Tyler on the spot at Springfield

Brian Tyler of Parma, Mich. holds a 41-point lead over Brad Noffsinger going into Saturday's "Tony Bettenhausen 100" at the Illinois State Fairgrounds, round eight of this year's USAC Coors Light Silver Bullet Series. He hopes to improve...

Brian Tyler of Parma, Mich. holds a 41-point lead over Brad Noffsinger going into Saturday's "Tony Bettenhausen 100" at the Illinois State Fairgrounds, round eight of this year's USAC Coors Light Silver Bullet Series. He hopes to improve on last year's eighth-place Springfield finish in his Kroger/Pringles/Sunny Delight Special. Sixty-six points are up for grabs in Saturday's race, so any one of the top-six in the standings has a mathematical change of emerging as the leader after the 100-miler. Tyler's competition will include 7-time Springfield winner Chuck Gurney of Livermore, Calif., who will sub for Jason Leffler Saturday, 3-time Springfield winner Jack Hewitt, defending champion Dave Darland, 1998 race winner Russ Gamester, 1992 winner and 3-time Silver Bullet Champion Jimmy Sills, USAC Sprint Car point leader Tony Elliott, Indianapolis 500 veterans J.J. Yeley, Johnny Parsons and Chet Fillip, plus a bevy of Illinois drivers, including Indianapolis 500 vet Donnie Beechler and Donnie Lehmann of Springfield, Terry Babb of Decatur, Randy Bateman and Bill Schemonia of Murphysboro and Craig Dori of Chicago. Robby Flock holds the 1-lap qualifying record of 120.048 mph set in 1996, while Hewitt holds the 100-mile race record of 106.920 set in 1987. Practice gets under way on the 1-mile dirt oval at 9 am, with qualifying starting at 10:30. A 15-mile "qualifying race" at 12:30 pm precedes the 1:30 green flag for the "Tony Bettenhausen 100." A field of 30 cars will start.

<pre> USAC COORS LIGHT SILVER BULLET SERIES STANDINGS

1. Brian Tyler 302 2. Brad Noffsinger 261 3. Tracy Hines 258 4. Dave Darland 254 5. J.J. Yeley 242 6. Ryan Newman 242 7. Jason Leffler 237 8. John heydenreich 221 9. Russ Gamester 197 10. Paul White 187

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Series USAC
Drivers Jason Leffler , Ryan Newman , Donnie Beechler , Dave Darland , J.J. Yeley , Tracy Hines , Jack Hewitt , Brian Tyler , Tony Elliott , Chet Fillip , Brad Noffsinger , Johnny Parsons , Russ Gamester , Paul White , Robby Flock , Donnie Lehmann , Tony Bettenhausen , Randy Bateman