Campbell Wins JEGS/CRA All-Stars Tour 2018 Opener at Birch Run SpeedwayScott Menlen
Salem, IN (April 30, 2018) – Veteran Michigan competitor Brian Campbell overcame a poor qualifying effort and survived several near crashes to win Sunday afternoon’s JEGS/CRA All-Stars Tour Presented by Chevrolet Performance Dixie 100 Presented by JEGS.com at Birch Run Speedway. The event was the 2018 points season opener for the crate late model series, and it was a stacked field of competitors as teams prepared for the upcoming $11,000 to win Masters of the Pro’s 200 at Birch Run on June 8th.
“It wasn’t pretty, but we got the win,” remarked Campbell in victory lane. “The car just wasn’t fast in qualifying, and on short runs, but I knew it would be good on the long runs, and we finally got one of those after the first 20 laps of the race. We’ve got some work to do before we come back for the Masters of the Pro’s 200, the competition was good today, but it will be even better for that race!”
Lisa Thomas Salon Fast Qualifier Johnny VanDoorn drew a five for the events inverted start, placing veteran late model competitor Harold Fair Jr. on the pole to start the race, but it was former Columbus Motor Speedway late model Champion Kyle Jones who got the lead from his outside front row starting position. Jones lead only lasted one lap as 2017 Birch Run series event winner Carson Hocevar charged to the lead on lap two. The event had several cautions with in the first 12 laps, one of those was Hocevar when he stopped on the track after a restart with a flat tire, handing the lead to Fair.
Fair would hold the lead until lap 48 when Campbell, who came from his 17th place starting position, to grab the lead from Fair Jr. Campbell would fight off Jones on a late restart with 16 laps to go to pull away for the win. Campbell picked up the $500 JAS Expedited Trucking Winner Bonus in the first event of the JAS Expedited Trucking Michigan Cup mini-series. Campbell also picked up a Great Lakes Tire/Hoosier Performance Award and the Racing Electronics Hardcharger Award.
Jones would finish in second and earned the FLUIDYNE Cool Under Pressure Award. Birch Run native and 2014 series Champion Dan Leeck came from his 11th place starting position to finish a very popular third. Former Berlin Raceway competitor Nate Walton finished in fourth place. 2017 first time series winner Kyle Crump finished in fifth place.
Nathan Bertino picked up the DGR-CROSLEY Rookie of the Race Award in his first ever CRA start, his crew earned the PitBoxes.com Pit Crew of the Race Award for their efforts in giving Bertino a fast car for his debut. Fellow rookie Mason Keller finished in seventh from his 18th place starting position earning a Great Lakes Tire/Hoosier Performance Award and was awarded the AR Bodies Cool Move of the Race Award for avoiding a couple of accidents early in the event. Josh Nelms finished in eighth in his series return after not racing much the past two seasons. Hocevar would finish in ninth with Ben Welch in 10th place.
The Dixie 100 was the only series point’s event in the Road to Bristol program for the JEGS/CRA All-Stars Tour. By finishing first and second Campbell and Jones both earned guaranteed starting positions for the JEGS/CRA All-Stars Tour Short Track U.S. Nationals 100 lap feature at Bristol Motor Speedway on May 18th.
The series next event will be the WCIParts.com 100 with the Short Track U.S. Nationals Presented by Vore’s Welding & Steel at Bristol Motor Speedway on Friday, May 18th. More information on the JEGS/CRA All-Stars Tour Presented by Chevrolet Performance is available at www.cra-racing.com.