HARTFORD, OH – Chris Madden is known for his patience in long-distance races. And his strategy worked to perfection in Saturday’s Battle at the Border finale at Sharon Speedway.
The Gray Court, SC driver bided his time before passing Gregg Satterlee and Tanner English for the lead on Lap 32 to earn his second World of Outlaws CASE Construction Equipment Late Models win in three days.
English and Satterlee led the field to the green flag in the 60-lap Feature, as the Benton, KY driver nosed ahead on the bottom and led until a caution came out on Lap 2 for Friday night’s winner Ryan Gustin.
On the next restart, it was Satterlee’s turn out front, as the Indiana, PA driver countered English’s inside line with a sweeping move on the outside of the track.
The two drivers waged war for the lead without changing lanes until a caution for Chub Frank on Lap 27 changed the race’s complexion.
When the race resumed, Satterlee and English continued their battle while Madden, who started fourth, moved toward the front.
“Smokey” closed in on the top two for the next three laps before he saw his opportunity on Lap 32.
With Satterlee up high, and English down low, Madden only had one place to go—the middle.
That’s when Madden’s Rocket XR1 gained momentum through Turns 1 and 2, pulling three wide with the other two drivers as they entered the backstretch.
The epic three-way duel lasted until Turn 3, when Madden’s speed carried him past both drivers, giving him the lead with 29 laps to go.
From there, Madden navigated traffic with ease to score the $25,000 victory—his 35th career World of Outlaws triumph.
Madden said he stayed patient, knowing the track would come to him later in the race.
“It was greasy, and I just made sure I didn’t hurt my tires,” Madden said. “I waited until the racetrack widened out and pretty much waited for it to come to me. I wanted to be in contention around halfway, and I think it was right around halfway when we started putting the pressure on them guys.”
His patience also allowed him to be in the right place at the right time when the middle opened between English and Satterlee. He said he was grateful for how cleanly the three drivers raced for the lead.
“I’m thankful for two good drivers and both of them holding their line,” Madden said. “All it would’ve took was a squeeze on each one, and it would’ve been a disaster for everybody.
“But it was just racing with two really good, competitive drivers, and that’s what racing is. To do it three-wide on a dirt track is pretty awesome.”
Madden’s victory also helped him extend his Series points lead to 64 ahead of Bobby Pierce, who finished third.
Nick Hoffman, who finished seventh, is third in points—66 points behind Madden.
English crossed the line second after leading 16 laps.
Despite missing out on the victory, he said it wasn’t the tires that kept him out of Victory Lane.
“I feel like the track got greasy at the end,” English said. “I got a lot of tire left, and [Madden] kind of looked just as bad as I felt, so I don’t know if it just got greasy, and we were all the same at the end.
“I know I felt like I was babying it the whole time and just trying to make sure I kept it beneath me and didn’t spin it. But I felt pretty good, and he’s one of the best, and he’s getting on top of his game again, and he’s going to be hard to beat.”
Pierce’s third-place finish was his second podium of the Battle at the Border, on a night that his team had to hustle to make Qualifying after changing an engine before Hot Laps.
The Oakwood, IL driver called the third-place finish a success after what his team had to do to get him on the track.
“It’s definitely a success,” Pierce said. “We saw a lot of good cars get lapped tonight, and a lot of good cars just not finish up front. It’s been tough all weekend, and the adversity we fought was just crazy.
“We didn’t know when we had to hustle and bustle to get that stuff changed around if we’d even make Qualifying. And we were like, well, at least we got a provisional, so we’ll see what happens. What a night, and I can’t say enough thanks to all of my crew guys.”
Brian Shirley crossed the line fourth, while 2018 Series champion Mike Marlar rounded out the top five.
Satterlee, who led 14 laps of the Feature, fell to sixth after his car tightened up in the race’s closing stages.
UP NEXT: The World of Outlaws CASE Late Models head to the Midwest for a tripleheader weekend. The Series visits Farmer City Raceway in Farmer City, IL on Thursday, June 1, before traveling to Tri-City Speedway in Granite City, IL on Friday, June 2. A trip to the Bluegrass State finishes the weekend with a stop at Paducah International Raceway on Saturday, June 3.
If you can’t make it to the track, watch all the action live on DIRTVision – either online on with the DIRTVision App.
CASE Construction Equipment Feature (60 Laps): 1. 44-Chris Madden; 2. 96V-Tanner English; 3. 32-Bobby Pierce; 4. 3S-Brian Shirley; 5. 157-Mike Marlar; 6. 22-Gregg Satterlee; 7. 9-Nick Hoffman; 8. 97-Cade Dillard; 9. 25-Shane Clanton; 10. 36-Logan Martin; 11. 1ST-Johnny Scott; 12. 2S-Stormy Scott; 13. B1-Brent Larson; 14. B5-Brandon Sheppard; 15. 0-Rick Eckert; 16. 28-Dennis Erb Jr; 17. 1C-Alex Ferree; 18. 11-Gordy Gundaker; 19. 40B-Kyle Bronson; 20. 30-Todd Cooney; 21. 2-Dan Stone; 22. 1Z-Logan Zarin; 23. 1*-Chub Frank; 24. 48-Colton Flinner; 25. 19R-Ryan Gustin FOX FACTORY HARD CHARGER: Brent Larson [+9]