Austin McCarl Masters Traffic to Win Thriller at Knoxville!

Austin McCarl won a thriller at Knoxville Saturday

Austin McCarl won a thriller at Knoxville Saturday (submitted photo)

Aaron Reutzel Holds Them Off in 360’s; Mike Mayberry Takes Pro Sprints Win

by Bill Wright

KNOXVILLE, Iowa (May 28, 2022) – Austin McCarl made a number of thrilling moves in traffic to take a heartstopper Saturday on Vermeer Night at Knoxville Raceway! The win was worth $5,000 for the driver from Altoona, Iowa aboard the Country Builders Construction #88. Aaron Reutzel, who was one of the players in the 410 feature, won his second career 360 feature, and Mike Mayberry won for the second time this year and the fourth time in his career in the Pro Sprints presented by Pace Performance.

Kerry Madsen shot out to the early lead in the 20-lap 410 feature from the pole, ahead of McCarl, Reutzel, Ayrton Gennetten and Justin Henderson. On lap four, Reutzel attempted a slider on McCarl in turn four. Neither lifted, as they were mere inches from disaster. McCarl would keep his spot.

Madsen entered lapped traffic on lap seven, and McCarl was able to close at the halfway point. On lap 14, McCarl made a pair of thrilling moves in traffic in turn one to separate himself from a battle for the runner-up spot with Reutzel.

On lap 17, McCarl used the low side to reel in Madsen and use a lapper as a pick. He took the lead, and pulled away to his sixth career 410 win here. Madsen held onto second, ahead of Reutzel, Gennetten and Henderson. Lynton Jeffrey, Carson McCarl, JJ Hickle, hard-charger Sawyer Phillips and Matt Juhl completed the top ten. Henderson set quick time, while Gennetten, Carson McCarl and Jeffrey claimed heat race wins.

“I didn’t want to make mistakes, and put my car where I needed to,” said McCarl of his late race moves. “I want to give a shout out to Aaron Reutzel for not junking me in three and four there early in the race. It got a little hairy there. I wasn’t going to lift, and I knew he wasn’t going to either. That was actually pretty fun with him. Kerry Madsen and Aaron Reutzel are two of the top ten sprint car drivers in the world, and I have a lot of respect for those guys. I just wanted to win so bad. (The track) was three lanes there. Just a big shout out to the Dunkin’s.”

Reutzel was the car to beat, starting outside of row one for the 18-lap 360 main event. He led Terry McCarl, Jamie Ball, Clint Garner and Kaleb Johnson in the early going. McCarl would take a slider at the leader on lap two, but fell a bit short.

The leaders entered lapped traffic on the seventh circuit, before the third running Ball had a tire come apart on him, bringing caution on lap eight. Reutzel led McCarl, Garner, Johnson and Landis back to green. Chase Randall was on the move soon after, climbing to fifth by the time the leaders hit lapped traffic again on lap 13.

Ricky Montgomery tipped over in turn two with four laps to go, negating a Garner pass of McCarl for second. Montgomery was unhurt. Garner repeated his pass low in four, but could not chase down Reutzel, who raced to the checkers ahead of Garner, McCarl, Johnson and hard-charger Randall. Joe Beaver, Landis, Riley Goodno, Ryan Leavitt and Nate Mills completed the top ten. McCarl set quick time over the 360 field, while Johnson, Alex Vande Voort and Leavitt won heat races.

“I felt like the hardest part of the race was turns one and two,” said Reutzel in Victory Lane. “You’ve got Terry behind you, and you’ve got Garner. I guarantee whatever I chose (on the restarts), one chose the other (line) and the other chose something else. There were so many options going into one and two. It was a game of chess on the first lap, and I felt good later in traffic. With four to go, I felt I tried to give it away and jumped over the cushion. This feels good for our team.”

