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Lakeside double-dip brings USAC Sprints return Friday-Saturday

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May 18, 2021  |  by Richie Murray, USAC Media

Robert Ballou of Rocklin, Calif. (pictured) is the only multi-time USAC AMSOIL National Sprint Car winner at Lakeside Speedway. (Lee Greenawalt Photo)

Robert Ballou of Rocklin, Calif. (pictured) is the only multi-time USAC AMSOIL National Sprint Car winner at Lakeside Speedway. (Lee Greenawalt Photo)

Update May 20, 2021: This event has been rained out.

Lakeside Speedway doubles the ante with USAC AMSOIL National Sprint Car racing x2 at the 4/10-mile dirt oval in Kansas City, Kan. on Friday and Saturday night, May 21-22, with a massive field of drivers from USAC’s National series, the Wholesale Batteries Midwest Wingless Racing Association and Wingless Sprints Oklahoma.

A car count in excess of 40 is expected to be on hand for the pair of events, which feature elevated purses for both night’s A-Mains with $6,000-to-win and $600 to start on Friday night and a $7,500 winner’s share and $600 to start on Saturday night.

Both events will be full points paying shows for the USAC AMSOIL National Sprint Cars; appearance points only for USAC MWRA and USAC WSO.

The weekend presents the first visit for the series to Lakeside since 2017, and it’s the third instance of this young season in which multiple features will be contested at one track during a single weekend: Feb. at Florida’s Bubba Raceway Park and in early May at Ohio’s Eldora Speedway.

Eldora was the most recent on the series calendar, and it was a classic with Robert Ballou prevailing for the first time with USAC in nearly three years.  The Rocklin, Calif. driver also enters this weekend as the lone multi-time USAC National Sprint Car feature winner at Lakeside, with successive scores during his 2015 championship season and again in 2016.  Ballou also holds Lakeside’s 8-lap USAC Sprint track record of 2:17.20, set in 2017.

Reigning USAC National Sprint Car champion and current point leader Brady Bacon (Broken Arrow, Okla.) is also the reigning USAC Sprint winner at Lakeside, which came in 2017 when he led all 30 laps.  In fact, in Bacon’s four series starts at Lakeside, in addition to his win, he’s finished 3rd in 2015, and was 2nd on both nights in 2016, the latter of which he led a race-high 19 laps before seeing the win slip away with two laps remaining.

Chase Stockon (Fort Branch, Ind.) owns the one-lap USAC Sprint Car track record of 16.438 at Lakeside, set in 2017.  In fact, he was also the fastest qualifier on night one at Lakeside in 2016.  He’s yet to finish outside the top-six in his four attempts at Lakeside with a best of 2nd in 2015, plus 4th place results on night two in 2016 and in 2017, with the 6th place finish coming on night one of 2016.

Chris Windom (Canton, Ill.) has finished inside the top-five in three of his four Lakeside USAC starts, with a best of 3rd in each of his last two appearances in 2016 and 2017.  The 2017 series champ was the hard charger of the feature that same year after starting 9th.  He was also 5th on the first night of Lakeside in 2016, fresh off a runner-up finish in a Silver Crown car at Gateway and a four-seater plane ride from St. Louis to Kansas City earlier that day.

Justin Grant (Ione, Calif.) won his heat race and finished 2nd in his only previous Lakeside USAC Sprint start in 2017.  Kevin Thomas Jr. (Cullman, Ala.) owns two top-ten finishes in his two Lakeside USAC appearances, taking a personal best 5th in 2015, plus a heat race win and a 7th place feature finish in 2017.

C.J. Leary (Greenfield, Ind.), the 2019 USAC National Sprint Car champ, has been a consistent top-ten finisher in his four previous runs at Lakeside, bested with a 6th in 2017 to go along with a 7th in 2015, and an 8th & 9th across two nights in 2016.

