YOUNG GUN STENHOUSE OUT-BRAVES THE VETERANS FOR THUNDERHILL O'REILLY USCS WIN FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: SUMMERTOWN, TN - Ricky Stenhouse Jr. of Olive Branch, MS out-braved the veterans to take his third O'Reilly United...
YOUNG GUN STENHOUSE OUT-BRAVES THE VETERANS FOR THUNDERHILL O'REILLY USCS WIN
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
SUMMERTOWN, TN - Ricky Stenhouse Jr. of Olive Branch, MS out-braved the veterans to take his third O'Reilly United Sprint Car Series win of the season Saturday night at Thunderhill Raceway. The 17-year-old SpeedMart Young Gun driving the Fast Effects J&J/Dynotech made a bold move with five laps to go to make the winning pass on veteran Mike Ward of Memphis, TN.
Ward took the lead at the start of the 30-lap feature from the outside front row, but the K&N Pole Award winner Stenhouse stayed glued to his rear nerf bar, as the lead pair weaved through heavy lapped traffic around the ¼-mile high-banked clay oval. Stenhouse made several moves to challenge for the lead, but Ward used his experience to keep the youngster behind him.
On lap 20, Ward and Stenhouse came up on a lapped car in turn three. Stenhouse committed to the inside, and tried to use the lapper as a pick to take the lead from Ward. But Ward went where no other driver dared to go, and took the high road in the loose dirt to pass the lapped car.
Before Stenhouse could make the pass for the lead, Ward nailed the throttle and blasted off the fourth turn trailing a big rooster tail of wet clay behind him to remain in the lead. Stenhouse kept working the drier bottom of the track, driving deeper and deeper in the turn each lap, and finally got the bite and momentum he needed to pass Ward coming off the fourth turn on lap 26.
The O'Reilly USCS National point leader Kenny Adams of Malabar, FL rode most of the race in the third spot, waiting in the wings while Ward and Stenhouse battled wheel-to-wheel for the lead. Once Stenhouse passed Ward for the lead, the "Malabar Missile" went to work on Ward for the runner-up spot, and made the pass before the checkered flag.
Adams finished second in the Milk Movers, Inc./Goodson Farms Shaw/Ott to keep pace with Stenhouse in the O'Reilly USCS Mid-South Thunder Tour regional point standings. Stenhouse holds an eight-point lead over Adams.
Ward had to settle for third spot in the AMC Maxim/McCarver, and 19-year-old Danny Martin Jr. of Sarasota, FL made a late-race charge after starting tenth to finish fourth in the Martin Structures, Inc. Schnee/ZRE. Another SpeedMart Young Gun, 15-year-old Hunter Schuerenberg of Sikeston, MO was fifth in the Minor's Harley-Davidson Maxim/Foxco.
The defending and four-time O'Reilly USCS National Champion Terry Gray of Bartlett, TN was sixth in the C&B Mushrooms/Wendy's Maxim/Wesmar, and Mike McElya of Bartlett, TN finished seventh in the Pyles Paving J&J/Sikes. The 1999 O'Reilly USCS National Champion Marshall Skinner of West Memphis, AR took the eighth spot in the Parts Plus Maxim/Ott.
Ernie Ainsworth of Bartlett, TN drove the H&H Enterprises/TMI Trailers of W. Memphis, AR to a ninth-place finish, and 18-year-old Ryan Myers of Eldorado, OH rounded out the top ten in the Garrett-Myers Farms Domelt/Garrett-Myers.
The Robison Racing Products Rookie of the Race was 19-year-old Bryn Gohn of Malabar, FL with an 11th-place finish in the Milk Movers, Inc./Goodson Farms Shaw/Ott, and another rookie, 16-year-old Matt Tiffany of Daytona Beach, FL was the Huggins Cams Hard Charger of the Race after starting 22nd and finishing 14th in the Independent Printing Shaw/Ott.
Schuerenberg won the six-lap Air Flow Research Power Dash, and Stenhouse won the Engler Machine and Tool first ten-lap heat race. Ward took the win in the ButlerBuilt second ten-lap heat race, and Gohn won the Koolbeans Trophies third ten-lap heat race. Mike Senecal of Palmetto, FL won the 12-lap B-Main in the Rodeway Inn Maxim/Humphrey.
The next two events for the O'Reilly USCS National Outlaw Thunder Tour and the Carolina Thunder Tour will be on Friday night, July 8 at Riverside Speedway in Travelers Rest, SC and on Saturday night, July 9 at I-20 Speedway in Batesburg, SC.