Armstrong, Andretti, and Thomas win USAC national rookie honors

usac United States Auto Club 2012 logo

usac United States Auto Club 2012 logoFrom Dick Jordan

Caleb Armstrong, Jarett Andretti and Kevin Thomas Jr. have been selected to receive USAC National “Rookie of the Year” honors December 12 at the 59th USAC “Night of Champions” celebration in Indianapolis, Ind.

Shane Cockrum will also be honored as the 2014 USAC “Most Improved Driver.”

The affair is again being held at the Indiana Roof Ballroom in downtown Indianapolis and distinctive awards will be presented to each driver during the evening’s program.

Armstrong, of New Castle, Ind., finished ninth in the 2014 USAC Silver Crown Series presented by TRAXXAS. His season produced an outstanding drive at the “4-Crown Nationals” in Rossburg, Ohio and a fourth-place finish at Gateway Motorsports Park in Madison, Ill.

Andretti, son of Indianapolis 500 veteran John Andretti, ranked 14th in the final AMSOIL USAC National Sprint Car standings and started 24 feature events, capped by a ninth-place finish at Tri-State Speedway in Haubstadt, Ind. In 2011 Jarett captured USAC’s Eastern Ford Focus Dirt championship.

Thomas, of Cullman, Ala., took 13th in the final Honda USAC National Midget standings and grabbed four “top-10” finishes in his 10 starts. A front-runner in USAC’s competitive National Sprint Car series, he claimed the 2013 USAC Most Improved Driver award after recording seven feature wins!

Cockrum, of Benton, Ill., scored an extremely popular victory in the “Ted Horn 100” Silver Crown race at the DuQuoin State Fairgrounds and was a steady competitor in the AMSOIL USAC National Sprint Car series. He also added a fifth-place finish in the “4-Crown Nationals” Midget race in September.

Armstrong piloted his father’s Neal Metal Recycling & Processing/Armstrong Farms Beast/Chevy while Andretti drove the Andretti Autosport Short Track Superior Auto/Indy Trading Post Maxim/Ott. Thomas drove the Kenny Brown Racing Black Jack Oil/Budweiser Spike/Esslinger. Cockrum’s primary cars were the Hardy Boys Motorsports Marion Underground/Shane Wade Enterprises Beast Chevy Silver Crown car and the Amati Racing Maxim/Dynotech Sprint car.

Western USAC Rookies who will be celebrated at their awards ceremonies February 7 in Paso Robles, Calif. are: Logan Williams (CRA Sprint), Jarid Blondel (Honda Western Midget), Trent Carter and Garrett Long (West Coast Sprint), Western Classic Sprint (Trevor Schmid) and Joel Rayborne (Western HPD Midget).