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USAC United States Auto Club Top Story Logo

This is the week when middle-America celebrates one of its signature motorsports events as the 38th “Belleville Midget Nationals” unfolds at the legendary Belleville (Kansas) High Banks. The occasion is the annual North Central Kansas Free Fair and Americana takes the forefront with one of the country’s most spectacular racing weekends.

Tuesday night’s “Chad McDaniel Memorial” at the Solomon Valley Raceway in Beloit, Kansas serves as a fitting debut for the Honda USAC National Midgets in their Sunflower State visit, then Thursday night kicks off the activity at Belleville’s half-mile dirt oval.

Bryan Clauson won last year’s Beloit feature and Rico Abreu was the star at Belleville in 2014.

Kevin Thomas Jr. of Cullman, Ala. is expected to be joined by his Keith Kunz/Curb-Agajanian teammates Abreu, Tanner Thorson and Christopher Bell to challenge the Kansas ovals. Thomas leads the Honda standings by 21 points over Tyler Thomas. Tracy Hines trails the leader by 27 points in third as he continues to pursue a third leg of USAC’s Triple Crown Championship. He already owns USAC Silver Crown and AMSOIL Sprint car titles.

The USAC Silver Crown cars, scheduled to compete at Belleville Friday, will have a practice session as part of Thursday night’s program which serves as the prelim for Saturday night’s Belleville Midget Nationals finale.

Jerry Coons Jr. hopes to become Belleville’s first four-time champion, having won the 2005, 2007 and 2012 classics. Bell won in 2013 and Abreu last year so the Kunz/Curb-Agajanian team is aiming for a third consecutive title.

Clauson owns two Belleville crowns as does Dave Darland. The event has been sanctioned by USAC 16 of the past 19 years.