In a race that was dominated by Jerry Coons Jr. until the final five laps, Rico Abreu pulled a rabbit out the hat with a late race move to the outside of leader, Bryan Clauson to capture his second win in a row in the Pennsylvania Midget Swing at the Lincoln Speedway.
In their first appearance at Lincoln since 1964 when the race was one by Parnelli Jones, the USAC midgets returned this week in three co-sanctioned events with the wingless competitors of the American Racing Drivers Club (ARDC). Track records fell repeatedly during time trial events with Bryan Clauson setting fast time at 15.804 seconds. Five drivers cracked the 16 second mark during time trials with Abreu, Tanner Thorson, Christopher Bell and Royersford, PA driver, Steve Buckwalter trailing Clauson on the charts.
Jerry Coons, Jr., driving the Mike Heffner owned Lelands.com #27 midget, led the first fourteen laps of the thirty lap main event, holding off the challenges of Clauson as the race neared the midway point. Clauson slid by to lead lap fourteen but Coons ran the inside and reclaimed the lead as the pair raced down the Lincoln backstretch on lap sixteen. The caution waved as the field headed to five to go when Bell looped it in turn four. Coons led lap twenty-five followed by Clauson, Christopher Bell, Abreu and Steve Buckwalter.
Clauson went to the top and took the lead from Coons on lap twenty-six and looked like the race winner but Abreu came to life, passing Coons and then setting sail on the leader. Abreu chased Clausson into turns one and two and when Clauson slid in front to protect his lead, Abreu found the room he needed on the extreme outside to complete the pass for the lead. Abreu collected the checkered flag followed by Clauson, Tracy Hines, Kevin Thomas, Jr. and Alex Bright. Coons faded to sixth with a mechanical issue after his great performance. Steve Buckwalter, Spencer Bayston, Tyler Thomas and Brenden Bright rounded out the top ten.
Steve Buckwalter picked up the win in the first heat with Coons just edging Ryan Watt for the win in heat number two. Tyler Thomas picked up the win in the third heat with Christopher Bell taking the win in heat number four. Trevor Kobylarz won the twelve lap B Main over Thorson, Hines, Tony DiMattia, Brett Wanner and Ryan Greth. Brett Arndt received the ARDC provisional for the thirty lap main event.
FEATURE FINISH (30 LAPS)
1. Rico Abreu, 2. Bryan Clauson, 3. Tracy Hines, 4. Kevin Thomas, Jr. 5. Alex Bright, 6. Jerry Coons, Jr., 7. Steve Buckwalter, 8. Spencer Bayston, 9. Tyler Thomas, 10. Brenden Bright, 11. Tanner Thorson, 12. Trevor Kobylarz, 13. Steven Drevicki, 14. Nick Wean, 15. Christopher Bell, 16. Billy Pauch, Jr., 17. Ryan Watt, 18. Brett Arndt, 19. Isaac Chapple, 20. Ryan Greth, 21. Brett Wanner, 22. Tim Buckwalter, 23. Tony DiMattia