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Bacon Recovers From Heat Race Spin to Win Wednesday at Ventura

By T.J. Buffenbarger

For the second race in a row Brady Bacon found himself in victory lane on the west coast. Wednesday night’s USAC West Coast Sprint Car Series feature victory during the opener of the Turkey Night Grand Prix at Ventura Raceway came with far more drama leading into the feature than the previous week at Bakersfield.

Bacon overcame a spin in his heat race to pass Dave Darland for the final transfer spot into the main event. From there Bacon passed Troy Rutherford for the lead on lap five and never looked back on his way to the victory.

“We just barely squeaked in there during the heat race,” said Bacon in victory lane. “I have to thank the guys on my sprint car team. They didn’t have to bring the car out here (to the west coast).”.

With the victory and being near the top of the leader board in practice for the USAC National Midget Car Series Bacon positioned himself as the favorite to possibly win a $50,000 bonus if he can win both the midget and sprint car portions of Thursday’s Turkey Night Grand Prix.

Rutherford and Brody Roa on the front row for the 20-lap main event. The pair raced side by side into turn one before contact with Rutherford going to the lead position while Road dropped back to fifth. One lap later Roa went over a wheel and bounced to a stop in turn one somehow not getting upside down. Roa had to retire pit side with damage to his car.

Rutherford pulled away from Bacon during the restart with Colby Copeland holding down third. By lap five Bacon caught Rutherford and drove around him on the outside of turn four to take the lead.

Behind Bacon Tyler Courtney was on the move up to fourth on lap 9 around Stevie Sussex. Two laps later Courtney passed Copeland for third with Clint Simpson in tow.

Up front it was all Bacon navigating traffic flawlessly to keep distance between himself and Rutherford for the victory. Simpson nosed out Courtney for the final podium position while Copeland rounded out the top five.

USAC Western Coast Sprint Car Series
Ventura Raceway
Ventura, CA
Wednesday November 20, 2017

Qualifying: 1. Tyler Courtney, 81M, Watt-12.289; 2. Kaleb Montgomery, 3K, Montgomery-12.307; 3. Brady Bacon, 63, Dooling/Hayward-12.388; 4. Colby Copeland, 24C, Copeland-12.444; 5. Matt Mitchell, 12, Dale-12.523; 6. Stevie Sussex, 34 Grau-12.567; 7. Brody Roa, 91R, BR-12.12.570; 8. Troy Rutherford, 11, Rutherford-12.588; 9. Max Adams, 5M, Adams-12.635; 10. Geoff Ensign, 3F, Finkenbinder-12.652; 11. Tristan Guardino, 15T, Guardino-12.656; 12. Klint Simpson, 101, Edison-12.672; 13. Jeremy Ellertson, 98, Ellertson-12.680; 14. Chase Briscoe, 5, Briscoe-12.724; 15. Dalton Hill, 81D, Double D-12.785; 16. Jake Swanson, 92, Sertich-12.786; 17. Matt Rossi, 02, Rossi-12.796; 18. Brandon Wiley, 33B, Team 33-12.806; 19. Shon Deskins, 20, Deskins-12.832; 20. Michael Pickens, 81, Watt-12.871; 21. Rick Hendrix, 15, Hendrix-12.872; 22. Chase Johnson, 24X, Johnson-12.878; 23. Slater Helt, 14, Watt-12.905; 24. Tanner Carrick, 83T, Carrick-12.914; 25. Shawn Arriaga, 56J, Arriaga-12.917; 26. Justyn Cox, 31C, Cox-12.963; 27. Guy Woodward, 24, Woodward-12.988; 28. Carson Macedo, 73, Ford-13.028; 29. Charlie Butcher, 96, B&B-13.062; 30. Kyle Smith, 55, Smith-13.108; 31. Dave Darland, 21K, Kruseman-13.115; 32. Cory Elliott, 11E, Elliott-13.169; 33. Sterling Cling, 2K, Kruseman-13.186; 34. Tom Hendricks, 14X, Hendricks-13.261; 35. Tyler Williams, 5K, Kruseman-13.261; 36. Bruce Douglass, 13, Davis-13.345; 37. Ryan Timmons, 29T, Timmons-13.357; 38. Koen Shaw, 88K, Shaw-13.406; 39. Bruce St. James, 7K, St. James-13.471; 40. Steve Hix, 57, Hix-13.481; 41. Geoffrey Strole, 09S, Strole-13.512; 42. Brent Owens, 71, Martin-13.525; 43. Damian Lopez, 5X, Perkins-13.962; 44. Albert Pombo, 35, Pombo-13.996; 45. Reed Broschart, 93, B&B-14.219; 46. Austin Ervine, 51, AJ-14.527; 47. Cody Majors, 29, Steele-14.765; 48. Stewart Freisen, 81X, Watt-NT; 49. Kyle Edwards, 39E, Edwards-NT.

