WACO, Texas – The mud-chucking modified maniacs of the United States Modified Touring Series will embark on a four-night, four-track swing through Texas this week to wrap up this year’s campaign in the Summit Racing Equipment USMTS Southern Region presented by Production Jars.
Action kicks off on Wednesday at Heart O’ Texas Speedway in Elm Mott, Texas, followed by a Thursday night gig at the Superbowl Speedway in Greenville, Texas. Friday takes the rugged USMTS road warriors to the Kennedale (Texas) Speedway Park and the curtain closes on Saturday at the Lonestar Speedway in Kilgore, Texas.
Each of the four events will pay $3,000 to win and no less than $250 to take the green flag in the main event all four nights.
The Summit Racing Equipment USMTS Southern Region champion will earn $10,000 while all drivers ranked among the top 15 in points-along with any others with perfect attendance in the region-are locked in for this year’s Hunt for the Casey’s USMTS National Championship powered by S&S Fishing & Rental, which carries a $25,000 payoff for the 2017 titlist.
Last year’s runner-up in the national points chase, Cade Dillard, has a series-best five victories this season and is in the driver’s seat to claim the Summit Racing Equipment USMTS Southern Region crown, but several others may have plans of their own.
Three-time USMTS national champ Jason Hughes – the man who nipped Dillard by three points to take last year’s title – rides in second place with a surmountable 47-points deficit while his teammate, Ryan Gustin, is just two more markers back in third.
Not far behind Gustin is the top Texan in the region, Chris Brown, whose lone win this season came three months ago down the road at the Cotton Bowl Speedway in Paige, Texas. Stormy Scott, Zack VanderBeek and Dereck Ramirez are the last remaining pilots with a mathematical shot at the regional points title.
Holding down the eighth and ninth positions, respectively, are Minnesota’s Travis Saurer and Arizona’s R.C. Whitwell. Both are also at the top of the rankings in the race for the 2017 Grant Junghans USMTS Rookie of the Year Award.