Grain Valley, Missouri…….Robert Ballou of Rocklin, California finally broke through with his first AMSOIL National Sprint Car win of the season on Saturday night at Valley Speedway, as he came out on top of a spirited top-bottom duel with Jon Stanbrough. The win was the fifth of Ballou’s career.
Chad Boespflug, substituting for Darren Hagen in the Mean Green – Oxydol #69 Chalk/Stanton Mopar for Hoffman Auto Racing, jumped out to the early lead from the pole. Early on, he was stalked by Stanbrough on the bottom as Ballou ran hard on the top trying to put pressure on the front two.
Ballou finally made it happen on lap eight as he sailed by Boespflug off turn-two. Stanbrough snuck under Boespflug shortly after, and the back-and-forth battle ensued between the two. Stanbrough nosed past on lap 18 for the lead, but Ballou came back strong to re-take the lead.
As they neared traffic, Stanbrough jumped to the lead again on lap 22. Ballou appeared to find some speed as the laps waned, however, and flew past as the duo approached the white flag, taking a .926-second win over Stanbrough in the MPHG Promotions – J.C. Plew #81 Maxim/Don Ott.
“We really needed this win. We’ve been trying a bunch of different cars, and actually just put together this experimental car from Maxim this week. It’s been tough on us. I have to thank my car owner Dallas Mulvaney and Derrick Bye, who helps a ton in getting everything ready. We found just a little bit of rubber coming in up top in those final few laps, and that helped us get the win,” Ballou said.
Stanbrough held on for second, and again gained a few more points to add to his lead in the Roberts/Tate Racing – Leer Racing #21x DRC/Speedway.
“He was up there on the top, so I just kept plugging away on the bottom. I guess he caught some rubber up there to catch us at the end, but it was another good night for us. I hate to keep saying it, but it was another good point night for us. I’m disappointed we didn’t win, but second is a good run, and we just have to keep doing it,” Stanbrough said.
Bryan Clauson, who was swept up in a lap-four incident in turn-four, restarted 21st and sliced back through the field to eventually take the final podium spot in the Curb Records – R&B Trucker’s #7 Maxim/Fisher.
“I was just trying to salvage after going to the back there. I always say, you have to run all thirty, and anything can happen. We were able to rally back and save what could have been a disastrous night. I just had to pick my way through there. We were fast high and low, just had to clear a few slower cars and find the holes at the right times,” Clauson said.
Levi Jones finished fourth in the Tony Stewart/Curb-Agajanian Racing – Chevy Performance #20 Maxim/Kistler, and Boespflug ended up fifth.
AMSOIL USAC NATIONAL SPRINT CAR RACE RESULTS: August 4, 2012 – Grain Valley, MO – Valley Speedway
QUALIFYING: 1. Levi Jones, 20, Stewart/Curb-Agajanian-13.811; 2. Jon Stanbrough, 21x, Roberts/Tate-13.825; 3. Stu Snyder, 21s, RHS-13.831; 4. Damion Gardner, 71, DG-13.847; 5. Robert Ballou, 81, MPHG-13.987; 6. Justin Grant, 71P, Phillips-13.990; 7. Chad Boespflug, 69, Dynamics-14.102; 8. Kevin Thomas, Jr., 9K, BlackJack-14.218; 9. Dave Darland, 11, Walker-14.226; 10. Brad Ryun, 1x, Ryun-14.237; 11. Bryan Clauson, 7, Tucker/BCI/Curb-Agajanian-14.265; 12. Bob Thoman, 27, Thoman-14.424; 13. Tracy Hines, 4, Hines-14.436; 14. Chase Stockon, 32, Stockon-14.493; 15. Hunter Schuerenberg, 35, Byram-14.508; 16. J.D. Black, 3B, Black-14.653; 17. Chad Shields, 81x, Shields-14.664; 18. Austin Alumbaugh, 26, Smith-14.738; 19. Lane Stone, 73, Stone-14.759; 20. Mitchell Moore, 51, Potter-14.778; 21. Chris Parkinson, 66, Parkinson-14.801; 22. Curtis Evans, 1A, Evans-15.023; 23. John Helm, 12, Helm-15.043; 24. Cody Baker, 38, Hall-15.065; 25. Aaron Kuhn, 1K, Kuhn-15.151; 26. Joe Boyles, 4F, Boyles-15.580; 27. Tom Nading, 20T, Nading-15.699; 28. Chad Tye, 88, Tye-15.765; 29. Josh Stephens, 09, Stephens-16.755; 30. Kenny Potter, 55, Potter-NT; 31. Michael Sosebee, 50, Sosebee-NT.
FIRST HEAT: (8 laps) 1. Hines, 2. Darland, 3. Jones, 4. Ballou, 5. Shields, 6. Parkinson, 7. Potter, 8. Kuhn. NT
SECOND HEAT: (8 laps) 1. Stanbrough, 2. Stockon, 3. Grant, 4. Alumbaugh, 5. Ryun, 6. Evans, 7. Boyles. 1:53.88
THIRD HEAT: (8 laps) 1. Boespflug, 2. Clauson, 3. Schuerenberg, 4. Stone, 5. Snyder, 6. Helm, 7. Nading. 1:55.79
FOURTH HEAT: (8 laps) 1. Thomas, 2. Gardner, 3. Moore, 4. Black, 5. Baker, 6. Thoman, 7. Tye. 1:53.93
SEMI: (12 laps) 1. Snyder, 2. Thoman, 3. Ryun, 4. Shields, 5. Kuhn, 6. Baker, 7. Potter, 8. Parkinson, 9. Boyles, 10. Evans, 11. Helm, 12. Nading, 13. Stephens, 14. Tye. NT
FEATURE: (30 laps) 1. Robert Ballou, 2. Jon Stanbrough, 3. Bryan Clauson, 4. Levi Jones, 5. Chad Boespflug, 6. Damion Gardner, 7. Dave Darland, 8. Hunter Schuerenberg, 9. Tracy Hines, 10. Chase Stockon, 11. Brad Ryun, 12. Bob Thoman, 13. Mitchell Moore, 14. Stu Snyder, 15. Chad Shields, 16. Kevin Thomas, Jr., 17. Cody Baker, 18. Aaron Kuhn, 19. Justin Grant, 20. Austin Alumbaugh, 21. J.D. Black, 22. Lane Stone. NT
FEATURE LAP LEADERS: Laps 1-7 Boespflug, Laps 8-17 Ballou, Lap 18 Stanbrough, Laps 19-21 Ballou, Laps 22-28 Stanbrough, Laps 29-30 Ballou.
NEW AMSOIL NATIONAL SPRINT POINTS: 1-Stanbrough-1,332; 2-Jones-1,311; 3-Darland-1,221; 4-Clauson-1,145; 5-Gardner-1,065; 6-Hines-1,039; 7-Ballou-996; 8-Schuerenberg-977; 9-Thomas-974; 10-Stockon-967.
NEXT AMSOIL NATIONAL SPRINT RACE: August 5 – Cameron, MO – US 36 Raceway