Picking up his first career prelim night victory in the My Place Hotels 360 Knoxville Nationals presented by Great Southern Bank, Altoona's Austin McCarl grabbed the lead on Lap 8 and led the remainder of Thursday's 20 lap A-Feature to mark his first career victory with the Lucas Oil American Sprint Car Series presented by the MAVTV Motorsports Network as well.
McCarl's second career win in 360cid competition at the Knoxville Raceway, the Kolthoff Electric/SCT No. 17a shot under the No. 70 of Calvin Landis through the first and second turns on Lap 6, only to have the caution appear for Ryan Leavitt.
Pinned to the back bumper of the Tom Madden Motorsports entry on the restart, McCarl again shot the gap between Landis and the berm to take the top spot.
"Calvin was kind of moving around there. I just had to stay patient. He was setting a good pace," stated McCarl. "
"The bottom was really good and threw up a bunch of juice through the middle. When I got to those first lap cars, they were running the top. I didn't know what to do, so I blew it through the middle, and it stuck. I didn't know how close those guys were behind him. Aaron and Kerry…those guys are World of Outlaws winners and the best in the world. I guess, in the end, I was lucky there wasn't a yellow."
Slowing opening his advantage, the battle for second heated up with Landis in the mix with Scelzi, Madsen, and Reutzel with the No. 87 getting the spot for a moment before mechanical issues struck on Lap 13. Getting to the infield to avoid the caution, the spot went to Kerry Madsen with Dominic Scelzi in tow.
Hitting lapped traffic with five laps to run, the slower traffic would not be enough to slow McCarl as the No. 17a crossed 2.539-seconds ahead of eighth starting, Kerry Madsen, who is the high point driver after Thursday prelim action. The final podium step went to California's Dominic Scelzi with Shane Golobic moving up three spots to fourth. Tim Shaffer completed the top five.
Making up seven positions, Joe Beaver grabbed sixth with Roger Crockett seventh. Racing through the B-Feature, Cory Eliason clawed from 21st to eighth in the Rudeen Racing No. 26. Calvin Landis ended up slipping to ninth with Tim Kaeding, also making a 13-position run from 23rd to complete the top ten.
The 30th annual My Place Hotels 360 Knoxville Nationals presented by continues Friday, August 7. Hot Laps begin at 6:45 P.M. with Qualifying getting underway at 7:15 P.M. (CT). Information on the event, tickets, and directions can be found at http://www.
Live coverage is available on http://www.dirtvision.com.
For other news, notes, and information on the American Sprint Car Series, from the National Tour to any of the Regional Tours that make up ASCS Nation in 2020, log onto http://www.ascsracing.com
, follow on Facebook, on Instagram, and Twitter (@LucasOilASCS).