BECHTELSVILLE, PA – The 2021 edition of USAC Eastern Storm begins at its traditional starting point, Grandview Speedway in Bechtelsville, Pa. on Tuesday night, June 15, with the 40-lap Jesse Hockett Classic.
As the most traditional of all the stomping grounds on the Eastern Storm tour, hosted annually since 2007, Grandview has been the home to 11 past events during the mini-series, serving 10 of those 11 occasions as the opener for the series.
Brady Bacon has been unstoppable of late at the 1/3-mile dirt oval, winning each of the last three Grandview USAC Eastern Storm events in 2017-18-19 and won again in this April’s Keystone Invasion. Bacon has not finished outside of the top-ten in any of his eight Grandview USAC Sprint starts, with 5th place results in 2007 & 2014, an 8th in 2016 and a 9th in 2013.
Bacon, the series point leader and three-time USAC National Sprint Car driving champion, will attempt to join an exclusive list of drivers who’ve won five consecutive USAC National Sprint Car features at a single track. Jim Hurtubise won five in a row at Indiana’s Terre Haute Action Track between 1960-62; Steve Chassey took five-straight at Indiana’s Winchester Speedway in 1979; and Tyler Courtney notched his fifth in a row at Ohio’s Eldora Speedway earlier this year in the month of May.
Kevin Thomas Jr. (Cullman, Ala.) was second in the Spring at Grandview during Keystone Invasion and has been a frequent frontrunner there with five consecutive top-five finishes in his last five starts, including a 2nd in 2016, 4th in 2017 and was 2nd again in 2018 and 5th in 2019. The 2021 Ocala and Bloomington winner also finished 3rd in 2012 and 9th in 2014 at Grandview, and his qualifying time there of 13.360 sec. from 2012 still stands as the all-time USAC National Sprint Car one-lap track record. He was also 6th in the midget race at Grandview in 2019.
Robert Ballou (Rocklin, Calif.) took third in April at Grandview and enters with a string of six-straight top-8 finishes, including three 6th place finishes in that span from 2016-17-19, and 8th place results in 2014 & 2018. In 11 Grandview USAC Sprint Car starts, the 2015 series champion finished inside the top-ten in nine of them, finishing 6th in the series’ debut at the track in 2007, 9th in 2012 and 3rd in 2011.
Leading series Rookie Tanner Thorson (Minden, Nev.) was a fourth-place finisher in his first Grandview USAC Sprint experience back in the Spring. He won his heat race and finished 4th there with the NOS Energy Drink National Midgets in 2019 and is a two-time 2021 USAC Sprint winner in the state of Pennsylvania – at Big Diamond and Path Valley. His Reinbold-Underwood Motorsports ride finished 2nd in its most recent go at Grandview with driver C.J. Leary in 2019 en route to the Eastern Storm title.
Anaheim, California’s Jake Swanson, a 2017 USAC West Coast Sprint Car champion, had a sterling debut at Grandview in April finishing 5th in the feature. He’s seeking his first career USAC National Sprint Car win, one which he nearly gained in Pennsylvania the day following Grandview, at Big Diamond.
A sixth-place Grandview finisher in the spring, C.J. Leary (Greenfield, Ind.) owns just three top-tens and a pair of top-five finishes there. The 2019 USAC National Sprint Car champ, and Eastern Storm titlist that same year, finished 2nd behind Bacon at Grandview in both 2017 and 2019.
A 10th place finisher at Grandview back in April, Chris Windom (Canton, Ill.) has snagged a USAC National victory at Grandview in his career, but that came in a midget in 2019. Windom has been banging on the door year-after-year for a first Sprint Car victory at Grandview and hasn’t finished outside the top-10 there since 2008. He finished as the runner-up in both 2008 & 2011 and took 3rd in four consecutive tries at Grandview in 2016-17-18-19. The career USAC Triple Crown champ was 4th in both 2010 & 2012 and 7th in both 2013-14.
Chase Stockon (Fort Branch, Ind.) reigned as the king at Grandview by winning during Eastern Storm in 2014. He also topped time trials as the fastest qualifier in both 2017 and 2019. Furthermore, he finished 10th in 2010 and 5th in 2013 and rolled sevens in three other Grandview starts with a 7th place finish in 2017-18-19.
