USAR: Indianapolis (IRP): Northern Division race report

Ross stays perfect in Indiana. Clermont, IN (June 23, 2002)-- Brian Ross made it"four for four" in Indiana, dominating the Kroger 250 presented by Lucas Oil Saturday night at Indianapolis Raceway Park. Ross won his fourth USAR Hooters ProCup ...

Ross stays perfect in Indiana.

Clermont, IN (June 23, 2002)-- Brian Ross made it"four for four" in Indiana, dominating the Kroger 250 presented by Lucas Oil Saturday night at Indianapolis Raceway Park. Ross won his fourth USAR Hooters ProCup Series race this season, all in the state of Indiana with other wins coming at the Winchester, Salem and Illiana racetracks.

"We obviously had a very good car here tonight," Ross said."We worked all day in practice and got the car better all day long. The guys on the crew did a great job."

Ross outdistanced Jay Fogleman for the win on a sprint to the finish with 21 laps remaining. Rookie Jimmy Burns enjoyed his best career finish in the Series coming home a solid third. Eric Corbett finished in fourth and Forrest Urban, Jr. completed the top-five.

Jay Fogleman enjoyed his best run of the season since finishing second at Jennerstown in April and, according to him, it couldn't have come at a better time.

"We ran a Southern Division race last week and finished in the top-five," said Fogleman."We have had terrible luck up here the past couple of races and we finally put everything together tonight. Brian (Ross) had a strong car but we were glad to run well in front of our sponsor Lucas Oil who was here tonight."

Burns improved from his qualifying position of 21st to his first podium finish of the season and hopefully, according to Burns, the first of many more to come.

"I would have to say that our finish came from experience, patience and a little bit of luck," said Burns."We were fortunate to have Jeff Spraker on our team as crew chief for this race and he helped us a bunch. He has a lot of experience at this track and he helped us get ready for the race. The team was great and hopefully we can use this momentum to carry us through the rest of the season."

The race was slowed seven times by caution with two red flags given to the field to transport drivers to the on-site care center for heat related problems.

Justin Ely, Neil Gacom, Robbie Ferguson and Roger Blackstock were all treated and released during the night.

"It was one of the hottest times I have ever driven a race car," added Jimmy Burns."I have blisters on my feet."

Most cautions were single car incidents during the race with a pair of drivers escaping injury in their respective incidents.

On lap 183 Danny Sammons had a tire go down and he made hard contact with the turn one wall. On lap 221 John Kinder brought out the final caution of the night when he and Eric Corbett made contact on the backstretch, sending Kinder hard into the outside wall entering turn three. Corbett was assessed a one-lap penalty for rough driving but managed to finish fourth to keep his string of top-five finishes alive while running a limited schedule.

Fogleman won the Sunoco Pole Award by leading qualifying for the first time this season. Ross also collected an extra $2,500 by winning the Lucas Oil Products Halfway Leader, Miller Lite Rookie of the Race, and Southern Pride Lap Leader Awards. John Gaunt and Jeremiah Kuntz each advanced 22 positions during the race to share the W.J. Plemons Investments Hard Charger Award.

Ross leaves Indiana with a 188-point lead over Jeff Agnew. Mardy Lindley remains in third, with Fogleman and Rondeau completing the top-five.

NEWS & NOTES

* Two drivers failed to qualify for the Kroger 250 presented by Lucas Oil. Jeff Oakley suffered mechanical problems before qualifying and Kris Limerick was only 35th fastest in qualifying.

* This race was the second of the season for Philip Rondeau and his sponsor Foxwoods Casino. The partnership is working to raise money and awareness of Racing Against Cancer. The casino is matching the winnings Rondeau collects each race and donating the money to the fight against a disease that has affected Rondeau personally.

* Charlie Ford suffered mechanical problems and finished 31st in his first race of the year in his new Dodge Intrepid.

* Bill Plemons, Jr., John Kinder, Mario Gosselin and Karen Schultz were all Southern Division drivers who entered the race.

* Donnie Hill, who won a Series race last season at Winchester Speedway, made his first start of the season Saturday night. He was collected in an early-race accident and finished 34th.

-usar-

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Series Stock car
Drivers Brian Ross , Mario Gosselin , Jeff Spraker , John Gaunt , Jeff Agnew