Eliason Finds Victory Lane With the All Stars at I-96

Cory Eliason. (T.J. Buffenbarger photo)

By T.J. Buffenbarger

LAKE ODESSA, MI (August 20, 2021) – Cory Eliason proved that perseverance can pay off by collecting his first Floracing All Star Circuit of Champions presented by Mobile 1 feature victory of the 2021 season Friday night at I-96 Speedway in Lake Odessa, Michigan.

Eliason, from Visalia, California, drove by Ian Madsen for the lead just before the halfway point in the 25-lap main event. Eliason then held off multiple challenges by Madsen and Tyler Courtney late in the main event for the victory.

The victory also avenged some misfortune Eliason had earlier in the season while at I-96 leading the Mace Thomas Classic.

“When we were here in May I think we got to the lead and ran something over from someone crashing and got a flat tire,” said Eliason of his misfortune at I-96 earlier in the season. “I felt like we left one here and we’ve left one at a lot of other places. This kind of gets the monkey off our backs, the guys have been working hard.”

Eliason also credited his car owner, Kevin Rundeen, for encouraging the team through its recent rough stretch.

“It’s been a struggle all year, but Kevin Rudeen is one of the greatest bosses we could have in this sport. He’s here to motivate you and keep you pumped up even if you run 20th or 13th, he’s always on our side saying ‘you’ve got this, it’s not your fault’”.

Wise led the opening circuits until siding off turn four with three laps complete. Bill Balog also slid off turn four in a separate incident, backing his car into the fence ending up right next to Wise’s car. Wise’s team was able to make repairs while Balog retired pit side.

This gave the lead to Ian Madsen. As the leaders started to get into lapped traffic Madsen and Eliason exchanged slide jobs with Eliason taking the lead on lap nine. Shortly after Eliason took the lead, the caution appeared for Tylar Rankin doing a 360 degree spin in turn four.

Eliason pulled away during the restart, but allowed Madsen and Courtney to close in. Madsen tired to slide by Eliason in turn two with five laps to go, but drove off the track in turn two and gave up second position to Courtney.

Courtney was starting to pressure Eliason for the lead when the red flag appeared for a flip by Corbin Gurley in turn four with two laps to go. After the restart Eliason was able to pull away for the victory over Courtney,

During the restart Eliason stayed close to Madsen, exchanging slide jobs with Madsen holding the lead.

After the race Eliason was pleased with the speed the team found leading into some of the biggest All Star Circuit of Champions races of the year and felt optimistic leading into the next event for the season Saturday at Waynesfield Raceway Park.

“I wish it didn’t take this long because I think we’ve found something,” Eliason said about getting his first All Star series victory in late August. “It always takes that one to get the monkey off your back, now that we have that win out of the way we will try to do it again tomorrow night.”

“It’s been a long road this year. Its one that I’ve questioned what I’m doing week in and week out.

Floracing All Star Circuit of Champions
I-96 Speedway
Lake Odessa, Michigan
Friday, August 19, 2021

Dixie Vodka Qualifying
1. 5-Ian Madsen, 13.341[4]
2. 26-Cory Eliason, 13.393[10]
3. 55-Hunter Schuerenberg, 13.422[20]
4. 11-Spencer Bayston, 13.444[19]
5. 10-Zeb Wise, 13.479[5]
6. 13-Justin Peck, 13.497[13]
7. 7BC-Tyler Courtney, 13.503[6]
8. 17B-Bill Balog, 13.527[16]
9. 91-Kyle Reinhardt, 13.544[14]
10. 07-Skylar Gee, 13.597[9]
11. 4-Cap Henry, 13.604[2]
12. 7M-Geoff Dodge, 13.650[12]
13. 5S-Max Stambaugh, 13.705[8]
14. 85-Dustin Daggett, 13.754[18]
15. 97-Greg Wilson, 13.785[17]
16. 7-Zane Devault, 13.840[7]
17. 12-Corbin Gurley, 13.866[15]
18. 71H-Ryan Ruhl, 13.869[11]
19. 21N-Frankie Nervo, 14.131[1]
20. 11C-Joe Conway, 14.997[21]
21. 39-Tylar Rankin, 59.999[3]

Ford Performance Heat Race #1 (8 Laps)
1. 7BC-Tyler Courtney[2]
2. 07-Skylar Gee[1]
3. 11-Spencer Bayston[3]
4. 5-Ian Madsen[4]
5. 5S-Max Stambaugh[5]
6. 7-Zane Devault[6]
7. 21N-Frankie Nervo[7]

All Pro Aluminum Cylinder Heads Heat Race #2 (8 Laps)
1. 4-Cap Henry[1]
2. 17B-Bill Balog[2]
3. 10-Zeb Wise[3]
4. 26-Cory Eliason[4]
5. 85-Dustin Daggett[5]
6. 12-Corbin Gurley[6]
7. 11C-Joe Conway[7]

Hunt Brothers Pizza Heat Race #3 (8 Laps)
1. 7M-Geoff Dodge[1]
2. 91-Kyle Reinhardt[2]
3. 13-Justin Peck[3]
4. 55-Hunter Schuerenberg[4]
5. 97-Greg Wilson[5]
6. 71H-Ryan Ruhl[6]
DNS: 39-Tylar Rankin

FloRacing A-Main (30 Laps)
1. 26-Cory Eliason[6]
2. 7BC-Tyler Courtney[3]
3. 11-Spencer Bayston[8]
4. 13-Justin Peck[12]
5. 55-Hunter Schuerenberg[5]
6. 5S-Max Stambaugh[13]
7. 97-Greg Wilson[15]
8. 4-Cap Henry[4]
9. 07-Skylar Gee[11]
10. 21N-Frankie Nervo[19]
11. 10-Zeb Wise[2]
12. 7-Zane Devault[16]
13. 5-Ian Madsen[1]
14. 85-Dustin Daggett[14]
15. 91-Kyle Reinhardt[10]
16. 7M-Geoff Dodge[7]
17. 12-Corbin Gurley[17]
18. 71H-Ryan Ruhl[18]
19. 39-Tylar Rankin[21]
20. 11C-Joe Conway[20]
21. 17B-Bill Balog[9]

Kears Speed Shop Dash (6 Laps)
1. 5-Ian Madsen[4]
2. 10-Zeb Wise[6]
3. 7BC-Tyler Courtney[7]
4. 4-Cap Henry[3]
5. 55-Hunter Schuerenberg[8]
6. 26-Cory Eliason[5]
7. 7M-Geoff Dodge[2]
8. 11-Spencer Bayston[1]