Mel Kenyon, Kenneth Nichols, Jeff Nuckles & Dave Steele



1965: Mel Kenyon, USAC Midget at the Sportsdrome – Jeffersonville, Ind.

1981: Jeff Nuckles, USAC Midget at Anderson Speedway – Anderson, Ind.

1982: Rick Hood, USAC Silver Crown at the Indiana State Fairgrounds – Indianapolis, Ind.

1983: Jack Hewitt, USAC Sprint at the Terre Haute Action Track – Terre Haute, Ind.

1985: Bubby Jones, USAC Sprint at 81 Speedway – Wichita, Kans.

1993: Kenneth Nichols, USAC Midget at Indianapolis Raceway Park – Clermont, Ind.

1999: Tracy Hines, USAC Sprint at the Terre Haute Action Track – Terre Haute, Ind.

2004: Dave Steele, USAC Silver Crown at Memphis Motorsports Park – Millington, Tenn.

2010: Bryan Clauson, USAC Midget at Tri-State Speedway – Haubstadt, Ind.

2015: Robert Ballou, USAC Sprint at Eldora Speedway – Rossburg, Ohio