WHEATLAND, Mo. — For the second year running, the Lucas Oil American Sprint Car Series presented by MAVTV American Real capped off the Sizzlin’ Summer Speedweek at the Lucas Oil Speedway and in just as many years a first-time national tour winner was crowned as Jonathan Cornell charged from 18th to win the Impact Signs, Awnings, and Wraps Speedweek Finale at the Diamond of Dirt Tracks.
“This is incredible,” Cornell said after becoming the season’s 12th different winner and 117th overall with the Lucas Oil ASCS presented by MAVTV American Real.
“I had to live with it, running the B Main,” Cornell said. “Starting that far back, you know, they tore the track up and I thought it was going to take rubber sooner so I was just hanging on.”
Capturing the night’s second B feature presented by DMI Rear Ends, The Kiowa Line Builders No. 28 worked steadily on the bottom groove while Miranda Arnold jumped to the point over Jeff Swindell.
The feature’s lone caution flew for the stalled No. 3h of Brandon Hanks on lap five as the Mid-Mo Auto Sales No. 5m worked the hub of the Lucas Oil Speedway with Jason Johnson, who worked to second on the start, challenging on the cushion.
Distancing from the MVT No. 41 on the restart, Arnold worked clear racetrack as Brad Loyet shuffled Johnson to third on lap seven, followed by the Hammers No. 94 of Swindell on lap 12.
Committed to the cushion with a stuck Bleeder in the left rear Wheel, Swindell began closing the gap as slower traffic began playing a role, just as Cornell cracked the top three on lap 17.
Working past the No. 94 on lap 21, Cornell closed in quickly on Arnold.
“No one was really running the bottom like we could and when I got to Miranda (Arnold) I didn’t know what place she was in until I looked at the scoreboard and I saw that we were right there,” said Cornell.
Nearly stalled by a slower car on the twenty-third circuit, Arnold found the VKCC No. 28 to her inside line entering turn three to complete the Lap 24. Missing the line just enough for Cornell to get the nose of the car even with Arnold’s rear axle, Cornell secured the lead, running to a 2.362 second advantage at the checkered flag.
Miranda Arnold’s runner-up finish was the Missouri native’s best finish against the national tour. “We’ve needed this to pick our whole team up and keep us going. It’s night’s like this that keep you racing, and wanting to race.”
Jeff Swindell earned his sixth podium in as many night and in doing so, secured the 2013 ASCS Sizzlin’ Summer Speedweek Championship and Bob Westphal Memorial Trophy.
“We were good from the get go really,” said Swindell. “We fell back to fourth there on the start and everyone started running the bottom so I decided to go somewhere they weren’t. We were a little tight there, plus the bleeder on the left rear stuck, so we just committed to the top.”
Jason Johnson ended up fourth with Brad Loyet completing the top five.
Jonathan Cornell, Miranda Arnold, Jeff Swindell, Jason Johnson, Brad Loyet, Logan Forler, Dustin Morgan, Cole Wood, Johnny Herrera, Tony Bruce Jr., Jay Russell, Brian Brown, Seth Bergman, Kyle Bellm, Evan Martin, Tyler Blank, Cody Baker, Mitchell Moore, Brandon Hahn, Wyatt Burks, Brandon Hanks, Randy Hibbs.