Fayette County Speedway
Chad Simpson edges Rauen in Fayette County traffic
By Ryan Clarkpositivelyracing.com
WEST UNION, Iowa (July 26) — It appeared lapped traffic would doom series points leader Chad Simpson on Tuesday at Fayette County Speedway, but it eventually redeemed him as he beat Jason Rauen to the checkers for his fourth Dart Corn Belt Clash Late Model Series victory of the season.
Simpson, the Mount Vernon, Iowa, driver who led throughout much of the event, was slowed by backmarkers late in the 35-lapper, allowing Farley's Rauen to sneak by for the lead. The 11th-starting Rauen's own trouble with the lapped cars provided the sixth-starting Simpson the opportunity to make his way back to the front in the waning moments to score the thrilling $2,000 victory.
Outside front-row starter Jason Utter of Columbus Junction, Iowa, was third followed by Curt Martin of Independence and Justin Mitchell of Cedar Rapids. Polesitter Chris Simpson of Oxford, Iowa, had a flat tire on the second lap and rallied back to finish ninth.
A pair of early cautions slowed the early laps, including when Chris Simpson headed to the pits to change a flat. Utter inherited the lead whiel Chad Simpson quickly moved into contention, sweeping behind the leader a few laps later and pulling away.
Simpson built a straightaway margin while Rauen, who started on the sixth row, used the high groove to race into the top five.
Just past the midway point, Rauen took second from Utter while Simpson encountered heavy traffic. Like Simpson, the lapped cars were running the low groove, allowing Rauen to close quickly.
With a handful of laps remaining, Rauen pulled even with Simpson and flew past the leader when Simpson was hung up by the slower cars.
Simpson kept Rauen within his sights as he made his way beneath the slower cars, and he was able to reel in the leader when Rauen encountered backmarkers. Simpson slipped past to regain control and race to his series-leading 14th career victory.
Notes: Chad Simpson's Bud and Denise Brinkman-owned MasterSbilt Race Car is sponsored Liebe Trucking, Wrap'd Dynamic Decals, T&W Insulation and GATR. ... No other series driver has more than two career Corn Belt Clash victories. ... Chad Simpson stretched his points lead over his brother. He's got 203 points to lead Chris Simpson (186), Denny Eckrich (176), Tim Isenberg (175) and Jason Rauen (172). ... The starting lineup was inverted six after the nine-car fast dash. ... The race was the first of three straight midweek events on the Iowa-based series. Wednesday's race is at Highway 3 Raceway in Allison and Thursday's is at C.J. Speedway in Columbus Junction.
Corn Belt Clash @ Fayette County: (1) Chad Simpson, (2) Jason Rauen, (3) Jason Utter, (4) Curt Martin, (5) Justin Mitchell, (6) Kurt Kile, (7) Jeremiah Hurst, (8) Denny Eckrich, (9) Chris Simpson, (10) Rob Moss, (11) Jake Meier, (12) Rick Wendling, (13) Mike Fryer, (14) Kevin Sather, (15) Tim Isenberg, (16) Dave Eckrick, (17) Curt Schroeder, (18) Todd Hansen, (19) Jill George, (20) Joe Ludemann, (21) Kevin Kile, (22) Justin Kay. Heat race winners (among 22 cars): Kay, Chad Simpson, Sather. Dash winner: Chad Simpson.