Bump Start Lifts Courtney To USAC Glory

Tyler Courtney (DB3 Imaging photo)
Tyler Courtney (DB3 Imaging photo)

NEWMANSTOWN, Pa. — A little bit of early race luck propelled Tyler Courtney to victory in Saturday night’s Eastern Midget Week finale at Lanco’s Clyde Martin Memorial Speedway.

Early in the 40-lap USAC NOS Energy Drink National Midget feature, Courtney was running fourth when he hit a bump and his car stalled.

However, the loss of power, forced Justin Grant’s car to hit Courtney from behind. The push allowed Courtney to refire his engine and continue the race.

He went on to take the lead from Tanner Carrick on the 14th lap and hold off Buddy Kofoid for the victory. It was his fourth win in his last five starts aboard the Clauson-Marshall Racing/NOS Turbo – ZMax/Spike/Stanton SR-11x.

“I ended up hitting the kill switch and it killed the car,” Courtney revealed.  “When I bounced, I hit the switch, then Grant hit me, and I was looking down to figure out what happened.  I flipped the switch back on and kept going, and he stopped there.  I got lucky there, but sometimes you’ve got to be more lucky than good and I’ll take it anyway I can get it.”

Courtney started sixth in the 22-car field after earlier setting the fastest time in both hot laps and qualifying.

Carrick started on the pole and led until Courtney took the lead on lap 14.

A restart with seven laps remaining, gave Kofoid an opportunity to challenge for the lead, but Courtney sped away.

“I’d be lying if I said I didn’t flinch,” Courtney admitted.  “At this point in the season, you’ve got to go for everything when you’re running for the championship. If we would’ve crashed there, it is what it is; we’re going for the win. Once I squeaked by Buddy there, I knew that was going to kill his momentum. So, I knew if I could squeak by him there, he’d be all chocked up getting off four there. There weren’t many laps left there, so I just needed to make those perfect and not make any mistakes and get ourselves to the finish line first.”

Kofoid finished second, with Cannon McIntosh rallying from 15th to take third. Carrick and Tanner Thorson, who started 19th, rounded out the top five.

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