Springfield "Tony Bettenhausen 100" race story

Jack Hewitt of Troy, Ohio scored the 23rd victory of his USAC Coors Light Silver Bullet career Saturday afternoon in the "Tony Bettenhausen 100" at the Illinois State Fairgrounds. He trailed "rookie" Bud Kaeding until lap 86, then made a...

Jack Hewitt of Troy, Ohio scored the 23rd victory of his USAC Coors Light Silver Bullet career Saturday afternoon in the "Tony Bettenhausen 100" at the Illinois State Fairgrounds. He trailed "rookie" Bud Kaeding until lap 86, then made a bold pass going into turn one and held on the final 15 laps in his Utility Peterbilt/Print Express/Café Santa Fe Special. "This was one of those days when you had to slow down to go fast," said Hewitt after the 100-mile grind. "Bud is young and brave and was driving hard, but I just tried to be patient and look for the first opportunity to get around him. I decided I'd better get him when I could, because there might not be another chance." Hewitt put his win in perspective with his final comment: "I used to baby-sit for Bud." Kaeding earned the Oliver Trucking "Rookie of the Race" award for his second-place finish, narrowly beating Jay Drake to the checkered flag. Dave Darland and pole starter Tony Elliott rounded out the "top-five." The race was halted after four laps for Terry Pletch, who crashed into the inside guardrail after a three-car tangle on the backstretch. He was uninjured. The only other caution period came on lap eight when Randy Bateman hit the wall in turn one. He also escaped injury. Elliott led the first six laps before yielding to Kaeding, who admitted he had to back off late in the race to conserve tire wear. Three time series champion Jimmy Sills won the 15-lap "qualifying race" which preceded the 100-lap feature. Brian Tyler of Parma, Mich. continues to lead the series standings after finishing seventh in Saturday's race.

Tony Elliott is the defending champion of the next series event - the "DuQuoin Century" - at the DuQuoin (Ill.) State Fairgrounds on Labor Day, September 4. He will be trying to qualify for his 100th series start in the 100-mile race at the 1-mile dirt oval.

<pre> USAC COORS LIGHT SILVER BULLET SERIES STANDINGS

1. Brian Tyler 344 2. Dave Darland 305 3. Tracy Hines 294 4. Brad Noffsinger 280 5. John Heydenreich 260 6. Ryan Newman 251 7. J.J. Yeley 250 8. JasoN Leffler 237 9. Jack Hewitt 235 10.Jay Drake 223

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Series USAC
Drivers Ryan Newman , Dave Darland , J.J. Yeley , Tracy Hines , Jack Hewitt , Brian Tyler , Bud Kaeding , Tony Elliott , Jay Drake , John Heydenreich , Brad Noffsinger , Jimmy Sills , Tony Bettenhausen