By Pete Walton
Phenix City, AL – 6/18/11 – The 2010 United Sprint Car Series presented by Goodyear Rookie of the Year, Morgan Turpen from Cordova, Tennessee became only the second female sprint car driver to win a USCS main event when the eighteen year-old took advantage of Tim Crawley’s lap fifteen misfortunes and raced into the www.RockAuto.com victory lane for a career-first USCS win in the 4th annual Randy Helton Memorial Race at East Alabama Motor Speedway on Saturday night.
Turpen, who won the Butlerbuilt Second Heat Race started the main event from the K&N Filters Pole Position after accumulating the most qualifying points. Tim Crawley who was the second qualifying driver, started outside the front row after Engler Machine and Tool First Heat winner, Jerod Roller from Olive Branch, Mississippi drew a zero inversion in the K&N Filters Pole Award drawing. The veteran (Crawley) won the initial race with Turpen for the lead to turn one. Turpen then chased Crawley from the runner-up spot for the first fifteen laps. She inherited the lead on lap fifteen after Crawley’s left rear tire blew out while he was leading the race entering turn one of the well manicured 4/10 mile oval. He had a 6-8 car length lead over the second year driver at the time.
Turpen closed the deal, even though she had to endure a restart on lap twenty-one that drew the field up on her rear bumper. After the re-start she blasted to nearly a half straight-a-way lead over the second place finisher, nine-time USCS National Champion, Terry Gray from Bartlett, Tennessee.
The 2008 USCS presented by Goodyear Rookie of the Year, Anthony Nicholson, also from Bartlett, Tennessee, followed Gray to the finish line in third place. Second-generation sprint car driver Matt Linder from Hoschton, Georgia followed in fourth place. Crawley from Benton, Arkansas charged back from the rear of the field after a tire change to finish fifth.
Past USCS regional series Champion, Johnny Bridges from Cherryville, North Carolina headed the next group of drivers in sixth place. 2010 USCS Southern Thunder regional series Rookie of the Year, sixteen-year old Eric Riggins, Jr. from Charlotte, North Carolina finished in the seventh position. USCS veteran racer, Brian Thomas from Pendergrass, Georgia followed Riggins in eighth place. Lance Moss from Cherryville, North Carolina who had a rollover in practice finished ninth and Bob Auld from Largo, Florida rounded out the top ten.
Johnny Bridges kicked off the evening’s USCS winged sprint action action by winning the Goodyear Speed Dash. 2010 USCS Mid South regional series Rookie of the Year, Jerod Roller won the Engler Machine and Tool First Heat. Morgan Turpen won the Butlerbuilt Second Heat Race. Matt Linder, who started way back in fifteenth position, garnered the Wilwood Hard Charger honors after advancing eleven positions and finishing fourth.
The next USCS Outlaw Thunder Tour presented by Goodyear event is a Carolina double-header weekend that kicks off at Carolina Speedway (www.carolinaspeedway.net ) in Gastonia, North Carolina on this Friday, June 24th followed by the series first visit in 7 years to Lancaster Motor Speedway(www.lancasterspeedway.net) in Lancaster, South Carolina on Saturday, June 25th. For an updated schedule of USCS events, rules and info please visit www.uscsracing.com or call the USCS office at 770-460-7223.
USCS Outlaw Thunder Tour results @ East Alabama Motor Speedway on June 18, 2011
Goodyear Speed Dash: Johnny Bridges, Matt Linder, Jake McLain, Morgan Turpen, Eric Riggins, Jr. and Lance Moss.
Engler Machine and Tool First Heat: Jerod Roller, Tim Crawley, Brian Bell, Nick DeFeo, Eric Riggins, Bob Auld, Matt Linder, Jake McLain and David Clark.
Butlerbuilt Second Heat: Morgan Turpen, Terry Gray, Johnny Bridges, Anthony Nicholson, Brandon McLain, Lance Moss, Brian Thomas, Darren Clark and Joe Larkin.
USCS presented by Goodyear Randy Helton Memorial Race – Feature – 27 Laps
Finish Start Car Driver/Hometown
1 1 80 Morgan Turpen, Cordova, TN
2 4 1 Terry Gray, Bartlett , TN
3 9 16 Anthony Nicholson, Bartlett, TN
4 15 1x Matt Linder, Hoschton, GA
5 2 88 Tim Crawley, Benton, AR
6 5 07 Johnny Bridges, Cherryville, NC
7 8 47 Eric Riggins, Jr., Charlotte, NC
8 13 67 Brian Thomas, Pendergrass, GA
9 12 23m Lance Moss, Cherryville, NC
10 11 83 Bob Auld, Largo, FL
11 3 5 Jerod Roller, Olive Branch, MS
12 8 96d Nick DeFeo, Marietta, GA
13 10 21b Brandon McLain, Indian Trail, NC
14 16 67M Jake McLain, Indian Trail, NC
15 7 23 Brian Bell, Cordova, TN
16 14 20 Darren Clark, Huntersville, NC
17 17 21 David Clark, Huntersville, NC
18 DNS 33 Joe Larkin, Suwannee, GA\
USCS presented by Goodyear Sprint Car Race Awards:
Goodyear Speed Dash winner award: #07 Johnny Bridges www.racegoodyear.com
Engler Machine and Tool First Heat winner award: #5 Jerod Roller www.englermachine.com
Butlerbuilt Second Heat winner award: #80 Morgan Turpen www.butlerbuilt.net
K&N Filters Pole Award: #80 Morgan Turpen www.knfilters.com
Wilwood Eng. Hard Charger Award: #1x Matt Linder (started 15th finished 4th ) www.wildwood.com
JE Pistons Top Guns Award: #10 Terry Gray (2nd place) www.jepistons.com
K&N Filters Podium Award: #16 Anthony Nicholson (3rd place) www.knfilters.com
Keizer Wheels Top Five Award: #88 Tim Crawley www.keizerwheels.com
Diversified Machine Inc/DMI Top 10 Award: #67 Brian Thomas www.diversifiedracing.com