Buddy Kofoid passed teammate Kaylee Bryson on a lap 16 restart and then held her off for the last 15 laps to win the POWRI Lucas Oil National Midget League’s feature at Humboldt Speedway. Despite falling just short of the win, Bryson made history in matching the best ever finish by a woman in a national midget feature event with her second-place finish.
Kofoid’s win is his fourth in the last six POWRi events and the sixth in a row for Keith Kunz Motorsports (KKM) and Toyota in POWRi competition. It marks Toyota’s 19th national midget feature triumph in 2020.
After starting fourth, Bryson moved up to third on the opening lap and then climbed into second by lap three. Just two laps later, she would throw a slider at leader Chance Morton into turn three to take the lead and then hold off Morton to assume the point position on lap five.
From that point on, she would maintain a comfortable lead, while Kofoid steadily moved up behind her, taking over the third position on lap 10 and then climbing into second on lap 13.
A caution flag on lap 16 would bunch the field for a restart that saw Kofoid diving inside Bryson into turn one to take over the top spot. The race would go green the rest of the way with the two KKM drivers as the class of the field. As the laps began to wind down, Bryson would close the gap as the leaders hit heavy traffic, but Kofoid was able to fight through it and stabilize the lead over the final five laps.
Behind the leaders, the action began to heat up between two more Toyota drivers, Zach Daum and Daison Pursley, for the third and final position on the podium. In the end, it was Pursley using a last lap pass to finish third, while Daum would place fourth as Toyota drivers captured the top four finishing positions.
“I thought we had something broke in the right rear early,” said a victorious Kofoid. “It was a bumpy track, but we were able to run hard. It feels great to get four wins so quickly since getting back. Hopefully we can pick up a couple more this year. Thanks to KKM, Toyota and Mobil 1 for giving me this opportunity. I’m just glad we were able to get past the early red flags to put on a great show for all the fans that came out to support us.”
Bryson, who led 11 of the 30 laps, matches former KKM drivers Holley Hollan and Holly Shelton, along with Sarah McCune, for the top finishing position by a woman in a national midget feature. It’s her second podium finish in just seven POWRi events this season.
“It feels pretty good to match that best finish, but I jut want that first win so bad,” said the 19-year-old Bryson. “I’m with one of the best teams out there and having Toyota power is pretty awesome. I feel fortunate to be out here with all of these great people. I’m learning every time I’m on the track. I got to race hard with Buddy and he’s one of the best of the best. Now my goal is to get some wins.”
Also earning top-10 finishes were fellow Toyota Emerson Axsom in sixth and Ace McCarthy in eighth. Cannon McIntosh fell just shy of a top-10. After falling back to 25th after an early incident, he charged back through the field to place 11th.
The POWRi Lucas Oil National Midget League moves on to Valley Speedway in Grain Valley, Missouri, for a pair of races Saturday and Sunday.