Tyler Groenendyk led the 15-lap Pro Sprints feature early ahead of Mike Mayberry, Scotty Johnson, Mike Johnston and Matthew Stelzer. Stelzer used the low side to gain fourth from Johnston on lap two. Josh Jones spun with two laps down, collecting JJ Beaver. Neither was injured, but Beaver was done.

Groenendyk led Mayberry, Johnson, Stelzer and Johnston back to green. Stelzer shot into the third spot, but the battle was on up front. On lap four, Mayberry used the middle of the track to gain a slim margin at the flag stand.

Mayberry pulled away from there and was never seriously challenged the rest of the way. Groenendyk held down second, ahead of Stelzer, Johnson and Johnston, who emerged in a good battle for fifth. Brandon Worthington, Eric Bridger, Matt Allen, Kade Higday and Jeff Wilke rounded out the top ten. Johnson set quick time, while Johnston and Higday were heat winners.

“Actually, I think I was a little bit better when (Groenendyk) was next to me,” said Mayberry in Victory Lane. “I’ve got to thank everyone on this car. I just kept thinking, ‘Don’t screw up, don’t screw up, don’t screw up. I guess I didn’t.”

Join us next Saturday, June 4, for McKay Group Insurance Night at Knoxville! The Casey’s Candy Dash for the kids, and the National Sprint Car Hall of Fame induction weekend festivities are all planned. All three sprint car divisions will be back in action, with the 410’s also compet! For more information, visit or check Knoxville Raceway’s Facebook and Twitter. For information on the National Sprint Car Hall of Fame & Museum, visit www.SprintCarHoF.com.

410 Results

Time Trials (Qualifying Order), 2 laps: 1. 7, Justin Henderson, Tea, SD (1), 15.627; 2. 8, Aaron Reutzel, Clute, TX (10), 15.700; 3. 2, Lynton Jeffrey, Sydney, NSW, Aust. (26), 15.708; 4. 25, JJ Hickle, Quilcene, WA (12), 15.803; 5. 88, Austin McCarl, Altoona, IA (23), 15.821; 6. 83JR, Kerry Madsen, St. Marys, NSW, Aust. (21), 15.860; 7. 3, Ayrton Gennetten, Gravois Mills, MO (9), 15.861; 8. 2KS, Ryan Giles, Grimes, IA (6), 15.901; 9. 20, AJ Moeller, Rockwell City, IA (3), 15.945; 10. 3P, Sawyer Phillips, Pleasantville, IA (11), 15.956; 11. 27, Carson McCarl, Altoona, IA (24), 15.972; 12. 09, Matt Juhl, Tea, SD (15), 16.034; 13. 49, Josh Schneiderman, West Burlington, IA (5), 16.075; 14. 44, Chris Martin, Ankeny, IA (14), 16.096; 15. 22, Riley Goodno, Knoxville, IA (8), 16.156; 16. 2M, Davey Heskin, St. Michael, MN (17), 16.239; 17. 56, Joe Simbro, Pleasantville, IA (2), 16.308; 18. 7TAZ, Tasker Phillips, Pleasantville, IA (27), 16.315; 19. 7W, Dustin Selvage, Indianola, IA (19), 16.316; 20. 21K, Thomas Kennedy, Winnipeg, MB, Can. (7), 16.317; 21. 5T, Presley Truedson, Kennedy, MN (13), 16.408; 22. 14T, Tim Estenson, Fargo, ND (22), 16.474; 23. 76, Nathan Mills, Bondurant, IA (18), 16.507; 24. 15, Bobby Mincer, Burlington, IA (25), 16.631; 25. 7B, Ben Brown, Marshall, MO (20), 16.749; 26. 12, Tyler Drueke, Eagle, NE (16), 16.815; 27. 9H, Landon Hansen, Newton, IA (4), 17.649

Heat one (started), 8 Laps, NT: 1. Ayrton Gennetten (4); 2. Justin Henderson (6); 3. Josh Schneiderman (2); 4. Davey Heskin (1); 5. JJ Hickle (5); 6. Sawyer Phillips (3); 7. Tim Estenson (8); 8. Ben Brown (9); 9. Dustin Selvage (7)

