Austin McCarl Dominates for First Knoxville Triumph in Season Opener!

Austin McCarl Dominates for First Knoxville Triumph in Season Opener!

Austin McCarl Dominates for First Knoxville Triumph in Season Opener!

Clint Garner Grabs Win #34 in 360’s, Devin Kline Tops 305’s

by Bill Wright

KNOXVILLE, Iowa (April 21, 2018) – Austin McCarl drove the TKS Motorsports #2KS to a dominating win in the PellaMotors.com/Kraig Ford Season Opener at the Knoxville Raceway Saturday night! After several years of trying, it was the Altoona, Iowa native’s first career win at the famous half-mile, and he left no doubt as he collected $4,000 for his win.

McCarl shot out in convincing fashion to start the 20-lap 410 feature event to lead Brooke Tatnell, Jamie Ball, Justin Henderson and RJ Johnson in the early going. McCarl entered lapped traffic on the fifth lap, and had opened up a 2.6 second lead on Tatnell. Two laps later, he had lapped up to twelfth place just past the halfway mark, he was lapping the tenth place car of Davey Heskin, with several lapped cars between himself and Tatnell.

Henderson slide by Ball for third, before Heskin tipped over in turn two, bringing a red flag. The restart saw Austin leading Tatnell, Henderson, Ball and Terry McCarl back to green. Terry would take fourth from Ball, while on lap sixteen, contact between Ball and Tasker Phillips sent the former upside down.

Though Tatnell made slide attempts on both that restart, and one with two to go for AJ Moeller, who suffered a flat right rear tire, they were to no avail. Austin McCarl would pull away and celebrate his first win here. Tatnell followed him to finish a steady second, while Terry McCarl charged up to third, followed by hard-charger, Wayne Johnson and Matt Juhl, who claimed fifth on the last lap. Tasker Phillips, Henderson, Heskin, RJ Johnson and Rager Phillips rounded out the top ten. Lynton Jeffrey would set quick time over the field, before missing his heat to attend his daughter’s prom walk-through. Austin McCarl, Terry McCarl and Moeller won heat races.

“I’ve been so close a couple of times, and I felt like I let one slip away last year,” said an emotional Austin McCarl in Victory Lane. “What a way to start the year! We got to traffic, and things got hairy with a couple of guys. I’ve watched enough races to know they can be won or lost in traffic. I did as well as I could, and the sprint car gods made me earn that one! We had reds and yellows…I just wanted Doug (Clark) to throw the checkers.”

Jon Agan shot from his starting spot in the third row to claim an early lead in the 18-lap 360 feature event over Matt Moro, Clint Garner and Christian Bowman. Jamie Ball would grab fifth from Calvin Landis on lap five. Veteran Tom Lenz would tip over in turn two six laps in to bring the red.

Agan led the field back to green, with Moro taking a shot at him with a slide job. The momentum lost by Moro, allowed Garner to puonce on the second spot. Meanwhile, Ball shot by Bowman into fourth. Agan’s good run came to an end when he slowed and went pitside on lap eight. Lee Grosz would spin on the back chute ten laps in, to bring out the final caution.

Garner would pull away the last eight laps, securing his 34th 360 win here by 5.3 seconds ahead of Ball, who passed Moro late in the going. Moro was third, followed by Landis and hard-charger, Seth Bergman. Bowman, Matt Cov”ington, Ryan Giles, Sawyer Phillips and Skylar Gee completed the top ten. Ball registered quick time over the 26-car field, while Joe Beaver, Tyler Groenendyk and Gee won heat races.

“Maybe I should have took it a little easier in the heat race,” said Garner in Victory Lane of a near crash in his heat. “I’m glad we didn’t crash there. It felt like we were about to go upside down. To come out and win the feature…that’s too cool. This is the only exercise I’ve done this year…I’ve been working and pushing snow.”

