Short Track Nationals Night #1 Results and Stories

Friday, October 5, 2018
Cody GardnerCody Gardner 10/5/18

I-30 Speedway

Short Track Nationals Night #1

73 cars

Heat one (started): 1. Cody Gardner 88R (2) 2. Sam Hafertepe Jr. 15H (8) 3. Tyson Hall 5x (1) 4. Cannon McIntosh 08 (3) 5. Zach Pringle 8z (7) 6. Justin Webb 31 (5) 7. Spencer Meredith 21m (9) 8. Gary Floyd 58 (6) 9. Martin Edwards 45 (4)

10-lap heats used passing points to send the top 40 to four Qualifiers.  Tonight’s action did not have a bearing on Saturday’s finale other than the top point getters in combined points between Friday and Saturday, who don’t qualify for the feature Saturday will start 19th and 20th.  Gardner led the distance in this one.  Hall and McIntosh trailed him early.  Z. Pringle was up to fifth early on.  Hafertepe was on the move from the tail, going from sixth to fourth on lap three.  Meredith had a left front tire fly off at the halfway point.  Hafertepe shot to third on the restart.  He’d pass Hall for second with two to go.  Edwards exited emanating smoke while running fourth.

Heat two (started): 1. Dustin Gates 6 (3) 2. Brady Bacon 99B (6) 3. Channin Tankersley 17T (4) 4. Eric Lutz 5 (7) 5. Chase Howard 44c (2) 6. Dakota Gaines D6 (5) 7. Joe Young 12T (8) 8. Kenny Coke 24 (1)

Gates led from flag to flag.  C. Howard trailed him early, followed by Tankersley.  Bacon was on the move.  He was fifth by lap two, then took fourth from Gaines on lap four.  Meanwhile, Lutz moved from the back to fifth.  On lap seven, Bacon passed Tankersley and C. Howard for second.  He and Tankersley put on a good race.  Lutz would get by C. Howard on the last lap for fourth.

Heat three (started): 1. Mike Goodman 11G (1) 2. Matt Covington 95 (6) 3. Johnny Herrera 45x (3) 4. Terry Gray 10 (2) 5. Brandon Hanks 84 (5) 6. Kevin Hinkle 21K (7) 7. Dewayne White 10K (4) DNS – Travis Rilat 00

Goodman led throughout.  Gray was second early, followed by Herrera.  Gray and Goodman put on a great race for the lead.  On lap three, Covington had moved from the tail to fourth.  He took third from Herrera on lap six, as you could throw a blanket on the top four.  Herrera would battle back by Covington, and then made contact with Gray.  Both drivers lost spots, and Covington snatched second.

Heat four (started): 1. Marshall Skinner 26 (1) 2. Tim Crawley 1x (4) 3. Joe B. Miller 51B (2) 4. Wayne Johnson 2c (5) 5. Morgan Turpen 10m (6) 6. Jeff Swindell 94 (8) 7. Ernie Ainsworth 91A (3) 8. Chance McCrary 13m (7)

Skinner led the distance in what was clearly the stoutest heat.  It included the I-30 track champ (Ainsworth), two-time USCS champ Turpen, four-time STN winner Crawley, and former STN winner Johnson, as well as Skinner, Miller and Swindell.  It was a tough draw for McCrary.  The battle was on for second most of the race.  Miller held off Crawley until the veteran nipped him at the finish line.  W. Johnson took fourth from Turpen on lap four.

Heat five (started): 1. Howard Moore 40 (3) 2. Koty Adams 21A (7) 3. Cody Howard 57 (1) 4. Robbie Price 1 (5) 5. Jason Howell 44 (2) 6. Rick Kahler 72K (6) 7. Jake Knight 93 (4) 8. Burt Wilson 10K2 (8)

Moore led the distance, grabbing the lap one lead and pulling away for the win.  Adams used the low side to shoot from seventh to third on lap one.  He’d take second from C. Howard on lap five, while Price moved into third.  With a lap to go, Price would do a 360 spin, but hold fourth.

Heat six (started): 1. Jordon Mallett 14 (3) 2. Seth Bergman 23 (6) 3. Chris Martin 44m (5) 4. Carson Short 21x (7) 5. Dale Howard 47 (2) 6. Brad Bowden 39 (4) 7. Tucker Doughty 2x (8) 8. Dale Wester 12w (1)

Mallett led D. Howard and Wester early.  Bowden moved into third on lap three, and C. Martin was fourth by lap four.  C. Martin used the high side to pass Bowden for third on lap five.  With a lap to go, the battle for second was three-wide.  Bergman came from nowhere on the high side to take second, while Short did the same to grab fourth on the last lap.

