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Sammy is Still Winning – Gets His Fourth STN Title

Sammy Swindell celebrates his victory at I-30 Speedway. (The Wheatley Collection)

Sammy Swindell celebrates his victory at I-30 Speedway. (The Wheatley Collection)

From Lonnie Wheatley

LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (November 5, 2016) – Sammy Swindell just keeps on winning. And he did it to the tune of more than $15,000 by topping Saturday night’s 29th Annual COMP Cams Short Track Nationals presented by Hoosier Tires 40-lap finale in front of a packed house at I-30 Speedway.

With the triumph aboard the Rains Motorsports No. 3s, the Germantown, TN, racer became just the second driver in event history to park it in victory lane on four occasions, matching Gary Wright in the win column.

This time around, Swindell slipped by early leader Tim Shaffer on the 14th circuit and then eased away in the closing circuits to secure his third STN victory of this decade (2011 and 2013) atop the ¼-mile clay oval after earning his first one in the infancy of the event in 1990.

“It feels great to win here again,” Swindell said in victory lane. “I can’t thank these guys enough, they work their butts off on this car.”

Gridding the feature field third, Swindell worked past Pack’s Pole Dash winner Tim Crawley in the opening handful of laps as the initial six circuits were interrupted by three minor cautions.

Getting an extended green flag run in progress with a lap seven restart, Swindell began moving in to pressure Shaffer for the point on the 12th round and then slipped underneath to take command two laps later.

Shaffer tried to battle back while Jason Johnson entered the lead mix on the high side. Just as the duo of Shaffer and Johnson appeared poised to challenge at the midway point, Swindell picked his way through traffic to reestablish some breathing room.

One final caution flew with a dozen laps remaining after Terry McCarl slid to a stop at the bottom of turn one with race-ending front end woes. Improving as the race progressed, Swindell gradually raced away to pick up the win. With lap money, Dash money and preliminary winnings factored in, Swindell banked $16,325 over the course of the weekend.

Pennsylvania’s Shaffer chased all the way, settling for runner-up honors in the DR Racing/Rudzik Excavating No. 49x with Louisiana native Johnson rounding out the podium in the Priority Aviation No. 41.

The third past STN champion among the top four along with Swindell and Johnson, Tim Crawley’s fourth-place showing was his best STN since a runner-up outing in 2000.

Making his first STN championship feature start in comparison to Crawley’s event-best 19 starts, Memphis’ Brian Bell rounded out the top five.

One of five event rookies to make Saturday night’s feature cut, Pennsylvania’s Mark Smith was the top-finishing first-timer in sixth while newly-crowned All Star champ Chad Kemenah was seventh.

Derek Hagar posted his first STN top-ten in eighth with event rookies Trey Starks and Spencer Bayston completing the top ten. Washington’s Starks rallied from 16th to ninth while Bayston’s charge from 18th in the Kevin Swindell-owned No. 39 was good enough for Hard Charger honors.

Other event rookies to race into the feature included Coleman Gulick and Sheldon Haudenschild.
The evening kicked off with Canadian Dylan Westbrook, New York’s Gulick, Smith, Aaron Reutzel, Jason Sides and Shane Stewart winning the STN Showdowns.

Johnny Gardner and Kevin Ramey won “C” Mains while Gulick and Starks topped “B” Mains.

Crawley earned an extra $500 by topping the Pack’s Dash for Cash while, Godley, TX, racer Claud Estes picked up $500 as well by winning the Inaugural “Red Shirt Dash” in Honor Lanny Edwards portion of the night.

Sixty-four different drivers from 16 different states as well as Canada competed in the 29th edition of the COMP Cams Short Track Nationals presented by Hoosier Tires as more than $110,000 was doled out over the course of the weekend.

29th Annual COMP Cams Short Track Nationals presented by Hoosier Tires Saturday Night Results:

Locked in from Preliminary Night Feature Events:

3s-Sammy Swindell, 49x-Tim Shaffer, 88c-Tim Crawley, 23b-Brian Bell, 41-Jason Johnson, 24-Terry McCarl.

STN Saturday Night Showdowns (Top 8 in combined points from Preliminary Night and Showdowns to positions 7-14 of “A” Main; Next 24 to two “B” Mains, balance to two “C” Mains):

STN Showdown #1 (10 Laps): 1. 47x-Dylan Westbrook, 2. 2-Parker Price-Miller, 3. 14m-Jordon Mallett, 4. 79-Jordan Thomas, 5. 31b-Sheldon Haudenschild, 6. 28-Jonathan Cornell, 7. X-Charlie Louden, 8. 91a-Ernie Ainsworth, 9. 43-Matthew Bauldwin, 10. 44-Ronny Howard.

STN Showdown #2 (10 Laps): 1. 14-Coleman Gulick, 2. 8m-T.J. Michael, 3. 9jr-Derek Hagar, 4. 40-Howard Moore, 5. 86-Tony Bruce, Jr., 6. 74e-Claud Estes, 7. 38-Rick Pringle, 8. 8z-Zach Pringle, 9. 77c-C.J. Hulsey, 10. 17*-Robbie Standridge.

STN Showdown #3 (10 Laps): 1. M1-Mark Smith, 2. 10h-Chad Kemenah, 3. 3-A.G. Rains, 4. 9x-Jake Bubak, 5. 42-Andy McElhannon, 6. 77x-Alex Hill, 7. D6-Dakota Gaines, 8. 5J-Jamie Ball, 9. 30-Joseph Miler, 10. 10c-Jason Keith.