Heat two (started), 8 Laps, 2:15.5: 1. Carson McCarl (3); 2. Aaron Reutzel (6); 3. Austin McCarl (5); 4. Ryan Giles (4); 5. Thomas Kennedy (7); 6. Tyler Drueke (9); 7. Nathan Mills (8); 8. Chris Martin (2); 9. Joe Simbro (1)

Heat three (started), 8 Laps, 2:15.5: 1. Lynton Jeffrey (6); 2. Matt Juhl (3); 3. Kerry Madsen (5); 4. Tasker Phillips (1); 5. Riley Goodno (2); 6. AJ Moeller (4); 7. Presley Truedson (7); 8. Bobby Mincer (8)

A main, 20 Laps, 5:57.9: 1. Austin McCarl (2); 2. Kerry Madsen (1); 3. Aaron Reutzel (4); 4. Ayrton Gennetten (3); 5. Justin Henderson (6); 6. Lynton Jeffrey (5); 7. Carson McCarl (8); 8. JJ Hickle (7); 9. Sawyer Phillips (13); 10. Matt Juhl (10); 11. Davey Heskin (14); 12. Riley Goodno (15); 13. Josh Schneiderman (11); 14. Thomas Kennedy (17); 15. Tasker Phillips (16); 16. Ryan Giles (9); 17. AJ Moeller (12); 18. Chris Martin (18); 19. Tim Estenson (20); 20. Dustin Selvage (24); 21. Nathan Mills (22); 22. Presley Truedson (19); 23. Tyler Drueke (21); 24. Ben Brown (25); 25. Bobby Mincer (23) DNS – Joe Simbro, Landon Hansen. Lap Leaders: K. Madsen 1-16, A. McCarl 17-20. Hard-charger: S. Phillips.

360 Results

Time Trials (Qualifying Order), 2 laps: 1. 24, Terry McCarl, Altoona, IA (3), 16.343; 2. 40, Clint Garner, Sioux Falls, SD (6), 16.476; 3. 8, Aaron Reutzel, Clute, TX (10), 16.585; 4. 4W, Jamie Ball, Knoxville, IA (11), 16.601; 5. 53, Joe Beaver, Knoxville, IA (7), 16.617; 6. 70, Calvin Landis, Knoxville, IA (2), 16.626; 7. 24N, Nathan Mills, Bondurant, IA (17), 16.672; 8. 22, Ryan Leavitt, Knoxville, IA (23), 16.773; 9. 99, Tony Rost, Omaha, NE (16), 16.778; 10. 22K, Kaleb Johnson, Sioux Falls, SD (24), 16.798; 11. 4, Cam Martin, Ankeny, IA (22), 16.807; 12. 9, Chase Randall, Waco, TX (13), 16.821; 13. 9M, Ricky Montgomery, Denver, CO (5), 16.870; 14. 5M, Collin Moyle, Knoxville, IA (4), 16.883; 15. 22X, Riley Goodno, Knoxville, IA (9), 16.885; 16. 7C, Devin Kline, Knoxville, IA (18), 16.902; 17. 5A, Alex Vande Voort, Knoxville, IA (1), 17.016; 18. 33, Alan Zoutte, Knoxville, IA (12), 17.219; 19. 83, Austin Miller, Lacona, IA (19), 17.292; 20. 1A, John Anderson, Des Moines, IA (14), 17.568; 21. 2, Jason Billups, Holt, MO (20), 18.329; 22. 5D, Jacob Dykstra, Port Colborne, ONT, (8), NT; 23. 49, Josh Schneiderman, West Burlington, IA (15), NT; DQ (Scales) – 11B, Ben Woods, Newton, IA (21)