Rob Caho Jr. (Wyoming, Minn.) has started three USAC National Sprint races at Lakeside with a best of 13th in 2016.  Robert Bell (Colfax, Iowa) has made one USAC National Sprint feature start at Lakeside, a 16th in 2017.

USAC AMSOIL National Sprint Car regulars making first Lakeside appearances include two-time 2021 winner and leading Rookie of the Year candidate Tanner Thorson (Minden, Nev.) and fellow Rookie Paul Nienhiser (Chapin, Ill.) who earned his best career series finish of 5th in his most recent start at Eldora.

The 2017 USAC West Coast Sprint Car champion, Jake Swanson (Anaheim, Calif.), is also making his first Lakeside appearance as well as 2020 USAC National Most Improved Driver Brandon Mattox (Terre Haute, Ind.) and one-time USAC National Sprint Car feature winner Matt Westfall (Pleasant Hill, Ohio).

USAC National regulars will be joined by a number of representatives from the USAC Midwest Wingless Racing Association and USAC Wingless Sprints Oklahoma, both of which are the co-sanctioning series for the event.

Reigning MWRA titlist Wyatt Burks (Topeka, Kan.) has made one previous USAC National start at Lakeside, finishing 16th in 2016.  In 2020 with MWRA at Lakeside, Burks never finished outside the top-two in three starts, winning in August and finishing as the runner-up in both June and October.

Multiple WSO champions are on the path to Lakeside with defending champ Ty Hulsey (Collinsville, Okla.) making the trip as well as 2018 and 2019 champ Brett Wilson (Coweta, Okla.), as are fellow series regulars J.C. Wilson (Coweta, Okla.) and Harlan Hulsey (Owasso, Okla.), all of whom will be making their USAC debuts at Lakeside.

Three-time POWRi WAR Sprint Car champion Riley Kreisel (Warsaw, Mo.) has made feature starts in all four of his previous Lakeside USAC National appearances dating to 2015 where he captured a semi-feature victory.  His 11th in 2016 has been his best feature result with the National series at Lakeside.  He enters the weekend as the most recent winner among all drivers at Lakeside, taking last October’s MWRA Special Event there.

Cody Baker (Lone Jack, Mo.) won MWRA’s 2021 season opener at Missouri’s Nevada Speedway just two weeks ago and leads the series standings entering the weekend’s pair of races.  He finished a best of 2nd with MWRA at Lakeside in August of 2020.

Kory Schudy (Battlefield, Mo.) won the first-ever MWRA race in 2020 at I-35 Speedway in Winston, Mo.  His 5th place MWRA finish in October of 2020 is his best performance thus far at Lakeside.  He’s made two USAC National Sprint starts this year, both in Ocala, Fla., finishing a best of 14th on night two.

Wesley Smith (Billings, Mo.) is a multi-time winner with MWRA, both of which came in 2020 at a points race in Bethany, Mo. and once more in a non-points special event in Grain Valley, Mo.  He finished 4th with MWRA at Lakeside in both August and October of 2020.

Chad Goff (Spring Hill, Kan.) is an MWRA winner who’s making his way to Lakeside this weekend after reigning supreme with the series at Central Missouri Speedway in July of 2020.

Chris Parkinson (Gladstone, Mo), the 2014 WAR Sprint Car champion, has made three previous USAC National starts at Lakeside with a pair of 15th place results in 2016 serving as his best.  The third generation of the legendary Parkinson family, grandson of Ralph and son of Junior, Chris finished 4th with MWRA at Lakeside in June of 2020.

Jack Wagner (Lone Jack, Mo.) made his first USAC AMSOIL National Sprint Car start at Knoxville, Iowa in 2020, finishing 20th.  He aims for his first series starts at Lakeside this weekend after finishing 5th there last August with MWRA.

