News From Terre Haute, Indiana

June 20, 2012

Stewart Racing driver hangs on in final laps

Craig Pearson
The Tribune-Star

TERRE HAUTE — Tony Stewart Racing’s Levi Jones passed Robert Ballou with 11 laps to go and held off a charging Jon Stanbrough to take the Hoosier Tire Midwest Sprint Car Series’ 25-lap feature Tuesday at the Terre Haute Action Track.

Jones took the No. 20 Chevrolet to victory, while team owner Stewart finished in seventh place in his first sprint racing in Terre Haute in seven years.

Justin Allgaier, currently sixth in the NASCAR Nationwide standings, held off Stewart’s No. 14 UMP Modifieds ride to win the 15-lap nightcap. Allgaier took the lead from Roger Mills on the eighth lap, but there was still work to do.  

Stewart got a chance to catch Allgaier, who led by half a straightaway when the caution came out with three laps to go.  

“I could hear him behind me. My crew chief Kelly was telling me I had a good-sized lead before the caution, but the caution can be a great equalizer,” Allgaier said. “Tony and Kenny Wallace are two of the best race-car drivers I’ve ever seen in my life in anything. To top that off with some of the best modified drivers in the country, it really is cool.”  

Allgaier was thrilled to drive to a win in Terre Haute.  

“To come back and to race here, to have Tony and Kenny [Wallace] here, to have all the fans that were here, this is such a cool race track, I love racing here but just don’t get to do it enough,” Allgaier said. “The last time I raced here was 2007 in a Silver Crown car so 180 degrees different from this. The best finish I had here was like seventh.”

Allgaier, who grew up near Springfield, Ill., and is known as “Little Gator,” was ferocious Tuesday night. The 26-year-old’s dad brought him to many races at the Action Track during his childhood.  

“The Hut Hundred was my favorite race of all-time and I never got to run it,” Allgaier said. “My dad has a tire store in Brownsburg, Hoosier Tire Midwest, so I grew up around all types of dirt racing and obviously this racetrack has all kinds of history behind it.”  

Allgaier praised his crew for getting his car adjusted after the heat races.

Once he got the lead, he extended it, and he held off Stewart at the end.

In the sprint car race, Damion Gardner was third, Ballou fourth and Chris Windom fifth. Sullivan native Chase Stockon was sixth.

West Terre Haute drivers Braylon Fitzpatrick and Blake Fitzpatrick wrecked. Blake Fitzpatrick was running in third place when he flipped his car on Turn 2 on the 10th lap.

Midwest Sprint Car Series  

20-lap feature — Levi Jones, Jon Stanbrough, Damion Gardner, Robert Ballou, Chris Windom, Chase Stockon, Tony Stewart, Nic Faas, Hunter Schuerenberg, Tery Babb, Chet Williams, Blake Fitzpatrick, Braylon Fitzpatrick, C.J. Leary.