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Big Cars, Big Speed: 27 USAC Silver Crown Drivers are Ready for Belleville Fri.-Sat.

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By: Richie Murray – USAC Media

Belleville, Kansas (May 15, 2024)………Big cars. Big excitement!

Twenty-seven USAC Silver Crown National Championship drivers and cars are on the entry list for this weekend’s Huncovsky Classic as the champ cars make their fifth ever appearance at the Belleville (Kan.) High Banks on Friday, May 17 for practice on Saturday, May 18 for the full racing program.

Four previous USAC Silver Crown events have been held at the half-mile dirt oval – in 2013-14-15-23, with this Saturday’s 50-lap main event paying $8,000 to the winner.

Two previous Belleville Silver Crown winners are entered for this weekend’s event, that being defending victor Brady Bacon (Broken Arrow, Okla.) and seven-time series titlist Kody Swanson (Kingsburg, Calif.), who hustled to the win back in 2014.

Of the 27 drivers in this year’s field, 19 have previously competed in the event with current point leader Swanson being the only driver to compete in all four past Belleville Silver Crown events. He’s already won the first two events of the 2024 season, both on pavement, at Ohio’s Toledo Speedway and Indiana’s Winchester Speedway. Twice, he has won the pole at Belleville in 2014 and 2023, and he holds the track record of 16.823 set one year ago in 2023.

Six more drivers have finished inside the top-five of a USAC Silver Crown event at Belleville, including Jerry Coons Jr. (Tucson, Ariz.) who has finished no worse than sixth in three starts and took a best of 2nd back in 2015. A Belleville favorite, Coons became the first three-time winner of the Belleville Midget Nationals with victories in 2005-07-12.

Furthermore, 2020 USAC Silver Crown champion Justin Grant (Ione, Calif.) led 15 laps of the 2023 event before his stirring duel for the win with Bacon came to an end with Grant flipping down the main straightaway. Grant took a best of 3rd in 2015.

Robert Ballou (Rocklin, Calif.) returns to the series on the dirt for Hans Lein’s team as Ballou makes his first visit back to Belleville since a third place run in the inaugural Silver Crown show there in 2013. Chase Stockon (Fort Branch, Ind.) turned in his best career Silver Crown run with a third in 2023. Shane Cottle (Kansas, Ill.), now with Five Three Motorsports, posted a best Belleville finish of fourth in 2023. Defending series champion, Logan Seavey (Sutter, Calif.), rounded out the top-five a year ago in his high banks debut.

Top-10 Belleville finishers returning to the Silver Crown lineup include Greenfield, Indiana’s C.J. Leary (6th in 2015), Pleasant Hill, Ohio’s Matt Westfall (7th in 2023), Muskogee, Oklahoma’s Kaylee Bryson (8th in 2023), Alvin, Texas’ Trey Burke (9th in 2023) and Shelby Township, Michigan’s Taylor Ferns (10th in 2023).

Also returning are Raisin City, California’s Mitchel Moles (12th in 2023) who will pilot a brand-new entry for first time Silver Crown participants Reinbold-Underwood Motorsports. Shelbyville, Ind. high school teacher/racer Gregg Cory (14th in 2023) will take on the high banks once more as will Fort Collins, Colorado’s Bryan Gossel (15th in 2023), Mechanicsburg, Pennsylvania’s Dave Berkheimer (19th in 2023), former Belleville High Banks midget track record holder Mario Clouser of Auburn, Ill. (21st in 2023) and Bonne Terre, Missouri’s Danny Long (23rd in 2023).

They’ll all be joined by eight Belleville Silver Crown first timers, including Daison Pursley (Locust Grove, Oklahoma), a first-time Silver Crown competitor for first-time Silver Crown entrant Team AZ Racing. Briggs Danner (Allentown, Pa.) is in the same boat as the two-time USAC East Coast Sprint Car champion takes the wheel for his first USAC Silver Crown appearance with DMW Motorsports.

