Bacon Aims for Midget Week Crown after Adding another Win
Lonnie Wheatley, WINCHESTER, Ind. (May 29, 2018) – Midway through twelve consecutive nights of racing action, another six nights remain for Brady Bacon beginning with Tuesday night’s opening round of USAC Indiana Midget Week competition at Montpelier Motor Speedway.
Bacon will pull double duty on four of six nights of Midget Week competition, taking part in non-wing Sprint Car action on Tuesday and Wednesday at Montpelier and Gas City and then Friday and Saturday at Bloomington and Lawrenceburg. Thursday at Putnamville and Sunday at Kokomo will be Midget competition only for Bacon.
“We have all the right pieces in place, we have a chance to make a really good week of it,” Bacon said of the Frank Manafort-owned No. 76m Midget team. Bacon enters the week ranked sixth in points with just two events in the books thus far.
Bacon goes into Midget week after six nights of racing at a half dozen different tracks throughout Indiana and Ohio, with several strong outings along the way including a triumph in the 360-ci portion of Saturday night’s Bob Hampshire Classic at Waynesfield Raceway Park.
The twelve-night run of racing action began last Wednesday with the USAC Sprint Car “Hulman Classic” at the Terre Haute Action Track where Bacon raced to a ninth-place finish after timing in third-quick. One night later, Bacon rallied from 27th to sixth atop the one-mile Indiana State Fairgrounds dirt oval in the USAC Silver Crown “Hoosier Hundred” aboard the Klatt Enterprises No. 6 entry only to have mechanical issues cut his race short.
“We started out struggling a little at Terre Haute, we tried some things that didn’t work as well as we had hoped,” Bacon explained. “Then we started slow in the Silver Crown car on Thursday, but we got some things figured out and went from 27th to sixth before we hut the motor with 25 laps to go. It was encouraging to have that speed though. We had plenty of tire left so I think we had a really good shot at a top-five finish.”
From there, the first of four consecutive nights of winged Sprint Car racing commenced with All Star Circuit of Champions competition at Ohio’s Attica Raceway Park on Friday night. After timing in quickest among his group and winning his heat race, a feature incident resulted in a finish of 19th.
“We were running around fourth and fifth, and the car was getting better,” Bacon relates. “Then I got squeezed into the fence and it knocked the front end down.”
It was still an encouraging night for the Bacon racing crew.
“Attica is a place that I’ve struggled at, most times I felt lucky to be top fifteen,” Bacon says. “We’ve figured some things out and now we had a chance to win that one, it’s encouraging. We’re getting close.”
Action shifted to Fremont Speedway on Saturday night with Bacon falling just a half-second short of the $5,000 winner’s share in second place.
“It wasn’t your normal Fremont, it was heavy all night,” Bacon explains. “We were racing for the win and every time I was about to pass him, a caution would come out. We were right there, just came up a car-length short.”
Double duty was in order in both 410-ci and 360-ci action at Sunday night’s “Bob Hampshire Classic” at Waynesfield Raceway Park. After winning heat races in both divisions, Bacon raced to a sixth-place finish in the 410-ci All Star Circuit of Champions portion of the event and posted his third overall win of the year in the 360-ci NRA Sprint Invaders main event.
“We started fourth in the All Star feature and were running around fifth to seventh most of the way,” Bacon recalls. “A car got out of shape ahead of us, if I could have cleared him we would have been in good shape but I slid off the track. I got back going but I had flat right front the last couple of laps and still finished sixth.”
Victory lane awaited “The Macho Man” at the completion of the 360-ci NRA feature.
“We started on the pole and led every lap to win that one,” Bacon says. “We have run that particular car five times now and never finished worse than second, and that was the same right rear tire that we won the USAC Sprint Car race on. It was cool, it felt good to be able to win the Bob Hampshire Classic.”
Bacon finished up the winged portion of the 12-race stretch with Monday night’s World of Outlaws tilt back across the state line in Indiana at Lawrenceburg Speedway where he posted a strong 12th-place finish.
“I think we’re down to about the last night on that motor, we were down a little bit on power and didn’t qualify all that great,” Bacon says. “We couldn’t really get our speed up, it just took too long to get going so we were satisfied to come away with a 12th place finish.”
Overall, the winged portion of the week proved encouraging for the team.
“We had a fast car each night in Ohio, so that’s really encouraging for us,” Bacon comments. “That has always been a tough place for us, so we’re making steps in the right direction.”
Now, the focus shifts back to Midgets for six consecutive Indiana nights.
2018 Quick Stats: 32 races, 3 wins, 13 top-fives, 18 top-tens.
Wednesday, May 23 – 9th in USAC Sprint Cars at the Terre Haute (IN) Action Track.
Thursday, May 24 – 19th in USAC Silver Crown at the Indiana State Fairgrounds.
Friday, May 25 – 19th in All Star Circuit of Champions Sprint Cars at Attica (OH) Raceway Park.
Saturday, May 26 – 2nd in FAST 410 Sprint Cars at Fremont (OH) Speedway.
Sunday, May 27 – 6th in All Star Circuit of Champions Sprint Cars and 1st in NRA Sprint Invaders 360’s at Waynesfield (OH) Raceway Park.
Monday, May 28 – 12th World of Outlaws Sprint Cars at Lawrenceburg (IN) Speedway.
Tuesday, May 29 – USAC Indiana Midget Week and Non-Wing 410 Sprint Car at Montpelier Motor Speedway.
Wednesday, May 30 – USAC Indiana Midget Week and Non-Wing 410 Sprint Car at Gas City I-69 Speedway.
Thursday, May 31 – USAC Indiana Midget Week at Lincoln Park Speedway (Putnamville, IN).
Friday, June 1 – USAC Indiana Midget Week and Non-Wing 410 Sprint Car at Bloomington Speedway.
Saturday, June 2 – USAC Indiana Midget Week and Non-Wing 410 Sprint Car at Lawrenceburg Speedway.
Sunday, June 3 – USAC Indiana Midget Week at Kokomo Speedway.
Keep Track: Keep track of Brady Bacon’s on-track action including schedule and results at http://www.bradybaconracing.com/, on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/Brady-Bacon-278125555137/ and on Twitter at https://twitter.com/BradyBaconRacin.
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Penning the recurring series of “The Wheatley Chronicles” articles on www.sprintcarmania.com, Lonnie Wheatley provides media, public relations and more for select tracks, drivers and events. For more information, Wheatley may be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org.