MACON, Ill. – official series release — POWRi photo —
Going two in a row, both Nathan Benson and Andrew Felker doubled down in their respective divisions for the final night of POWRi Freedom Fest at Macon Speedway.
Felker fought hard to the front from a fifth place starting position to earn his second victory in the action-packed POWRi Lucas Oil National Midget Series feature event, while Benson steaked to his third POWRi Speedway Motors 600cc Outlaw Micro Series feature victory after starting on the outside front row, strengthening his points lead.
Pole sitter Justin Peck took the early lead at the drop of the green flag as second place starter, Nick Knepper would bobble coming off turn four allowing the youngster from Monrovia, Ind. an early advantage. With two laps in the books, Brayton Lynch would stop the field as his flipping machine in turns three and four would bring out red flag conditions. He would be alright, but done for the rest of the event.
Coming back to green with Peck leading the way, Justin Grant would miscalculate a slide job entering turn one and end up spun around, collecting a crowd of cars and blocking the track bringing out another red. Austin Brown, Isaac Chapple, Davey Camfield, and Jake Neuman were involved, with Chapple being the only car unable to continue.
Coming back to green, Peck’s Esslinger-powered DRC/Duracoat entry would work to stay out front as Felker set up Daniel Robinson for the second position. Felker would officially take the second position on lap 10 and set his sights on the lead. Surging closer towards the front as Peck struggled to work his way through lap traffic, Felker would capitalize as Peck slid a lap car, coming in too hot on the cushion and losing just enough speed for Felker to take the lead on lap 14. Two laps later, Austin Brown would bring out the caution as his Toyota-powered BOSS Chassis would slow atop turns one and two with a flat right front.
With the caution bunching the field up, Felker would surge ahead as Spencer Bayston closed in on Peck for the second position. On lap 19 Bayston would clear Peck with a slide job for second and get the caution he needed to challenge for the lead a lap later as Payton Pierce slowed off turn two. Coming back to green Ryan Robinson would get pinched into the cushion in turns one and two, sending the Keith Kunz/Curb-Agajanian Motorsports Toyota-powered Bullet flipping. Robinson would be alright, but his machine would find its way onto the business-end of the wrecker.
Felker would again show the way back to green flag racing, with the Stanton SR-11-powered BOSS Chassis/ Sixty-Six Truck and Foreign Salvage entry pounding the cushion on the high banked fifth-mile as the laps wound down. Bayston would hold onto second, as Darren Hagen mounted a tremendous charge from 17th to third in the Austin Brown/Esslinger-powered BOSS Chassis entry.
Coming in fourth was Peck and rounding out the top five was Daniel Robinson.
“Hats off to the BOSS Chassis, Stanton SR-11 guys,” said Felker. “They’ve given me an awesome race car all year and we’ve kept struggling and finally I hope we have the monkey off our back. This car is awesome right now. I can’t thank my family and sponsors enough and sticking through it, and hopefully we can keep this going.”
“Tim [Clauson] had the car pretty good,” added Bayston. “Hats off to Andrew, two nights in a row here, that’s pretty good. I really wanted that win. We’ll see what we can do tomorrow night.”
Two-time defending POWRi Speedway Motors 600cc Outlaw Micro Series Champion Nathan Benson got out the broom and made a clean sweep of the POWRi Freedom Fest, dominating both nights at Macon Speedway in the micro ranks.
Starting outside the front row to Jeremy Camp, Benson would again use the top side of the high banked fifth-mile to his advantage allowing the FTZ-powered Pace Chassis to flex its muscles.
Chris Cochran improved a position from the previous night as he found himself again on the podium, but this time in the second position, while Jeremy Camp brought home a third place finish. Tucker Klaasmeyer finished in fourth and Dereck King again took fifth.
“It feels really good,” said Benson. “We have this thing rolling pretty good right now; Pace Chassis, FTZ Engines, Schure Built Suspensions and Dave Byers helping us in the pits. Thanks to all the fans that came out and hope you all had a great 4th of July.”
CREDIT: POWRi Racing