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OSKALOOSA’S “ULTIMATE CHALLENGE” TUESDAY

By Dick Jordan

Two of USAC’s most prestigious AMSOIL National Sprint races are on tap this week, beginning with the $15,000-to-win Casey’s General Stores “Ultimate Challenge” Tuesday night at Southern Iowa Speedway in Oskaloosa, Iowa. The “Joe James/Pat O’Connor Memorial” will follow on Saturday night at the Salem (Ind.) Speedway.

The late Jesse Hockett will be remembered Tuesday at Oskaloosa. He won last year’s “Ultimate Challenge” in a thrilling finish with Dave Darland. Tracy Hines won last year’s “James/O’Connor” feature on the Salem highbanks.

Levi Jones of Olney, Ill. holds an 84-point lead over Damion Gardner going into Tuesday’s Oskaloosa event. Jones was sixth and Gardner fifth at Knoxville (Iowa) Raceway in Sunday night’s “Non-Winged Knoxville Nationals” 26-lapper.

Bud Kaeding of Campbell, Calif. led the last 22 laps at Knoxville. He took the lead from Brady Bacon on lap five and led the rest of the way in the all-green-flag race to put his Alviso Rock/High Five Pizza Maxim/Speedway Chevy in victory lane. Bacon finished second and led three laps of the race. Daron Clayton was third ahead of fourth-place Scotty Weir, who led the opening lap of the feature. Gardner rounded out the “top-five.”

USAC AMSOIL NATIONAL SPRINT SERIES POINT STANDINGS

1-Levi Jones-1,560, 2-Damion Gardner-1,476, 3-Bryan Clauson-1,440; 4-Chris Windom-1,340; 5-Jerry Coons Jr.-1,340; 6-Tracy Hines-1,265; 7-Henry Clarke-1,063; 8-Dave Darland-1,030; 9-Shane Hmiel-887; 10-Jon Stanbrough-767.

USAC NATIONAL SPRINT DIRT POINT STANDINGS

1-Levi Jones-1,343; 2-Damion Gardner-1,229; 3-Bryan Clauson-1,181; 4-Chris Windom-1,151; 5-Jerry Coons Jr.-1,081; 6-Tracy Hines-1,042; 7-Dave Darland-1,030; 8-Henry Clarke-828; 9-Jon Stanbrough-767; 10-Robert Ballou-645.

USAC NATIONAL SPRINT PAVEMENT POINT STANDINGS

1-Shane Hmiel-286, 2-Jerry Coons Jr.-263, 3-Bryan Clauson-259, 4-Damion Gardner-249, 5-Henry Clarke-235, 6-Tracy Hines-226, 7-JoJo Helberg-222, 8-Bobby East-221, 9-Levi Jones-213, 10-Chris Windom-190.