From Bryan Hulbert
CALHAN, Colo. (October 7, 2017) – Returning to Colorado after a nearly 20 year absence, Sammy Swindell made his return worthwhile at the El Paso County Raceway as the driver of the A.G Rains Motorsports No. 3 parked in Victory lane for the third time in 2017 with the Lucas Oil American Sprint Car Series presented by the MAVTV Motorsports Network.
Drawing the pole in Saturday’s 25-lap feature event, Swindell outran Colorado’s Jake Bubak into the first two turns to hold the race lead on a track that was slick but still had some rough spots in the corners that proved challenging for several teams.
Slowed with one lap complete for the spun No. 99 of Skylar Gee, Swindell held off any attempt at the lead.
Working to traffic by the seventh lap, Swindell had to move carefully as all lanes of the quarter-mile were occupied. Finally held up behind a pair of slower cars, Bubak closed from over a half straightaway to the back bumper of the Rossie Feed and Grain No. 3.
“Sometimes you just run up on a couple cars at a time. With it being a little bumpy, those slower guys would hit the ruts and really upset their cars, and sometimes you just have to be in the right place at the right time so it was a challenge, but it was fun. I’m very blessed to be able to do this. The Lord’s been with me,” commented Swindell of the race through traffic.
Unable to clear the slower cars, the pair began using lapped cars as picks with each looking to pin the other. Rushing the inside line off the fourth turn several times as the race approached the halfway point, Bubak pulled all but even, but the lapped traffic chess match would swing the way of Swindell.
Under caution for the final time with seven laps to run, Swindell was unchallenged the rest of the way, winning by 2.508 seconds. Jake Bubak held on to the runner-up spot with Aaron Reutzel coming up to take the final podium step. Taking advantage of restarts, Sam Hafertepe, Jr. came from seventh to fourth with Matt Covington fifth.
Seth Bergman was sixth with Johnny Herrera seventh. Jason Martin crossed eighth followed by Blake Hahn. Despite engine issues, Wayne Johnson rounded out the top-ten. Three Heat Races on the night were topped by Sam Hafertepe, Jr., Jake Bubak, and Matt Covington. The CP-Carrillo Hard Charger was Sam Hafertepe, Jr. No provisionals were used.
The Lucas Oil ASCS National Tour presented by the MAVTV Motorsports Network returns to competition at the 44th Devil’s Bowl Winter Nationals on Friday, October 20 and Saturday, October 21. Tickets are on sale at http://www.devilsbowl.com.
For continued updates on the American Sprint Car Series, from the National Tour to any of the seven regional tours that make up the over 150 races across the ASCS Nation in 2017, log onto http://www.ascsracing.com. Make sure to like the American Sprint Car Series on Facebook at http://www.facebook.com/LucasOilASCS, follow us on Twitter at http://www.twitter.com/LucasOilASCS, and check out our Instagram @LucasOilASCS.
Lucas Oil ASCS National Tour
El Paso County Raceway – Calhan, Colo.
Saturday, October 7, 2017
Car Count: 19
Heat 1 (8 Laps): 1. 15H-Sam Hafertepe Jr, ; 2. 23-Seth Bergman, ; 3. 87-Aaron Reutzel, ; 4. 99-Skylar Gee, ; 5. 16-Brian Hardman, ; 6. 8-Brett Ream, ; 7. 16X-Butch Hardman, 
Heat 2 (8 Laps): 1. 9X-Jake Bubak, ; 2. 3-Sammy Swindell, ; 3. 2C-Wayne Johnson, ; 4. 86-Zac Taylor, ; 5. 17W-Harli White, ; 6. (DNF) 1W-Charlie White, 
Heat 3 (8 Laps): 1. 95-Matt Covington, ; 2. 45X-Johnny Herrera, ; 3. 52-Blake Hahn, ; 4. 1-Jason Martin, ; 5. 56X-Mark Chisholm, ; 6. (DNF) 22T-Mike Taylor, 
Protect the Harvest A-Feature:
A Feature (25 Laps): 1. 3-Sammy Swindell, ; 2. 9X-Jake Bubak, ; 3. 87-Aaron Reutzel, ; 4. 15H-Sam Hafertepe Jr, ; 5. 95-Matt Covington, ; 6. 23-Seth Bergman, ; 7. 45X-Johnny Herrera, ; 8. 1-Jason Martin, ; 9. 52-Blake Hahn, ; 10. 2C-Wayne Johnson, ; 11. 86-Zac Taylor, ; 12. 17W-Harli White, ; 13. 99-Skylar Gee, ; 14. 56X-Mark Chisholm, ; 15. 8-Brett Ream, ; 16. 16-Brian Hardman, ; 17. 16X-Butch Hardman, ; 18. (DNF) 22T-Mike Taylor, ; 19. (DNF) 1W-Charlie White, 
Lap Leader(s): Sammy Swindell 1-25
CP-Carrillo Hard Charger: Sam Hafertepe, Jr. +3
FSR High Point Driver: Jake Bubak