WM: Phoenix Copper World report

Yeley Last-Lap Victor in "Copper World" Midgets Defending USAC Midget "Copper World Classic" champ J.J. Yeley used a pair of slower cars to make the winning move and defend his 2004 triumph in Sunday's 25-lap "Fast Signs 25," part...

Yeley Last-Lap Victor in "Copper World" Midgets

Defending USAC Midget "Copper World Classic" champ J.J. Yeley used a pair of slower cars to make the winning move and defend his 2004 triumph in Sunday's 25-lap "Fast Signs 25," part of the 28th Annual "Copper World Classic" at Phoenix International Raceway in Avondale, Ariz. The event afforded points toward the National and Western Midget Car Series championships.

Yeley's led only the final lap of the contest in his ASE/Ford Beast/Pink Ford, making a bold move in traffic to beat Jay Drake, Nine Racing teammate Bobby East, Dave Steele and Tracy Hines to the twin checkered flags.

"I knew I could make the move, even though there was a transition of the banking coming through there," said Yeley who will make limited USAC starts in 2005. "I've been in races where I've won and lost at the line, and I feel for Bobby. We just had the better luck today. I came here as a kid and watched how it was done."

Michael Lewis was the pacesetter during the first 15 laps of the caution-marred event. Lewis held advantages of over a second at times before being brought in during a caution period, which started following the completion of 15 laps, for removal of a loose rear sway bar.

East inherited the lead and held off Yeley and Drake until Turn 4 of the final lap. East went high to avoid running into slower traffic, while Yeley split the middle and Drake dived low. The final margin of victory was .049 seconds.

Lewis secured the pole for the event Saturday after practice times determined the field. Following his misfortune on lap 15, East took over the point from laps 16-24 before Yeley jumped ahead.

The USAC National Midget Car Series is idle until May 7 when it visits the Raceway @ Powercom Park in Beaver Dam, Wisc., while the Western Midget Car Series resumes action March 5 at Altamont Motorsports Park in Tracy, Calif.

USAC NATIONAL MIDGET CAR SERIES STANDINGS
1.-J.J. Yeley-63
2.-Bobby East-59
3.-Jay Drake-58
4.-Dave Steele-51
5.-Aaron Fike-45
6.-Tom Hessert III-42
7.-Josh Wise-39
8.-Ron Gregory-36
9.-Steve Paden-31
10.-Aaron Pierce-27

USAC WESTERN MIDGET CAR SERIES STANDINGS
1.-J.J. Yeley-63
2.-Bobby East-59
3.-Jay Drake-58
4.-Dave Steele-51
5.-Aaron Fike-45
6.-Tom Hessert III-42
7.-Josh Wise-39
8.-Ron Gregory-36
9.-Dallen McKenney-33
10.-Steve Paden-31

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Series USAC
Drivers Michael Lewis , J.J. Yeley , Tracy Hines , Dave Steele , Aaron Fike , Tom Hessert III , Jay Drake , Bobby East , Ron Gregory , Aaron Pierce , Steve Paden , Josh Wise