By Andrew Kunas
BILLINGS, Mont. – They say that in order to finish first, you must first finish. That proved to be the case for Colby Thornhill, who had a little luck fall his way as he won his second Brodix ASCS Frontier Region sprint car main event in as many nights, taking the Montana Spring Shootout at Big Sky Speedway.
The Enumclaw, Washington driver ran second for most of the 25-lap feature behind race long leader Kelly Miller of Coaldale, Alberta. Miller kept the young Thornhill at bay throughout, often leading by as much as a full straightaway on the 3/8-mile clay oval. With just a few laps remaining, however, Miller’s car began to sputter as he was running out of fuel. Thornhill ran Miller down and passed him for the lead with a couple of laps remaining. Miller, far enough out ahead of the rest of the field, continued to sputter around the track and limped across the line in fifth place, eventually stopping on the track after taking the checkered flag.
It was Thornhill’s third career win with the Brodix ASCS Frontier Region. It was a successful trip to Montana aboard the Thornhill Motorsports No. 19 Shark-powered Triple X as he also won Friday’s event at Gallatin Speedway. Thornhill had been racing on the west coast all spring before deciding to venture out to Montana this weekend. While he is headed back to Washington for events there, Thornhill expressed his hopes to come back out for more ASCS Frontier Region events later this season.
Great Falls, Montana driver Kory Wermling, who had been fighting mechanical issues this season, turned his luck around as he finished second aboard his No. 9k Boyle-powered Maxim. Also turning his own luck around was Meridian, Idaho’s Tyler Driever, who drove from the 12th starting position to finish third aboard the Driever Racing No. 33t Shark-powered Maxim, scoring a little extra cash also with the hard charger nod. It was Driever’s first time finishing a race this season, so he and team were more than pleased with their night.
After the initial start was called back, the second attempt to start the race was thwarted by a large multi-car accident that saw both Trever Kirkland and Austyn Gossel flipping upside down off the track in Turn 3 and taking Phil Dietz with them. While Kirkland and Gossel were done for the night, Dietz’s team put another top wing on his car in the work area and got him back out to restart the race at the tail end of the field. Dietz pleased his home track fans by coming back to finish fourth.
In an attrition filled race, two more caution flags flew for cars stopping on the track after blowing motors, including Ross Mathewson and Joe Perry.
Following Miller, the rest of the Top 10 were Jordan Milne, Adam Speckman, Ian Myers, Abraham Hernandez and Perry.
Heat races earlier in the evening were won by Mathewson and Perry.
Up next for the Brodix ASCS Frontier Region sprint car series is a busy 4th of July holiday weekend. Friday, July 1st sees the tour make another visit to Gallatin Speedway in Belgrade, Montana. After a day off on Saturday, the series has a two-night holiday event on Sunday and Monday, July 3rd and 4th at Electric City Speedway in Great Falls, Montana. The series returns to Big Sky Speedway for the Big Sky 360 Nationals on Friday and Saturday, July 15th and 16th.
More information on the Brodix Frontier Region of the American Sprint Car Series can be found online at www.ascsracing.com. Stagg Motor Sports, the promoting company of the ASCS Frontier Region, can be found at www.staggmotorsports.com.
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Brodix ASCS Frontier Region
Montana Spring Shootout
Big Sky Speedway
June 11, 2022
Heat 1 (8 laps): 1. 56 Ross Mathewson, 2. 16g Austyn Gossel, 3. 72 Phil Dietz, 4. 19 Colby Thornhill, 5. 3 Jordan Milne, 6. 24m Ian Myers, 7. 33t Tyler Driever.
Heat 2 (8 laps): 1. 28 Joe Perry, 2. 2jr Kelly Miller, 3. 37 Trever Kirkland, 4. 9k Kory Wermling, 5. 4 Adam Speckman, 6. 2m Abraham Hernandez.
Feature (25 laps): 1. 19 Colby Thornhill, 2. 9k Kory Wermling, 3. 33t Tyler Driever, 4. 72 Phil Dietz, 5. 2jr Kelly Miller, 6. 3 Jordan Milne, 7. 4 Adam Speckman, 8. 24m Ian Myers, 9. 2m Abraham Hernandez, 10. 28 Joe Perry, 11. 56 Ross Mathewson, 12. 16g Austyn Gossel, 13. 37 Trever Kirkland.