With lightning as the backdrop for most of the evening, it was a picture perfect night for ‘The Rocket’ as he won his heat, earned the Sybesma Graphics Pole Award and led every lap of the feature race to score his second $2,000 paycheck in as many nights.
Unlike Friday night in Bloomfield, Iowa, where Sanders hunted down leader Zack VanderBeek and took the lead late in the race, this time Sanders was the hunted and VanderBeek was looking to turn the tables.
Sanders jumped out to a big lead early on but a pair of caution flags on laps 6 and 11 kept the pack within striking distance.
Nate Wasmund challenged the defending USMTS National Champion midway through the race, peeking underneath on a couple of occasions while Sanders continued to ride the high line around the high-banked 3/8-mile clay oval.
A flat right rear tire with 15 laps to go ended Wasmund’s victory hopes and VanderBeek picked up where he left off.
The final ten laps had the crowd holding its collective breath as VanderBeek followed Sanders high into each turn and then dove underneath to drag-race him down the straight-aways.
The 2004 USMTS Rookie of the Year gave it one final effort in the last turn, but came up a car length short as Sanders marched to his third win in his last four starts in Major League Bowhunter Central Region competition.
Meanwhile, VanderBeek settled for the bridesmaid spot for the third race in a row and his fourth straight post-race podium.
Sanders’ win was the 23rd of his USMTS career, tying him for eighth on the all-time list with VanderBeek and Al Hejna.
Just one career win behind now, Stormy Scott drew the eighth starting spot for the Casey’s General stores “A” Main but clawed his way to a third-place finish behind the wheel of the #20r machine normally driven by team owner and teammate Bryan Rowland who put Scott behind the wheel after he crashed his normal ride the night before.
Dylan Smith started on the front row next to Sanders and kept him in his crosshairs early on but held on for a fourth-place finish after a spirited battle with John Allen, who got fifth.
Zach Sanders has won two USRA Modified features at the I-35 Speedway early on in the 2014 season and came home sixth Saturday night while Austin Siebert passed nine cars en route to a seventh-place finish and his second Mesilla Valley Transportation Hard Charger Award in the last 24 hours.
Kerry Davis finished eighth, Johnny Scott raced to ninth after starting 17th on the starting grid and Daniel Hilsabeck rounded out the top ten.
With his win, Sanders padded his points lead in the Major League Bowhunter Central Region presented by Day Motor Sports, but VanderBeek remains just 19 points behind (476 to 457). Stormy Scott is third with 422 markers, followed by Siebert (384), Smith (382), Dereck Ramirez (372), Jake Gallardo (366), Hilsabeck (348), Johnny Scott (346) and Joe Duvall (280).
Up next for the United States Modified Touring Series is a tripleheader weekend, May 8-10, to kick off the Farm Boy BBQ Sauce Northern Region presented by Day Motor Sports.
Action gets underway Thursday at the Rice Lake (Wis.) Speedway, moves to the Mississippi Thunder Speedway in Fountain City, Wis., on Friday and then wraps things up on Saturday at the Ogilvie (Minn.) Raceway.
To learn more about the United States Modified Touring Series, visit www.usmts.com online or call 515-832-7944. You can also like us on Facebook at www.facebook.com/usmts, follow us on Twitter at www.twitter.com/usmts or check out our YouTube channel at www.youtube.com/usmtstv.
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United States Modified Touring Series
USMTS Casey’s Cup powered by Swan Energy – Major League Bowhunter Central Region presented by Day Motor Sports
I-35 Speedway, Winston, Mo.
Saturday, April 26, 2014
Showing finishing position, starting position in parentheses, car number, driver, hometown, chassis/engine builder and money won. The top 12 drivers in passing points accumulated in the heat races were locked into the “A” Main, with the top 8 re-drawing for starting positions 1-8.
C&R RACING HEAT RACE #1 (8 laps):
1. (5) 20 Rodney Sanders, Happy, Texas.
