PARAGOULD, AR – Story and audio by Managing Editor Jacob Seelman for Speed77 Radio, Race Chaser Online and USCS Racing – Scott Frazier photo – After a short winless drought, the mini-sprint world was turned back right-side up Thursday night for Joe B. Miller.
Miller, the Millersville, Missouri native and perennial USCS www.rockauto.com 600 Sprint Series contender, bolted away from Todd McWilliams on a green-white-checkered finish during the 20-lap micro sprint feature portion of the 3rd Annual “Rumble at the Ridge” at Crowley’s Ridge Raceway to notch a dominating victory.
Miller led all 20 laps of the A-main en route to his fourth win of the 2014 season and sixth career USCS 600 victory, which puts him in sole possession of fifth on the all-time series win list.
“We were just hooked up tonight,” Miller said in www.rockauto.com Victory Lane. “The bottom worked real well for us on that last restart and we just took off. It was kinda nice to not have to fight off the hounds for once,” Miller laughed.
The event was slowed by caution five times, but the most serious incident came on lap 16, when Travis Senter caught the wheel of a lapped car and went flipping wildly down the backstretch, causing the fourth yellow and only red-flag period of the night. In a testament to the safety of the cars and equipment, Senter walked away uninjured.
Following that incident, the race’s final caution came at Lap 18 when the No. 25 of Dennis Tucker, Jr. spun in turn four to set up the dash to the finish.
McWilliams, from Conway, Arkansas came home in the runner-up spot, with Benton, Arkansas driver Dusty Young completing the podium in third. Poplar Bluff Speedway winner and Caruthersville, Missouri native B.J. Gatewood finished fourth, and defending USCS 600 Sprint Series champion Sean Hosey (Clarksville, TN) rounded out the top five.
Miller kicked off the night by grabbing the win in the Hoosier Tire Speed Dash, and followed that win up with a victory in the Engler Machine and Tool First Heat. Travis Senter notched the win in the www.rockauto.com Second Heat. Following the inversion draw, B.J. Gatewood grabbed the K&N Filters Pole Position. Bo Barber passed the most cars in the main event (seven) to garner the Wilwood Disc Brakes Hard Charger Award.
The www.rockauto.com USCS 600 Sprint Car Series season continues on Thursday, July 17th with a rescheduled event at Lavonia Speedway in Georgia.
RESULTS: www.rockauto.com USCS 600 Sprint Car Series @ Crowley’s Ridge Raceway; July 3, 2014
Hoosier Tire Speed Dash: Joe B. Miller, B.J. Gatewood, Sean Hosey, Abbie Gatewood, Bo Barber, Rece Wommack.
Engler Machine and Tool First Heat: Joe B. Miller, Dusty Young, Noah Burlison, Clayton Robertson, Sean Hosey, Dennis Tucker Sr., Abbie Gatewood, Dennis Tucker Jr.
www.rockauto.com Second Heat: Travis Senter, Todd McWilliams, B.J. Gatewood, Chris Wright, Brandon Hinkle, Brian Nance, Rece Wommack, Bo Barber.
www.rockauto.com USCS 600 Sprint A-Main 20 laps:
- #51B – Joe B. Miller, Millersville, MO
- #28 – Todd McWilliams, Conway, AR
- #131 – Dusty Young, Benton, AR
- #88 – B.J. Gatewood, Caruthersville, MO
- #69R – Clayton Robertson, Osceola, AR
- #6 – Sean Hosey, Clarksville, TN
- #72 – Chris Wright, Qulin, MO
- #88T – Dennis Tucker Sr., Frenchmen Bayou, AR
- #14 – Bo Barber, Clarksville, TN
- #88G – Abbie Gatewood, Caruthersville, MO
- #21B – Brandon Hinkle, Cabot, AR
- #39N – Brian Nance, Mayfield, KY
- #22 – Travis Senter, Osceola, AR
- #25 – Dennis Tucker Jr., Frenchmen Bayou, AR
- #18N – Noah Burlison, Hot Springs, AR
- #33 – Rece Wommack, Westphal, MO
USCS 600 Sprint Race Awards:
K&N Filters Pole Award #88 – B.J. Gatewood
K&N Filters Podium (3rd place) Award: #131 – Dusty Young
Wilwood Disc Brakes Hard Charger Award: #14 – Bo Barber
Keizer Aluminum Wheels Top Five Award: #69R – Clayton Robertson
Saldana Racing Products Super Sixth Award: #6 – Sean Hosey
DMI/Bulldog Rear Ends Top Ten Award: #88G – Abbie Gatewood