Aaron Reutzel Scores Emotional Lucas Oil ASCS Victory at I-30 Speedway
LITTLE ROCK, Ark (April 12, 2014) - If you're going to win, make sure it's memorable. That's exactly what Aaron Reutzel did on Saturday night at the I-30 Speedway in Little Rock, Ark, leading start-to-finish for his first Protect the Harvest A-Feature win with the Lucas Oil American Sprint Car Series presented by MAVTV American Real.
"Unbelievable, I just want to cry. I've been trying for so long to win one of these things, and have come so close so many times. There are so many people that should be here tonight that aren't here. My dad traveled with for 16 years, he's not here. I wish he could've been here. Bob and Christy Miller, they do so much for us. All those guys deserve to be here," said a very overjoyed, and appreciate, Aaron Reutzel who became the twenty-eight different winner at the I-30 Speedway in Lucas Oil ASCS competition.
Thanking sponsors, Aaron made a special point to thank crew member Ryan Beechler, "He quit racing this year to come help me, and build these motors and that's part of our performance right now is his engines. They're just unbelievable."
In 2014, Reutzel is the third first time winner in Lucas Oil ASCS National competition, and fourth different winner in five events. He is the 123rd winner with the ASCS National Tour since 1993 and 139th since the ASCS National Championship was established in 1992.
Getting the jump from the pole, Reutzel found traffic on Lap 8 as the caution displayed for the No. 31g of Johnny Gardner, who lost the Left Rear wheel just in front of Reutzel entering turn one.
Going back to the last fully completed lap, slower cars dropped to the tail, leaving Reutzel wide open for second running Sean McClelland, who jumped to second at the start of the race.
Asked about the move that got him to the runner-up spot, McClelland replied, "At the start of the race, [Rick] Pringle moved down and I said, this is was going to be my only shot to get into second and maybe follow Aaron and get into lapped traffic with him. We jumped to the top down there and got to second and was just going to ride it out until we got into lapped traffic. There at the end, we did get into some heavy lapped traffic but he was just ten times better than us."
Able to stay with Reutzel for a moment, the No. 87 would quickly scoot away with the race brewing for third between Jeff Swindell and Brad Loyet with the Vacuworx Global No. 05 taking the spot.
Finding traffic on Lap 16, the caution remained furrowed this time as the B.C. Funds No. 87 began navigating back markers. Committed to the inside line, Reutzel started seeing his advantage of nearly a straight-a-way diminish to only a few car lengths as the field worked to the final five revolutions.
Splitting the lapped cars of Jan Howard and Anthony Nicholson with three to go, Aaron was able to race uncontested to the finish. Holding off several late race challenges from Brad Loyet, Tulsa's Sean McClelland crossed second.
Brad Loyet's third place finish is his best performance at the quarter-mile oval.
"We've always struggled when we came here, and this is a place that suits my driving style normally, but tonight it was just kind of right around the bottom. We started fifth and were able to pick up a couple spots. Overall, we're really happy with this. We had a pretty darn good weekend, and a good points night for us - I know I sound like a NASCAR driver saying that - but that's out end goal is trying to win this points championship."
Jeff Swindell held off the No. 15h in the closing laps for fourth with Sam Hafertepe, Jr. completing the top five after starting sixteenth.
Jason Johnson was one of the few drivers able to make the high-line work most of the race, placing the Stenhouse, Jr. Racing - Curb / Agajanian Performance Group No. 41 sixth; taking the lead in Lucas Oil ASCS driver standings by 11 over Tony Bruce, Jr. Dustin Morgan advanced seven spots to seventh with Justin Sturch eight. Johnny Herrera from twenty-first to ninth with Tony Bruce, Jr. from eighteenth to complete the top ten.
The evening saw 43 drivers split into five Heat Races with Brad Loyet, Rick Pringle, Jan Howard, Jason Johnson, and Brandon Hanks each taking a win. A pair of B-Features went to Cody Gardner and Tony Bruce, Jr.
The Lucas Oil ASCS presented by MAVTV American Real competes next at the Outlaw Motorsports Park on Friday, May 2 in Muskogee, Okla. followed by the Rock 'N Roll 50 at the Riverside International Speedway in West Memphis, Ark. on Saturday, May 3. The see the full lineup of events, log onto http://www.ascsracing.com.
Lucas Oil ASCS presented by MAVTV American Real
I-30 Speedway - Little Rock, Ark.
Saturday, April 13, 2014
Car Count: 43
Heat Races presented by SpeedMart - 8 Laps, winners plus top 11 in passing points to A-Feature.
Heat 1 (8 Laps): 1. 05-Brad Loyet; 2. 16-Anthony Nicholson; 3. 31G-Johnny Gardner; 4. 87-Aaron Reutzel; 5. 1N-Nic Jenkins; 6. 26-Marshall Skinner; 7. 32X-Robert Richardson; 8. 13-Taylor Tidmore; 9. (DNF) 5K-Jerry Kamer
Heat 2 (8 Laps): 1. 38-Rick Pringle; 2. 94-Jeff Swindell; 3. 91-Dale Howard; 4. 17G-Cody Gardner; 5. 18-Tony Bruce Jr; 6. 45X-Johnny Herrera; 7. 5-Jerod Roller; 8. 14-Jordon Mallett; 9. 2J-Jacob Pringle
Heat 3 (8 Laps): 1. 46-Jan Howard; 2. 1-Sean McClelland; 3. 93-Dustin Morgan; 4. 95-Matt Covington; 5. 15H-Sam Hafertepe Jr; 6. 88-Tim Crawley; 7. 33-Kris Miller; 8. 12T-Joe Young; 9. 5X-Tyson Hall
Heat 4 (8 Laps): 1. 41-Jason Johnson; 2. 17-Blake Hahn; 3. 23-Seth Bergman; 4. X-Charlie Louden; 5. 14Z-Zach Pringle; 6. 8X-Chris Williams; 7. 92-Jordan Weaver; DNS 29-Brandon Hahn
Heat 5 (8 Laps): 1. 3H-Brandon Hanks; 2. 9-Justin Sturch; 3. 27-Curt Terrell; 4. 3-A.G. Rains; 5. 4-Tommy Snellgrove; 6. 21-Kevin Hinkle; 7. (DNF) 9JR-Derek Hagar; 8. (DNF) 43-Matthew Bauldwin
Smiley's Racing Products B-Features - Top 3 advance to the A-Feature.
