From Lonnie Wheatley, KANSAS CITY, Kan. (August 21, 2010) – Lincoln, Indiana’s Dave Darland became the fourth different winner in as many nights of Sixth Annual Lucas Oil Sprint Bandits Tour ‘N Topless Midwest Swing action by taking the $10,000 winner’s share in Saturday night’s Ron Shuman Classic atop the ½-mile Lakeside Speedway clay oval.
Darland gunned into the lead from the front row outside at the outset in the Goodnight Racing Pallet Builder No. 39 DRC and then withstood a late charge from Robert Ballou in the 30-lapper to secure the prestigious win and the coveted pedal car trophy that goes along with it.
“We had a great car and they did a great job with the track considering how much rain we had here last night,” Darland commented. “One and two was tricky, you had to hit it just right to get through it good. Three and four was good everywhere, you could put it to the mat about half way through the corner no matter where you were.”
While Darland enjoyed Sprint Bandits TNT victory lane for the third time in his career, it was California native Robert Ballou capturing his second TNT title by virtue of his runner-up finish. Ballou took the title by 26 points over eighth-place finisher Brady Bacon, with Casey Shuman another ten points back in third.
Making his first TNT appearance of the year after Friday night’s preliminary action was rained out, Darland earned a front row starting position by winning both his heat race and qualifying race. Starting to his inside was Ballou, who charged from eighth to win the night’s opening heat race and then climbed from sixth to second to amass the most points through qualifying action.
The feature event got off to a rough start when J.D. Black biked it exiting turn four and flipped violently down the frontstretch. As the field checked up for the red lights, Kyle Cummins and Logan Walker got together and flipped in turn two. There were no injuries.
Darland gunned into the lead on the restart and led the early rounds in front of Ballou, Coleman Gulick and Casey Shuman before Daron Clayton slid to a stop in turn three to bring out the caution after four laps.
Darland cruised out front ahead of Ballou and Gulick as Hunter Schuerenberg and Bryan Clauson soon advanced from tenth and eleventh, respectively, to dice for fourth position.
As traffic came into play near the midway point, Ballou began to close in on Darland who found himself mired behind three cars on the 18th circuit. As Darland split a pair of cars, Mike Moore spun in turn two to bring out a caution, giving Darland clear track with just a dozen circuits remaining.
Back into traffic over the final handful of laps, Ballou closed to within a pair of car lengths aboard Dallas Mulvaney’s Don Ott-powered MPGH Promotions No. 81 Triple X and tried to mount a challenge.
Darland stayed just out of reach and took the checkered flag with a four-car length advantage over Ballou, who pocketed $2,250 of the total $9,000 Sprint Bandits TNT point fund accumulated over the season of nine completed events.
Clauson battled past Schuerenberg and Gulick over the final half of the race to claim the show position aboard the Hockett Racing No. 75, with Schuerenberg taking fourth in the final circuits.
Gulick rounded out the top five in the Hazardous Motorsports No. 14, with Shuman, Gary Taylor, Brady Bacon, 14th-starter Chris Morgan and 19th-starter Patrick Stasa completing the top ten.
Schuerenberg, Ballou and Darland topped heat race action for the 26-car field, with Shuman, J.C. Bland and Darland winning the qualifiers. Paul Flynn flipped in turn one on the opening lap of the night’s second heat race and was done for the night.
Sixth Annual Lucas Oil Sprint Bandits Tour ‘N Topless Midwest Swing
Lakeside Speedway Ron Shuman Classic Results:
Heat One (8 Laps): 1. 35-Hunter Schuerenberg, 2. 7c-Chris Morgan, 3. 99-Brady Bacon, 4. 98-J.C. Bland, 5. 4g-Casey Shuman, 6. 39g-Matt Goodnight, 7. 16-Anthony Nicholson, 8. 19-Patrick Stasa. DNS: 23-Mitch Wissmiller.
Heat Two (8 Laps): 1. 81-Robert Ballou, 2. 75-Bryan Clauson, 3. 2-Gary Taylor, 4. 69-Mike Moore, 5. 91-Jeff Stasa, 6. 7jr-J.D. Black, 7. 38-Logan Walker, 8. 12-Andy Helm, 9. 76j-Paul Flynn.
Heat Three (8 Laps): 1. 39-Dave Darland, 2. 14-Coleman Gulick, 3. 92-Daron Clayton, 4. 96-Cody Brewer, 5. 21x-Kyle Cummins, 6. 88-Chad Tye, 7. 90-Patrick Budde, 8. 51-Doug Martens.
Qualifier One (8 Laps): 1. 4g-Casey Shuman, 2. 81-Robert Ballou, 3. 14-Coleman Gulick, 4. 75-Bryan Clauson, 5. 91-Jeff Stasa, 6. 19-Patrick Stasa, 7. 7c-Chris Morgan. DNS: 39g-Matt Goodnight, 76j-Paul Flynn.
Qualifier Two (8 Laps): 1. 98-J.C. Bland, 2. 2-Gary Taylor, 3. 99-Brady Bacon, 4. 35-Hunter Schuerenberg, 5. 21x-Kyle Cummins, 6. 16-Anthony Nicholson, 7. 7jr-J.D. Black, 8. 51-Doug Martens, 9. 23-Mitch Wissmiller.
Qualifier Three (8 Laps): 1. 39-Dave Darland, 2. 96-Cody Brewer, 3. 92-Daron Clayton, 4. 69-Mike Moore, 5. 38-Logan Walker, 6. 88-Chad Tye, 7. 90-Patrick Budde, 8. 12-Andy Helm.
Lakeside Speedway Sprint Bandits TNT $10,000-to-win Ron Shuman Classic:
“A” Feature (30 Laps): 1. 39-Dave Darland, 2. 81-Robert Ballou, 3. 75-Bryan Clauson, 4. 35-Hunter Schuerenberg, 5. 14-Coleman Gulick, 6. 4g-Casey Shuman, 7. 2-Gary Taylor, 8. 99-Brady Bacon, 9. 7c-Chris Morgan, 10. 19-Patrick Stasa, 11. 16-Anthony Nicholson, 12. 98-J.C. Bland, 13. 96-Cody Brewer, 14. 91-Jeff Stasa, 15. 51-Doug Martens, 16. 88-Chad Tye, 17. 90-Patrick Budde, 18. 12-Andy Helm, 19. 69-Mike Moore, 20. 23-Mitch Wissmiller, 21. 92-Daron Clayton, 22. 39g-Matt Goodnight, 23. 21x-Kyle Cummins, 24. 38-Logan Walker, 25. 7jr-J.D. Black. DNS: 76j-Paul Flynn.
Lucas Oil Sprint Bandits TNT Points (Top 10): 1. Robert Ballou 1,196, 2. Brady Bacon 1,170, 3. Casey Shuman 1,160, 4. J.C. Bland 1,023, 5. Anthony Nicholson 1,008, 6. Patrick Stasa 666, 7. Travis Rilat 661, 8. Jeff Stasa 628, 9. Matt Sherrell 572, 10. Gary Taylor 561.