Justin Grant (Ione, Calif.) has earned two career USAC National Sprint Car top-five finishes at Grandview, with bests of 4th in 2014 and 5th in 2017. The 2020 USAC Silver Crown champ was 8th during Eastern Storm at Grandview in 2019 and 10th in 2018.
Shane Cottle’s last visit to the east came in 2016, and the one-time Eastern Storm winner from Kansas, Ill. took home a solid 6th place result at Grandview in 2013. His most recent trip to Pennsylvania resulted in a USAC victory with the Silver Crown series at Selinsgrove in August of 2020. Cottle will pilot the Tim Hogue owned No. 39, a familiar ride during USAC’s eastern trips for drivers such as Dave Darland, Jerry Coons Jr., Richard Vander Weerd and, most recently, Thomas Meseraull.
Matt Westfall (Pleasant Hill, Ohio) has made four starts in USAC National Sprint Car competition at Grandview over the past decade. His first has been his best thus far, finishing 10th in 2013.
Alex Bright is among a strong USAC East Coast contingent set for the five-race battle that is Eastern Storm. At Grandview, Bright (Collegeville, Pa.), the USAC Rapid Tire East Coast Sprint Car point leader, finished 7th in April and set a new 10-lap track record of 2:24.412 for USAC Sprint Cars at the track.
Timmy Buckwalter (Douglassville, Pa.) finished one spot behind Bright in 8th in April. Buckwalter has set fast time on three occasions this year with the USAC AMSOIL National Sprint Cars, twice at Ocala, Fla. and again at Big Diamond. At Grandview, Buckwalter was victorious with the USAC East Coast Sprint Cars in May 2019.
Briggs Danner (Allentown, Pa.) made the National fans stand up and take notice in the Spring at Grandview when he set quick time during qualifying for the Keystone Invasion show in late April. In mid-May, he turned in a dominating performance in winning a USAC East Coast Sprint Car feature at Grandview.
Steven Drevicki (Reading, Pa.) has been the dominator USAC East Coast competition in recent years, capturing the championship for the USAC East Coast Sprint Cars in three consecutive seasons between 2018-2020, earning 13 victories along the way. The 2014-15 ARDC Midget champion raced with the USAC National Sprint Cars at Grandview in 2019 where he was 13th and, with the National Midgets there in 2019, was 17th.
Fellow Pennsylvanian Carmen Perigo has been a regular with the USAC National Sprint Cars at Grandview over the years. The Wingless Sportsman Sprint superstar from Stoystown, Pa. has made three Grandview starts, finishing a best of 18th in 2019.
Mark Smith (Sunbury, Pa.) is one of the top contingent of Keystone State drivers. He took 12th at Grandview in 2013 as his best Eastern Storm performance there thus far. He joins fellow East Coast racers Nash Ely (Sinking Spring, Pa.), Chris Allen Jr. (Monroe, N.J.), Tom Savage (Red Lion, Pa.) and Joey Amantea (Mt. Pocono, Pa.), among others, as Eastern Storm competitors this week.
Isaac Chapple (Willow Branch, Ind.) owns the eight-lap track record at Grandview of 1:52.46, set in 2017. The 2015 USAC National Sprint Car Rookie of the Year finished a best of 14th at Grandview in 2018.
First time Eastern Storm appearances will be turned in by a trio of drivers who made their first Grandview USAC start this past spring: Terre Haute, Indiana’s Brandon Mattox (11th); Chapin, Illinois’ Paul Nienhiser (12th); and Ventura, California’s Ricky Lewis (18th).
Logan Seavey (Sutter, Calif.) has never made a USAC Sprint Car appearance at Grandview, but the 2018 USAC National Midget champ did finish 10th in the midget there in 2019. The 2018 USAC Southwest Sprint Car champion, Charles Davis Jr. (Buckeye, Ariz.), will make his first cross country trip for Eastern Storm in 2021.
This week, the USAC AMSOIL Sprint Car National Championship will tackle five dates in a six-night stretch with the USAC Silver Crown Champ Car Series taking center stage for a single night.
The Sprint Cars begin 2021 Eastern Storm on Tuesday, June 15, at the 1/3-mile Grandview Speedway in Bechtelsville, Pa., the only track that has appeared on the schedule since Eastern Storm’s inaugural run in 2007.
The following night, on Wednesday, June 16, the Sprint Cars will make their debut on the recently reconfigured 4/10-mile Bridgeport Speedway in Swedesboro, N.J.
