360 KXV NAT’LS: “Blackjack” Finally; Brian Brown a Winner of 360 Nationals at Knoxville

RaceChaser Staff Dirt Track Racing, Featured, Midwest, Other Sprint Cars, Sprints & Midgets 0 Comments

KNOXVILLE, Iowa – official release — Serena Delhamer photo — A loud scream of satisfaction echoed across the grounds of the Knoxville Raceway as Brian Brown finally marked the Arnold Motor Supply 360 Knoxville Nationals off his bucket list in his fifteenth attempt at the $10,000-to-win event.

In Brown’s fifteenth 360 Sprint Car victory at the Knoxville Raceway, the FVP No. 21 led start-to-finish in the 25-lap championship event.

“Man this feels good. I’m just thankful for everybody on this team,” said Brown. “I’m almost out of breath, but this one’s pretty cool.”

Asked about having to change his line through traffic, Brown replied, “The car felt good up there the whole feature. Believe or not, I didn’t want to lap anybody. I just didn’t want to get off it. That Impact Signs, Awnings, and Wraps Scoreboard was pretty handy. I saw where Sam (Hafertepe) got by Sammy (Swindell) but didn’t know where he was running once he got up there but here we are.”

Leading by over two seconds at the first caution on Lap 7 for Kevin Swindell, Brown opened up his advantage again as Joe Beaver and Sammy Swindell swapped the runner-up spot.

Slow again on Lap 9 for the spun No. 82 Bronson Maeschen, the restart saw Sam Hafertepe, Jr. taking third and going to work on Swindell for second. Taking the spot on Lap 11, Hafertepe was never able to make up the two second disadvantage and Brown streaked through lapped traffic for the win.

Bettering his 2011 finish of eleventh, Hafertepe felt good about his performance in the 360 Nationals.

“We had an awesome car there but I really, would have liked a caution there at the end just to see if we could have done anything with him,” said Hafertepe. “I don’t think many people knew we were running the bottom of three and four and that’s where we were really making up a lot of time. I just felt like if I could have had a shot at him, not sure I could have passed him, but would have liked the opportunity.”

Sammy Swindell posted his second podium of the weekend with a third place finish; holding off Davey Heskin in the closing laps, who ended up losing an engine.

“Our car was just too tight for that curb out there,” commented Swindell. “I messed up a couple times. One time I got the right-front wheel up over it and that really slowed me down so I ended up letting Sam get through there, and let Davey catch up so I just backed it down to where I could make consistent laps.”

Mark Dobmeier came from 10th to grab fourth with Tim Shaffer taking fifth after starting 14th.

The highest finishing Rookie was Bill Balog, who placed 11th in the B-Feature.

Rookie Devin Kline grabbed his second 305 feature of his career and the year at Knoxville. Corey Kautz got the feature off to a bumpy start after flipping in turn one when the green flag fell. He was uninjured.

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