The sun is setting earlier, but that doesn’t stop the action at Colorado National Speedway. Fans were treated to a wide range of on-track entertainment on October 2nd for the Sunbelt Rentals Late Model Championship Night, from Bandoleros and Legends to Late Models and full-size pickups and three-car Trains. The night’s Circle Drags drew the loudest cheers as classics, beaters and tuners duked it out in pairs for one lap, eventually crowning a decaled Nissan the ultimate victor.
GALITZ TRANSPORTATION LATE MODELS
FEATURE PART 1 Chad Cowan in the #76 landed the pole position for the first Galitz Transportation Late Model race. It didn’t take long for him to stretch out a comfortable lead over second place. The #40 Brandon Newey and #94 Kyle Morse put on a good show behind the leader, jostling for position as the laps wound down. Championship hopeful #31 Rick Smith took advantage of the battle to close on Cowan #76. Cowan found his comfortable lead shrunk by #31 Rick Smith and #24 Eric Bowers. Smith #31 sent it into Turn 4 with hopes of catching the leader, but his efforts were stalled by a lapped car, and #76 Cowan was credited with the first Late Model feature win of the night.
FEATURE PART 2 It all came down to a forty-lap feature race to determine the Late Model champion. Rick Smith #31, #6 Tommy Roe and #8 Dan Alamaa entered the race as the top three drivers in overall points, and they battled each other hard for the fifth position as the laps wound down. Meanwhile, Eric Bowers #24 kept a sizable lead over the second- and third-place machines, #94 Kyle Morse and #98 Lee Kemmit, but that lead vanished with a yellow flag for a single-car incident halfway through the race.
Bowers #24 easily took over the first spot once more when the green flag waved again, controlling the field without breaking a sweat. Alamaa #8 managed to slip into the fourth position ahead of fellow championship contenders #6 Roe and #31 Smith, but he didn’t have enough car under him to make a move on #24 Bowers, or to snatch the points lead away from #31 Rick Smith. After it was all said and done, it was the #94 of Kyle Morse who would be credited with the victory, and #31 Rick Smith was crowned the overall season champion.
FEATURE PART 1: #76 Chad Cowan
FEATURE PART 2: #94 Kyle Morse
QUICK TIME: #76 Chad Cowan, 17.193
AC TRANSMISSION CENTER LEGENDS
A sizable field of 30 cars took the green flag for the AC Transmission Centers Legend feature race, led by the #21 Ryan Jones and followed by #45 Cole Tuttle. A few laps in, third-place qualifier #15 Danny Medina snuck past the leaders and took over the top of the board. The #21 Jones was relegated to third as his car fell slightly off the pace, making way for #66 Kyle Clegg and #22 Chris Eggleston. Before they could settle into a single-file line, the #97 Bill Blevins spun around on his own and slowed the race with a caution.
The pack was bunched up on the restart, and soon it was all about the three-car breakaway for the third position. Medina #15 maintained a small advantage over #66 Clegg and #22 Eggleston, but not for long. Eggleston #22 dove to the inside of the racetrack and took the lead away from Medina #15 while Clegg #66 waited for an opening close behind. The three cars went door-to-door, trying to wear one another out as the laps wound down. Cleg #66 managed to get around Medina #15, but he didn’t have enough time to make a pass on #22 Eggleston, the night’s winner. Eggleston was understandably breathless in victory lane after the battle.
FEATURE: #22 Chris Eggleston
DASH: #32 Cody Milan
FAST DASH: #66 Kyle Clegg
QUICK TIME: #22 Chris Eggleston, 18.287
The ultra-small Bandoleros stock cars are the perfect way for young drivers to cut their teeth on a professional racetrack. The first feature race included drivers considered to be part of the Bandit class, the youngest racing division at CNS. #33 Dillyn Kellogg showed how fast his car was and swept the first DASH race, keeping the nose of his machine clean despite a few small incidents in the four-car field behind him. Kellogg #33 would go on to win the Bandit feature race as well.
The Outlaw class was next, and it was all about the #98 of Sammy Haugen. Haugen #98 dominated his class’s DASH race, proving he was the man to beat behind the wheel. After sweeping the feature win, Haugen #98 climbed out of his car in victory lane, telling the fans that the victory was bittersweet as it was his final race in the series. When asked if he’d return to CNS in the future behind the wheel of something with a bigger chassis, Haugen said, “Well, if I had a dollar for every time somebody asked me that, the answer would be yes.”