A number of MWRA regulars are expected to make the voyage to Lakeside to try to crack their first career USAC National Sprint Car feature starting lineup, including Braydon Cromwell (Lone Jack, Mo.), Brad Wyatt (Kearney, Mo.), Sam Wagner (Lone Jack, Mo.), Vinny Ward (Springfield, Ill.), Dylan Kadous (Topeka, Kan.), Drake Barker (Kansas City, Mo.), Zack Clark (Olathe, Kan.), Mark Lane (Grain Valley, Mo.), J.D. Black (Grain Valley, Mo.), Luke Howard (Overland Park, Kan.), Xavier Doney (Odessa, Mo.), Kyle Lewis (Spring Hill, Kan.), Heath Murry (Tonganoxie, Kan.), Dakota Earls (Independence, Mo.) and Chad Tye (Independence, Mo.).

Tickets will be available at the gate on each race day.  However, tickets can also be purchased in advance at www.TracPass.com.  One-day general admission tickets are on sale now for $25.  Two-day general admission tickets are $45.  Tickets for children aged 12-15 are $10 per day while kids aged 11 and under are admitted for free.

Pit passes are available at the track as well as on www.TracPass.com.  Pit passes are $30 for members and $35 for non-members.  Two-day pit passes can be purchased for $60.  One-day pit passes for children aged 6 and under are $15.

Both nights, registration and pit gates open at 3pm CDT with the grandstands/ticket office opening at 5pm and hot laps at 6:30pm, immediately followed by qualifying and racing. Friday’s action will also include E-Mods and Mod Lites, while Saturday’s event card will have the E-Mods.

For more information on the event, visit USAC’s official website at www.USACracing.com.  You can also visit the race promoter’s website at www.trackenterprises.com or by calling their office at (217) 764-3200.  You may check out the track’s website directly by clicking www.lakesidespeedway.net or by calling at (913) 299-9206.

USAC AMSOIL SPRINT CAR NATIONAL CHAMPIONSHIP POINTS: 1-Brady Bacon-763, 2-Justin Grant-734, 3-Kevin Thomas Jr.-697, 4-Robert Ballou-659, 5-Chris Windom-635, 6-C.J. Leary-628, 7-Tanner Thorson-602, 8-Jake Swanson-591, 9-Paul Nienhiser-449, 10-Chase Stockon-440.

TRACK RECORDS FOR USAC AMSOIL NATIONAL SPRINT CARS AT LAKESIDE SPEEDWAY:

1 lap – 7/29/2017, Chase Stockon, 16.438 seconds, 109.502 mph.
8 laps – 7/29/2017, Robert Ballou, 2 minutes, 17.20 seconds, 104.956 mph.
10 laps – 7/6/2001, Jay Drake, 2 minutes, 58.19 seconds, 101.016 mph.

USAC NATIONAL SPRINT CAR WINS AT LAKESIDE SPEEDWAY:

2 wins – Robert Ballou.
1 win – Brady Bacon, Don Branson, Tony Elliott, Kenny Irwin Jr., Arnie Knepper, Jud Larson, Jim Mahoney, Thomas Meseraull, Smokey Snellbaker, Robbie Stanley, Dave Steele, Brian Tyler, Greg Weld, Carl Williams, Doug Wolfgang & J.J. Yeley.

USAC NATIONAL SPRINT CAR WINNERS AT LAKESIDE SPEEDWAY:

Sept. 1, 1963 – Don Branson
July 23, 1965 – Jud Larson
July 15, 1966 – Arnie Knepper
July 7, 1967 – Greg Weld
July 5, 1968 – Carl Williams
July 8, 1978 – Doug Wolfgang
June 5, 1981 – Smokey Snellbaker
Sept. 13, 1991 – Jim Mahoney
June 5, 1992 – Robbie Stanley
Sept. 15, 1995 – Kenny Irwin Jr.
April 12, 1996 – Dave Steele
April 24, 1998 – Brian Tyler
July 6, 2001 – Tony Elliott
July 7, 2001 – J.J. Yeley
April 26, 2015 – Robert Ballou
June 25, 2016 – Robert Ballou
June 26, 2016 – Thomas Meseraull
July 29, 2017 – Brady Bacon

