By Richie Murray
Du Quoin, Illinois (August 28, 2019)………Eight past Ted Horn 100 winners are among the 37 drivers prepared for action in this Sunday’s USAC Silver Crown Champ Car Series race at the Du Quoin State Fairgrounds in southern Illinois.
Chris Windom (Canton, Ill.) has captured two of the last three Ted Horn 100 victories, both of which he assumed the lead late in the race, just six laps from the end in 2018 and with three to go during the 2016 classic en route to a championship season.
USAC Silver Crown point leader Kody Swanson (Kingsburg, Calif.) owns a pair of Ted Horn 100 victories. He took the first of his record 28 series wins at Du Quoin in 2010 and raced to victory again in 2017. His team, Nolen Racing, has collected two Du Quoin victories, first with Johnny Parsons in 1992 and in 1999 with Tony Elliott.
Shane Cockrum, from nearby Benton, Ill., is one of two drivers to win back-to-back Champ Car races at Du Quoin and is the most recent to do so back in 2014 and 2015. He’s finished in the top-five for six consecutive years at Du Quoin and Sunday’s race marks the final event for the Hardy Boys Motorsports team at the Magic Mile, the team with whom Cockrum scored both victories.
Chris Urish (Elkhart, Ill.) stunned the field with a victory in the 2013 Ted Horn 100, going to the lead after running in the third position with just four laps remaining to score his first career victory.
Brian Tyler (Mt. Pleasant, N.C.) has been a master of the one-mile dirt ovals in the Land of Lincoln, winning four times at Springfield and once, in 2008, at Du Quoin. He will wheel the Galas Motorsports No. 12, which has direct connections to Delrose/Holt Racing’s six Silver Crown victories at Du Quoin with drivers Gary Bettenhausen and Jeff Swindell.
Swindell (Germantown, Tenn.) won for Delrose/Holt in the 1990 race at Du Quoin. Nearly three decades later, he remains a threat to win. In both 2016 and 2017, Swindell led the most laps. He was in control for 55 laps in 2016, finishing 2nd after being passed for the lead with just three laps to go. In 2017, he led 68, finishing 3rd after leading until 10 laps remaining.
The very first of Peru, Indiana native Russ Gamester’s six Silver Crown wins came at Du Quoin in 1997 where the 1989 USAC National Midget champion took over the lead with just 14 laps remaining to score the breakthrough victory.
Shane Cottle (Kansas, Ill.) was dominant in his 2007 Du Quoin victory, leading all 100 laps from the pole position en route to his first career series victory. He again won the pole for the event the following year in 2008.
Past Silver Crown Series winners on the hunt for a first Du Quoin triumph include C.J. Leary (Greenfield, Ind.), who has led the race in each of the past two years, including a race-high 53 laps one year ago. He’s joined by David Byrne (Shullsburg, Wisc.), John Heydenreich (Bloomsburg, Pa.), 2017 Springfield Mile winner Justin Grant (Ione, Calif.), May’s Hoosier Hundred winner Tyler Courtney (Indianapolis, Ind.) and two-time Springfield winner A.J. Fike (Galesburg, Ill.).
Nine different Illinois drivers have won at Du Quoin, including Tinley Park’s Tony Bettenhausen (1949 & twice in 1951), Rantoul’s Don Branson (1965), Danville’s Bubby Jones (1976), Tinley Park’s Gary Bettenhausen (twice in 1980, 1982, 1983 & 1988), Chicago’s Rich Vogler (1981), Kansas’ Shane Cottle (2007), Elkhart’s Chris Urish (2013), Benton’s Shane Cockrum (2014 & 2015) and Canton’s Chris Windom (2016 & 2018).
Eight Illinoisans are set for combat Sunday at Du Quoin with the four past Ted Horn 100 winners Cottle, Urish, Cockrum and Windom joining Fike, Patrick Lawson (Edwardsville, Ill.), Terry Babb (Decatur, Ill.) and Korey Weyant (Springfield, Ill.)
Two past USAC National champions in Broken Arrow, Oklahoma’s Brady Bacon (2014 & 16 Sprint) and Minden, Nevada’s Tanner Thorson (2016 Midget) are entered. Bacon, a Williams Grove winner in June, led 28 laps a year ago at Du Quoin while Thorson is set to make his second Silver Crown start, and first at Du Quoin. Six-time All Star Circuit of Champions titlist Chad Kemenah (Alvada, Ohio) is ready to make his Du Quoin debut.
Jacob Wilson (Crawfordsville, Ind.) won the pole for last year’s race while Kevin Thomas, Jr. (Cullman, Ala.) took the runner-up spot in the main event behind Windom and brings a streak of four-straight 2nd place finishes on dirt in Silver Crown competition into Du Quoin.