Before a lap could be completed in the 15-lap 305 main event, defending track champion, Eric Bridger got over the turn three cushion and ended upside down. He was unhurt. Devin Kline shot to the point from outside row two when the green fell for keeps, followed by rookie Jayce Jenkins and Chase Young.

Kelby Watt made his presence felt, grabbing third on lap two, while Ryan Leavitt followed him into fourth a lap later. Kline had built a three-second lead and was into lapped traffic by the seventh circuit. Watt and Leavitt waged a good battle for third behind him. The only caution would come with three laps to go, when Kevin Hetrick stopped inside turns three and four.

Kline would pull away from the field, winning his 11th career 305 feature, ahead of Watt, who grabbed second, and Leavitt. Jenkins ran a steady race to come home fourth, ahead of Matthew Stelzer. Hard-charger Evan Epperson, Chase Young, Mike Mayberry, Joe Simbro and Mike Ayers rounded out the top ten. Hetrick registered quick time, while Simbro and Bridger won heats.

“These young kids keep coming up and giving everyone a run for their money,” said Kline in Victory Lane. “Last year (in the 360’s) definitely helped, and it’s fun to be racing here no matter the class. I couldn’t have asked for a better night. Things have slowed down for me a little, and I think my reaction time is much better.”

Join us next week, Saturday, April 28, for Town Crier Night featuring the 410, 360 and 305 sprint cars! For more information, visit www.KnoxvilleRaceway.com!

410 Results

Time Trials (Qualifying Order), 2 laps: 1. 12, Lynton Jeffrey, Sydney, NSW, Aust. (2), 15.246; 2. 24, Terry McCarl, Altoona, IA (5), 15.268; 3. 09, Matt Juhl, Tea, SD (1), 15.307; 4. 55, Brooke Tatnell, Sans Souci, NSW, Aust. (13), 15.380; 5. 5J, Jamie Ball, Knoxville, IA (6), 15.401; 6. 83, Justin Henderson, Tea, SD (9), 15.409; 7. 71A, RJ Johnson, Tampa, FL (3), 15.483; 8. 56N, Davey Heskin, St. Michael, MN (17), 15.495; 9. 20, AJ Moeller, Rockwell City, IA (20), 15.513; 10. 7W, Tasker Phillips, Pleasantville, IA (8), 15.534; 11. 2C, Wayne Johnson, Oklahoma City, OK (7), 15.545; 12. 7, Carson McCarl, Altoona, IA (14), 15.609; 13. 2KS, Austin McCarl, Altoona, IA (21), 15.646; 14. 49, Josh Schneiderman, West Burlington, IA (19), 15.908; 15. 44, Chris Martin, Ankeny, IA (18), 15.917; 16. 4, Dakota Hendrickson, Omaha, NE (10), 15.943; 17. 9, Rager Phillips, Pleasantville, IA (4), 15.945; 18. 75, Glen Saville, Razorback, NSW, Aust. (12), 16.317; 19. 19, Bob Weuve, Newton, IA (15), 16.715; 20. 15, Bobby Mincer, Burlington, IA (16), 17.893; 21. 85, Chase Wanner, Agency, IA (11), 18.375; 22. 28, Scott Bogucki, McLaren Vale, SA, Aust. (22), NT.

Heat one (started), 8 Laps, 2:09.8: 1. Austin McCarl (2); 2. RJ Johnson (4); 3. Brooke Tatnell (5); 4. Tasker Phillips (3); 5. Dakota Hendrickson (1); 6. Bob Weuve (6) DNS – Lynton Jeffrey, Scott Bogucki

Heat two (started), 8 Laps, 2:14.0: 1. Terry McCarl (6); 2. Josh Schneiderman (2); 3. Wayne Johnson (3); 4. Rager Phillips (1); 5. Davey Heskin (4); 6. Jamie Ball (5); 7. Bobby Mincer (7);

Heat three (started), 8 Laps, 2:16.6: 1. AJ Moeller (4); 2. Carson McCarl (1); 3. Matt Juhl (6); 4. Chris Martin (2); 5. Justin Henderson (3); 6. Chase Wanner (5) DNS – Glen Saville

