TERRE HAUTE, Ind. – Two years ago the USAC Traxxas Silver Crown Championship featured three drivers separated by just 11 final points.
Entering this Saturday night’s Sumar Classic 100 finale at the Terre Haute Action Track, the same 11 point separation is evident among the top three drivers in the standings.
Bobby East is the point leader in pursuit of his first series crown, while former champion Jerry Coons, Jr. is six points back and Kody Swanson is 11 in arrears eyeing his initial series title.
Swanson ended up third in the 2010 standings behind Levi Jones and Bud Kaeding, but Tony Stewart, East’s car owner along with Curb-Agajanian, remembers the closest top-three series shootout ever when he won in 1995.
Stewart edged Dave Darland by just two points and Jack Hewitt by nine on his way to the USAC “Triple Crown.”
Five drivers actually have mathematical chances for the 2012 championship, although Kaeding trails by 42 points and Tanner Swanson by 57 with 66 points available Saturday.
Kody Swanson fared the best of the title hopefuls when the series last visited Terre Haute in 2010. Swanson was fifth in the 100-lap race, compared to a seventh for East, a 15th for Tanner Swanson, a 15th for Kaeding and a 24th for Coons.
Levi Jones, the 2010 winner, will not compete at Terre Haute, recuperating from season-ending neck injuries.
The Tony Stewart Racing/Curb-Agajanian team is trying to open the way for a unique entrant “Triple Crown” of sorts, with Curb-Agajanian also currently involved with the 2012 AMSOIL National Sprint Car point leader and the Mopar National Midget point leader.
Saturday’s event completes a two-night Terre Haute USAC extravaganza, with the Jim Hurtubise Classic USAC AMSOIL National Sprint Car Series racing on Friday night.