Image Credit: Jessica Edmiston
In a thriller that had everyone guessing who would take the win at Lake Ozark Speedway, El Paso’s John Carney II held off the hard-charging duo of Jonathan Cornell and Matt Covington for his first victory of the season with the Lucas Oil American Sprint Car Series presented by the MAVTV Motorsports Network on Sunday night.
“Man this feels good. We’ve been working hard, and we’ve had a fast car. Just haven’t caught any breaks and I guess we did catch at least one tonight, but this car was great. Everyone who helps me, South Plains Auto Transport, Danny Sander Construction, Mesilla Valley Transportation, Jackson Compaction….just everyone it means a lot. It takes lots of help to operate up and down the road, and without them, I couldn’t be here racing. It’s a lot of fun to get to come out here and do this,” stated Carney in Victory Lane.
Carney’s fourth career victory with the Lucas Oil American Sprint Car Series presented by the MAVTV Motorsports Network, the battle between he and early race leader, Matt Covington, saw the duo trade the lead nearly a dozen times with each answering the other’s slide job over the course of the $5,000 to win feature event.
Taking the point after a second attempt at the start, Covington led the way with the race halted on Lap 6 when Sam Hafertepe, Jr. and Kyle Bellm came together battling for third; sending the pair flipping violently into the third and fourth turns. Both drivers were unharmed but unable to continue.
Restarting with Jamie Ball and John Carney II in tow, Covington held the point as Carney worked to second on a Lap 7 restart for a stopped No. 28 of Scott Bogucki.
Working the low side of the Lake Ozark Speedway, Carney advanced to the point on Lap 10 with the pair exchanging the position several times before Carney was able to get some breathing room. Short-lived as the pair hit traffic, Carney found his line blocked; allowing the Triple X Race Co. No. 95 to make the high line pass working Lap 20, but the caution would bring the field back to Lap 19, and the Danny Sander Construction No. J2 back to the lead.
Keeping pace on the field at the restart, Carney continued to work the hub as Covington railed the cushion. Going after the lead with five to go, the pair were joined by Jonathan Cornell with the No. 35m looking anywhere they weren’t. Slide for slide, Carney, and Covington exchanged the lead with Cornell nearly taking it away several times as the laps clicked by. To the white flag, and still anyone’s race, Carney made his car as wide as possible as the trio dove into the final two turns. A drag race to the checkered flag, Carney snagged the win by 0.194 seconds with Jonathan Cornell getting the last lap pass for the runner-up spot. Matt Covington in a close, and badly needed third after flipping on Saturday night, trailed by a mere 0.911 seconds. Running inside the top five nearly the entire race, Paul Nienhiser held on to fourth with Jamie Ball making a nice rebound run to fifth.
Advancing 14 positions after having to race his way in through the second B-Feature, Blake Hahn was the night’s hard charger in sixth. Terry McCarl was seventh with Sean McClelland eighth. Retaking the point’s lead, Roger Crockett rallied from 14th to ninth for a pair of top tens on the weekend. Finishing 10th for the second night in a row was Jordon Mallett.
Seeing several weekly competitors for Knoxville Raceway make the trip on Sunday, 38 drivers broke down into five Heat Races that went to Kyle Bellm, Sam Hafertepe, Jr., Matt Covington, Jamie Ball, and Carson McCarl. A pair of B-Features were topped by Chris Martin and Scott Bogucki. Three drivers utilized provisionals with Harli White using a National Owner Point’s Provisional. Miles Paulus entered on the ASCS Warrior Region Provisional with Aryton Gennetten gifted a Promoter’s Provisional.
The next event for the Lucas Oil American Sprint Car Series presented by the MAVTV Motorsports Network is Saturday, June 1 at Route 66 Motor Speedway in Amarillo, Texas. Fans not able to attend can find the weekend broadcast live via this link.
For other news, notes, and information on the American Sprint Car Series, from the National Tour to any of the nine Regional Tours that make up ASCS Nation in 2019, log onto their website, follow on Facebook, on Instagram, and on Twitter (@LucasOilASCS).
Lucas Oil ASCS presented by MAVTV
ASCS Warrior Region
Lake Ozark Speedway (Eldon, Mo.)