Heat seven (started): 1. Dylan Westbrook 47x (6) 2. Harli White 17w (2) 3. Wally Henson 2H (3) 4. Blake Jenkins 99J (1) 5. Alex Hill 77x (5) 6. Claud Estes III 74E (3) 7. Scott Smith 12 (8) 8. Adam Miller 32m (7)

White led Jenkins and a charging Westbrook on lap one.  Westbrook provided the entertainment, busting the cushion on both end.  He claimed second by lap two, and shot around White for the point on lap three.  Henson made a pass of Jenkins with two to go to grab third.

Heat eight (started): 1. Tony Bruce Jr. 86 (3) 2. Derek Hagar JR (7) 3. Jamie Ball 5J (4) 4. Jan Howard 121 (1) 5. Joseph Miller 30 (2) 6. Layne Himebaugh 94L (8) 7. Wade Woolsey 29w (5) 8. Sammy Swindell 3 (6)

Bruce got by the row one starters to lead lap one over J. Howard and Jos. Miller.  Ball spun with a lap in the books, bringing caution.  S. Swindell was on the move from outside row three and grabbed third on the restart with Hagar in tow.  Hagar would get by Sammy, before a throttle linkage issue sidelined Swindell.  Bruce led J. Howard, Hagar, Jos. Miller and Ball back to green.  Hagar grabbed second on the restart.  Ball would bounce back from the tail to gain third at the white flag.

Heat nine (started): 1. Blake Hahn 52 (6) 2. Skylar Gee 99 (8) 3. Ryan Bickett 17B (4) 4. Ronny Howard 44H (1) 5. John Carney II J2 (5) 6. Eric Baldaccini 0 (2) 7. Rick Pringle 38 (7) 8. Kyle Clark 9$ (3)

R. Howard led early over Clark and Bickett.  Clark lost a steering bolt a lap in, but avoided a serious incident.  R. Howard led Bickett, Hahn, Carney and Baldaccini back to green.  Bickett would surge to the lead with Hahn in tow.  Hahn would shoot by Bickett for the lead on lap four.  A lap later, Gee, ripping the cushion, would cruise by R. Howard for third.  Gee would continue his charge, gaining second from Bickett with three to go.
Chance McCraryChance McCrary Qualifier one (started, *qualified for feature): 1. H. White (1*) 2. Bruce (3*) 3. Skinner (2) 4. Bergman (4*) 5. Adams (5*) 6. Westbrook (6*) 7. McIntosh (9) 8. Price (8) 9. Bickett (7) 10. Himebaugh (10)

White led the 10-lapper throughout.  Combined passing points between heats and qualifiers were used to lock the top 14 in the feature.  Skinner was second early, but Bruce took the spot on lap three.  The best racing was for third between Skinner and Bergman late.  The track really slicked off from bottom to top.  The first three qualifiers were mostly contested on the bottom half of the track.

Qualifier two (started, *qualified for feature): 1. C. Martin (2*) 2. Hagar (5*) 3. Turpen (9*) 4. Hahn (6*) 5. Herrera (7) 6. Gardner (3) 7. Jenkins (10) 8. Gates (4) 9. Tankersley (1) 10. Hall (8)

Gardner spun before a lap could be completed.  On the restart, C. Martin contacted Tankersley sending him around.  C. Martin would led wire to wire from there.  Hagar moved into second immediately.  Turpen was on the move from the tail, and grabbed third by getting by Gates, Hahn and Herrera by the halfway point.

Qualifier three (started, *qualified for feature): 1. Hafertepe Jr. (6*) 2. Crawley (3*) 3. Henson (1) 4. Joe B. Miller (7) 5. Bacon (5) 6. Moore (4) 7. Co. Howard (8) 8. Gray (9) 9. Lutz (2) 10. J. Howard (10)

Henson led Lutz and Hafertpe early.  Hafertepe disposed of Lutz on lap two and Henson on lap four to take the lead.  Crawley worked under Lutz for third on lap four before J. Howard spun.  Hafertepe Led Henson, Crawley, Lutz and Joe B. Miller back to green.  A three-way battle for fifth saw all three try to hit the same spot.  The result was Bacon and Lutz piled up in one.  Bacon would restart.  Crawley shot to second on the restart.

Qualifier four (started, *qualified for feature): 1. Ball (1*) 2. Goodman (3*) 3. Mallett (4*) 4. Short (2) 5. Covington (5) 6. Gee (6) 7. W. Johnson (7) 8. R. Howard (10) 9. Z. Pringle (7) 10. J. Swindell (9)

J. Swindell worked inside W. Johnson in turn one and launched off his left front, getting upside down.  He was unhurt and W. Johnson restarted with a twisted nose wing.  Ball led Goodman and Short early.  Covington would move into third at the halfway point before Z. Pringle lost power on the front stretch and collected W. Johnson, who probably wished he hadn’t pushed off.  On the restart, Mallett was able to move by Covington for third.
Dale WesterDale Wester C main one (started): 1. Carney II (2) 2. Gaines (4) 3. Estes III (6) / 4. Hanks (1) 5. Kahler (3) 6. Woolsey (8) 7. Coke (13) 8. Wilson (10) 9. Knight (7) 10. Meredith (11) 11. Smith (5) 12. Wester (12) 13. McCrary (9) DNS – Ch. Howard, D. Howard, R. Pringle, Rilat