They are joined by fellow Silver Crown veterans Kyle Steffens (St. Louis, Mo.), Kyle Robbins (New Castle, Ind.), Austin Nemire (Sylvania, Ohio), Mike Haggenbottom (Levittown, Pa.), Matt Goodnight (Winchester, Ind.), Danny Long (Bonne Terre, Mo.), Steve Buckwalter (Royersford, Pa.), Casey Shuman (Tempe, Ariz.) and Chris Fetter (Troy, Mo.).
Robbins (2018) and Shuman (2016) are past series Silver Crown Rookies of the Year, joined by this year’s crop of series rookies heading to Du Quoin, including Dave Berkheimer (Mechanicsburg, Pa.), Ronnie Wuerdeman (Cincinnati, Ohio), Austin Mundie (Dallas, Texas), Dallas Hewitt (Troy, Ohio), Casey Buckman (Chandler, Ariz.) and Jimmy Light (West Springfield, Pa.). While a series Rookie, Mundie isn’t a first-time to Du Quoin, finishing 24th in 2018.
Pits and registration open at 1pm, grandstands open at 4pm, practice at 5pm, qualifying at 6:30 with the Ted Horn 100 scheduled for an 8:15pm start. All times central.
Tickets will be available on raceday or by calling the Du Quoin Fair office at 618-542-1535. Info and tickets can also be obtained by calling the Track Enterprises office at 217-764-3200.
Advance tickets are $25 for adults and $10 for children 11 and under. On the day of the race, adults are $30 and children 11 and under are $10. Pit passes are $35 apiece for adults and $20 for children 11 and under.
Sunday’s Ted Horn 100 will have live, flag-to-flag coverage on FloRacing. You can listen to live audio of the broadcast for free on the USAC app or follow along with live updates on https://www.facebook.com/usacracing/ and https://twitter.com/USACNation/ with live timing and scoring available on both the USAC and Race-Monitor apps.
TED HORN 100 ENTRY LIST (37 Drivers)
# / DRIVER / HOMETOWN / TEAM
07 JACOB WILSON/Crawfordsville, IN (Wilson Brothers Racing)
08 KYLE STEFFENS/St. Louis, MO (Kyle Steffens)
2 PATRICK LAWSON/Edwardsville, IL (Patrick Lawson)
6 BRADY BACON/Broken Arrow, OK (Klatt Enterprises)
7 KYLE ROBBINS/New Castle, IN (KR Racing)
9 ®TANNER THORSON/Minden, NV (Chris Dyson Racing)
10 C.J. LEARY/Greenfield, IN (DMW Motorsports)
12 BRIAN TYLER/Mt. Pleasant, NC (Galas Motorsports)
14 A.J. FIKE/Galesburg, IL (Dennis & Dave McQuinn)
15 ®CHAD KEMENAH/Alvada, OH (Hampshire/Kemenah Racing)
16 AUSTIN NEMIRE/Sylvania, OH (Nemire-Lesko Racing)
17 CHRIS WINDOM/Canton, IL (Goodnight-Byrd Racing)
20 KODY SWANSON/Kingsburg, CA (Gene Nolen Racing)
21 JEFF SWINDELL/Germantown, TN (Mark Swanson Encore Team)
24 MIKE HAGGENBOTTOM/Levittown, PA (John Haggenbottom)
31 ®DAVE BERKHEIMER/Mechanicsburg, PA (Berkheimer Racing)
33 ®RONNIE WUERDEMAN/Cincinnati, OH (Ronnie Wuerdeman)
34 TERRY BABB/Decatur, IL (Ken Morford)
39 MATT GOODNIGHT/Winchester, IN (Goodnight Racing)
40 DAVID BYRNE/Shullsburg, WI (Byrne Racing)
43 JOHN HEYDENREICH/Bloomsburg, PA (A.J. Felker)
44 DANNY LONG/Bonne Terre, MO (Danny Long)
47 ®AUSTIN MUNDIE/Dallas, TX (Patty Butler)
51 RUSS GAMESTER/Peru, IN (Gamester Racing)
53 STEVE BUCKWALTER/Royersford, PA (Five Three Motorsports)
55 CASEY SHUMAN/Tempe, AZ (Patty Bateman)
56 KEVIN THOMAS, JR./Cullman, AL (Foxco Racing)
57 ®DALLAS HEWITT/Troy, OH (Dallas Hewitt)
71 SHANE COCKRUM/Benton, IL (Hardy Boys Motorsports)
74 ®CASEY BUCKMAN/Chandler, AZ (C-Buck Motorsports)
77 CHRIS URISH/Elkhart, IL (Chris Urish)
81 SHANE COTTLE/Kansas, IL (Curtis Williams)
89 CHRIS FETTER/Troy, MO (Sammy Fetter)
91 JUSTIN GRANT/Ione, CA (Hemelgarn Racing)
97 TYLER COURTNEY/Indianapolis, IN (Hans Lein)
99 ®KOREY WEYANT/Springfield, IL (Scott Weyant)
123 ®JIMMY LIGHT/West Springfield, PA (Two-Three Motorsports)
® = USAC Silver Crown Rookie of the Year contender