Kyle Steffens (Saint Charles, Mo.) is a Silver Crown veteran whose record dates back to 2001. However, this weekend marks his first Silver Crown run at Belleville. Sterling Cling (Tempe, Ariz.) has been tabbed to step in for the injured Wayne Johnson aboard the TwoC Racing No. 12. Mike Adkins (Bellevue, Wash.) is back in the lineup after making his most recent Silver Crown appearance 24 years ago at the Cal Expo State Fairgrounds, finishing 20th!

Also making Belleville debuts are 2023 National Sprint Car Hall of Fame Non-Wing Sprint Car Rookie of the Year Trey Osborne (Columbus, Ohio) as well as Nathan Moore (Kaufman, Texas) and Dave Peperak (Clinton, Ind.) whose lone career USAC feature victory came with the sprint cars way back in 1981 at Ohio’s Eldora Speedway and aired on ABC’s Wide World of Sports.

RACE DETAILS:

On Friday, May 17, at the Belleville (Kan.) High Banks, it’s opening night for the USAC NOS Energy Drink Midget National Championship season in conjunction with a practice night for the USAC Silver Crown division. The pits open at 3pm Central. Front gates open at 5:30pm. Hot laps start at 6:30pm, followed by qualifying and racing. General admission and reserved tickets are $25. General admission and reserved tickets for ages 12 and under are $15. A one-day pit pass is $35 and two-day pit passes are $60. Advance tickets are on sale now at www.BellevilleHighBanks.org. Tickets will be available at the gate on both race days.

On Saturday, May 18, at Belleville, it’s a full race day for both the USAC NOS Energy Drink National Midget and USAC Silver Crown divisions. The pits open at 3pm Central. Front gates open at 5:30pm. Hot laps start at 6:30pm, followed by qualifying and racing. General admission and reserved tickets are $30. General admission and reserved tickets for ages 12 and under are $20. A one-day pit pass is $40 and two-day pit passes are $60. Advance tickets are on sale now at www.BellevilleHighBanks.org. Tickets will be available at the gate on both race days.

The entire weekend of events can be watched LIVE on FloRacing at https://flosports.link/usac.

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BELLEVILLE USAC SILVER CROWN ENTRY LIST:

06 Bryan Gossel/Fort Collins, CO (Bryan Gossel)

08 Kyle Steffens/St. Charles, MO (Steffens Motorsports)

6 C.J. Leary/Greenfield, IN (Klatt Enterprises)

9 Brady Bacon/Broken Arrow, OK (Chris Dyson Racing)

10 (R) Briggs Danner/Allentown, PA (DMW Motorsports)

12 (R) Sterling Cling/Tempe, AZ (TwoC Racing)

21 (R) Daison Pursley/Locust Grove, OK (Team AZ Racing)

22 Logan Seavey/Sutter, CA (Rice Motorsports-Abacus Racing)

26 Kaylee Bryson/Muskogee, OK (Sam Pierce)

31 Dave Berkheimer/Mechanicsburg, PA (Berkheimer Racing)

32 Gregg Cory/Shelbyville, IN (Williams-Cory Racing)

44 Danny Long/Bonne Terre, MO (Danny Long)

48 (R) Nathan Moore/Kaufman, TX (Chip Thomas-Joe Moore)

53 Shane Cottle/Kansas, IL (Five Three Motorsports)

54 Matt Westfall/Pleasant Hill, OH (Westfall Racing)

55 Jerry Coons Jr./Tucson, AZ (Patty Bateman)

60 Trey Burke/Alvin, TX (Legacy Autosport-Robert Wilson Racing)

69 Chase Stockon/Fort Branch, IN (Pink 69 Racing)

71 (R) Mike Adkins/Bellevue, WA (Madkins Racing)

77 Kody Swanson/Kingsburg, CA (Doran-Binks Racing)

81 (R) Trey Osborne/Columbus, OH (BCR Group)

91 Justin Grant/Ione, CA (Hemelgarn Racing)

92 Mario Clouser/Auburn, IL (Kazmark Motorsports)

97 Robert Ballou/Rocklin, CA (Hans Lein)

119 (R) Mitchel Moles/Raisin City, CA (Reinbold-Underwood Motorsports)