Heat one (started), 7 Laps, NT: 1. Kaleb Johnson (3); 2. Terry McCarl (6); 3. Devin Kline (1); 4. Jamie Ball (5); 5. Nathan Mills (4); 6. Jacob Dykstra (8); 7. Ricky Montgomery (2); 8. Austin Miller (7)

Heat two (started), 7 Laps, 2:03.6: 1. Alex Vande Voort (1); 2. Clint Garner (6); 3. Ryan Leavitt (4); 4. Collin Moyle (2); 5. Cam Martin (3); 6. Joe Beaver (5); 7. John Anderson (7); 8. Josh Schneiderman (8)

Heat three (started), 7 Laps, 2:03.0: 1. Riley Goodno (2); 2. Aaron Reutzel (6); 3. Tony Rost (4); 4. Chase Randall (3); 5. Calvin Landis (5); 6. Alan Zoutte (1); 7. Jason Billups (7) DNS – Ben Woods

A main (started), 18 Laps, NT: 1. Aaron Reutzel (2); 2. Clint Garner (3); 3. Terry McCarl (4); 4. Kaleb Johnson (5); 5. Chase Randall (13); 6. Joe Beaver (9); 7. Calvin Landis (7); 8. Riley Goodno (11); 9. Ryan Leavitt (6); 10. Nathan Mills (10); 11. Tony Rost (8); 12. Jamie Ball (1); 13. Cam Martin (14); 14. Devin Kline (15); 15. Alex Vande Voort (12); 16. Jacob Dykstra (19); 17. Austin Miller (22); 18. Alan Zoutte (18); 19. John Anderson (20); 20. Jason Billups (21); 21. Collin Moyle (16); 22. Ricky Montgomery (17); 23. Josh Schneiderman (23) DNS – Ben Woods. Lap Leader: Reutzel 1-18. Hard-charger: Randall.

Pro Series Results

Time Trials (Group Qualifying): 1. 44, Scotty Johnson, Dallas, IA (5), 17.329; 2. 0, Mike Mayberry, Fremont, IA (6), 17.587; 3. 41, Jeff Wilke, Knoxville, IA (4), 17.587; 4. 17X, Tyler Groenendyk, Oskaloosa, IA (11), 17.592; 5. 71, Brandon Worthington, Indianola, IA (8), 17.669; 6. 17, Matt Allen, Adel, IA (12), 17.770; 7. 99, Matthew Stelzer, Papillion, NE (3), 17.795; 8. 81E, Eric Bridger, Winterset, IA (10), 17.821; 9. B29, JJ Beaver, Knoxville, IA (2), 18.106; 10. 02S, Josh Jones, Knoxville, IA (7), 18.179; 11. 14J, Mike Johnston, Des Moines, IA (13), 18.208; 12. 24, Kade Higday, Pleasant Hill, IA (9), 18.313; 13. 12P, Ryan Navratil, Des Moines, IA (1), NT.

Heat one (started), 6 Laps, 1:51.6: 1. Mike Johnston (1); 2. Brandon Worthington (4); 3. Matthew Stelzer (3); 4. JJ Beaver (2); 5. Scotty Johnson (6); 6. Jeff Wilke (5) DNS – Ryan Navritil

Heat two (started), 6 Laps, 1:51.6: 1. Kade Higday (1); 2. Mike Mayberry (6); 3. Eric Bridger (3); 4. Josh Jones (2); 5. Tyler Groenendyk (5); 6. Matt Allen (4)

A main (started), 15 Laps, NT: 1. Mike Mayberry (4); 2. Tyler Groenendyk (1); 3. Matthew Stelzer (5); 4. Scotty Johnson (2); 5. Mike Johnston (8); 6. Brandon Worthington (3); 7. Eric Bridger (7); 8. Matt Allen (10); 9. Kade Higday (9); 10. Jeff Wilke (6); 11. Josh Jones (12); 12. JJ Beaver (11) DNS – Ryan Navritil. Lap Leaders: Groenendyk 1-3, Mayberry 4-15. Hard-charger: Mayberry.

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