BANDIT DASH: #33 Dillyn Kellogg
BANDIT FEATURE: #33 Dillyn Kellog
OUTLAW DASH: #98 Sammy Haugen
OUTLAW FEATURE: #98 Sammy Haugen
WHITTAR RACING TRAINS
Closing out the night were Whittar Racing’s chaotic three-car Trains. Controlled by the engine in the front vehicle and the “brake artist” in the rear, the Trains scattered on the first lap. It’s rare to see the Trains red flagged, but they were that night as a loose wheel wreaked havoc on the racetrack and other debris made the track unsafe for racing conditions. When things got rolling again, the #86 Last Call duo managed to keep all twelve wheels on the ground to win the race and the season championship.
Feature Winner: #86 Last Call
Feature 1 Pos No. Name Hometown 1. 76 Chad Cowan Gering NE 2. 31 Rick Smith Gering NE 3. 24 Eric Bowers Colorado Springs 4. 94 Kyle Morse Peyton CO 5. 98 Lee Kemmit Brighton 6. 40 Brandon Newey (R) Thornton 7. 60W Troy Witthar Westminster 8. 44 Tommy Powers Pine 9. 16 Steve Mills Colorado Springs 10. 6R Tommy Roe Thornton 11. 48 Mikey Blackard (R) Lakewood 12. 33 Christopher Buskirk Bayard NE 13. 17x Mariah Boudrieau (R) Colorado Springs 14. 88 Brad Skufca (R) Greeley CO 15. 10 Alan Phelps Cheyenne WY 16. 51 Eric Meisner Brighton 17. 58 Bryce Weinmaster (R) Brighton Co 18. 50 Justin McKeachie Aurora 19. 8 Dan Alamaa Colorado Springs 20. 69 Nathan Gasser Fort Lupton
Feature 2 Pos No. Name Hometown 1. 94 Kyle Morse Peyton CO 2. 69 Nathan Gasser Fort Lupton 3. 8 Dan Alamaa Colorado Springs 4. 16 Steve Mills Colorado Springs 5. 98 Lee Kemmit Brighton 6. 31 Rick Smith Gering NE 7. 60W Troy Witthar Westminster 8. 76 Chad Cowan Gering NE 9. 6R Tommy Roe Thornton 10. 44 Tommy Powers Pine 11. 48 Mikey Blackard (R) Lakewood 12. 33 Christopher Buskirk Bayard NE 13. 10 Alan Phelps Cheyenne WY 14. 51 Eric Meisner Brighton 15. 58 Bryce Weinmaster (R) Brighton Co 16. 88 Brad Skufca (R) Greeley CO 17. 17x Mariah Boudrieau (R) Colorado Springs 18. 40 Brandon Newey (R) Thornton 19. 50 Justin McKeachie Aurora DQ 24 Eric Bowers Colorado Springs
Legends Pos No. Name Hometown 1. 22 Chris Eggleston Thornton 2. 15 Danny Medina Colorado Springs 3. 66 Kyle Clegg Westminster 4. 21 Ryan Jones Arvada 5. 6 Scotty Scott Arvada 6. 87 Tim Trostel Thornton 7. 89 Zach Morris (R) Greenwood Village 8. 40 Dillon Foster Arvada 9. 44 Alfred Matthews Arvada 10. 69 Haydon Moody Arvada 11. 37 Tanner Scarberry Denver 12. 90 Chasen Groff (R) Denver 13. 75 Austin Hackenberg Greeley 14. 14 Jacob Nutall (R) Parker 15. 32 Cody Milan Fort Collins 16. 51 Casey Wiggans (R) Colorado Springs 17. 9M Terry McBride Edgewater 18. 18 JJ Sanders Aurora 19. 45 Cole Tuttle Blackhawk 20. 03 Darrell L Stewart Arvada 21. 04 Natalie Foster Westminster 22. 99 Tessa Marine (R) Littleton 23. 38 Garrett Wilson (R) Platteville 24. 12 Bryanna Bruce (R) Wheatland WY 25. 97 Bill Blevins Arvada 26. 95 Jessilyn Dike Westminster 27. 72 Cynthia Robb Wheatridge 28. 78 Ashlyn Himler Erie 29. 42 Jim Bowman Livermore 30. 50 Tyler Wiggans Colorado Springs
Trains Pos No. Name Hometown 1. 86 Last Call 2. 26 Slam Track 3. 01 Dukes Of Hazard 4. 151 Crazy Train 5. 77 Willie B Foundation Train 6. 311 Bipolar Express 7. 45 Trump Train
Outlaws Pos No. Name Hometown 1. 98 Sammy Haugen Centennial 2. 52 Nic Wall Commerce City 3. 17 4. 21x Jake Johnson Pine CO
Bandits Pos No. Name Hometown 1. 33 Dillyn Kellogg Denver 2. 61 Lilly Tuttle Denver 3. 23 Javon Barnard Wheatridge 4. 21 Madilyn Lange Wheatland WY 5. 60 Liam Hammond Brighton CO