Fifty years after the USAC National Sprint Cars last visited Pennsylvania’s ½-mile Selinsgrove Speedway, the series is back on Thursday night, June 17 for the first time since Mitch Smith’s victory five decades earlier in 1971.
A night off for the Sprint Cars doesn’t mean a night off for USAC racing on Friday, June 18, when the USAC Silver Crown Champ Car Series races its way to Mechanicsburg, Pennsylvania’s ½-mile Williams Grove Speedway.
USAC Sprints get back to work on Saturday night, June 19, at Port Royal (Pa.) Speedway’s ½-mile. The tour closes out on Sunday night, June 20, with the USAC Sprint Car debut at the newly rejuvenated Bloomsburg Fair Raceway 3/8-mile dirt oval in Pennsylvania, where the sight and sound of auto racing of any kind has been absent for the past 40 summers.
On Tuesday at Grandview, 358 Modifieds will also be on the event card. Gates open at 5pm Eastern with the drivers meeting at 5:45pm and hot laps at 6:30pm.
Adult admission tickets are $30, children 6 to 11 are $10 and children 5 and under will be admitted free. Pit passes are $40.
All Eastern Storm events will be streamed live on FloRacing at https://bit.ly/3dgONXz.
USAC NATIONAL SPRINT CAR WINS AT GRANDVIEW SPEEDWAY:
2-Bryan Clauson & Levi Jones
1-Daron Clayton, Bobby East, Jesse Hockett & Chase Stockon
USAC NATIONAL SPRINT CAR WINNERS AT GRANDVIEW SPEEDWAY:
2007: Levi Jones (6/6)
2009: Jesse Hockett (6/2)
2010: Levi Jones (6/1)
2011: Bobby East (5/31)
2012: Bryan Clauson (6/5)
2013: Daron Clayton (6/5)
2014: Chase Stockon (6/3)
2016: Bryan Clauson (6/7)
2017: Brady Bacon (6/13)
2018: Brady Bacon (6/14)
2019: Brady Bacon (6/11)
2021: Brady Bacon (4/22)
TRACK RECORDS FOR USAC NATIONAL SPRINT CARS AT GRANDVIEW SPEEDWAY:
1 Lap – 6/5/2012 – Kevin Thomas Jr. – 13.360 – 89.731 mph
8 Laps – 6/13/2017 – Isaac Chapple – 1:52.46 – 85.278 mph
10 Laps – 4/22/2021 – Alex Bright – 2:24.412 – 83.013 mph
12 Laps – 6/11/2019 – Jason McDougal – 3:01.48 – 79.268 mph
GRANDVIEW USAC NATIONAL SPRINT CAR FEATURE RESULTS:
2007 FEATURE: (30 laps) 1. Levi Jones, 2. Brady Short, 3. Billy Pauch, 4. Damion Gardner, 5. Brady Bacon, 6. Robert Ballou, 7. Ricky Stenhouse Jr., 8. Dave Darland, 9. Darren Hagen, 10. Jesse Hockett, 11. Jerry Coons Jr., 12. Josh Weller, 13. Jimmy Light, 14. Mike Martin, 15. Mat Neely, 16. Lucas Wolfe, 17. Bob Ream Jr., 18. Daron Clayton, 19. Chris Windom, 20. Kevin Swindell, 21. Brad Sweet, 22. John Heydenreich. NT
2008 FEATURE: (50 laps) 1. Jesse Hockett, 2. Chris Windom, 3. Bryan Clauson, 4. Tracy Hines, 5. Jerry Coons Jr., 6. Dave Darland, 7. Levi Jones, 8. Chad Boat, 9. Damion Gardner, 10. Cole Whitt, 11. Brad Sweet, 12. Henry Clarke, 13. Billy Pauch, 14. Darren Hagen, 15. Robert Ballou, 16. Scotty Weir, 17. Bud Kaeding, 18. Josh Weller, 19. Kevin Swindell, 20. Steve Petry. NT
