By Dick Jordan
Kody Swanson’s USAC Traxxas Silver Crown series point lead over Bobby East has dwindled to just four points entering the September 2 “Ted Horn 100” at the DuQuoin (Ill.) State Fairgrounds.
Swanson failed to finish Saturday’s “Tony Bettenhausen 100” at the Illinois State Fairgrounds in Springfield, despite leading the first 19 laps. East finished eighth in the 100-mile contest.
A.J. Fike of Galesburg, Ill. became the first Illini driver to win the Springfield classic in 29 years as he sped to victory Saturday in his RFMS Racing Liberty Village/McGladrey & Pullen Beast/Foxco. He grabbed the lead on a restart from Levi Jones and led the final 65 miles for the win. Defending race winner Brian Tyler took second at the checkered flag ahead of Tanner Swanson, Jones and Bryan Clauson.
Jones led 16 laps of the race in his bid to become the first Illini driver to win the race since Gary Bettenhausen in 1983.
Only 49 points separate the “top-seven” in the current standings going into the DuQuoin race.
2012 USAC TRAXXAS SILVER CROWN STANDINGS
1-Kody Swanson-302; 2-Bobby East-298; 3-Jerry Coons Jr.-289; 4-Levi Jones-270; 5-Tanner Swanson-259; 6-Bud Kaeding-259; 7-Bobby Santos-253; 8-A.J. Fike-221; 9-Tracy Hines-217; 10-Brian Tyler-192.