By Andrew Kunas
GREAT FALLS, Mont. – Tyler Thompson made his presence known Saturday night when he motored to his first ASCS Frontier Region sprint car victory on Night 2 of the 27th Annual Montana Roundup at Electric City Speedway.
The Harrisburg, Oregon driver led the distance after starting inside the second row, but first had an early furious battle for the lead and then had to fight heavy traffic. After the dust settled, the multi-time Cottage Grove Speedway track champion had his first win in Montana and first victory under the ASCS banner, driving the Main Motorsports No. 35km Ostrich-powered Maxim.
Thompson had a strong start and made a power move inside of pole sitter Logan Forler going into Turn 1, the two nearly making contact as they made their way around Turn 2. Thompson took the lead down the back straightaway but the Boise, Idaho driver threw a slider against Thompson in Turns 3 and 4, squeezing up against Thompson and the outside wall and nearly making contact again. Thompson popped out from between and secured the lead in the opening laps while Forler lost second to Kelly Miller.
While Thompson ripped around the top of the race track, Miller was glued to the bottom early as it had worked for him when he won Friday night. The Lethbridge, Alberta driver nearly passed Thompson a couple of times, but Thompson then pulled away. Forler, also running the top, eventually drove by Miller to retake second place. Seeing that the bottom wasn’t as hooked up as it was the night before Miller moved up the race track and secured third place in the early going.
Thompson was quickly in traffic, allowing Forler to close in. Every time Forler got close; however, Thompson would pick off one more lapped car to put between himself and Forler. Fighting traffic to keep pace with Thompson, Forler eventually had to contend with Miller and hold him off for second. From there Thompson drove on to the victory.
Forler eventually took second aboard the family’s No. 2L Fisher-powered Maxim. Miller finished third in the KDM Motorsports No. 2jr Custom Automotive-powered Eagle, and increased his points lead over defending series champion Trever Kirkland of Helena, Montana to 59 points with five races remaining on the ASCS Frontier Region schedule.
Skyler Gee of Leduc, Alberta was fourth. Kirkland finished fifth, continuing his run of being the only driver to have finished in the Top 10 in every ASCS Frontier Region main event this season.
Former series champion Phil Dietz won the B-Main and then moved up from 17th to finish sixth in the main event, earning hard charger honors. Joe Perry, Brock Lemley, Harli White and Kory Wermling rounded out the Top 10.
Heat races earlier in the evening were won by White, Forler, Cody Masse and Thompson.
Main event points from Friday and Saturday night will be combined to determine main event lineups for Sunday’s finale at Electric City Speedway, with the top 14 cars locked into the $10,000-to-win Montana Roundup main event.
More information on the Brodix Frontier Region of the American Sprint Car Series, along with the ASCS National Tour and other ASCS regional tours, 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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ASCS Frontier Region
27th Annual Montana Roundup – Night 2
Electric City Speedway
Great Falls, MT
September 2, 2023
Heat 1 (8 laps): 1. 12hw Harli White, 2. 2s James Setters, 3. 28 Joe Perry, 4. 10L Brock Lemley, 5. 3 Jordan Milne, 6. 56 Ross Mathewson, 7. 49 Mike Monahan.
Heat 2 (8 laps): 1. 2L Logan Forler, 2. 23n Skylar Gee, 3. 37 Trever Kirkland, 4. 5c Channing Filler, 5. 24m Ian Myers, 6. 66 Fred Holz, 7. 81 Darren Smith.
Heat 3 (8 laps): 1. 35m Cody Masse, 2. 0J Jeremy McCune, 3. 2 Shad Petersen, 4. 9k Kory Wermling, 5. 72 Phil Dietz, 6. 16g Austyn Gossel, 7. 4p Leroy Brush.
Heat 4 (8 laps): 1. 35km Tyler Thompson, 2. 2jr Kelly Miller, 3. 01 Rich Bailey, 4. 38n Mark Tabor II, 5. 6g Bryan Gossel, DNS – 34 T.J. Richman.
B-Feature (12 laps): 1. 72 Phil Dietz, 2. 24m Ian Myers, 3. 16g Austyn Gossel, 4. 56 Ross Mathewson, 5. 6g Bryan Gossel, 6. 3 Jordan Milne, 7. 49 Mike Monahan, 8. 66 Fred Holz, 9. 81 Darren Smith, 10. 34 T.J. Richman, 11. 4p Leroy Brush. First four finishers transferred to A-Feature.
Feature (25 laps): 1. 35km Tyler Thompson, 2. 2L Logan Forler, 3. 2jr Kelly Miller, 4. 23n Skylar Gee, 5. 37 Trever Kirkland, 6. 72 Phil Dietz, 7. 28 Joe Perry, 8. 10L Brock Lemley, 9. 12hw Harli White, 10. 9k Kory Wermling, 11. 0J Jeremy McCune, 12. 2s James Setters, 13. 2 Shad Petersen, 14. 01 Rich Bailey, 15. 24m Ian Myers, 16. 35m Cody Masse, 17. 16g Austyn Gossel, 18. 56 Ross Mathewson, 19. 38n Mark Tabor II, 20. 5c Channing Filler.