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Thorson Goes Down as 25th Knepper Memorial Champion

Tanner Thorson - Connor Hamilton photo
Tanner Thorson – Connor Hamilton photo

Belleville, IL – On a hammer-down, running above the cushion Belle-Clair Speedway, it would be Minden, Nevada’s own Tanner Thorson finding his way into victory lane at the conclusion of the 30 lap POWRi Lucas Oil National Midget Series main event honoring the legendary Arnie Knepper. Grabbing the lead ten laps in from Andy Malpocker, Thorson had to deflect a hard charging Austin Brown who was the first car to attempt running above the tall cushion on the board walls, moving all the way to the second position and challenging for the lead before the caution on lap 20.

Returning to racing, Thorson jumped to the extreme high side and began working his Keith Kunz/Curb-Agajanian Motorsports Toyota-powered Bullet above the curb. With 10 short laps left, teammate Spencer Bayston running in the third position closed in on Brown, but the action was slowed for the final caution with five to go. Returning to racing, Bayston over took Brown for second as Carson Macedo closed in on the duo, eventually finishing third at the finish. Brown took fourth, while early race leader Malpocker rounded out the top five.

“That was pretty tricky,” said Tanner Thorson. “I had no idea; I assume that Austin was running the top up there and my guys told me to get up there under the yellow. I’m beat right now. I’ve been holding my breath since the two yellows to go. I just can’t thank these guys enough.”

“This is not a typical Belle-Clair Speedway,” explained Spencer Bayston. “This is elbows up about as bad as it gets. That was a lot of fun. I don’t know if Keith and Pete enjoyed watching that, but they gave us really good racecars, obviously going one-two-three here. I was hoping I could get up and battle with Tanner. I think I was trying something that a little bit different than he was, but I just ran out of time.”

“The track was just really different than normal,” Carson Macedo said. “You had to get up and get above the cushion like that. This place really put on some good racing tonight. Pretty awesome to see KKM one-two-three. Hopefully tomorrow night we’ll be the same.”

Midgets

Speedway Motors Heat Race Winners: Heat 1: 97 – SPENCER BAYSTON, Heat 2: 5C – COLTEN COTTLE, Heat 3: 91 – DERECK KING, Heat 4: 67 – TANNER THORSON

Semi Feature Winner: 71 – RYAN ROBINSON

Great Clips Feature Winner: 67 – TANNER THORSON

POWRi Lucas Oil National Midget Series Feature Results (30 laps):
1. 67 – TANNER THORSON 2. 97 – SPENCER BAYSTON 3. 71K – CARSON MACEDO 4. 7 – AUSTIN BROWN 5. 22 – ANDY MALPOCKER 6. 5X – JUSTIN PECK 7. 27 – TUCKER KLAASMEYER 8. 91 – DERECK KING 9. 5D – ZACH DAUM 10. 1T – TONY RONEY 11. 3N – JAKE NEUMAN 12. 71 – RYAN ROBINSON 13. 9K – KYLE SCHUETT 14. 67K – HOLLY SHELTON 15. 35 – TYLER ROBBINS 16. 86J – DANNY MEYER 17. 05 – BRAD LOYET 18. 5C – COLTEN COTTLE 19. 50 – DANIEL ADLER 20. 57D – DANIEL ROBINSON 21. 28 – KORY SCHUDY 22. 3 – ANDREW FELKER 23. 5 – DANNY FRYE

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