A Main (started), 20 Laps, NT: 1. Austin McCarl (1); 2. Brooke Tatnell (6); 3. Terry McCarl (8); 4. Wayne Johnson (11); 5. Matt Juhl (7); 6. Tasker Phillips (12); 7. Justin Henderson (3); 8. Davey Heskin (10); 9. RJ Johnson (5); 10. Rager Phillips (15); 11. Carson McCarl (9); 12. Josh Schneiderman (13); 13. Chris Martin (14); 14. Lynton Jeffrey (18); 15. Bob Weuve (17); 16. Glen Saville (20); 17. AJ Moeller (4); 18. Jamie Ball (2); 19. Dakota Hendrickson (16); 20. Bobby Mincer (19) DNS – Chase Wanner, Scott Bogucki. Lap Leader: A. McCarl 1-20. Hard-charger: W. Johnson.

360 RESULTS

Time Trials (Qualifying Order), 2 laps: 1. 5J, Jamie Ball, Knoxville, IA (22), 16.206; 2. 21, Robbie Price, Cobble Hill, BC, Can. (8), 16.223; 3. 55, McKenna Haase, Des Moines, IA (7), 16.308; 4. 9, Ryan Giles, Grimes, IA (10), 16.387; 5. 2M, Matt Moro, Polk City, IA (6), 16.486; 6. 4, Jon Agan, Knoxville, IA (21), 16.544; 7. 3P, Sawyer Phillips, Pleasantville, IA (3), 16.546; 8. 40, Clint Garner, Sioux Falls, SD (20), 16.549; 9. 15, Christian Bowman, Altoona, IA (13), 16.558; 10. 70, Calvin Landis, Knoxville, IA (14), 16.608; 11. 8L, Tom Lenz, Marion, IA (18), 16.627; 12. 4J, Lee Grosz, Harwood, ND (2), 16.630; 13. 53, Joe Beaver, Knoxville, IA (19), 16.637; 14. 95, Matt Covington, Glenpool, OK (12), 16.650; 15. 99, Skylar Gee, Leduc, ALB, Can. (15), 16.664; 16. 23, Seth Bergman, Snohomish, WA (23), 16.679; 17. 17, Tyler Groenendyk, Oskaloosa, IA (1), 16.686; 18. 25, Dylan Peterson, Hartford, SD (25), 16.692; 19. 40C, Cody Wehrle, Burlington, IA (5), 16.707; 20. 76, Brad Comegys, Bondurant, IA (11), 16.709; 21. 6, Mitchell Alexander, Knoxville, IA (26), 16.818; 22. 9N, Wade Nygaard, Grand Forks, ND (24), 16.850; 23. 2D, Dusty Ballenger, Harrisburg, SD (9), 17.079; 24. 47, Brant O’Banion, Sioux Falls, SD (16), 17.121; 25. 3, Nate Van Haaften, Otley, IA (17), 17.292; 26. 24N, Nathan Mills, Bondurant, IA (4), 18.943.

Heat one (started), 7 Laps, 1:59.2: 1. Joe Beaver (2); 2. Calvin Landis (3); 3. Seth Bergman (1); 4. Jamie Ball (6); 5. Sawyer Phillips (4); 6. Wade Nygaard (8); 7. Ryan Giles (5); 8. Nate Van Haaften (9); 9. Cody Wehrle (7)

Heat two (started), 7 Laps, 2:03.3: 1. Tyler Groenendyk (1); 2. Matt Covington (2); 3. Clint Garner (4); 4. Robbie Price (6); 5. Tom Lenz (3); 6. Matt Moro (5); 7. Dusty Ballenger (8); 8. Brad Comegys (7); 9. Nathan Mills (9)

