Crawley Lands USCS Sprints Win
WEST MEMPHIS, Ark. – It’s been a pretty good month to be Tim Crawley.
Crawley, the 2012 United Sprint Car Series filtercharged by K&N champion from Benton, Arkansas, started from the K&N Filters Pole Position Saturday night at Riverside International Speedway and stomped the field once again, leading wire-to-wire and rolling into www.rockauto.com Victory Lane after taking the win in the rescheduled 30-lap USCS Sprint Speedweek Finale.
The triumph was Crawley’s fifth straight United Sprint Car Series victory, as well as the 70th career USCS win of his impressive career.
Crawley had to endure three caution flags en route to scoring the win, one on Lap 10 when the #12M of Greg Merritt stopped in Turn 4, the second on Lap 20 when the #13T of Taylor Tidmore spun and collected 1999 series champion Marshall Skinner in the aftermath and the third with four laps to go when Cody Gardner spun into the inside tires and was unable to get restarted.
Each time, Crawley marched away on the ensuing restart and was never challenged.
Marion, Arkansas native Jan Howard had a banner night, starting from the outside of the front row and chasing Crawley the entire distance to finish second. 2008 series Rookie of the Year Anthony Nicholson, from Bartlett, Tennessee completed the podium in third and Bryant, Arkansas driver Zach Pringle finished fourth. Former series winner and West Memphis native A.G. Rains completed the top five.
Tulsa, Oklahoma’s Brandon Hahn ended the night in sixth, and Memphis driver Howard Moore finished seventh after winning his heat race. Defending series champion Derek Hagar came home in eighth, his first start since winning four USCS features in a row a month ago. Millington, Tennessee’s Dalton Davis crossed the stripe in ninth and hometown favorite Johnny Gardner, out of Benton, rounded out the top ten finishers.
Hagar, who won the first three feature events of this year’s USCS Sprint Speedweek, held on to claim his first Speedweek championship over Tim Crawley by 28 points. Crawley used Saturday’s victory to climb to second in the final Speedweek tally.
Crawley kicked off the evening’s racing action with a win in the Hoosier Speed Dash, and then went on to notch the win in the Engler Machine and Tool First Heat. Howard Moore drove to victory in the Butlerbuilt Second Heat, and Cody Gardner netted the Schoenfeld Headers Third Heat win. Jan Howard collected the checkers in the JE Pistons Fourth Heat.
Gardner was the provisional polesitter after scoring the most passing points in heat race action, but when first heat winner Crawley pulled a four in the K&N Filters Inversion Draw, Crawley garnered the K&N Pole Award.