Bobby Santos Wins the Little 500

7. Bobby Santos III

By T.J. Buffenbarger

ANDERSON, IN (September 5, 2020) — After six previous attempts Bobby Santos III earned the title of Little 500 champion Saturday night at Anderson Speedway. Santos from Franklin, Massachusetts took advantage of great pit work by his team to pass Shane Hollingsworth for the lead with 32 laps to go and drove away from the field for the victory.

Defending Little 500 champion Kody Swanson led at the start with Kyle Hamilton and Tyler Roahrig in pursuit.

The first caution flag of the race involved teammates Chris Neuenschwander and Dalton Armstrong tangling. Former Little 500 winners Jacob Wilson and Jeff Bloom were caught up in the incident and eliminated earl in the event.

Following a second caution for Justin Harper slowing on the inside of turn four Swanson continued to lead Hamilton and Roahrig. Brian Gerster briefly pinned Roahrig behind slower traffic to take away the third spot on lap 63, but Roahrig took the position back two laps later.

After a caution flag on lap 79 a long green flag period took place with positions changing hands up front. Roahrig was able to get by Hamilton for second position on lap 108. Caleb Armstrong followed suit and took the third spot from Hamilton on lap 110.

On lap 141 Roahrig took his turn in the lead as Swanson dropped back through the field. Caleb Amstrong moved to second and made Roahrig’s time in the lead short lived taking over the top spot on lap 165.

The lone green flag period was interrupted by Armstrong slowing on the front stretch after leading, taking him out of contention.

After pit stops Roahrig led Santos, Shane Hollingsworth, Gerster, and Swanson. Caution periods for a spin by Mickey Kempgens and hard wall contact by Doug Dietch slowed the field. During restarts Hollingsworth dropped back to fifth as Santos, Gerster, and Swanson advanced their positions.

ON lap 285 Roahrig had a close call while leading as he contacted a lapped car, causing that car to spin. The spinning car’s rear bumper briefly hooked Roahrig’s front bumper and looked like it was going to spin, but the cars dislodged and Roahrig was able to continue. Hamilton was right behind Roahrig and struck the slower car that eventually led him falling out of contention.

Roahrig continued to lead with Santos hanging to his back bumper. After a caution on lap 336 several leaders pitted eventually leaving Santos and Swanson on a lap of their own. Santos was able to pull away from Swanson while Roahrig and Hollingsworth, who had pitted under that caution, raced for third one lap behind the leaders.

After a caution for Caleb Armstrong slowing on lap 401 Santos crew made a fast pit stop to keep him on the lead lap while Roahrig went a lap down. Hollingsworth went to the lead while Swanson and Santos raced for second. Santos took the position on lap 424. Two laps later Swanson retired his car with mechanical issues.

Hollingsworth saw his lead quickly disappear with Santos passing him for the lead on lap 467. Santos then pulled away for his first Little 500 victory. Hollingsworth was the only other car on the lead lap in second position with Roahrig, Kyle O’Gara, and Eric Gordon rounding out the top five.

72nd Pay Less Little 500 presented by UAW
Anderson Speedway
Anderson, Indiana
Saturday September 5, 2020

1. 22-Bobby Santos III, 500
2. 20-Shane Hollingsworth, 500
3. 56-Tyler Roahrig, 499
4. 67-Kyle O’Gara, 498
5. 77-Eric Gordon, 498
6. 44-Brian Tyler, 498
7. 71-Caleb Armstrong, 491
8. 78-Ken Schrader, 488
9. 64-Jerry Coons Jr, 484
10. 68-Mickey Kempgens, 477
11. 21-Johnny Gilbertson, 469
12. 32-Ronnie Wuerdeman, 455
13. 55-Tommy Nichols, 439
14. 4-Kody Swanson, 424
15. 51-Scotty Hampton, 424
16. 27-Brian Gerster, 377
17. 26-Aaron Pierce, 372
18. 18-Shane Butler, 330
19. 59-John Inman, 295
20. 5-Kyle Hamilton, 285
21. 31-Derek Bichak, 255
22. 0-Doug Dietsch, 249
23. 7-Dakota Armstrong, 167
24. 12-Chris Neuenschwander, 165
25. 29-Chris Jagger, 143
26. 24-Cory Setser, 107
27. 50-Russ Gamester, 86
28. 1-Billy Wease, 83
29. 2-Christian Koehler, 81
30. 6-Bryan Gossel, 48
31. 53-Justin Harper, 44
32. 07-Jacob Wilson, 21
33. 28-Jeff Bloom, 20