By David Reininger - Motorsport.com Phoenix, AZ (March 17, 2001) - Michael Lewis earned his second career USAC Midget victory after winning the midget division of the Pennzoil Copper World Classic at Phoenix International Raceway this...
By David Reininger - Motorsport.com
Phoenix, AZ (March 17, 2001) - Michael Lewis earned his second career USAC Midget victory after winning the midget division of the Pennzoil Copper World Classic at Phoenix International Raceway this afternoon.
"It's awesome, I don't know what to say," said Lewis, whose first midget victory came in June on the quarter-mile track at Anderson, IN.
Lewis led once, taking the lead from Kahne on lap 22.
"I tried to move early on, but I got shuffled back one car. I knew we had a strong car, the motor ran awesome, so I just waited for something to happen," Lewis said.
Kasey Kahne, Dave Darland, J. J. Yeley and Mike Bliss, all driving Steve Lewis-owned midgets, set the pace throughout the race, racing against each other and the eventual winner throughout the course of the 25 lap race.
"That's one thing about the Lewis team, they prepare every car the best they can and it's up to the driver to put the thing in the best position he can," said Darland. "When you have four cars out here and they're all fast, you know you're going to be running against your teammate along with a few other guys. Once you get out there racing, those teammates are just another car."
Kahne led three times for a total of 16 laps. A last lap attempt at unseating Lewis from the lead nearly put both drivers in the wall. "That last lap was pretty close," said Kahne. "I got a little run on Michael coming to the dogleg. I went to the bottom and we were both trying as hard as we could. We rubbed just a little bit, but that's racing. Michael kept going."
"Michael did a good job." Kahne and Darland, scored second and third respectively, were disqualified following a post race inspection. Both cars were found to be under the minimum weight.
A.J. Fike was credited with second, followed by J.J. Yeley, Aaron Fike and Jay Drake in fifth place.
In the Supermodified division, Davey Hamilton was the victor in the 25 lap race. Hamilton was running second on lap 14 when the leader, Troy Regier had his engine expire. Hamilton was followed across the finish line by Dave McNight Jr, Joey Payne, Scott Schmidt and Doug Saunier in fifth.
Lonnie Adamson, who ran out of fuel on the last lap, dropped three positions to finish sixth.