STN Showdown #4 (10 Laps): 1. 87-Aaron Reutzel, 2. 39-Spencer Bayston, 3. 5m-Max Stambaugh, 4. 21b-Brandon Hinkle, 5. 31g-Johnny Gardner, 6. 21-Kevin Hinkle, 7. 69-Jamey Mooney, 8. 88r-Cody Gardner, 9. 4-Tommy Snellgrove.

STN Showdown #5 (10 Laps): 1. 7s-Jason Sides, 2. 26-Marshall Skinner, 3. 23s-Trey Starks, 4. 51b-Joe B. Miller, 5. 91s-Kevin Ramey, 6. 27-Andy Shouse, 7. 1s-Joey Schmidt, 8. 15*-Jeff Masson, 9. 29-Brandon Stevenson.

STN Showdown #6 (10 Laps): 1. 88s-Shane Stewart, 2. 2k-Brandon Long, 3. 10-Dustin Homan, 4. 59-Brad Bowden, 5. 17w-Harli White, 6. 49-Shawn Dancer, 7. 15J-Jeremy Middleton, 8. 12w-Dale Wester, 9. 10k-Dewayne White.

“C” Features – Top 4 from Each Advance to Corresponding “B” Feature; 5th through 7th to “Red Shirt Dash”

First “C” Feature (10 Laps): 1. 31g-Johnny Gardner, 2. 42-Andy McElhannon, 3. 49-Shawn Dancer, 4. 59-Brad Bowden, 5. 74e-Claud Estes, 6. 21b-Brandon Hinkle, 7. 10-Dustin Homan, 8. 12w-Dale Wester, 9. 29-Brandon Stevenson, 10. 43-Matthew Bauldwin, 11. 44-Ronny Howard, 12. 21-Kevin Hinkle, 13. 4-Tommy Snellgrove.

Second “C” Feature (10 Laps): 1. 91s-Kevin Ramey, 2. 79-Jordan Thomas, 3. 10c-Jason Keith, 4. D6-Dakota Gaines, 5. 1s-Joey Schmidt, 6. 10k-Dewayne White, 7. 30-Joseph Miller, 8. 15*-Jeff Masson, 9. 69-Jamey Mooney. DNS: 17*-Robbie Standridge, 88r-Cody Gardner, 77c-C.J. Hulsey.

Pack’s Dash for Cash – Finishing Order Set First Three Rows of Feature Lineup

Dash (6 Laps): 1. 88c-Tim Crawley ($500), 2. 49x-Tim Shaffer ($250), 3. 3s-Sammy Swindell ($175), 4. 41-Jason Johnson ($150), 5. 24-Terry McCarl ($125), 6. 23b-Brian Bell ($100).

Red Shirt Dash in Honor of Lanny Edwards

Red Shirt Dash (8 Laps): 1. 74e-Claud Estes ($500), 2. 10-Dustin Homan ($100), 3. 1s-Joey Schmidt ($100), 4. 10k-Dewayne White ($100), 5. 30-Joseph Miller ($100), 6. 21b-Brandon Hinkle ($100).

“B” Features – Top 3 from Each Advance to “A” Feature

First “B” Feature (12 Laps): 1. 14-Coleman Gulick, 2. 7s-Jason Sides, 3. 31b-Sheldon Haudenschild, 4. 17w-Harli White, 5. 40-Howard Moore, 6. 8z-Zach Pringle, 7. 5m-Max Stambaugh, 8. 27-Andy Shouse, 9. 42-Andy McElhannon, 10. 51b-Joe B. Miller, 11. 9x-Jake Bubak, 12. X-Charlie Louden, 13. 49-Shawn Dancer, 14. 59-Brad Bowden, 15. 5J-Jamie Ball, 16. 31g-Johnny Gardner.

Second “B” Feature (12 Laps): 1. 23s-Trey Starks, 2. 39-Spencer Bayston, 3. 91a-Ernie Ainsworth, 4. 47x-Dylan Westbrook, 5. 3-A.G. Rains, 6. 28-Jonathan Cornell, 7. 14m-Jordon Mallett, 8. 15J-Jeremy Middleton, 9. 10c-Jason Keith, 10. 8m-T.J. Michael, 11. 91s-Kevin Ramey, 12. 2k-Brandon Long, 13. 38-Rick Pringle, 14. 77x-Alex Hill, 15. 79-Jordan Thomas, 16. D6-Dakota Gaines.

STN Championship “A” Feature

A Feature (40 Laps – Starting position in parentheses): 1. 3s-Sammy Swindell (3) [$15,500], 2. 49x-Tim Shaffer (2) [$8,700], 3. 41-Jason Johnson (4) [$5,000], 4. 88c-Tim Crawley (1) [$4,000], 5. 23b-Brian Bell (6) [$3,750], 6. M1-Mark Smith (8) [$3,500], 7. 10h-Chad Kemenah (7) [$3,400], 8. 9jr-Derek Hagar (9) [$3,200], 9. 23s-Trey Starks (16) [$3,100], 10. 39-Spencer Bayston (18) [$3,000], 11. 88s-Shane Stewart (10) [$2,600], 12. 86-Tony Bruce, Jr. (13) [$2,400], 13. 14-Coleman Gulick (15) [$2,300], 14. 2-Parker Price-Miller (14) [$2,200], 15. 31b-Sheldon Haudenschild (19) [$2,100], 16. 87-Aaron Reutzel (11) [$2,000], 17. 24-Terry McCarl (5) [$2,000], 18. 7s-Jason Sides (17) [$2,000], 19. 26-Marshall Skinner (12) [$2,000], 20. 91a-Ernie Ainsworth (20) [$2,000], 21. 3-A.G. Rains (21) [$2,000]

Note: Rains started the feature by virtue of I-30 Speedway track champion provisional.

Lap Leaders: Tim Shaffer 1-14, Sammy Swindell 15-30.