WS: Season finale nets Hendrix the 2002 title

Western Sprint title is 3rd USAC title for Rick Hendrix. Stewart sweeps Irwindale & Las Vegas Sprint features. 2002 NASCAR Winston Cup Champion Tony Stewart of Rushville, Ind. recorded back-to-back 40-lap victories in the USAC Western Sprint Car...

Western Sprint title is 3rd USAC title for Rick Hendrix.
Stewart sweeps Irwindale & Las Vegas Sprint features.

2002 NASCAR Winston Cup Champion Tony Stewart of Rushville, Ind. recorded back-to-back 40-lap victories in the USAC Western Sprint Car Series finales Thursday and Saturday nights at Irwindale, Calif. and Las Vegas, Nev. respectively.

Driving the Western Speed/Coca-Cola Wesmar Chevy/Eagle, Stewart led all but the first two laps at Irwindale to beat Eric Butze, Scott Hansen, Rick Hendrix and Kahne. Butze was a half-lap in arrears at the checkered flag! Saturday night, Stewart passed Jeff Gardner on the 20th lap and led the rest of the way at the Las Vegas "Bullring" to beat Gardner, Tracy Hines, Brian McClish and Kevin Feeney. The Las Vegas victory gave him a "sweep" of that night's Sprint/Midget "doubleheader," his first such USAC "sweep" on pavement.

Rick Hendrix of Canyon Country, Calif. came from third place in the point standings on the final night to win the Western Sprint Car Championship from runner-up Scott Hansen and third-place Chad Nichols. Hendrix finished 12th at Las Vegas and finished with a three-point advantage over Hansen, who spun on the third lap of the race.

Hendrix nosed out Stewart for the fastest qualifying time at Irwindale but Stewart returned to post the fast time at Las Vegas.

This is the third USAC title for Hendrix, he previously won the 1998 USAC Western Midget Car Series championship and the 1992 USAC TQ Midget Car championship.



USAC WESTERN SPRINT CAR SERIES FINAL STANDINGS
1. Rick Hendrix 713
2. Scott Hansen 710
3. Chad Nichols 687
4. Todd Ellison 674
5. Tony Hunt 670
6. Brian McClish 655
7. Tim Barber 478
8. Mike Aaby, Jr. 474
9. Shauna Hogg 382
10. Bobby McMahan 364

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Series USAC
Drivers Tony Stewart , Tracy Hines , Eric Butze , Tim Barber , Tony Hunt , Rick Hendrix , Bobby McMahan , Scott Hansen