2. (8) 52w Nate Wasmund, Rochester, Minn.
3. (2) R Ron Ver Beek, Oskaloosa, Iowa.
4. (4) 22D Daniel Hilsabeck, Waukee, Iowa.
5. (3) 91 Joe Duvall, Claremore, Okla.
6. (7) 16 Austin Siebert, Grandview, Mo.
7. (6) 92 Tyler Grooms, Trenton, Mo.
8. (1) 26s Steven Glenn, Hamilton, Mo.
JRi SHOCKS HEAT RACE #2 (8 laps):
1. (2) 95 Dylan Smith (R), Osceola, Neb.
2. (1) 4R Dereck Ramirez, Woodward, Okla.
3. (6) 20R Stormy Scott, Las Cruces, N.M.
4. (3) 11 Darren Shaw, Lathrop, Mo.
5. (5) J17 Jake Gallardo (R), Las Cruces, N.M.
6. (4) 1st Johnny Scott, Las Cruces, N.M.
7. (8) 95 Keith Foss, Winona, Minn.
8. (7) 75 Bud Wilson, Trenton, Mo.
EDELBROCK HEAT RACE #3 (8 laps):
1. (1) 98 John Allen, Chanute, Kan.
2. (3) 35 Jay Purkey (R), Colwich, Kan.
3. (8) 69 Zach Sanders, Kearney, Mo.
4. (6) 33z Zack VanderBeek, New Sharon, Iowa.
5. (7) 68 Kerry Davis, Parkville, Mo.
6. (5) 42 Sam Florence, Trimble, Mo.
7. (4) 36 Jeff Conner, Panora, Iowa.
8. (2) 35X Chris Purkey (R), Park City, Kan.
CASEY’S GENERAL STORES “A” MAIN (40 laps):
1. (1) 20 Rodney Sanders, Happy, Texas, MBCustom/Geddes, $2000.
2. (10) 33z Zack VanderBeek, New Sharon, Iowa, LG2/Sput’s, $1500.
3. (8) 20R Stormy Scott, Las Cruces, N.M., LG2/ProPower, $1000.
4. (2) 95 Dylan Smith (R), Osceola, Neb., Jet/Woods, $900.
5. (4) 98 John Allen, Chanute, Kan., GRT/Hatfield, $800.
6. (3) 69 Zach Sanders, Kearney, Mo., GRT/Burlington, $600.
7. (16) 16 Austin Siebert, Grandview, Mo., GRT/Mullins, $650.
8. (13) 68 Kerry Davis, Parkville, Mo., GRT/Sput’s, $500.
9. (17) 1st Johnny Scott, Las Cruces, N.M., Ramirez/ProPower, $550.
10. (11) 22D Daniel Hilsabeck, Waukee, Iowa, Hughes/Mullins, $500.
11. (12) 11 Darren Shaw, Lathrop, Mo., Shaw/Yancy’s, $350.
12. (6) 4R Dereck Ramirez, Woodward, Okla., Ramirez/ProPower, $425.
13. (15) J17 Jake Gallardo (R), Las Cruces, N.M., LG2/AOS, $400.
14. (7) 35 Jay Purkey (R), Colwich, Kan., Shark/Bogus, $375.
15. (21) 36 Jeff Conner, Panora, Iowa, Skyrocket/Durham, $350.
16. (20) 92 Tyler Grooms, Trenton, Mo., Hughes/Grooms, $250.
17. (5) 52w Nate Wasmund, Rochester, Minn., GRT/Action, $250.
18. (22) 26s Steven Glenn, Hamilton, Mo., Shaw/CAM, $250.
19. (23) 75 Bud Wilson, Trenton, Mo., Hughes/GMPP, $250.
20. (24) 35X Chris Purkey (R), Park City, Kan., Shark/Bogus, $300.
21. (19) 95 Keith Foss, Winona, Minn., Skyrocket/Grove, $300.
