Clauson Conquers USAC Midgets in Chad McDaniel Memorial

The Wheatley Chronicles – Volume IV, No. 37

Lonnie Wheatley, BELOIT, Kan. (August 3, 2016) – On any given night, there is a pretty good chance you’ll find Bryan Clauson in some type of racecar somewhere.

The first Wednesday of this August found Clauson in his 114th race of “Circular Insanity” at the Solomon Valley Raceway for the Seventh Annual USAC Midgets “Chad McDaniel Memorial” event.

Clauson responded by using the top side to dispose of race-long leader Spencer Bayston en route to his 27th overall win of the year aboard the Dooling Machine/Cancer Treatment Centers of America/Jonathan Byrd’s No. 63 Midget.

While Clauson gridded the 35-lap feature in fifth, pole starter Spencer Bayston outgunned teammate Carson Macedo for the lead at the drop of the green and weathered several cautions in the early going to lead the way.

Bayston held off Macedo early on with Tucker Klaasmeyer holding third until Clauson battled by before a red flag flew for a wild Anton Hernandez ride off turn one after eight laps.

Clauson battled past Macedo for second soon after and went to work on Bayston for the point after a final caution flew for Casey Shuman with 15 rounds remaining. Clauson worked the upper portion of the track and finally took the point away from Bayston for keeps on the 25th lap.

At the same time, 17th-starter Tanner Thorson’s charge through the field had netted him third with a move past Macedo. Thorson reeled in Bayston and slipped by for runner-up honors in the final rounds, but was out of time to give chase to race-winner Clauson.

Clauson was followed at the line by a Kunz trio of Thorson, Bayston and Macedo with “Tuesday Night Thunder” winner Chad Boat rallying from 16th to round out the top five.

The Vitals

Series: USAC National Midgets

Track: Solomon Valley Raceway (Beloit, KS)

Car Count: 32

Quick Time: Brady Bacon (13.253 seconds)

Qualifying Moments: Late in the going, Brady Bacon laid down the fast lap of qualifying for the second night in a row; Earlier, Troy Simpson slipped too high exiting turn four and turned over and smacking the outer retaining wall.

Heat Winners (starting position in parentheses): Ryan Greth (4), Tanner Thorson (2), Keith Rauch (4), Chad Boat (3).

Heat Moments: After the third heat devolved into a survival of the fittest with the top three on the heels of the fourth and final runner as the checkered flag flew, Dave Darland nearly took advantage of a Bayston lapse off the throttle with the checks in sight but fell just short of stealing the final transfer in the final heat.

“B” Main Winner (starting position in parentheses): Casey Shuman (2).

“B” Main Moments: The Dunlap Midget is full of life on this night with Shuman taking the “B” Main win; Lance Bennett biked out of third on the second lap and was done with damage to the left rear, with sixth-runner Jeff Crook pulling pitside under the caution; Terry Goodwin took the sixth and final transfer from Dustin Weland soon after and held it the rest of the way.

“A” Main Cautions: Six

4 Laps – The red flag flies when Tuesday night promoter Cody Brewer gets on his side in turns three and four in a tangle that also includes Bob Harr and Tyler Thomas.

Lap 5 Restart – Ninth-runner Anton Hernandez spins to a stop at the bottom of turn four before making it to the green flag.

5 Laps – Sitting in sixth, Ryan Greth slides to a stop off the top of turn four.

8 Laps – Hernandez climbs a wheel getting into turn one and goes for a ride to bring out the red flag.

13 Laps – Matt Johnson and Jeff Stasa get together in turn one, relocating an infield tire in the process.

20 Laps – Battling near and amongst the top five a few laps prior, Shuman slides to a stop off the top of turns three and four. Shuman rejoins after some advice for fellow Arizona shoe Chad Boat.

Hard Charger: Tanner Thorson was the one on the move, rallying from 17th to capture runner-up honors.

