Rough-Riding Henderson Conquers Kilgore

Justin Henderson enjoys victory lane Thursday night at Lone Star Speedway in Kilgore, Texas. (Tim Aylwin photo)
Justin Henderson enjoys victory lane Thursday night at Lone Star Speedway in Kilgore, Texas. (Tim Aylwin photo)

KILGORE, Texas — Justin Henderson found his way to victory on a rough and tumble race during night one of the Lone Star Sprint Car Nationals at the Lone Star Speedway.

All smiles in victory lane, the South Dakota driver was pleased with the track, “It seems like tracks are getting flatter and flatter and slicker and slicker which is great for late models but these are sprint cars and I like these kind of tracks.”

Taking the field from the pole position, Henderson jumped to the point ahead of Travis Rilat’s No. 39c. Bicycling the car exiting turn four with three laps complete, Rilat fell back to fifth as the 77x of Wayne Johnson bolted into the runner up spot followed by Jeff Swindell.

Running down Henderson with slower traffic looming, the Oil Medics No. 77x would begin challenging for the lead only to see the caution fly on lap seven for the No. 11 of Justin Melton after contact with the wall.

Taking off for two more laps the caution flew again as Tony Bruce spun to a stop exiting turn four. The Oil Medics No. 18 would continue on as the caution waved before a lap could be complete as the No. 17r of Aaron Reutzel slowed exiting turn two. Reutzel did not continue.

Underway once again, the car on the move was the Gaerte No. 3g of Shane Stewart. Taking away third from Jeff Swindell, the defending Lone Star Sprint Nationals Champion worked around Wayne Johnson for second with eleven laps complete.

Running down Henderson along with the back of the field, Stewart would begin to challenge for the top spot before the caution flew on lap fourteen as the No. 52 of Blake Hahn stalled at the top of turn four. Kevin Swindell also retired with mechanical problems on the Curb Records No. 39.

Dustin Morgan would be the cause of a caution on lap 15 and Terry McCarl on lap sixteen before a competition red was taken following Kyle McCutcheon slamming the wall in turn four. Running in fourth before the red, Jeff Swindell would see the rear suspension of his H&H Container Services No. 94 come apart; allowing Brady Bacon to take over the fourth position.

The final caution of the night would fly with 23 laps complete as Josh Baughman spun collecting Zach Pringle, Jeff Swindell, and Mike Goodman.

Marking the final run to the checkered flag, Justin Henderson would be challenged briefly by Shane Stewart on the restart but would sail to victory. Shane Stewart would settle for second with Wayne Johnson completing the podium. Brady Bacon would hold onto fourth after having to hold off the hard charging Johnny Herrera who climbed from 22nd to finish fifth.

The finish:

Justin Henderson, Shane Stewart, Wayne Johnson, Brady Bacon, Johnny Herrera, Travis Rilat, Seth Bergman, Tony Bruce Jr., Dustin Morgan, Matt Covington, John Carney II, Jeff Swindell, Jamie Passmore, Josh Baughman, Zach Pringle, Mike Goodman, Wes Wofford, Kyle McCutcheon, Terry McCarl, Kevin Swindell, Blake Hahn, Aaron Reutzel, Sam Hafertepe Jr., Justin Melton.