2010 FEATURE: (40 laps) 1. Levi Jones, 2. Bryan Clauson, 3. Damion Gardner, 4. Chris Windom, 5. Dave Darland, 6. Tracy Hines, 7. Henry Clarke, 8. Ricky Williams, 9. Bill Rose, 10. Chase Stockon, 11. Mark Bitner, 12. J.R. Berry, 13. Kyle Moody, 14. Johnny Mackison, 15. Shane Hmiel, 16. Kyle Robbins, 17. Jerry Coons Jr., 18. Josh Weller, 19. J.C. Bland, 20. Jeff Geiges, 21. Landon Simon, 22. Jonathan Swanson, 23. Steve Petry. NT
2011 FEATURE: (40 laps) 1. Bobby East, 2. Chris Windom, 3. Robert Ballou, 4. Casey Shuman, 5. Dave Darland, 6, Jon Stanbrough, 7, Levi Jones, 8. Mark Bitner, 9. Tracy Hines, 10. Damion Gardner, 11. Bryan Clauson, 12. Travis Rilat, 13. Keith Bloom Jr., 14. Justin Grant, 15. Kevin Thomas Jr., 16. Kyle Moody, 17. Daron Clayton, 18. Kyle Robbins, 19. Brent Marks, 20. Hunter Schuerenberg, 21. Wes McIntyre, 22. Coleman Gulick. NT
2012 FEATURE: (40 laps) 1. Bryan Clauson, 2. Levi Jones, 3. Kevin Thomas, Jr., 4. Chris Windom, 5. Jerry Coons, Jr., 6. Darren Hagen, 7. Dave Darland, 8. Hunter Schuerenberg, 9. Robert Ballou, 10. Jon Stanbrough, 11. Tracy Hines, 12. Bobby East, 13. Chase Stockon, 14. Mark Smith, 15. Joey Biasi, 16. Kyle Moody, 17. Mike Gular, 18. Damion Gardner, 19. Jonathan Hendrick, 20. C.J. Leary, 21. Mark Bitner, 22. Coleman Gulick. NT
2013 FEATURE: (40 laps) 1. Daron Clayton, 2. Bryan Clauson, 3. Levi Jones, 4. Hunter Schuerenberg, 5. Chase Stockon, 6. Shane Cottle, 7. Chris Windom, 8. Dave Darland, 9. Brady Bacon, 10. Matt Westfall, 11. Tracy Hines, 12. Mark Smith, 13. Tyler Courtney, 14. Nick Drake, 15. Mark Bitner, 16. Joey Biasi, 17. C.J. Leary, 18. Trevor Utt, 19. Kevin Thomas, Jr., 20. Brent Marks, 21. Landon Simon, 22. Robert Ballou, 23. Billy Pauch, Jr. NT
2014 FEATURE: (40 laps) 1. Chase Stockon, 2. Jon Stanbrough, 3. Dave Darland, 4. Justin Grant, 5. Brady Bacon, 6. Tracy Hines, 7. Chris Windom, 8. Robert Ballou, 9. Kevin Thomas, Jr., 10. Hunter Schuerenberg, 11. Shane Cockrum, 12. Bryan Clauson, 13. C.J. Leary, 14. Mark Smith, 15. Joey Biasi, 16. Mark Bitner, 17. Trevor Kobylarz, 18. Dalten Gabbard, 19. Jarett Andretti, 20. Daron Clayton, 21. Chad Boespflug, 22. Landon Simon. NT
2016 FEATURE: (40 laps) 1. Bryan Clauson, 2. Kevin Thomas, Jr., 3. Chris Windom, 4. Thomas Meseraull, 5. Jarett Andretti, 6. Robert Ballou, 7. Max McGhee, 8. Brady Bacon, 9. Tony DiMattia, 10. Dave Darland, 11. Shane Golobic, 12. Chad Boespflug, 13. C.J. Leary, 14. Chase Stockon, 15. Aaron Farney, 16. Jerry Coons, Jr., 17. Landon Simon, 18. Mark Smith, 19. Bret Mellenberndt, 20. Isaac Chapple, 21. Shane Cottle, 22. Joey Biasi. NT
2017 FEATURE: (40 laps) 1. Brady Bacon, 2. C.J. Leary, 3. Chris Windom, 4. Kevin Thomas, Jr., 5. Justin Grant, 6. Robert Ballou, 7. Chase Stockon, 8. Jerry Coons, Jr., 9. Tyler Courtney, 10. Jarett Andretti, 11. Matt Westfall, 12. Aaron Farney, 13. Thomas Meseraull, 14. Alex Bright, 15. Kyle Robbins, 16. Dave Darland, 17. Chad Boespflug, 18. Isaac Chapple, 19. Tony DiMattia, 20. Trevor Kobylarz, 21. Chandler Leiby, 22. Joey Biasi. NT
