Lonnie Wheatley, PUTNAMVILLE, Ind. (August 16, 2022) – A new era of Sprint Car racing kicked off Tuesday night as Kyle Larson and Brad Sweet launched the new High Limit Sprint Car Series atop the ¼-mile Lincoln Park Speedway clay oval.
And it was Penngrove, California’s Michael “Buddy” Kofoid establishing as the inaugural High Limit winner by taking the $22,022 winner’s share that was boosted to $23,633 by a $500 Durst Dollars bonus per each feature starting position as well as a $10,000 bounty that was placed upon Kyle Larson and divvied up among the nine drivers that finished of him after rebounding from lap 19 issues while vying for a position among the top three to complete the top ten.
After starting ninth, Kofoid turned on the afterburners over the final ten laps by ripping the topside of the racetrack past Cory Eliason on the 28th round and then race leader Justin Sanders one lap later en route to the lucrative victory aboard the Crouch Motorsports Hi-Plains Building Division/Indy Race Parts No. 11 Sprint Car ahead of Sanders and Eliason to give Cali shoes a sweep of the Hoosier State podium.
“It’s cool to finally get a win at Lincoln Park,” Kofoid commented. “I kinda thought it would have been in a Midget first.”
While pole starter Brady Bacon led the way ahead of Zeb Wise and then Larson in the early going, Kofoid struggled to gain ground until near the midway point. But, once he got the top working, there was no stopping him as he stormed into the lead on the 29th lap and never looked back.
“Early, the bottom was the place to be, it was dirty up top that I didn’t want to be the first to try it and maybe lose some spots,” Kofoid explained. “I saw it got cleaner and cleaner and at the end of that first long green flag run I went up there a couple of times I could feel it working. I just knew I needed a long green flag run, I figured I’d be okay. I finally found a rhythm and figured if I was the most consistent on the top that I should get off the corners the fastest and straightest.”
With Bacon setting the early pace, Sanders slipped back by Larson for second before the first of three quick cautions flew after 18 laps when the dueling 35 cars of Chad Kemenah and Zach Hampton tangled in turn three.
One lap later Larson slowed with problems as did 11th-runner Brent Marks with both returning after a quick trip to the work area as Kofoid moved up to fourth.
The third and final caution flew the next time around when Marks looped it turn two to set up a 15-lap dash to the stripe as Kofoid slipped back to fifth.
Kofoid went to work on the top and was up third by the 23rd round and was reeling in the lead duo of Sanders on the top side and Eliason down low.
Kofoid blew past Eliason for second on the 28th lap and slid past Sanders one lap later after a brief hesitation in traffic by the Aromas, CA, racer.
Kofoid went on to victory lane, leaving Sanders and Eliason to battle it out for second with Sanders getting the nod at the stripe.
“It feels pretty bad right now after leading a lot of laps,” Sanders said of the runner-up finish aboard the Swindell Speedlab Bubby Brands No. 39. “I was leading, I didn’t know how hard to push it and didn’t want to drive if off the racetrack. I’m just disappointed for Kevin (Swindell) and these guys, this one will be hard to swallow for a long time.”
Eliason claimed the show position aboard the Indy Race Parts No. 71x, explaining that, “We didn’t come here to run second or third, I committed to the bottom and kind of struggled with it. Buddy caught us off guard.”
Ricky Stenhouse, Jr., crossed the stripe fourth with Wise rounding out the top five. After setting the night’s quickest time of 11.599 seconds in qualifying and winning the first High Limit heat race, Alex Bowman was sixth while Bacon slipped to seventh after leading the opening 19 circuits.
Hunter Schuerenberg rallied from 19th to eighth Tyler Courtney advancing as well from 21st to night as Larson rebounded to capture tenth.
After Bowman established quick time and won the opening heat, Sanders, Larson and Stenhouse, Jr., claimed ensuing heat race victories before Courtny topped the “B” Main.
