BOONE, Iowa – Jeff Taylor made history during another record-setting IMCA Speedway Motors Super Nationals.
Taylor chased Brandon Blochlinger much of the way before finally catching up and leading the last two laps for the Modified main event win Saturday evening at Boone Speedway. He became the first driver from Arkansas to win a Super Nationals championship in any division.
“The last time I left here was on a tractor and I wasn’t farming. It was pretty ugly,” Taylor said. “We came back to Super Nationals with the goal of getting back into the show and I had an awesome car to do it with.”
“I built it and raced it at the Duel In The Desert in Las Vegas last year,” he added. “I may park it in my yard now. I don’t know if I ever want to get rid of it.”
Blochlinger ended in second after a long run at the front of the 40-lapper. Early leader Kyle Strickler was third and Brandon Beckendorf completed the out-of-state top four.
Twenty-six states and Canada were represented in the record 872 entries for the 30th annual Super Nationals. Two new divisional records were set with 191 Stock Cars and 55 Mach-1 Sport Compacts; another divisional record was equaled with 153 Hobby Stocks.
Completing the car count totals were 251 Modifieds, 180 Karl Chevrolet Northern SportMods and 42 Late Models.
Also reigning as Super Nationals champions on Saturday were Donavon Smith in the Stock Cars and Shannon Anderson in the Hobby Stocks, both for the second time, and 16-year-old Nick Roberts in the Karl Chevrolet Northern SportMods.
A high school junior, Roberts led green to checkers in becoming the youngest champion in Super Nationals history. He held off Troy Jerovetz and Cory Rose before Jesse Sobbing challenged late.
Sobbing made his charge toward the front after being involved in a lap nine yellow and restarting at the rear. The previous youngest champion had been Scott Anderson of Mason City, who was 18 when he won the Hobby Stock title in 1999.
Chad Palmer led the first 22 laps before Smith reeled him in and led the last eight times around the track in the Stock Car show. Also champion in 2009, Smith became the first driver to win the main event and Sunoco Race Fuels Race of Champions the same year.
Anderson dominated the Hobby Stock feature from the onset, running away with the 30-lapper. The race ran without caution and there was no catching Anderson, who was into lapped traffic by midway and took the checkers half a straightaway ahead of Brandon Pruitt.
Also Super Nationals champion in 2009, Anderson equaled his father Jeff’s career total at Boone in the Stock Car division.
Kevin Stoa led all 12 laps in winning the Harris Auto Racing Modified Race of Champions a second time.
James Kleinheksel passed Joel Rust for the lead on the eighth of 10 laps and led to the finish of the Arnold Motor Supply Race of Champions for Northern SportMods. Adam Armstrong led all 10 laps and became the first non-Iowan to win the Arnold Motor Supply Hobby Stock Race of Champions.
Mike Murphy Jr. had won the Deery Brothers Summer Series feature for Late Models on opening night Sept. 3. Jacob Ellithorpe topped the Sport Compact main event the next evening.
Friday’s Fast Shafts All-Star Invitational winner was Jordan Grabouski. Mark Elliott raced from the 30th starting spot to finish a close second.