Oval Nats Entries Include Four Past Winners

Steve Koletar Photo

PERRIS, CA – Four past Oval Nationals winners are on the pre-entry list for this week’s 25th running of the Heimark Anheuser Busch Budweiser Oval Nationals Presented by All Coast Construction on November 4-5-6 at southern California’s Perris Auto Speedway.

Thirty-six cars are entered for the event which features such Perris headliners as three-time Oval Nationals winner Damion Gardner, the Concord, Calif. native, eight-time AMSOIL USAC CRA Sprint Car champion and current point leader, who is seeking to become the first four-time Oval Nationals winner in this Saturday night’s $10,000-to-win finale.

C.J. Leary (Greenfield, Ind.) enters as the defending Oval Nationals winner, collecting the top prize in 2019. The 2020 event was not held due to COVID-19 restrictions. Kevin Thomas Jr. (Cullman, Ala.) captured back-to-back Oval Nationals triumphs in 2017-2018. Chris Windom (Canton, Ill.) became the youngest Oval Nationals winner at the age of 19 in 2010.

Prelim winners looking to break through for a monumental first Oval Nationals final night score this weekend include USAC AMSOIL Sprint Car National championship point leader, and three-time champ, Brady Bacon (Broken Arrow, Okla.). Bacon swept both preliminary nights in 2019, same as Justin Grant (Ione, Calif.) did in 2018. Brody Roa (Garden Grove, Calif.) notched his only career USAC National win in a prelim during the 2017 event.

In USAC CRA competition this season, Gardner has added three wins at The PAS, with Roa netting two, while both Austin Williams (Yorba Linda, Calif.) and Charles Davis Jr. (Buckeye, Ariz.) have added one. Austin is the son of 1997 Oval Nationals winner Rip Williams.

Making his Oval Nationals debut is Tanner Thorson (Minden, Nev.), a 2015 Turkey Night Grand Prix USAC NOS Energy Drink Midget National Championship feature winner at Perris, who has won five times with the USAC National Sprints this year.

Another 2021 USAC National Sprint Car winning driver entered is Logan Seavey (Sutter, Calif.) who, like Thorson, is a past USAC National Midget champion. Seavey is one of two drivers to win in all three USAC National divisions this year along with Grant.

This week, five-time USAC National Sprint Car winner Shane Cottle (Kansas, Ill.) will make his first Oval Nationals appearance in 13 years. USAC National Sprint Car’s top Rookie in 2017, Stevie Sussex (Laveen, Ariz.), returns to the Oval Nationals lineup.

Jake Swanson (Anaheim, Calif.), R.J. Johnson (Laveen, Ariz.) and Matt Mitchell (Costa Mesa, Calif.) are all past USAC CRA feature winners at Perris who are looking to reach USAC National victory lane for the first time in their careers this weekend.

The Oval Nationals begins with practice from 6-9pm PT on Wednesday night, November 3. Three-straight full nights of racing, with each evening offering qualifying, heats, semi-feature and feature events, begins at Perris on Thursday, Nov. 4, then returns the following night on Friday, Nov. 5, with the grand finale taking place on Saturday night, Nov. 6.

The drivers meeting takes place at 4:30pm PT during each night of racing with cars slated to be on track at 5:30pm.

All three nights of racing will be shown LIVE on FloRacing at at https://bit.ly/3frPoW6.


1 Damion Gardner/Concord, CA (Mark Alexander)

2 Chase Johnson/Penngrove, CA (Jack Yeley)

4 Justin Grant/Ione, CA (TOPP Motorsports)

4G Chris Gansen/Verdemont Heights, CA (Gansen Motorsports)

4x Jacob Hodges/Camarillo, CA (Jacob Hodges)

5 Logan Seavey/Sutter, CA (Baldwin-Fox Racing)

5A Alex Banales/West Lafayette, IN (Baldwin-Fox Racing)

5x Tommy Malcolm/Corona, CA (Dino Napier)

9K Kevin Thomas Jr./Cullman, AL (KT Motorsports)

11o Ikaika O’Brien/Aiea, HI (Ikaika O’Brien)

12 Stevie Sussex/Laveen, AZ (Robbie & Gaye Allen)

13 Dennis Gile/Phoenix, AZ (Gene Gile Racing)

17v Danny Faria Jr./Tipton, CA (Hollywood Motorsports)

19 Chris Windom/Canton, IL (Hayward Motorsports)

19AZ Tanner Thorson/Minden, NV (Reinbold-Underwood Motorsports)

21 A.J. Bender/Ramona, CA (Rich Bender)

21AZ Jake Swanson/Anaheim, CA (Team AZ Racing)

25 Chris Muraoka/Waianae, HI (Sure Can LLC)

37 Matt Mitchell/Costa Mesa, CA (J.W. Mitchell Motorsports)

38 Tye Mihocko/Phoenix, AZ (Glenn Crossno)

39E Kyle Edwards/Fountain Valley, CA (Gordon Edwards)

44 Cody Williams/Norco, CA (Cody Williams)

47 Charles Davis Jr./Buckeye, AZ (Davis Race Team)

51 R.J. Johnson/Laveen, AZ (Ricky Johnson)

51T Eddie Tafoya Jr./Chino Hills, CA (Eddie Tafoya Sr.)

52v Trent Williams/Hesperia, CA (Ron & Brandi Williams)

69 Brady Bacon/Broken Arrow, OK (Dynamics, Inc.)

72 Austin Grabowski/Riverside, CA (Austin Grabowski)

73 Max Adams/Loomis, CA (Josh Ford Motorsports)

74 Shane Sexton/Warner Springs, CA (Stan Sexton)

74x Shane Cottle/Kansas, IL (Hodges Motorsports)

77m C.J. Leary/Greenfield, IN (Michael Motorsports)

91R Brody Roa/Garden Grove, CA (BR Performance)

92 Austin Williams/Corona, CA (Tom & Laurie Sertich)

92m TBA (Tom & Laurie Sertich)

98 Verne Sweeney/Lomita, CA (Ken Tracy)