By Tim Tuttle
MACON, Ill. (June 23, 2012)—Bubba Altig drove to his first victory in the POWRi Lucas Oil National Midget Series and Aaron Andruskevitch took his third career triumph in the POWRi Speedway Motors 600cc Outlaw Micro Series on Saturday at one-fifth mile Macon Speedway.
Altig led all 30 laps and finished five car lengths ahead of Rico Abreu. Austin Brown was third. The 25-year-old from Mechanicsburg, Ill., runs regularly in the Badger Auto Racing Midget Association, which co-sanctioned the Macon event with POWRi, and also has run on steadily with POWRi. Macon was Altig’s seventh of the season with POWRi.
“It feels really good to get my first POWRi win,” Altig said. “I’ve won in Badger and running with POWRi makes for good competition, the best in the country. The car was good all night and I like the track. I’ve got a million laps around this place.”
Altig dedicated his victory to late car owner Howard Davis, who died in April.
“Howard was our co-owner with Rick Imhoff and we really miss him,” Altig said. “This win was for Howard and to get this win for him is really special.”
Altig started on the pole in his Fontana-powered Spike and was never seriously threatened. He banged wheels with Travis Berryhill on the 15th lap, sending the driver from American Canyon, Calif., rolling into the turn two wall and bringing out the feature’s only red flag.
“I was going through lapped traffic and running my line and I misjudged where he was,” Altig said. “I didn’t mean to hit him and apologized to him.”
Abreu started seventh in Keith Kunz Motorsports’ Toyota-powered Bullet and was up to third by the red flag. The 20-year-old from Rutherford, Calif., had a furious battle with Brown and finally passed him for second on the next-to-last lap.
“It took me a bit to get going at the beginning,” Abreu said. “Keith and the team have me a really good car and it’s a good track. You could do really good slide jobs. I was entering turns one and two lower than Brown and it helped me keep the tires underneath me. I was able to get in front of him and kill his momentum to get into second. It’s good to run up front and unfortunate we didn’t have more laps.”
Brown of Millstadt, Ill., started eighth and was third by the second lap. He passed Shane Hollingsworth for second on the 10th lap and held it to the 29th.
“We had a good night,” Brown said. “The cushion was pretty deep and he (Hollingsworth) made a mistake and I was able to get by him in turns three and four. Abreu and I had a pretty good battle and he slid me in (turns) one and two. I’m happy with where we finished.”
Andruskevitch started on the outside of the front row and led all 20 laps. Joe B. Miller of Millersville, Mo., finished second, 10 car lengths behind, and Trent Beckinger of Evansville, Ind., was third.
“It was like we were shot out of a cannon at the start and it was like 20 laps of explosions,” Andruskevitch said. “Wow, we couldn’t’ ask for a better night.”
It was Andruskevitch’s first victory in POWRi this season. The 31-year-old from nearby Riverton, Ill., had two in a partial 2011 campaign.
“I’d hoped to win earlier and carry the momentum into this season,” Andruskevitch said.
Andruskevitch, driving a Stallard with a GMS Racing-built Suzuki power, has six top-sixes and a worst of 10th in the seven POWRi events he’s entered this year.
“We have great equipment with the Stallard and GMS and Engler injections,” Andruskevitch said. “Tim Engler helps a lot and is a major part of our team.”
Miller has four second places and a worst of eighth in the eight POWRi Micro features this season. He’s leading the championship.
“Aaron was really fast,” Miller said. “Jacob Patton (who started third, next to Miller on the second row) and I went to the bottom on the start and I got up to third and we went to the top. I was able to pass Jacob about midrace.”
Beckinger, the 2011 POWRi Micro champion who is running a partial season due to work commitments, started 12th in his OSR-built Kawasaki and new Sawyer chassis.
“We built the Sawyer with all new (bolt-on) components,” Beckinger said. “We need to start up front to really show what we’ve got, but a perfect package. It’s going to be a heck of a season.”
POWRi had 35 Midgets and 54 Micros at Macon.
POWRi Lucas Oil National Midget Series results (30 laps): 1. Bubba Altig, 2. Rico Abreu, 3. Austin Brown, 4. Shane Hollingsworth, 5. Andrew Felker, 6. Dillon Welch, 7. Danny Stratton, 8. Chris Bell, 9. Dereck King, 10. Tyler Thomas, 11. Brett Anderson, 12. Chett Gehrke, 13. Cameron Hagin, 14. Daniel Robinson, 15. Jake Blackhurst, 16. Colten Cottle, 17. Garrett Aitken, 18. Ryan Blakeman, 19. Brandon Waelti, 20. Tim Siner, 21. Tony Roney, 22. Travis Berryhill.
POWRi Speedway Motors 600cc Outlaw Micro Series results (20 laps): 1. Aaron Andruskevitch, 2. Joe B. Miller, 3. Trent Beckinger, 4. Alex Harris, 5. Jeremy Camp, 6. Jacob Patton, 7. Brad McDaniel, 8. Derek Schuett, 9. Jake Palmisano, 10. Cale Thomas, 11. Jake Neuman, 12. Justin Peck, 13. JB Gilbert, 14. Devin Feger, 15. Paul Nienhiser, 16. Michael Faccinto, 17. Spencer Montgomery, 18. Nate Lauderbaugh, 19. Joe Faloon, 20. Heath Ross, 21. Andrew Felker, 22. John Dines, 23. Nathan Benson.
For more information, go to www.POWRi.com.