BOONE, Iowa – Tyler Frye got the lead back just in time to get himself a spot on the front row for the start of Saturday’s Northern SportMod main event at the IMCA Speedway Motors Super Nationals fueled by Casey’s.
Frye led the first 11 laps of the first qualifying feature Tuesday at Boone Speedway, lost the front spot to Jerry Hoffman following a restart on the 12th circuit and then saw Doug Smith slip by for second.
Frye rallied in the final laps, catching Smith and then Hoffman before the race ended a lap short of the scheduled 24 circuits when another car got hung up on the turn four berm.
Smith also caught Hoffman before the final caution came out.
Completing the top eight, who also advance to the middle row on Saturday, were Matt Hoeft, Clinton Luellen, Tracy Wassenberg. Bobby Anders and Cody Hudson.
Wassenberg, the 2007 Super Nationals champion, will make his career fifth main event start. Luellen qualified for the fourth time, Smith and Hoeft both for the third time and Frye and Hudson both for the second.
Hoffman and Anders make their Super Nationals SportMod main event debuts.
Sport Compact Feature: He was driving a new car but the results were the same.
Jacob Ellithorpe repeated as Sport Compact champion at the IMCA Speedway Motors Super Nationals fueled by Casey’s. He took the $260 checkers more than a straightaway ahead of his closest pursuit Tuesday night at Boone Speedway.
The 25-lapper ran caution-free. Chuck Fullenkamp and Brad Chandler each led a single circuit before the 11th starting Ellithorpe made his way to the front to stay.
2011 champion Nathan Chandler, Brad Chandler and Merv Chandler completed the top four. Mitch Bolton was fifth.
“I knew the Chandlers were back there and that they’d be coming,” Ellithorpe said following his successful return to Boone. “When I got into lapped traffic, I tried to watch five cars ahead of me and then run where they weren’t.”
“I didn’t think I’d be able to get through the middle alive and get to the front,” he added, “but I got lucky.”
A Super Nationals record 63 Sport Compacts vied Tuesday and the 30-car main event field was represented by five states.
Mike Barten and Tyler Whalen advanced 14 positions to sixth and eighth, respectively. Ramsey Meyer moved up 11 places to seventh and hard charger John Whalen was a plus 16 to 10th.
Their story, however, was the same as for the drivers who started closer to the front: Nobody could catch Ellithorpe.
He caught up with the back of the pack by lap eight, led by most of a straightaway before halfway and had four lapped cars – and a lot of real estate – between his back bumper and Nathan Chandler by lap 16.
“It’s great to be able to win this again,” Ellithorpe said. “We watched races earlier in the week and made some changes after we ran second in our heat. Everything just worked out for us.”
Northern SportMods Qualifier No. 2: The race was pretty good up front, but the guys coming from the back almost stole the show in Tuesday’s second qualifying feature for Northern SportMods at Boone Speedway.
Brett Lowry found his way around Tim Rupp 14 laps into the 25-lapper and led to the checkers to earn the outside front row starting spot for the IMCA Speedway Motors Super Nationals fueled by Casey’s main event on Saturday.
Rupp held off Danny Dvorak to finish third. Eric Flander advanced 14 positions to fourth, Joe Feyen was fifth after starting last in the field of 30 and Tony Pogeler was sixth.
Rounding out the top eight moving on to Saturday’s big dance were 24th starting Bryan Rigsby and 29th starting Brandon Long.
Dvorak is now at five-time Super Nationals qualifier. Flander and Pogeler will make their second main event starts while Lowry, Rupp, Feyen, Rigsby and Long are all in for the first time.
Hobby Stock Qualifier: Austin Hauswirth will take the green flag from the front of the outside row in Saturday’s main event for Hobby Stocks at the IMCA Speedway Motors Super Nationals fueled by Casey’s.
Hauswirth led the last 16 laps in winning Tuesday’s qualifying feature at Boone Speedway. He’d started sixth and made the move to the front past eventual runner-up Austin Luellen following a ninth lap restart.
The rest of the top eight advancing to the big show are Jamie Songer, hard charger Malik Sampson, Benji Irvine, Tiffany Bittner, Darin Johnson and Devin Smith.
Sampson raced into the top four from the 20th starting spot and joins Luellen, Irvine, Bittner and Johnson as first-time main event qualifiers. Hauswirth and Songer are both in the big show for the second time, Smith for the fifth.