B Feature 1 (12 Laps): 1. 17G-Cody Gardner; 2. 23-Seth Bergman; 3. 45X-Johnny Herrera; 4. 14Z-Zach Pringle; 5. 26-Marshall Skinner; 6. X-Charlie Louden; 7. 14-Jordon Mallett; 8. 9JR-Derek Hagar; 9. 8X-Chris Williams; 10. 92-Jordan Weaver; 11. 33-Kris Miller; 12. (DNF) 29-Brandon Hahn; DNS 43-Matthew Bauldwin; DNS 5K-Jerry Kamer
B Feature 2 (12 Laps): 1. 18-Tony Bruce Jr; 2. 88-Tim Crawley; 3. 91-Dale Howard; 4. 5-Jerod Roller; 5. 1N-Nic Jenkins; 6. 27-Curt Terrell; 7. 4-Tommy Snellgrove; 8. 32X-Robert Richardson; 9. 13-Taylor Tidmore; 10. 12T-Joe Young; 11. 5X-Tyson Hall; 12. 2J-Jacob Pringle; 13. 21-Kevin Hinkle
Protect the Harvest A-Feature
A Feature (30 Laps): 1. 87-Aaron Reutzel; 2. 1-Sean McClelland; 3. 05-Brad Loyet; 4. 94-Jeff Swindell; 5. 15H-Sam Hafertepe Jr; 6. 41-Jason Johnson; 7. 93-Dustin Morgan; 8. 9-Justin Sturch; 9. 45X-Johnny Herrera; 10. 18-Tony Bruce Jr; 11. 88-Tim Crawley; 12. 3-A.G. Rains; 13. 17G-Cody Gardner; 14. 38-Rick Pringle; 15. 95-Matt Covington; 16. 23-Seth Bergman; 17. 17-Blake Hahn; 18. 16-Anthony Nicholson; 19. 91-Dale Howard; 20. 46-Jan Howard; 21. 3H-Brandon Hanks; 22. (DNF) 31G-Johnny Gardner
Lap Leader(s): Aaron Reutzel 1-30
KSE Hard Charger: Johnny Herrera +12
Hawk Performance Fastest Lap: N/A
CSI Rebound: Derek Hagar
2014 A-Feature Winner(s): Rico Abreu - 2, Tony Bruce, Jr. - 1, Patrick Stasa - 1, Aaron Reutzel - 1
2014 Lucas Oil ASCS Driver Standings (Top 15): 1. Jason Johnson 580; 2. Tony Bruce, Jr. 569; 3. Sam Hafertepe, Jr. 568; 4. Brad Loyet 562; 5. Johnny Herrera 561; 6. Matt Covington 557; 7. Christopher Bell 549; 8. Jeff Swindell 543; 9. Seth Bergman 539; 10. Aaron Reutzel 518; 11. Blake Hahn 518; 12. Brandon Hahn 394; 13. Joe Wood, Jr. 309; 14. Rico Abreu 300; 15. John Carney II 267;
The 2014 season marks the twenty-third year of sanctioning Sprint Car racing for the American Sprint Car Series, which brings the best of Sprint Car racing to dozens of different tracks throughout the nation. Anchored by the Lucas Oil American Sprint Car Series, ASCS also consists of ten different Regions throughout the nation.
Lucas Oil Products is the title sponsor of the American Sprint Car Series. More information can be found on Lucas Oil Products at www.lucasoil.com. MAVTV is the presenting sponsor of the American Sprint Car Series. Log onto www.mavtv.com for information regarding availability and listings in your area.
Associate sponsors for the Lucas Oil American Sprint Car Series presented by MAVTV include: Hoosier Racing Tire and Brodix.
Team Lucas Sponsors for the American Sprint Car Series consist of Protect the Harvest, iON Camera, Smokey Mountain Moonshine, C&R Radiator, Hawk Performance Products, Geico, E3 Spark Plugs, and General Tire.
Product and Contingency Sponsorship provided by: K&N Filters, KSE Racing Products, SpeedMart, Competition Suspension, Engler Machine and Tool, FSR Radiator and Racing Products, Schoenfeld Headers, Driverwebsites.com, Weld Wheels, Saldana Racing Products, Maxwell Industries, Print Place, Simpson, The Joie of Seating, Wesmar Racing Engines, Hinchman Indy Racewear, Rod End Supply, Smiley's Racing Products, Speedway Motors, and Hilborn Injection Systems.
Additional information regarding the American Sprint Car Series is available at www.ascsracing.com as well as Twitter (@LucasOilASCS) and Facebook. News and information can also be sent to you with the ASCS E-News by texting ASCS to 22828 with any mobile device.
Photo Credit: Jimmy Jones