Sunday, May 26, 2019
Car Count: 38
Event Count: 41
SCE Gaskets Heat Races (Top 16 in Passing Points advance to the A-Feature)
Heat 1 (8 Laps): 1. 86-Kyle Bellm, ; 2. 4X-Terry McCarl, ; 3. 6-Bryan Grimes, ; 4. 84-Brandon Hanks, ; 5. 33M-Mason Daniel, ; 6. 17W-Harli White, ; 7. 77X-Alex Hill, ; 8. 3-Ayrton Gennetten, 
Heat 2 (8 Laps): 1. 15H-Sam Hafertepe Jr, ; 2. J2-John Carney II, ; 3. 14-Jordon Mallett, ; 4. 0-Steven Russell, ; 5. 44M-Chris Martin, ; 6. 99-John Schulz, ; 7. (DNF) 49B-Ben Brown, ; (DNS) 44-Jared Sewell,
Heat 3 (8 Laps): 1. 95-Matt Covington, ; 2. 35M-Jonathan Cornell, ; 3. 21H-Brian Brown, ; 4. 28-Scott Bogucki, ; 5. 52-Blake Hahn, ; 6. 78-Kaley Gharst, ; 7. 33-Austin Alumbaugh, ; 8. 21-Miles Paulus, 
Heat 4 (8 Laps): 1. 5J-Jamie Ball, ; 2. 37H-Nicholas Howard, ; 3. 9X-Paul Nienhiser, ; 4. 2X-Tucker Doughty, ; 5. 21P-Robbie Price, ; 6. 1K-Kelby Watt, ; 7. 3P-Rusty Potter, 
Heat 5 (8 Laps): 1. 27-Carson McCarl, ; 2. 22-Sean McClelland, ; 3. 11-Roger Crockett, ; 4. 22X-Riley Goodno, ; 5. 5-Kory Bales, ; 6. 4-Evan Martin, ; 7. 6X-Frank Rogers, 
BMRS B-Features (Top 3 from each advance to the A-Feature)
B Feature 1 (12 Laps): 1. 44M-Chris Martin, ; 2. 77X-Alex Hill, ; 3. 2X-Tucker Doughty, ; 4. 84-Brandon Hanks, ; 5. 33M-Mason Daniel, ; 6. 4-Evan Martin, ; 7. 3P-Rusty Potter, ; 8. 22X-Riley Goodno, ; 9. (DNF) 78-Kaley Gharst, ; 10. (DNF) 3-Ayrton Gennetten, ; (DNS) 49B-Ben Brown,
B Feature 2 (12 Laps): 1. 28-Scott Bogucki, ; 2. 52-Blake Hahn, ; 3. 21P-Robbie Price, ; 4. 17W-Harli White, ; 5. 21-Miles Paulus, ; 6. 1K-Kelby Watt, ; 7. 5-Kory Bales, ; 8. 99-John Schulz, ; 9. (DNF) 33-Austin Alumbaugh, ; 10. (DNF) 44-Jared Sewell, ; 11. (DNF) 6X-Frank Rogers, 
A Feature (30 Laps): 1. J2-John Carney II, ; 2. 35M-Jonathan Cornell, ; 3. 95-Matt Covington, ; 4. 9X-Paul Nienhiser, ; 5. 5J-Jamie Ball, ; 6. 52-Blake Hahn, ; 7. 4X-Terry McCarl, ; 8. 22-Sean McClelland, ; 9. 11-Roger Crockett, ; 10. 14-Jordon Mallett, ; 11. 27-Carson McCarl, ; 12. 6-Bryan Grimes, ; 13. 21H-Brian Brown, ; 14. 3-Ayrton Gennetten, ; 15. 21P-Robbie Price, ; 16. 77X-Alex Hill, ; 17. 17W-Harli White, ; 18. 44M-Chris Martin, ; 19. (DNF) 2X-Tucker Doughty, ; 20. (DNF) 21-Miles Paulus, ; 21. (DNF) 0-Steven Russell, ; 22. (DNF) 28-Scott Bogucki, ; 23. (DNF) 37H-Nicholas Howard, ; 24. (DNF) 86-Kyle Bellm, ; 25. (DNF) 15H-Sam Hafertepe Jr, 
Lap Leader(s): Matt Covington 1-10; John Carney II 11-30
Hard Charger: Blake Hahn +14
High Point Driver: Sam Hafertepe, Jr.
Provisional(s): Harli White (Points) / Miles Paulus (Regional) / Ayrton Gennetten (Promoter)
2019 National Tour Driver Standings (Top 15): 1. 2. Roger Crockett 903; 2. Matt Covington 893; 3. Sam Hafertepe, Jr. 892; 4. Blake Hahn 883; 5. John Carney II 863; 6. Scott Bogucki 845; 7. Jamie Ball 794; 8. Harli White 776; 9. Robbie Price 729; 10. Jordon Mallett 726; 11. Alex Hill 703; 12. Tucker Doughty 638; 13. Dylan Westbrook 545; 14. Brandon Hanks 326; 15. Thomas Kennedy 300;
2019 Race Winners: Sam Hafertepe, Jr. – 3 (5/17 – I-96 Speedway; 5/18 – I-96 Speedway; 5/25 – Lake Ozark Speedway); Thomas Kennedy – 2 (4/25 – Eagle Raceway, 4/26 – U.S. 36 Raceway); John Carney II – 1 (5/26 – Lake Ozark Speedway);
Weather Related Cancellations: Devil’s Bowl Speedway (3/15 and 3/16); Williams Grove Speedway (5/3); Selinsgrove Speedway (5/4); Lakeside Speedway (5/9); I-30 Speedway (5/11)
Author: Bryan Hulbert – Lucas Oil American Sprint Car Series