Dream Season Rolls On For Andy Bryant

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Andy Bryant celebrated both a feature win and the Ozark Golf Cars USRA B-Mod track championship Saturday night at Lucas Oil Speedway. (Kenny Shaw photo)

WHEATLAND, Mo. – The dream season continues for young Andy Bryant.

Bryant doubled up Saturday night at Lucas Oil Speedway, capturing both the Ozark Golf Cars USRA B-Mod feature and the track championship on the final night of the Big Adventure RV Weekly Racing Series season.

Other feature winners on Bill Roberts Chevrolet-Buick Season Championship Night Presented by KYOO-Your Country 99 & KPOW-Power 97.7 were: Mitch Keeter (Pitts Homes USRA Modifieds), Brian Schutt (Big O Tires Street Stocks) and Shane Essary (Warsaw Auto Marine & RV ULMA Late Models).

Cutshaw finished second to Keeter to clinch his fourth straight Pitts Homes USRA Modified track championship. Meanwhile, Toby Ott earned the Big O Tires Street Stock track championship and Johnny Fennewald captured the Warsaw Auto Marine & ULMA Late Model title on a night that saw 97 cars check into the pits.

Bryant, quickly moving from his fourth-row starting position, overtook pole-starting JC Morton to grab the lead completing lap two. The 17-year-old from Fort Scott, Kan., dominated from there.

“The track was great tonight,” Bryant said. “We started eighth and got a really good start. Kris (Jackson) put up a good fight on that last restart. He had me looking back. It was a great track, a great race and I’m glad to win it.”

Bryant had opened a big lead when a caution for debris on lap 13 bunched the field for a seven-lap shootout. But Bryant prevailed for his fourth feature victory of the season to with with three runner-up finishes and two thirds.

“It’s just been a pretty decent year,” said Bryant, who was leading in the most recent Out-Pace USRA B-Mod National standings as well. “I’d just like to thank everybody that helps me, both my family and sponsors. They’re what allows us to compete at this level to be successful.”

Jackson finished second with Taylor Moore in third.

As Mitch Keeter drove to his first feature win of the season in the Pitts Homes USRA Modified division, Jeff Cutshaw used a strong second-place run to win a fourth straight Lucas Oil Speedway championship.

Cutshaw won the previous week’s feature to regain the lead. Jason Pursley of Hermitage, who began the night 10 points behind Cutshaw, finished fifth.

“Four in a row is kind of a nice thing. This field is tough,” Cutshaw said. “Jason runs great. It was a tight battle all the way until the end this year. I want to thank Pitts Homes for sponsoring this class. They do a lot for us.”

Keeter started outside of row two and moved past Scott Drake and into the lead on lap four. He held off Cutshaw the rest of the way with Joe Duvall finishing third and Drake in fourth.

“This car has been good for me all year,” Keeter said. “I race in Oklahoma on Saturdays and every chance I get, I come over here. It’s a great track and I enjoy coming here.”

Brian Schutt finished off a strong final stretch of his season, taking his third feature win over the final five races in the Big O Tires Street Stock division.

Schutt held off James Flood by one car length as Flood used the high groove to pressure him over the final five laps. Marc Carter was third and Kenny Carroll finished fourth.

“We probably shouldn’t even be here this week. We broke an oil pump last week, under caution, got it shut off and didn’t hurt the motor,” Schutt said. “I had a last-minute spring change and the car was really, really good. We’ve been building on stuff.”

Toby Ott wrapped up the championship at his hometown track with a solid fifth-place run. He began the night with a comfortable lead over former track champion Carroll.

“That’s a pretty good, respectable finish for us tonight,” Ott said. “We’ve been trying some stuff and it’s worked out pretty well. A bunch of the guys had it hooked up tonight. We did what we could and we’re happy to come out with what we got tonight.

“It’s been a great season. I don’t have a complaint. I finished every race and that’s all you can ask for. Everything has been completely awesome.”

Racing veteran Shane Essary led all 20 laps to grab his first Warsaw Auto Marine & RV ULMA feature win of the season.

Essary started outside of the front row and held off challenges from runner-up – and season points champ – Johnny Fennewald on three restarts in the second half of the race.

“I’d like to thank my sponsors and Rick Hoover,” Essary said. “He owns the car and gives me a chance to drive and I’m just having a good time.”

Fennewald used his strong runner-up run to nail down his first track title. Defending division champion Aaron Marrant finished third.

“I just had a goal the last couple of weeks to keep my head, run clean and just finish races,” Fennewald said. “We started the season with two DNFs. I didn’t have very many points and we were way behind. We just started (getting) firsts and seconds and now, look where we’re at.

“I’ve wanted to win one of these for a long time. It’s really hard to do. It just takes a lot of work. I have a lot of good help and a lot of good sponsors behind me.”