GRAIN VALLEY, Mo. — Packing the pits with 40 entrants, the POWRi Lucas Oil WAR Sprint League at Valley Speedway’s Mid-State Open-Wheel Nationals did not disappoint when it came to epic excitement and close side-by-side racing Saturday night.
After 25 trips around the pristine racing surface mixed with a plethora of top-position swapping, Mario Clouser gained the lead and did not look back en route to grabbing his third POWRi Lucas Oil WAR career feature victory.
Clouser would not gain the advantage easily though as High Point Qualifier Zach Daum would attempt to sweep the night of racing. Using a pole starting spot, Daum appeared to be the class of the field early, leading for the majority of the feature.
However, a late-race caution would plague the leader as mechanical issues would gain the upper-hand relegating Daum to the infield potentially ripping victory from within his grasp. Clouser would benefit from Daum’s misfortunes, inheriting the lead and never giving up the favored finishing position.
Earning the victory every step of the way, Clouser would have his hands full for the entire event with constant battles from Wyatt Burks, Brandon Morrin, Brandon Mattox, Nate McMillin and Shane Cottle.
With six drivers in contention for the first prize the racing was hot and heavy as Burks, Mattox, and Cottle would all make a run on Clouser in the later stages. Brandon Mattox would edge Burks in a drag-race to the finish line placing a very close second leaving Burks in third. Using strategy and a set-up partial to late-race dramatics, Shane Cottle would fly into the top-five making a run for the lead with two laps to-go placing fourth on the night. Brandon Morrin would be scored among the pacesetters for the duration of the event rounding out the top five.
Feature (25 laps): 1. 6-Mario Clouser; 2. 28M-Brandon Mattox; 3. 11W-Wyatt Burks; 4. 74X-Shane Cottle; 5. 98-Brandon Morin; 6. 24-Nate McMillin; 7. 9-Chad Goff; 8. 91-Riley Kreisel; 9. 65-Chris Parkinson; 10. 5C-Colten Cottle; 11. ST1-Lane Stone; 12. 77-Jack Wagner; 13. 12-Wesley Smith; 14. 16-Anthony Nicholson; 15. 14-Jadon Rogers; 16. 31-Zach Daum; 17. 28-Kory Schudy; 18. 86-Zac Taylor; 19. 31X-Dylan Kadous; 20. 4-Braydon Cromwell; 21. 22S-Slater Helt; 22. 54-Trey Gropp; 23. 41-Brad Wyatt