Heat three (started), 7 Laps, 2:01.5: 1. Skylar Gee (2); 2. Dylan Peterson (1); 3. Christian Bowman (4); 4. Jon Agan (5); 5. Lee Grosz (3); 6. McKenna Haase (6); 7. Mitchell Alexander (7); 8. Brant O’Banion (8)

A main (started), 18 Laps, NT: 1. Clint Garner (4); 2. Jamie Ball (8); 3. Matt Moro (1); 4. Calvin Landis (3); 5. Seth Bergman (17); 6. Christian Bowman (2); 7. Matt Covington (13); 8. Ryan Giles (9); 9. Sawyer Phillips (10); 10. Skylar Gee (12); 11. Joe Beaver (11); 12. Robbie Price (7); 13. Dylan Peterson (16); 14. McKenna Haase (6); 15. Tyler Groenendyk (14); 16. Wade Nygaard (19); 17. Mitchell Alexander (20); 18. Nate Van Haaften (25); 19. Dusty Ballenger (22); 20. Brad Comegys (21); 21. Cody Wehrle (23); 22. Nathan Mills (26); 23. Lee Grosz (18); 24. Jon Agan (5); 25. Tom Lenz (15); 26. Brant O’Banion (24). Lap Leaders: Agan 1-7, Garner 8-18. Hard-charger: Bergman.

305 Results

Time Trials (Group Qualifying): 1. 35, Kevin Hetrick, Gladstone, IL (3), 17.329; 2. 22, Ryan Leavitt, Knoxville, IA (1), 17.371; 3. 1K, Kelby Watt, Adel, IA (2), 17.439; 4. 5C, Devin Kline, Knoxville, IA (8), 17.536; 5. 0, Mike Mayberry, Fremont, IA (13), 17.700; 6. 81E, Eric Bridger, Winterset, IA (7), 17.787; 7. 56, Joe Simbro, Pleasantville, IA (11), 18.000; 8. 26, Chase Young, Des Moines, IA (10), 18.318; 9. 33, Jayce Jenkins, Colfax, IA (14), 18.513; 10. 41, Jeff Wilke, Genoa, IL (6), 18.802; 11. 50, Mike Ayers, St. Charles, IA (4), 18.860; 12. 48D, Dallas Mendenhall, Unionville, MO (17), 19.130; 13. 41D, Dan Henning, Columbia, IA (5), 19.628; 14. 64C, Casey Greubel, Lacona, IA (15), 20.171; 15. 67, Jon Hughes, Knoxville, IA (12), NT; 16. 21, Evan Epperson, Muscatine, IA (16), NT; 17. DQ (Light at Scales) – 99, Matthew Stelzer, Papillion, NE (9).

Heat one (started), 6 Laps, 1:52.3: 1. Joe Simbro (2); 2. Mike Mayberry (3); 3. Kelby Watt (4); 4. Jayce Jenkins (1); 5. Matthew Stelzer (6); 6. Mike Ayers (7); 7. Dan Henning (5) DNS – Kevin Hetrick, Jon Hughes

Heat two (started), 6 Laps, 1:47.8: 1. Eric Bridger (2); 2. Ryan Leavitt (4); 3. Devin Kline (5); 4. Dallas Mendenhall (1); 5. Chase Young (3); 6. Casey Greubel (7); 7. Evan Epperson (6) DNS – Jeff Wilke

A Main (started), 15 Laps, NT: 1. Devin Kline (4); 2. Kelby Watt (7); 3. Ryan Leavitt (8); 4. Jayce Jenkins (2); 5. Matthew Stelzer (10); 6. Evan Epperson (12); 7. Chase Young (1); 8. Mike Mayberry (5); 9. Joe Simbro (3); 10. Mike Ayers (14); 11. Dallas Mendenhall (9); 12. Casey Greubel (11); 13. Kevin Hetrick (15); 14. Dan Henning (13); 15. Eric Bridger (6) DNS – Jon Hughes, Jeff Wilke. Lap Leader: Kline 1-15. Hard-charger: Epperson.

 

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