555 Taylor Ferns/Shelby Township, MI (Taylor Ferns Racing)

777 (R) Dave Peperak/Clinton, IN (Peperak Motorsports)

(R) represents a USAC Silver Crown Rookie of the Year contender

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USAC SILVER CROWN NATIONAL CHAMPIONSHIP POINTS: 1-Kody Swanson-152, 2-C.J. Leary-131, 3-Bobby Santos-125, 4-Justin Grant-122, 5-Taylor Ferns-107, 6-Logan Seavey-107, 7-Davey Hamilton Jr.-95, 8-Tyler Roahrig-85, 9-Mario Clouser-84, 10-Kaylee Bryson-80.

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TRACK RECORD FOR USAC SILVER CROWN AT THE BELLEVILLE HIGH BANKS:

1 Lap – 5/20/2023 – Kody Swanson – 16.823 – 106.996 mph

50 Laps – 7/31/2015 – Chris Windom – 22:46.927 – 65.841 mph

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BELLEVILLE HIGH BANKS USAC SILVER CROWN WINS:

1-Brady Bacon, Tracy Hines, Kody Swanson & Chris Windom

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BELLEVILLE HIGH BANKS USAC SILVER CROWN RACE WINNERS:

2013: Tracy Hines (8/2)

2014: Kody Swanson (8/1)

2015: Chris Windom (7/31)

2023: Brady Bacon (5/20)

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BELLEVILLE HIGH BANKS USAC SILVER CROWN POLE WINNERS:

2013: Tracy Hines (16.856)

2014: Kody Swanson (17.221)

2015: Chris Windom (17.356)

2023: Kody Swanson (16.823)

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PAST USAC SILVER CROWN FEATURE RESULTS AT THE BELLEVILLE HIGH BANKS:

2013 FEATURE: (50 Laps) 1. Tracy Hines, 2. Bobby East, 3. Robert Ballou, 4. Jerry Coons Jr., 5. Chris Windom, 6. A.J. Fike, 7. Kody Swanson, 8. Brian Tyler, 9. Dave Darland, 10. Tim Barber, 11. Shane Hollingsworth, 12. Miranda Throckmorton, 13. Chris Urish. NT

2014 FEATURE: (50 Laps) 1. Kody Swanson, 2. Tracy Hines, 3. Christopher Bell, 4. Bobby East, 5. Dave Darland, 6. Jerry Coons Jr., 7. Chris Urish, 8. Jacob Wilson, 9. Chris Windom, 10. Jake Simmons, 11. Caleb Armstrong, 12. C.J. Leary, 13. Grant Simpson, 14. Davey Ray. 24:35.13

2015 FEATURE: (50 Laps) 1. Chris Windom, 2. Jerry Coons Jr., 3. Justin Grant, 4. Kody Swanson, 5. Shane Cockrum, 6. C.J. Leary, 7. Brady Bacon, 8. Kevin Thomas Jr., 9. Steve Buckwalter, 10. Aaron Pierce, 11. A.J. Fike, 12. Austin Nemire, 13. Rex Norris III, 14. Terry James, 15. Chris Fetter, 16. Shane Cottle, 17. Patrick Lawson. 22:46.927

2023 FEATURE: (50 laps, starting positions in parentheses) 1. Brady Bacon (5), 2. Kody Swanson (1), 3. Chase Stockon (13), 4. Shane Cottle (10), 5. Logan Seavey (7), 6. Shane Cockrum (12), 7. Matt Westfall (14), 8. Kaylee Bryson (9), 9. Trey Burke (18), 10. Taylor Ferns (19), 11. C.J. Leary (3), 12. Mitchel Moles (8), 13. Travis Welpott (17), 14. Gregg Cory (22), 15. Bryan Gossel (15), 16. Patrick Bruns (21), 17. Justin Grant (2), 18. Tyler Roahrig (16), 19. Dave Berkheimer (23), 20. Wayne Johnson (11), 21. Mario Clouser (6), 22. Kevin Thomas Jr. (4), 23. Danny Long (24), 24. Chris Fetter (20). NT

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