Illinois wrapup, Nazareth preview

Brian Tyler of Parma, Mich. stormed from 21st starting position to take the lead on the 48th lap of Saturday's "Tony Bettenhausen 100" at the Illinois State Fairgrounds and went on to win the USAC Weld Racing Silver Crown race by...

Brian Tyler of Parma, Mich. stormed from 21st starting position to take the lead on the 48th lap of Saturday's "Tony Bettenhausen 100" at the Illinois State Fairgrounds and went on to win the USAC Weld Racing Silver Crown race by three seconds over runner-up Rich Tobias, Jr.

Tyler will be among top threats for victory in this weekend's "Bully Hill Vineyards 100" at the Nazareth (Pa.) Speedway, part of the track's Firestone Indy 225 weekend, which includes the Indy Racing League and all three USAC National racing series. A 100-mile Weld Racing Silver Crown race precedes Sunday's IRL Firestone Indy 225.

Tyler won the "qualifying race" which preceded the Springfield 100-miler, then led the final 53 miles of the race in his Dellen Automotive Family/Utility Peterbuilt Beast/Chevy. The win was the eighth of his Silver Crown career and his second this season as he solidified his fourth-place point ranking.

"Everytime we go out on dirt we keep getting better and better," said Tyler in victory lane. "I'm not worried about the points, I'm here to win and the points will take care of themselves. I knew on the lap 48 restart if I was going to get Tobias it would be on the front stretch. I got a really good start and made a great entry into turn one."

Trailing Tyler and Tobias at the checkered flag was pole starter Jerry Coons, Jr., who had finished second at Springfield the last three years!

John Heydenriech and Matt Westfall rounded out the "top-five" at the finish, while series point leader Dave Steele was seventh and takes a 77-point lead into this weekend's event at Nazareth.

Jay Drake's bid for a record-tying fourth consecutive series victory fell short as he finished 14th, one lap in arrears after starting 10th.

Only two yellows slowed the Springfield event, for a blown engine and a blown tire.

Friday's Nazareth timetable has USAC practice starting at 8:30 am. The Midgets qualify starting at 4:10 pm and the Sprint cars begin qualifying at 4:45. On Saturday, a USAC Silver Crown practice at 8 am is followed by Silver Crown qualifying at 10:15 am. Sprint and Midget warm-ups start at 12:50 pm. The 30-mile Midget feature is slated for 2 pm, followed by the 30-mile Sprint feature at 3:45 and a 15-mile Silver Crown "qualifying race" is set for 4:45.

Sunday's 100-mile "Bully Hill Vineyards 100" Weld Racing Silver Crown race gets the green flag at 11:30 am, following at 9:30-10 warm-up.

WELD RACING USAC SILVER CROWN SERIES STANDINGS
1.-Dave Steele-433
2.-Jason McCord-356
3.-Bud Kaeding-351
4.-Brian Tyler-340
5.-Dave Darland-300
6.-Jay Drake-291
7.-Bobby East-243
8.-John Heydenreich-241
9.-Aaron Pierce-230
10.-Boston Reid-213

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Series USAC
Drivers Dave Darland , Dave Steele , Brian Tyler , Bud Kaeding , Jay Drake , Bobby East , John Heydenreich , Matt Westfall , Jason McCord , Aaron Pierce , Jerry Coons , Boston Reid , Tony Bettenhausen