22. (9) R Ron Ver Beek, Oskaloosa, Iowa, Skyrocket/Midstate, $250.
23. (14) 91 Joe Duvall, Claremore, Okla., MBCustom/Mullins, $300.
24. (18) 42 Sam Florence, Trimble, Mo., Allen/Yancy’s, $250.
(R) = Rookie of the Year contender.
Lap Leader: R. Sanders 1-40.
Total Laps Led: R. Sanders 40.
Margin of Victory: 0.212 second.
Provisional Starters: none.
Sybesma Graphics Pole Award: R. Sanders.
Mesilla Valley Transportation Hard Charger: Siebert (started 16th, finished 7th).
Next Race: Thursday, May 8, Rice Lake Speedway, Rice Lake, Wis..
Major League Bowhunter Central Region Points: R. Sanders 476, VanderBeek 457, S. Scott 422, Siebert 384, Smith 382, Ramirez 372, Gallardo 366, Hilsabeck 348, J. Scott 346, Duvall 280.
Rookie of the Year Points: Gallardo 1276, Adam Penn 855, Smith 729, Shane Sprinkle 640, Cade Dillard 577.
COMP Cams Engine Builder of the Year Points: ProPower 147, Sput’s 146, Geddes 113, Mullins 88, AOS 82.
Manufacturers Championship Points: LG2 151, MBCustom 147, Ramirez 129, GRT 116, Hughes 90.
American Racer – VanderBeek.
Beyea Custom Headers – Bryan Rowland.
Brass Monkey Racing Products – not awarded.
C&R Racing – R. Sanders.
Edelbrock – Allen.
FK Rod Ends – Conner.
Forty9Designs.com – J. Purkey.
Fuel Safe – not awarded.
GRT Race Cars – Allen.
Hooker Harness – Gallardo.
JRi Shocks – Smith.
KEVKO Oil Pans & Components – J. Scott.
Keyser Manufacturing – Hilsabeck.
Marsh Racing Wheels – Duvall.
Mesilla Valley Transportation – Siebert.
MSD Ignition – R. Sanders, VanderBeek.
PBM Performance Products – R. Sanders.
Power Lift Racing Products – Wasmund.
Real Racing Wheels – not awarded.
Sybesma Graphics – R. Sanders.
VP Racing Fuels – R. Sanders.
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USMTS OFFICIAL SPONSORS: American Racer Racing Tires, AMP Energy, Casey’s General Stores, Chix Gear, COMP Cams, Day Motor Sports, Farm Boy BBQ Sauce, Intercomp, KEVKO Oil Pans & Components, MSD, Nitroquest Media Group, RACEceiver, RacinDirt.com, Snickers, SpiderWeb Modular Storage Solutions, Swan Energy, VP Racing Fuels.
USMTS PARTICIPATING SPONSORS: Arizona Sport Shirts, ASi Racewear, BRODIX Cylinder Heads, Double H Bands, ElbowsUp.com, Erson Cams, Integra Racing Shocks & Springs, Major League Bowhunter, Mesilla Valley Transportation, New Vision Graphics, Olympic Fire Protection, Penn Transport, Road Runner Crane, Road Runner Trucking, S&S Fishing & Rental, United Cellular Services.
USMTS CONTINGENCY SPONSORS: AFCO Racing Products, Bell Racing Helmets, Beyea Custom Headers, Brass Monkey Racing Products, C&R Racing, CPD Racing Tools, Edelbrock, Fast Shafts, FK Rod Ends, Forty9 Designs, Fuel Safe, Genesis Racing Shocks, GRT Race Cars, Hooker Harness, JRi Shocks, Keyser Manufacturing, KSE Racing Products, Marsh Racing Wheels, PBM Performance Products, Power Lift Racing Products, Quarter Master, Real Racing Wheels, Sybesma Graphics, Tiger Rear Ends.