INSTANT REPLAY: 4TH ANNUAL BELLEVILLE MIDGET NATIONALS - 1981 by Paul Haase BELLEVILLE, Kan. (July 13, 2001) - In one of the closest races in the Belleville Midget Nationals history, Mike Gregg held off a charging Ron 'Sleepy' Tripp to take the...
INSTANT REPLAY: 4TH ANNUAL BELLEVILLE MIDGET NATIONALS - 1981
by Paul Haase
BELLEVILLE, Kan. (July 13, 2001) - In one of the closest races in the Belleville Midget Nationals history, Mike Gregg held off a charging Ron 'Sleepy' Tripp to take the checkered by half a car length. About halfway through Saturday's 30-lap main, Tripp caught up with Gregg, who had been leading the race in fine fashion, with two-time defending champion Stan Fox right on their push bars.
On the final lap all three got caught up in a group of slower cars. Gregg got caught high and Tripp used the low groove to get past him. Coming out of the fourth turn, Gregg and Tripp were still being held back by the slower cars but the high groove group was running just a little faster and Gregg was able to take Tripp right at the flagstand.
In the preliminaries, the fast times were turned in by Tripp, winning Thursday's time trials, followed closely by Gene Brown. Gregg took Thursday's trophy dash.
Thursday's final was won by Brian Renshaw, followed by the hot-running Steve Troxell, Jon Rahe, Gary Staggers and John Zerbe.
Fox dominated Friday's events by taking quick time, winning his heat race and taking the checkered flag in the main event.
Quick times were the rule Friday as Fox, Bruce Field and Casey Slocum were all under the 20-second mark.
Some of the other top names and finishers in the Friday main included Arizona's Mark Passerrelli, Colorado's Randy Roberts, Bobby Fix and Steve Newman.
In Saturday's events, Zerbe captured the semi-main, Jack Yeley took the consolation with Rod Ullery, Gary Bell, Dave Strickland Jr. and Gregg taking their heats.
The championship had only one yellow flag when Slocum spun in the back stretch, with the rest of the race run under the green.
4th Annual Belleville Midget Nationals - 1980 Top 3 finishers:
1. Mike Gregg
2. Ron 'Sleepy' Tripp
3. Stan Fox
Reserved tickets for the 24th Annual Belleville Midget Nationals presented by WhoWon.com are available by calling (785) 527-5179, 9 a.m. to 4 p.m., Monday through Friday, or by logging onto the Belleville High Banks Web site.