The Box Score…

PROSOURCE QUALIFYING: 1. Brady Bacon, 76m, FMR-13.253; 2. Bryan Clauson, 63, Dooling/Hayward-13.480; 3. Holly Shelton, 67K, Kunz/Curb-Agajanian-13.654; 4. Tucker Klaasmeyer, 27, Klaasmeyer-13.730; 5. Carson Macedo, 71K, Kunz/Curb-Agajanian-13.742; 6. Ryan Robinson, 71, Kunz/Curb-Agajanian-13.750; 7. Casey Shuman, 32, Dunlap-13.776; 8. Spencer Bayston, 97, Kunz/Curb-Agajanian-13.794; 9. Ryan Greth, 4, Lesher-13.806; 10. Anton Hernandez, 25, Petry/Goff-13.836; 11. Keith Rauch, 47, Mason-13.855; 12. Dave Darland, 11AG, Gray-13.895; 13. Chett Gehrke, 11c, Matteson-13.930; 14. Bob Harr, 2, Halarr-13.955; 15. Tyler Thomas, 91T, Thomas-13.969; 16. Chad Boat, 84, Tucker/Boat-14.077; 17. Lance Bennett, 10, McCauley-14.149; 18. Tanner Thorson, 67, Kunz/Curb-Agajanian-14.182; 19. Jeff Crook, 5J, Crook-14.184; 20. Matt Johnson, 85, Central-14.245; 21. Cody Brewer, 96, Central-14.266; 22. Dustin Weland, 88, Weland-14.270; 23. Ryan Oerter, 43, RKO-14.291; 24. Brayton Lynch, 1K, RKR-14.299; 25. Troy Simpson, 7, Simpson-14.310; 26. Jeff Stasa, 91, SBR-14.539; 27. Tyler Dunkle, 0B, Zero-14.647; 28. Johnny Murdock, 0, Zero-14.958; 29. Terry Goodwin, 2G, Goodwin-14.960; 30. Ashley Oerter, 16, RKO-16.173; 31. Cody Williams, 13, Zero-16.497; 32. Garett Hood, 11H, Two Hoods-NT.

SIMPSON RACE PRODUCTS FIRST HEAT: (10 laps) 1. Greth, 2. Macedo, 3. Gehrke, 4. Bacon, 5. Bennett, 6. Goodwin, 7. Brewer. 2:02.67

COMPETITION SUSPENSION (CSI) SECOND HEAT: (10 laps) 1. Thorson, 2. Clauson, 3. Hernandez, 4. Harr, 5. Robinson, 6. Stasa, 7. Weland, 8. A. Oerter. 2:06.81

BENIC ENTERPRISES THIRD HEAT: (10 laps) 1. Rauch, 2. Shelton, 3. Thomas, 4. R. Oerter, 5. Williams, 6. Crook, 7. Shuman. 2:11.40

INDY RACE PARTS FOURTH HEAT: (10 laps) 1. Boat, 2. Johnson, 3. Klaasmeyer, 4. Bayston, 5. Darland, 6. Murdock, 7. Lynch, 8. Hood. 2:20.64

SEMI: (12 laps) 1. Shuman, 2. Robinson, 3. Darland, 4. Brewer, 5. Stasa, 6. Goodwin, 7. Weland, 8. Murdock, 9. Dunkle, 10. A. Oerter, 11. Bennett, 12. Crook, 13. Williams. NT

FEATURE: (35 laps) 1. Bryan Clauson (5), 2. Tanner Thorson (17), 3. Spencer Bayston (1), 4. Carson Macedo (2), 5. Chad Boat (16), 6. Brady Bacon (6), 7. Dave Darland (12), 8. Ryan Robinson (7), 9. Tyler Thomas (15), 10. Tucker Klaasmeyer (3), 11. Holly Shelton (4), 12. Chett Gehrke (13), 13. Casey Shuman (8), 14. Bob Harr (14), 15. Keith Rauch (11), 16. Jeff Stasa (21), 17. Ryan Oerter (20), 18. Terry Goodwin (22), 19. Ryan Greth (9), 20. Matt Johnson (18), 21. Anton Hernandez (10), 22. Cody Brewer (19), 23. Brayton Lynch (23). NT

**Simpson flipped during qualifying. Brewer flipped on lap 5 of the feature. Hernandez flipped on lap 9 of the feature.

FEATURE LAP LEADERS: Laps 1-24 Bayston, Laps 25-35 Clauson.

The Wheatley Chronicles brings insight and highlights from all variety of racing series throughout the nation in 2016 and beyond along with the Open Wheel Power Rankings on a regular basis. Please send any comments, questions or advertising inquiries regarding The Wheatley Chronicles at to Lonnie Wheatley at