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Ross Kenseth Fights Off Augie Grill to Win Night Of The Stars 100

Ross Kenseth Fights Off Augie Grill to Win Night Of The Stars 100

by July 28, 2013 0 comments

Clermont, Indiana (Saturday, July 20, 2013): The premier tour within Champion Racing Association (CRA) Powered by JEGS; the ARCA/CRA Super Series Powered by JEGS was the featured class of the Night of the Stars Twin 100s on Friday, July 26th which were a part of Brickyard Speedweeks with the JEGS/CRA All-Stars Tour Presented by Chevrolet Performance at the exquisite 0.686 mile progressively banked paved oval of Lucas Oil Raceway, located west of Indianapolis in Clermont, Indiana. Ross Kenseth held off a hard-charging Augie Grill in a thrilling battle to score his first ARCA/CRA Super Series Win since the 2012 Winchester 400.

It didn’t come easy for Kenseth in his all black #25 Blain’s Farm & Fleet / Toyota as Grill hounded him for 71 laps before spinning coming out of turn two with just five laps to go, clearing the way for Kenseth to go on and score the win. “Wow what a race! Augie (Grill) was all over me for what seemed like forever. That was a lot of fun to race clean like that for the win,” The 20-year-old originally from Appleton, Wisconsin who now resides in Mooresville, North Carolina said in victory lane. “This car was sure fast tonight and I needed every bit of it.” He added.

33 cars signed in for the race and after EDCO Welding Fast Qualifier, Chad Finley drew a six for an inversion, it placed Kenseth and Boris Jurkovic on the front row for the century grind. When the green flag flew from Chief Starter, Brian Duncan, it would be Jurkovic using his momentum from the outside lane to drive around Kenseth to take the early lead as the rest of the field settled in behind the lead duo.

Jurkovic set a torrid early pace while trying to keep the top spot away from Kenseth who slid in behind Jurkovic and occupied the same real estate Jurkovic was using all over the Circle City oval. After following his tire tracks for the first 18 laps, Kenseth made his move by Jurkovic to take the lead on lap 19 and he tried his hand at pulling away from the rest of the field.

Augie Grill, a three-time winner in the Southern Super Series in 2013 and making a rare ARCA/CRA Super Series Powered by JEGS appearance, worked his way by Jurkovic for second on lap 23 from his fifth starting spot and from there, the Hayden, Alabama driver reeled in Kenseth only a lap later and what transpired over the next 71 laps will have the fans in the grandstands as well as the many on-lookers, including several on-lookers and visitors from the NASCAR fraternity who came over from the activities at near-by Indianapolis Motor Speedway talking for quite some time.

Grill searched high and low trying to figure out a way around Kenseth and several times throughout the course of the race, Grill would pull up along-side of Kenseth in an epic battle for the lead that had the crowd on their feet several times throughout the race. However, Kenseth would just edge the President of Grand American Race Cars (GARC) at the start / finish line where it counted.

After reaching the halfway point of the race and while Kenseth collected both the VR-12 Halfway Leader and Holley Carburetors Halfway Leader awards, Grill would fall back, regroup and again apply heavy pressure to the race leader and each time, Kenseth would foil his efforts.

Time and time again, Grill would challenge Kenseth for the lead and each time, Kenseth would stave off the Southern superstars’ advances. As the laps continued to click off, Grill would drive into the corners deeper and deeper and would come out of the turns a little bit sooner than the race leader in an effort to finally take over the top spot and make the trip from Alabama worthwhile.

With five laps to go and coming out of turn two, Grill stepped on the gas a little sooner than he had been all night long and the back end of his familiar #112 would come around bringing out the last of the three cautions that would wave on the evening. Grill didn’t hit anything and the rest of the field took evasive action to avoid his sideways machine. The disappointed driver would fall back to the rear of the field and would eventually finish 14th.

This set up a five-lap shootout between Kenseth and the new second place car of Terry Fisher Jr., and as the green flag flew one more time, Kenseth would quickly pull away from Fisher Jr., who had to contend with Current Points Leader, 19-year-old Travis Braden. Contact between those two drivers on the restart would allow Kenseth to pull away from them and the rest of the field and cross the stripe first to score his seventh career ARCA/CRA Super Series Powered by JEGS victory to move him into a tie for 10th on the All-Time Career Wins list with the legendary Fred Campbell.

