Barnes is SportCompact Super Nationals Champion, Record Field
Joshua Barnes put on a clinic on racing in lapped traffic Tuesday night at during the 2016 IMCA Super Nationals.
Then the champagne flowed as Barnes and his crew celebrated winning the Mach-1 Sport Compact championship at the IMCA Speedway Motors Super Nationals fueled by Casey’s.
Barnes started on the pole and led all 25 circuits of a main event that ran caution-free. He was running with lapped cars by midway and negotiated traffic the last 12 times around the track with Mitch Bolton and Kimberly Abbott close behind.
“We worked hard just getting better after finishing second at Super Nationals last year,” said Barnes, whose $335 win included the Speedway Motors Weekly Racing bonus. “We wanted to get better and there’s only one way to do that. We race against a lot of good drivers and there were a lot of them here tonight.”
A Super Nationals record 84 Sport Compacts, from eight states, competed Tuesday. That’s 20 more than the previous mark.
Bolton, Abbott and Ramsey Meyer completed the top four. Defending champion Nate Coopman was fifth.
Bolton was scored second on every lap while Abbott took over third for good on lap three. Meyer took over fourth soon after and joined in the pursuit of the leader.
Both Bolton and Abbott made up ground as Barnes negotiated traffic. He moved to the lower line and had a lapped car as a cushion when he crossed the stripe.
“With Kimberly (Abbott) starting outside the front row, I knew she’d keep up a fast pace,” said Barnes. “I started running mid-track but once I got into lapped traffic some of those cars were running my line, so I threw it lower.”
Late contact in the right rear with one of those lapped cars nearly knocked Barnes out of that line, but he got the car straight and led to the finish.
Grady Shearer became the first North Dakota driver to start the Sport Compact main event at Super Nationals and finished 24th.
Hard charger was Brandon Reu, who advanced 13 positions to finish 14th after winning his “B” feature.
Feature results – 1. Joshua Barnes, Keokuk; 2. Mitch Bolton, Grand Junction, Colo.; 3. Kimberly Abbott, Camp Point, Ill.; 4. Ramsey Meyer, Pierce, Neb.; 5. Nate Coopman, Mankato, Minn.; 6. Ron Kibbe, Danville; 7. Austen Becerra, Camp Point, Ill.; 8. Jake Newsom, Sioux City; 9. Zachary Bohlmeyer, Beatrice, Neb.; 10. Dustin O’Brien Jr., Glidden; 11. Jake Benischek, Durant; 12. Corey Stapleton, Denison; 13. Luke Jackson, Sioux City; 14. Brandon Reu, Donnellson; 15. Todd Hine, Davenport; 16. Cory Peters, Spencer; 17. Brandon Lambert, Carthage, Ill.; 18. Trent Orwig, Ottumwa; 19. Brooke Fluckiger, Columbus, Neb.; 20. Terry Blowers, Waseca, Minn.; 21. Brett Marshall, Maquoketa; 22. Shaun Bangart, Chilton, Wis.; 23. Dan Markham, Murray, Neb.; 24. Grady Shearer, Fargo, N.D.; 25. Lance Mielke, Norfolk, Neb.; 26. Cody VanDusen, Atalissa; 27. Jarad Gross, Spencer; 28. Chuck Fullenkamp, West Point; 29. Nathan Chandler, Norway; 30. Luke Benischek, Durant.