Clauson nips Hagen in USAC/Badger Thriller

Bryan ClausonBy Bryan Gapinski Sun Prairie,Wis., Aug. 30, 2009----Bryan Clauson regained the lead on the final lap to win the 9th annual 30-lap "Hall of Fame Midget Classic"" Sunday Night at Angell Park Speedway. The event was co-sanctioned by the USAC Mopar National and Badger Midget Car Series.
Jerry Coons Jr.paced the initial two circuits, before Clauson took the lead. With Clauson leading, positions in the top ten were changing every lap on the multi-groove track. Clauson's half-straightaway lead was erased on lap 10, when a car stalled. Clauson held a five-car length lead at the midway point over Darren Hagen and Coons.
Fast qualifier Brad Kuhn charged past two cars in the next two laps, moving into third place. Two more cautions in the next two laps kept the field bunched up. Clauson again held a slight advantage over Hagen and Kuhn. Clauson appeared headed for victory, when on the final lap the caution was displayed for a spun car, setting up a one lap shootout for the victory.
On the restart Hagen passed Clauson for the lead entering Turn 1. Hagen pulled to a three-car length advantage down the backstretch. With Hagen running the lower groove, Clauson used the high groove to maintain his momentum. Clauson drove off the final turn pulling even with Hagen. Clauson driving the Corey Tucker owned Spike/Ford-Esslinger No. 39 edged Hagen at the line by less than one-half car length for the victory. Kuhn, Mike Hess who started in 14th position, and Brad Sweet rounded out the top five.
Scott Hatton holds 110-point lead over Hess in Badger points heading into the Sept. 4 Stan Fox Memorial at Dodge County Fairgrounds (Beaver Dam,Wis.). The following day will be the co-sanctioned USAC/Badger 28th annual Fireman's Nationals presented by Pepsi at Angell Park. Kuhn's USAC point lead now stands at 34 markers over Hagen.

QUAL       HT 1   B-FEAT   A FEAT  
1 17B KUHN 14.925 1 CLAUSEN 1 EAST 1 CLAUSEN
2 3 HAGEN 14.927 2 KUHN 2 K.SWANSON 2 HAGEN
3 49 SWEET 15.001 3 WAELTI 3 CLARKE 3 KUHN
4 4 EAST 15.008 4 LOYET 4 HESS 4 HESS
5 39 CLAUSEN 15.056 5 K.SWANSON 5 T.SWANSON 5 SWEET
6 11 COONS 15.126 HT 2   6 FISCUS 6 COONS
7 67 CLARKE 15.162 1 HAGEN 7 SMITH 7 HATTON
8 33 RAY 15.202 2 WHITT 8 ERFURTH 8 LOYET
9 O5 LOYET 15.209 3 COONS 9 WALTERS 9 EAST
10 15 HATTON 15.236 4 HATTON 10 MAYHEW 10 WHITT
11 5D DAUM 15.245 5 HESS 11 DULL 11 CLARKE
12 30 BOAT 15.303 HT 3 12 SHREFFLER 12 K.SWANSON
13 19K K.SWANSON 15.31 1 CONOVER 13 JOHNSON 13 WAELTI
14 1X HESS 15.364 2 DAUM 14 SLOTTEN 14 RAY
15 24 HINES 15.367 3 SWEET 15 C.ARMSTRONG 15 BOAT
16 56 HMIEL 15.391 4 HINES 16 D.ARMSTRONG 16 CONOVER
17 21K MAYHEW 15.433 5 T.SWANSON   17 FISCUS
18 1 WHITT 15.436 HT 4 18 SMITH
19 19 T.SWANSON 15.458 1 HMIEL 19 HINES
20 13 SMITH 15.497 2 RAY 20 T.SWANSON
21 7A D.ARMSTRONG 15.498 3 BOAT 21 HMIEL
22 5W WALTERS 15.614 4 ALTIG 22 DAUM
23 7 FISCUS 15.63 5 SMITH 23 ALTIG
24 57 ALTIG 15.672  
25 3X WAELTI 15.822    
26 25 ERFURTH 15.841  
27 76 CONOVER 15.854  
28 88 SLOTTEN 15.871    
29 56X DULL 15.964    
30 21S SHREFFLER 16.141    
31 82 JOHNSON 16.341      
32 31 BUDRES 17.73    
33 7C C.ARMSTRONG NT