“It was really cool to have my Dad (NASCAR Sprint Cup Series star, Matt Kenseth) here tonight, my sister too.” Kenseth continued after his second career ARCA/CRA Super Series Win at Lucas Oil Raceway. “I can’t say enough about how much fun it was to race such a clean race with Augie (Grill) I really felt bad for him when he spun. Would’ve liked to race him to the end. I’m sure we’ll be at the same place again before too long.” Kenseth ended.

Finishing in second place would be Fisher Jr., in his #81 McGunegill Engine Performance / Chevrolet as he recovered from contact between him and Braden late in the race to secure the runner-up spot. “The car was really good on long runs, but we just didn’t have enough speed on the restarts,” The Ossian, Indiana driver explained. “I am just so proud of this entire team. They’re the reason why we’re where we are tonight.” The 27-year-old added. For his runner-up showing, Fisher Jr., picked up the FLUIDYNE Cool Under Pressure Award.

Rounding out the podium finishers was two-time LOR winner in the ARCA/CRA Super Series, Brian Campbell who would come home in third after starting 15th in his #20 KBR Development / Ford. “We started too far back and by the time we got up towards the front I used up the car,” The 33-year-old from Wyoming, Michigan said after climbing out of his machine. “It was a real good night for Team KBR though, (Car  Owner) Mike (Bursley) won the JEGS/CRA (All-Stars Tour) race and we got a third in this one. Real happy for this entire team.” He added.

Greenwood, Indiana veteran, Tommy St. John, in his first appearance of the 2013 racing season, made the most of it with a fourth place finish after starting way back in 25th. He earned the Racing Electronics Hard-Charger Award, the first Hoosier Racing Tire Performance Award and the Hedman Hedders Husler Award for his efforts. Austin Theriault would score his career high ARCA/CRA Super Series showing as the Fort Kent, Maine driver finished off the top five.

Jurkovic recovered from an early race pit stop to finish sixth after leading the first 18 laps while Brandon Hermiller had a good night after finishing sixth in the JEGS/CRA All-Stars Tour race earlier in the evening, he would come home seventh in the ARCA/CRA Super Series portion of the night. Jeff Fultz picked up the second Hoosier Racing Tire Performance Award for his 21st to eighth place run as Evan Jackson, making his first appearance since the 2010 season, celebrated his 50th career start in the series with a ninth place over Braden who recovered from his mishap with Fisher Jr., late in the race, earned the AR Bodies Cool Move of the Race Award for his recovery after slapping the turn one wall, to complete the top 10 with a damaged racecar and extend his points lead in the process.

Veteran Rick Turner, who finished 13th in the race, won the VDL Fuel Systems Hot Lap of the Race Award while 19-year-old rookie, Brandon Oakley’s 17th place finish netted him the Boyne Machine Company & the Cometic Gaskets Rookie of the Race Awards. Finley’s second career EDCO Welding Fast Qualifier Award, his first also came at LOR in 2012, was a 21.684 over the 33-car field as his lap time measures out to 113.890mph.

The third event in three weekends and third race of a marathon six races in five weekends stretch continues for the ARCA/CRA Super Series Powered by JEGS on Saturday, August 3rd as the rescheduled Tri-State Car Collector Appraisers 125 Presented by T.A.A.G. Incorporated is at the famed 7/16s (0.437) mile semi-banked paved oval of Berlin Raceway, located west of Grand Rapids in Marne, Michigan. This event was rained out back on May 11th.

For more information about all four touring series’ within Champion Racing Association Powered by JEGS, please go to the series website at: www.cra-racing.com You can also follow CRA on Facebook at: www.facebook.com and search for “Champion Racing Association” as well as Twitter at www.twitter.com/CRAracing Finally for more information about Berlin Raceway, the host facility for the seventh race of the 2013 season for the ARCA/CRA Super Series Powered by JEGS, go to the track website at: www.berlinraceway.com

Press Release
Press Release, source information and photo credits are located at the bottom of the article.

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