Heat Race #1 (10 Laps): 1. 101 – Klint Simpson, 2. 81M – Tyler Courtney, 3. 56J – Shawn Arriga, 4. 57 – Steve Hix, 5. 11E – Cory Elliott, 6. 51 – Austin Ervine, 7. 15 – Rick Hendrix, 8. 12 – Matt Mitchell. (First three finishers transferred to the A-Main)

Heat Race #2 (10 Laps): 1. 5 – Chase Briscoe, 2. 11 – Troy Rutherford, 3. 14 – Slater Helt, 4. 96 – Charlie Butcher, 5. 14X – Tom Hendricks, 6. 29 – Cody Majors, 7. 71 – Brent Owens, 8. 3K – Kaleb Montgomery. (First three finishers transferred to the A-Main)

Heat Race #3 (10 Laps): 1. 15T – Tristan Guardino, 2. 83T – Tanner Carrick, 3. 63 – Brady Bacon, 4. 21K – Dave Darland, 5. 81X – Stewart Friesen, 6. 88 – Koen Shawn, 7. 20 – Shon Deskins, 8. 5X – Damion Lopez. (First three finishers transferred to the A-Main)

Heat Race #4 (10 Laps): 1. 5M – Max Adams, 2. 24C – Colby Copeland, 3. 33B – Brandon Wiley, 4. 55 – Kyle Smith, 5. 31C – Justyn Cox, 6. 13 – Bruce Douglass, 7. 81D – Dalton Hill, 8. 09S – Geoffrey Strole. (First three finishers transferred to the A-Main)

Heat Race #5 (10 Laps): 1. 81 – Michael Pickens, 2. 92 – Jake Swanson, 3. 34 – Stevie Sussex, 4. 24 – Guy Woodward, 5. 29T – Ryan Timmons, 6. 3F – Geoff Ensign, 7. 35 – Albert Pombo, 8. 2K – Sterling Cling. (First three finishers transferred to the A-Main)

Heat Race #6 (10 Laps): 1. 1. 73 – Carson Macedo, 2. 91R – Brody Roa, 3. 24X – Chase Johnson, 4. 5K – Tyler Williams, 5. 93 – Reed Broschart, 6. 98 – Jeremy Ellertson, 7. 02 – Matt Rossi, 8. 7K – Bruce St. James. (First three finishers transferred to the A-Main)

Feature (20 Laps): 1. 63 – Brady Bacon, 2. 11 – Troy Rutherford, 3. 101 – Klint Simpson, 4. 81M – Tyler Courtney, 5. 24C – Colby Copeland, 6. 34 – Stevie Sussex, 7. 55 – Chase Briscoe, 8. 15T – Tristan Guardino, 9. 92 – Jake Swanson, 10. 81 – Michael Pickens, 11. 5M – Max Adams, 12. 73 – Carson Macedo, 13. 24X – Chase Johnson, 14. 3F – Geoff Ensign, 15. 33B – Brandon Wiley, 16. 3K – Kaleb Montgomery, 17. 83T – Tanner Carrick, 18. 56J – Shawn Arriga, 19. 14 – Slater Helt, 20. 91R – Brody Roa.