PAST LAKESIDE SPEEDWAY USAC SPRINT RESULTS AT LAKESIDE SPEEDWAY (ON DIRT):

2001 NIGHT ONE FEATURE: (20 laps) 1. Tony Elliott, 2. Jay Drake, 3. Bill Rose, 4. Robbie Rice, 5. Jerry Coons Jr., 6. J.J. Yeley, 7. Levi Jones, 8. Dave Darland, 9. Derek Davidson, 10. Bud Kaeding, 11. Clay Klepper, 12. Jonathan Vennard, 13. Gregg Dillion, 14. Dustin Smith, 15. Tracy Hines, 16. Craig Dori, 17. Ed Carpenter, 18. Dickie Gaines.

2001 NIGHT TWO FEATURE: (30 laps) 1. J.J. Yeley, 2. Tracy Hines, 3. Bill Rose, 4. Dave Darland, 5. Bud Kaeding, 6. Levi Jones, 7. Derek Davidson, 8. Robbie Rice, 9. Tony Elliott, 10. Ed Carpenter, 11. Jonathan Vennard, 12. Gregg Dillion, 13. Jerry Coons Jr., 14. Craig Dori, 15. Jay Drake, 16. Dickie Gaines, 17. Dustin Smith, 18. Clay Klepper.

2015 FEATURE: (30 laps) 1. Robert Ballou, 2. Chase Stockon, 3. Brady Bacon, 4. Dave Darland, 5. Kevin Thomas Jr., 6. Jon Stanbrough, 7. C.J. Leary, 8. Tracy Hines, 9. Chris Windom, 10. Casey Shuman, 11. Aaron Farney, 12. Jarett Andretti, 13. Landon Simon, 14. Danny Thoman, 15. Riley Kriesel, 16. Ryan Kitchen, 17. Josh Stephens, 18. Mike Moore, 19. Chris Parkinson, 20. Ricky Stangl, 21. Warren Johnson, 22. Bret Mellenberndt.

2016 NIGHT ONE FEATURE: (30 laps) 1. Robert Ballou, 2. Brady Bacon, 3. Dave Darland, 4. Thomas Meseraull, 5. Chris Windom, 6. Chase Stockon, 7. Chad Boespflug, 8. Aaron Farney, 9. C.J. Leary, 10. Max McGhee, 11. Riley Kreisel, 12. Clinton Boyles, 13. Bret Mellenberndt, 14. Joe Bares, 15. Chris Parkinson, 16. Rob Caho Jr., 17. Kenny Potter, 18. Landon Simon, 19. Isaac Chapple, 20. Mike Ell, 21. Warren Johnson.

2016 NIGHT TWO FEATURE: (30 laps) 1. Thomas Meseraull, 2. Brady Bacon, 3. Chris Windom, 4. Chase Stockon, 5. Chad Boespflug, 6. Dave Darland, 7. Isaac Chapple, 8. C.J. Leary, 9. Aaron Farney, 10. Landon Simon, 11. Robert Ballou, 12. Bret Mellenberndt, 13. Rob Caho Jr., 14. Max McGhee, 15. Chris Parkinson, 16. Wyatt Burks, 17. Terry Richards, 18. Clinton Boyles, 19. Riley Kreisel, 20. Danny Thoman, 21. Kenny Potter, 22. Warren Johnson.

2017 FEATURE: (30 laps) 1. Brady Bacon, 2. Justin Grant, 3. Chris Windom, 4. Chase Stockon, 5. Tyler Courtney, 6. C.J. Leary, 7. Kevin Thomas Jr., 8. Josh Hodges, 9. Jarett Andretti, 10. Chad Boespflug, 11. Brandon Stevenson, 12. Robert Ballou, 13. Patrick Budde, 14. Rob Caho Jr., 15. Terry Richards, 16. Robert Bell, 17. Steve Thomas, 18. Riley Kreisel, 19. Mike Sosebee, 20. Ryan Kitchen.