From Mike O’Leary, Jim Fisher photo
Lawrenceburg, IN – Defending KISS champion Brady Short turned his fortunes around with a hard fought victory at Lawrenceburg Speedway on Saturday. Short led the final 11 circuits, holding off Jon Stanbrough over the closing laps to earn his second career KISS win. Behind Stanbrough, John Memmer, Andrew Elson and Casey Riggs finished in the top five.
Afterward, Short explained the significance of outrunning Stanbrough to the Lawrenceburg Speedway crowd, “If you want to be the man, you have to beat the man and he’s the man right now. So it feels pretty good to beat him.”
The 30-lap feature saw thrilling three-car battle between Short, at the wheel of the Indiana StoneWorks Maxim, Stanbrough and youthful Justin Grant. After drawing the pole starting spot, Stanbrough edged Short to lead the first lap, but wasn’t able to pull away. Grant quickly took second from Short, then hustled around Stanbrough on the fifth circuit. Working the high groove, Grant kept the Baldwin Maxim out front for the next 13 laps, smoothly slicing through traffic while Short and Stanbrough scrapped for second. Following a lap 17 restart, Stanbrough passed Short for second in turn four. But Short fought back, re-passing the Fox DRC and then diving inside of Grant in turn three and taking the lead just before the flagstand.
As the cushion kept moving higher through turn four, Grant also ran higher. On the 20th circuit, he got too high and clouted the wall, losing four spots before the caution came out for debris. Although officials inspected his machine for damage under the yellow, Grant’s hood disintegrated on the front straightaway shortly after the green, and he headed to the pits.
Short maintained a twelve car length lead until Stanbrough began to narrow the gap over the last three circuits. But Stanbrough could only close to three car lengths at the finish. Memmer, Elson and Riggs put on a good battle for third, but weren’t able to contend for the lead.
“When I got back to third, I just was a little bit tight,” Short explained as he celebrated in the pit area. “I knew the track was going to come to me and I knew the car was good, it was pulling the front wheels up in the air whenever I wanted it to and that’s always a comfortable feeling. The first ten laps you just kind of have to be comfortable and figure out where they are going to run at and where you need to run at to make yourself go fast. That’s what I tend to do, try to be smart and the first half of the race let them guys drive their hearts out and the last half is when I try to pick it up.”
Stanbrough admitted that he would have liked a few more laps, “All of the yellow flags hurt us, we needed some long green flag laps to let the car come to us and every time the yellow would come out the air pressure would go back down. There at the end we started to free up a little bit and kind of reeled him in. But it was just too late. Congratulations to Brady, he did a good job and you can’t ask to win every single race and we’ve been lucky and run up front almost every race this year. I just needed some longer green flag laps and it might have been different. But I’m not taking anything away from Brady, he did a good job.”
A short distance away, Grant said that he had been chasing the race track as the race went on. “The car was on a rail. It was awesome and it was fun to drive. After that yellow we just got a little tight and bicycled up and blew the hood apart and that was about it.”
As the racers prepare for the fourth stop of this year’s KISS tour, at Tri-State Speedway in two weeks, Stanbrough’s second place finish moved him into a commanding point lead as he chases his fifth championship. Hunter Schuerenberg runs second, 45 points behind with two events remaining. Short sits third in the standings, trailing Stanbrough by 83, with Billy Puterbaugh Jr. 15 point further back.
King of Indiana Sprint Series; Round 4
Lawrenceburg Speedway, May 22, 2010
Heat 1: 1. Jon Stanbrough 53 (3), 2. Hunter Schuerenberg 2e (3), 3. Billy Puterbaugh Jr. 71p (7), 4. Brett Burdette 17b (5), 5. Mike Miller 53m (6), 6. Robbie Shuttleworth 11x (1), 7. Keith Bradley 29k (8), 8. Ted Hines 12 (4)
Heat 2: 1. John Memmer 4m (1), 2. Brady Short 36 (8), 3. Casey Riggs 37 (3), 4. Shawn Westerfeld 89 (5), 5. Chad Boespflug 98 (6), 6. Joshua Clemons 71c (7), 7. Jason Soudrette 44 (2), 8. Michael Fischesser 4 (4)
Heat 3: 1. Andrew Elson 27a (2), 2. Justin Grant 5 (4), 3. Casey Shuman 4g (3), 4. Robert Ballou 81 (7), 5. JR Douglas 09 (1), 6. Logan Hupp 9h (5), 7. Mike Weber 22w (6)
A Main (30 laps): 1. Brady Short (2), 2. Jon Stanbrough (1), 3. John Memmer (4), 4. Andrew Elson (6), 5. Casey Riggs (8), 6. Casey Shuman (9), 7. Chad Boespflug (14), 8. Hunter Schuerenberg (5), 9. Joshua Clemons (17), 10. Shawn Westerfeld (11), 11. Billy Puterbaugh (7), 12. JR Douglas (15), 13. Robert Ballou (12), 14. Ted Hines (21), 15. Jason Soudrette (19), 16. Mike Miller (13), 17. Michael Fischesser (22), 18. Mike Weber (20), 19. Justin Grant (3), 20. Logan Hupp (18), 21. Brett Burdette (10), 22. Robbie Shuttleworth (16)
KISS Points: 1. Jon Stanbrough 507, 2. Hunter Schuerenberg 462, 3. Brady Short 424, 4. Billy Puterbaugh Jr. 409, 5. Ted Hines 408, 6. Casey Riggs 398, 7. Andrew Elson 387, 8. Dave Darland 340, 9. Tracy Hines 335, 10. Chris Windom 335
2010 King Of Indiana Sprint Series
Gas City I-69 Speedway Friday, May 14 Dave Darland
Kokomo Speedway Sunday, May 16 Jon Stanbrough
Bloomington Speedway Friday, May 21 Rain
Lawrenceburg Speedway Saturday, May 22 Brady Short
Tri-State Speedway Saturday, June 5
Paragon Speedway Saturday, June 26
The King of Indiana Sprint Series is organized and conducted by the individual Indiana sprint car race track promoters to provide the best sprint car racing. Many thanks to the series sponsors, including Indiana StoneWorks for the B-Main, Simpson Performance Products, Sprint Car & Midget Magazine and Van Horn Tint & Accessories for the champion’s helmet, Elliottbrand Web Designs, in Westport, IN, and Kiva Networking in Bloomington for the KISS website (www.kissracing.com).