Eldora recap, Columbus preview

MIDGETS GEAR UP FOR COLUMBUS RETURN STRATTON BLITZES "4-CROWN" FIELD The USAC National Midget Car Series is preparing for its long-awaited return to the Columbus (Ohio) Motor Speedway October 8 and series point leader Josh Wise...

MIDGETS GEAR UP FOR COLUMBUS RETURN
STRATTON BLITZES "4-CROWN" FIELD

The USAC National Midget Car Series is preparing for its long-awaited return to the Columbus (Ohio) Motor Speedway October 8 and series point leader Josh Wise hopes to continue his drive toward his initial USAC National driving title. The Columbus race will be the first for USAC's National Midget Series there in 27 years, although the Ford Focus Midgets have competed there the past two seasons.

Wise emerged from Saturday night's "4-Crown Nationals": at the Eldora Speedway in Rossburg, Ohio with a 112-point cushion over runner-up Jerry Coons Jr. after finishing second to Danny Stratton in the 25-lap feature event. Coons failed to finish the race, becoming to first driver to retire from the race.

Stratton, of Riverside, Calif., earned his first National feature win in the 25-lapper, leading the final 16 laps in his Lein Acres/Midstate Equipment Spike/Esslinger after passing Wise on lap 10. "There have been a lot of guys who have won a race here," said Stratton, nearly out of breath after climbing the fence on the front straightaway. "I can't believe I just won the '4-Crown Nationals.'

Trailing Stratton at the finish were Wise, Davey Ray, Dave Darland and Darren Hagen. Stratton, Friday's fastest qualifier, also won his heat race. Darland and Tom Hessert III also won heats and Ray won the semi.

Eric Wilkins of El Mirage, Ariz. suffered a broken collarbone and a broken finger in a flip during Saturday's semi.

USAC NATIONAL MIDGET CAR SERIES STANDINGS
1.-Josh Wise-934
2.-Jerry Coons, Jr.-822
3.-Brad Kuhn-653
4.-Ron Gregory-582
5.-Tom Hessert III-570
6.-Teddy Beach-533
7.-Darren Hagen-533
8.-Cole Carter-506
9.-Jay Drake-449
10.-Dave Darland-443

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Series USAC
Drivers Brad Kuhn , Dave Darland , Tom Hessert III , Jay Drake , Teddy Beach , Ron Gregory , Jerry Coons , Josh Wise , Davey Ray , Cole Carter , Darren Hagen , Danny Stratton , Jerry Coons Jr.