Carney led Hanks and Estes early in the 12-lapper taking three to the B.  Knight spun on lap two, collecting Wester.  Once green, Hanks was running second when he performed a 360 and kept running.  He lost several spots.  Meredith spun bringing a caution on the next lap.  Carney led Estes, Smith, Kahler and Gaines back to green.  Smith moved up to second, while Hanks re-entered the top five on the restart.  Gaines and Estes raced hard for the third and final transfer, with Gaines getting the spot with three to go.  Hanks had help into another 360 spint with 11 down.  Gaines would get over Smith’s left front in a battle for second on the last lap, sending Smith pitside.  Estes inherited the final transfer.

C main two (started): 1. Hill (1) 2. S. Swindell (14) 3. Ainsworth (11) / 4. Hinkle (2) 5. Webb (5) 6. Joseph Miller (4) 7. Baldaccini (8) 8. Clark (15) 9. Young (6) 10. Howell (3) 11. Doughty (12) 12. A. Miller (13) 13. D. White (10) 14. Bowden (7) 15. Edwards (16) 16. Floyd (9)

Hill led Hinkle and J. Miller early.  A three-way, three-wide battle for third developed as Baldaccini and Bowden joined J. Miller.  Baldaccini and J. Miller traded the spot on lap five and six.  Bowden would spin, collecting S. Swindell, who somehow kept the car rolling on lap seven.  The restart saw Hill leading Hinkle, J. Miller, Baldaccini and S. Swindell.  Sammy grabbed fourth on the restart and then took the third and final transfer from J.  Miller with three to go.  He passed Hinkle for second on lap 10.  Ainsworth, coming from the back like S. Swindell captured the third and final transfer from Hinkle on the last lap.

B main one (started): 1. Covington (2) 2. Gee (1) 3. Joe B. Miller (3) / 4. Moore (4) 5. Herrera (5) 6. Carney (12) 7. Gates (6) 8. Lutz (8) 9. Co. Howard (7) 10. Himebaugh (11) 11. Estes III (14) 12. Tankersley (10) 13. Gaines (13) 14. Price (9) DNS – W. Johnson, J. Howard

The 12-lapper took the top three to the A.  The top three remained the same throughout with the bottom still the preferred line.  The only caution came for a Himebaugh spin.

B main two (started): 1. Bacon (1) 2. Short (4) 3. Skinner (2) / 4. Gardner (5) 5. McIntosh (7) 6. Z. Pringle (10) 7. Henson (3) 8. Ainsworth (14) 9. R. Howard (8) 10. Bickett (11) 11. Jenkins (5) 12. Gray (9) 13. Hill (12) 14. S. Swindell (13) DNS – Hall, J. Swindell

Bacon led Skinner and Jenkins early.  Contact between Gray and Hill sent Hill upside down in turn one.  Sammy spun at the same time and exited.  No one was injured.  Bacon led Skinner, Jenkins, Short and Gardner back to green.  Gardner surged as the middle cleared off a bit, getting by Short for fourth, then Jenkins for the third and final transfer.  Jenkins would spin at the halfway point, surrendering fourth.  Bacon now led Skinner, Gardner, Short and McIntosh back to green.  Short would move up the track through the middle and shoot by Gardner for third and then Skinner for second.
Jason Johnson ASCS National championship carJason Johnson ASCS National championship car A main (started): 1. Hafertepe (1) 2. Hagar (2) 3. Crawley (6) 4. Hahn (3) 5. Mallett (7) 6. Bruce (4) 7. Bacon (16) 8. Goodman (8) 9. Turpen (10) 10. Westbrook (14) 11. Bergman (11) 12. Covington (15) 13. Ball (12) 14. C. Martin (5) 15. Gee (17) 16. Joe B. Miller (19) 17. Adams (13) 18. Skinner (20) 19. H. White (9) 20. Short (18)

The feature paid $2,750 and was 27 laps in honor of the late Memphis native, Greg Hodnett.  Bobbi and Jaxx Johnson were also present with the former ASCS National champion #41 on display.  Hafertepe would lead from start to finish.  Hagar pressured at times, and Crawley threw his hat in the ring as well.  Bacon, who started 16th was in the top ten by a lap seven spin by H. White.  Another caution came for a 360 spin from Short on lap 14.  The leader was in lapped traffic with four to go.  Crawley passed Hagar briefly on lap 26, but Hagar held him off for second.  Baocn was the hard-charger.  Hafertepe and Hagar garnered the most points and are guaranteed spots 19 and 20 Saturday night if they aren’t already in.  2018 I-30 track champ Ainsworth has a guaranteed provisional.