High Limit Sprint Car Series
Lincoln Park Speedway – Putnamville, IN
Tuesday, August 16, 2022
Qualifying: 1. 55x-Alex Bowman 11.599, 2. 21h-Brady Bacon 11.646, 3. 26-Zeb Wise 11.654, 4. 22-Riley Goodno 11.682, 5. 71-Cory Eliason 11.729, 6. 39-Justin Sanders 11.739, 7. 57-Kyle Larson 11.745, 8. 17jr-Ricky Stenhouse, Jr. 11.746, 9. 11x-Buddy Kofoid 11.832, 10. 17-Kevin Thomas, Jr. 11.858, 11. 99-Skylar Gee 11.888, 12. 5T-Travis Philo 11.896, 13. 30-C.J. Leary 11.906, 14. 19m-Brent Marks 11.932, 15. 35-Chad Kemenah 12.000, 16. 1au-Marcus Dumesny 12.034, 17. 19-Chris Windom 12.068, 18. 24-Tim Crawley 12.133, 19. 5k-Jason McDougal 12.151, 20. 17x-Justin Grant 12.152, 21. 14-Chase Briscoe 12.172, 22. 11-Cale Thomas 12.204, 23. 55-Hunter Schuerenberg 12.205, 24. 83T-Tanner Carrick 12.226, 25. 13-Justin Peck 12.226, 26. 19az-Mitchel Moles 12.238, 27. 7bc-Tyler Courtney 12.260, 28. 35h-Zach Hampton 12.281, 29. 2h-Brian Hayden 12.361, 30. 55T-McKenna Haase 12.393, 31. 27-Trey McGranahan 12.465, 32. 47bc-Emerson Axsom 12.497, 33. 5s-Chase Stockon 12.504, 34. 22s-Slater Helt 12.672, 35. 7s-Sam Scott 12.911.
Heat One (8 Laps): 1. 55x-Alex Bowman, 2. 71-Cory Eliason, 3. 11x-Buddy Kofoid, 4. 19-Chris Windom, 5. 13-Justin Peck, 6. 30-C.J. Leary, 7. 5s-Chase Stockon, 8. 2h-Brian Hayden, 9. 14-Chase Briscoe.
Heat Two (8 Laps): 1. 39-Justin Sanders, 2. 21h-Brady Bacon, 3. 17-Kevin Thomas, Jr., 4. 19m-Brent Marks, 5. 19az-Mitchel Moles, 6. 11-Cale Thomas, 7. 55T-McKenna Haase, 8. 22s-Slater Helt, 9. 24-Tim Crawley.
Heat Three (8 Laps): 1. 57-Kyle Larson, 2. 26-Zeb Wise, 3. 35-Chad Kemenah, 4. 5k-Jason McDougal, 5. 55-Hunter Schuerenberg, 6. 7bc-Tyler Courtney, 7. 99-Skylar Gee, 8. 7s-Sam Scott, 9. 27-Trey McGranahan.
Heat Four (8 Laps): 1. 17jr-Ricky Stenhouse, Jr., 2. 35h-Zach Hampton, 3. 22-Riley Goodno, 4. 5T-Travis Philo, 5. 17x-Justin Grant, 6. 83T-Tanner Carrick, 7. 47bc-Emerson Axsom, 8. 1au-Marcus Dumesny.
Dash (6 Laps): 1. 21h-Brady Bacon (1), 2. 26-Zeb Wise (4), 3. 39-Justin Sanders (3), 4. 55x-Alex Bowman (5), 5. 57-Kyle Larson (6), 6. 17jr-Ricky Stenhouse, Jr. (7), 7. 71-Cory Eliason (8), 8. 35h-Zach Hampton (2).
“B” Main (12 Laps): 1. 7bc-Tyler Courtney (3), 2. 30-C.J. Leary (1), 3. 5s-Chase Stockon (5), 4. 11-Cale Thomas (2), 5. 99-Skylar Gee (7), 6. 83T-Tanner Carrick (4), 7. 47bc-Emerson Axsom (8), 8. 14-Chase Briscoe (13), 9. 2h-Brian Hayden (9), 10. 55T-McKenna Haase (6), 11. 24-Tim Crawley (14), 12. 22s-Slater Helt (10), 13. 27-Trey McGranahan (15), 14. 7s-Sam Scott (11), 15. 1au-Marcus Dumesny (12).
“A” Main (35 Laps): 1. 11x-Buddy Kofoid (9), 2. 39-Justin Sanders (3), 3. 71-Cory Eliason (7), 4. 17jr-Ricky Stenhouse, Jr. (6), 5. 26-Zeb Wise (2), 6. 55x-Alex Bowman (4), 7. 21h-Brady Bacon (1), 8. 55-Hunter Schuerenberg (19), 9. 7bc-Tyler Courtney (21), 10. 57-Kyle Larson (5), 11. 13-Justin Peck (17), 12. 5T-Travis Philo (16), 13. 17-Kevin Thomas, Jr. (10), 14. 35h-Zach Hampton (8), 15. 35-Chad Kemenah (11), 16. 19-Chris Windom (13), 17. 11-Cale Thomas (24), 18. 19m-Brent Marks (14), 19. 5k-Jason McDougal (15), 20. 22-Riley Goodno (12), 21. 19az-Mitchel Moles (18), 22. 17x-Justin Grant (20), 23. 5s-Chase Stockon (23), 24. 30-C.J. Leary (22).
Lap Leaders: Brady Bacon 1-19, Justin Sanders 20-28, Buddy Kofoid 29-35.