ROSSBURG, Ohio – Tyler Courtney came out on top of a wild race with Tanner Carrick and Logan Seavey to win the NOS Energy Drink USAC National Midget Series portion of the 4-Crown Nationals Saturday night at Eldora Speedway.
Courtney led only the final two laps, but was in touch with the lead battle for most of the night. He ran past Rico Abreu on lap seven and latched on to the back nerf bars of Carrick and Seavey from there.
When Carrick and Seavey traded barbs up front on the 19th round, Courtney was there to pounce, driving underneath Seavey to claim second as Carrick reasserted his command at the front of the field.
Finally, with two to go, Courtney made his winning move. He pitched a feverish slider into turn one to pass Carrick’s No. 71k, then pinched Carrick down against the lapped car of Karsyn Elledge exiting the second corner to take a lead he wouldn’t relinquish over the final three-quarters of a mile.
Courtney’s victory was his seventh of the USAC National Midget Series season, most among all drivers, and his second midget win in a row during 4-Crown Nationals competition.
“Man, that wasn’t easy,” said Courtney in victory lane. “There for a while, I just couldn’t gain any ground on those Kunz guys out front. I felt like we were all three the same speed, but we got into lapped traffic and those guys started racing there a little bit and I just tried to time my moves right. But Tanner kept coming back, man. He’s one heck of a driver.”
Courtney’s midget victory was his first win in a pursuit of all three USAC victories on the same night.
“To win all three, you gotta start with one. That one was just a lot harder than I was hoping for,” Courtney noted. “But this is Eldora; that’s what this place is all about, and hopefully that’s a good way to start out the night for these fans here.
“It feels awful good to put our Clauson-Marshall guys back in victory lane for the second year in a row.”
Carrick, who started from the outside pole and led 20 of the 25 laps, had to settle for a gut-wrenching second and was .591 seconds adrift of Courtney’s NOS Energy Drink No. 7bc at the checkered flag.
Carrick’s teammate Logan Seavey, who was out front from laps 16 through 18, completed the podium. Rico Abreu was fourth and Kevin Thomas Jr. finished fifth.
Chris Windom, Justin Grant, Zeb Wise, Tucker Klaasmeyer and Tanner Thorson were the balance of the top 10.
To view complete race results, advance to the next page.