Kokomo Smackdown Night #1 Results and Stories

Thursday, August 24, 2023
Kokomo Speedway (Video Highlights from FloRacing.com)
Kokomo Speedway (Video Highlights from FloRacing.com)

Kokomo Speedway
Kokomo, IN

Kokomo Smackdown

USAC National Sprint Car Series

46 cars

It was a sultry night at Kokomo!  The humidity was at a high level and kept the track tacky all night.  Drivers have an eye on points as they get their best point total from either Thursday or Friday to line them up for Saturday.

Robert Ballou (5th car out to time) set quick time on the quarter-mile at 12.900 seconds.  Brady Bacon (44th car out) was second quick, followed by Logan Seavey (24th), Chase Stockon (6th), Emerson Axsom (40th), CJ Leary (17th), Matt Westfall (45th), Max Adams (38th), Justin Grant (39th) and Jake Swanson (3rd).  Kevin Thomas Jr. timed well enough for second quick, but was light at the scales.

Heat one (started): 1. Shane Cottle 2E (1) 2. Daison Pursley 5P (3) 3. Grant 4 (4) 4. Ballou 12 (6) / 5. Kayla Roell 5K (2) 6. Wyatt Burks 11w (9) 7. Geoff Ensign 17 (8) 8. Devan Myers 75 (11) 9. Jack Hoyer 5 (12) 10. Cole Bodine 57B (7) 11. Larry Kingseed Jr. 21 (10) 12. Axsom 47BC (5)

10-lap heats took the top four to the feature.  Before a lap could get in, Ballou got into the back of Grant, and collected Kingseed, Ensign and Bodine.  All continued.  On the second try, Axsom clipped the turn four infield tire and destroyed his car on the frontstretch.  He came back later with a backup.  Cottle led the distance, with Pursley and Grant in tow.  Burks held the final transfer early, until Ballou recovered from the tail to grab it on lap three.

Heat two (started): 1. Joey Amantea 88J (1) 2. Korbyn Hayslett 1H (2) 3. Leary 15x (5) 4. Bacon 69 (6) / 5. Briggs Danner 39 (3) 6. Swanson 21AZ (4) 7. Kevin Thomas Jr. 42 (12) 8. Brandon Mattox 28 (7) 9. Jadon Robers 17GP (8) 10. Kobe Simpson 21K (10) 11. Eddie Tafoya Jr. 51T (9) 12. Troy Carey 45N (11)

Hayslett led lap one, but Amantea took early control and won going away.  Bacon used the middle of turn four to pass Danner for third on lap two.  Leary followed him into the fourth and final transfer on lap four, and then snuck by Bacon for third on the last lap.

Heat three (started): 1. Rylan Gray 81G (1) 2. Trey Osborne 6T (3) 3. Ricky Lewis 41 (2) 4. Kyle Cummins 3R (4) / 5. Seavey 2B (6) 6. Westfall 33m (5) 7. Sterling Cling 34 (8) 8. Nate Schank 1 (7) 9. Brayden Clark 41G (10) 10. Jack James 99 (11) 11. Riley Kreisel 2 (9)

Kreisel biked and suffered a flat left rear ending his race on lap one.  Gray led the distance.  Lewis, Cummins and Seavey completed the top four early.  Cummins bobbled on lap two, letting Seavey and Osborne into transfer spots.  Osborne, an impressive rookie who towed in on a flatbed, then passed Seavey low in four to gain third.  He then passed Lewis with two to go for second.  At the same time, Cummins passed Seavey for the final transfer.

Heat four (started): 1. Carson Garrett 15 (4) 2. Colten Cottle 57 (2) 3. Adams 5x (5) 4. Dave Darland 36D (8) / 5. Chance Crum 26 (3) 6. Zack Pretorius 9z (7) 7. Dustin Ingle 2DI (10) 8. Bryar Schroeter 21s (11) 9. Stevie Sussex 77s (9) 10. Mitchel Moles 19AZ (1) 11. Stockon 5s (6)

With a lap in the books, Stockon and Moles came together ending in a nasty flip for Moles.  He was uninjured, but both were done.  C. Cottle led early over Garrett, Crum, Adams and Darland.  At the halfway point, Garrett slid in front of Cottle to lead in turn two.  Adams took third from Crum at the white flag, and then Darland worked by for the final transfer on the last lap in a good three-way battle for two spots.

C main (started): 1. Rogers (1) 2. Cling (2) 3. Thomas Jr. (16) 4. Burks (3) / 5. Kreisel (5) 6. Tafoya (4) 7. Sussex (6) 8. Simpson (8) 9. Myers (11) 10. Carey (12) 11. Hoyer (15) 12. Ingle (10) 13. Clark (9) 14. James (13) 15. Schroeter (14) 16. Kingseed (7)

The 10-lapper saw the top four head to the B.  Rogers set the pace throughout, ahead of Cling.  Tafoya grabbed third from Burks on lap four, but almost spun out on lap five allowing Burks and Kreisel into transfer spots.  At the same time, Thomas was on the move from the tail, putting four wheels above the cushion.  He grabbed fifth, and on lap eighth surged from fifth to third before a caution flew setting up a green, white, checker finish that saw no changes.

B main (started): 1. Stockon (2) 2. Seavey (1) 3. Swanson (4) 4. Danner (5) 5. Westfall (3) 6. Bodine (8) / 7. Rogers (13) 8. Mattox (9) 9. Roell (7) 10. Cling (14) 11. Thomas Jr. (15) 12. Schank (10) 13. Crum (6) 14. Axsom (17) 15. Ensign (12) 16. Burks (16) 17. Pretorius (11) DNS – Moles

The 12-lapper saw the top four advance to the feature.  There was no passing in the top six after lap one on a track that was still heavy and lent to the bottom.

A main (started): 1. Grant (2) 2. Bacon (5) 3. Ballou (6) 4. Garrett (7) 5. Rogers (24, prov.) 6. Leary (4) 7. S. Cottle (8) 8. Danner (16) 9. Amantea (9) 10. Cummins (1) 11. Axsom (23, prov.) 12. Stockon (12) 13. Seavey (11) 14. Swanson (14) 15. Lewis (19) 16. Adams (3) 17. Bodine (21) 18. Westfall (13) 19. Gray (10) 20. Hayslett (18) 21. Darland (22) 22. Pursley (15) 23. Osborne (17) 24. C. Cottle (20)

Adams and Hayslett were penalized one row for being late to staging for the 30-lapper.  Swanson had issues and went to the work area, restarting at the tail.  A first lap incident saw Seavey, Westfall, Osborne, Darland and C. Cottle piled up.  Osborne (fronte end) and C. Cottle were done.  Seavey changed a left rear tire.  Grant led early over Cummings, Leary, Bacon and Garrett.  Bacon passed Leary for third on lap two.  Pursley slowed four laps in to bring the only caution.  Grant led Cummins, Bacon, Garrett and Lary back to green.  Second through fourth were in close quarters most of the way, but the show was watching Rogers come from the tail after taking a provisional.  He was the only driver dedicated to putting all four tires in the fluff high above the cushion, and he was driving by people.  By lap ten, he was into the top ten.  Grant was in lapped traffic by the halfway point, with Cummins and Bacon in tow.  Bacon put a slider on Cummins to take over second with six to go.  By that time, Grant had checked out.  Bacon held onto second, while Cummins slowed with a couple of laps to go.  Ballou and Garrett moved into third and fourth, while Rogers continued his hard-charger run by finishing in the top five.