2018 FEATURE: (40 laps – starting positions in parentheses) 1. Brady Bacon (1), 2. Kevin Thomas, Jr. (3), 3. Chris Windom (4), 4. Tyler Courtney (12), 5. Jarett Andretti (6), 6. Chad Boespflug (2), 7. Chase Stockon (7), 8. Robert Ballou (10), 9. Thomas Meseraull (8), 10. Justin Grant (9), 11. Dave Darland (16), 12. Matt Westfall (18), 13. C.J. Leary (11), 14. Isaac Chapple (21), 15. Tony DiMattia (5), 16. Zach Daum (13), 17. Timmy Buckwalter (14), 18. Jerry Coons, Jr. (15), 19. Joey Biasi (17), 20. Kyle Lick (22), 21. Trevor Kobylarz (20), 22. Carmen Perigo (19). NT
2019 FEATURE: (40 laps – starting positions in parentheses) 1. Brady Bacon (2), 2. C.J. Leary (5), 3. Chris Windom (9), 4. Tyler Courtney (3), 5. Kevin Thomas, Jr. (4), 6. Robert Ballou (8), 7. Chase Stockon (6), 8. Justin Grant (1), 9. Jason McDougal (11), 10. Chad Boespflug (15), 11. Ryan Godown (18), 12. Carson Short (14), 13. Steven Drevicki (7), 14. Dave Darland (13), 15. Joey Biasi (16), 16. Bill Balog (20), 17. Isaac Chapple (22), 18. Carmen Perigo (12), 19. Trevor Kobylarz (17), 20. Kyle Lick (21), 21. Timmy Buckwalter (10), 22. Dustin Christie (19). NT
2021 APRIL FEATURE: (40 laps, starting positions in parentheses) 1. Brady Bacon (3), 2. Kevin Thomas Jr. (2), 3. Robert Ballou (13), 4. Tanner Thorson (6), 5. Jake Swanson (5), 6. C.J. Leary (12), 7. Alex Bright (8), 8. Timmy Buckwalter (4), 9. Briggs Danner (10), 10. Chris Windom (7), 11. Brandon Mattox (1), 12. Paul Nienhiser (11), 13. Justin Grant (14), 14. Chase Stockon (16), 15. Thomas Meseraull (20), 16. Matt Westfall (18), 17. Joey Biasi (9), 18. Ricky Lewis (17), 19. Carmen Perigo (15), 20. Kenny Miller III (22), 21. Steven Drevicki (19), 22. Isaac Chapple (21), 23. Mark Smith (23-P). NT
2021 EASTERN STORM SCHEDULE:
June 15: Grandview Speedway – Bechtelsville, PA (USAC Sprint)
June 16: Bridgeport Speedway – Swedesboro, NJ (USAC Sprint)
June 17: Selinsgrove Speedway – Selinsgrove, PA (USAC Sprint)
June 18: Williams Grove Speedway – Mechanicsburg, PA (USAC Silver Crown)
June 19: Port Royal Speedway – Port Royal, PA (USAC Sprint)
June 20: Bloomsburg Fair Raceway – Bloomsburg, PA (USAC Sprint)
EASTERN STORM CHAMPIONS:
2007: Levi Jones
2008: Cole Whitt
2009: Cole Whitt
2010: Levi Jones
2011: Levi Jones
2012: Bryan Clauson
2013: Bryan Clauson
2014: Brady Bacon
2015: Robert Ballou
2016: Bryan Clauson
2017: Chris Windom
2018: Chris Windom
2019: C.J. Leary
2020: Not Held
EASTERN STORM FEATURE WINS (2007-2020):
6-Bryan Clauson, Levi Jones & Chris Windom
4-Brady Bacon & Robert Ballou
2-Tyler Courtney, Thomas Meseraull & Kevin Thomas Jr.
1-Chad Boat, Chad Boespflug, Daron Clayton, Shane Cottle, Dave Darland, Bobby East, Damion Gardner, Jesse Hockett, Jason McDougal, Hunter Schuerenberg, Jon Stanbrough, Ricky Stenhouse Jr. & Chase Stockon