Farney Flies to First USAC Win
The Wheatley Chronicles – Volume III, No. 62
Lonnie Wheatley, TERRE HAUTE, Ind. (July 15, 2015) – The pupil has learned well. Quite well indeed.
Aaron Farney has learned so well from mentor Robert Ballou that he romped to his first career Sprint Car feature win on Wednesday night. And he did it on quite the sizable stage, wiring the field in the “Don Smith Classic” atop the treacherous ½-mile Terre Haute Action Track to become the third different winner in as many completed rounds of USAC’s Indiana Sprintweek.
“Robert (Ballou) has taught me everything, from how to set up the car to how to drive it, everything,” the 19-year-old from Brookston, IN, said in victory lane.
While Farney gunned into the lead from the pole starting position at the drop of the green flag, Ballou burst from the ninth starting position up to third in the opening three laps and then promptly slid past Chad Boespflug entering turn one on a lap four restart.
It seemed inevitable. All that stood between the current USAC National points leader and his eleventh overall win of the year was Farney’s yellow No. 15f Sprint Car.
But Ballou never could get one more position. Farney rode the upper limits of the track, grazing the outer retaining wall on several occasions.
Ballou was still within striking distance though until one final interruption with 13 laps to go. Farney seemingly gained momentum with each passing lap over the final green flag run, ultimately taking the checkered flag with nearly a straightaway advantage over Ballou.
“I was sure there was someone back there, I just didn’t know who or how close they were,” Farney said.
Nobody was close. Not on the night that Farney collected his first feature win.
Ballou crossed the stripe second with Dave Darland making a late move to take third from Boespflug. Chase Stockon rallied from 16th to round out the top five.
Series: USAC Indiana Sprintweek
Track: Terre Haute Action Track (Terre Haute, IN)
Car Count: 37
Quick Time: The first car out of the chute, Saybrook, Illinois’ Mitch Wissmiller posted his first USAC quick time with a lap of 21.361 seconds.
Heat Winners (starting position in parentheses): Robert Ballou (4), Chase Stockon (2), Carson Short (2), Logan Jarrett (1).
Heat Moments: Ballou provided the highlight of heat race action with a last corner slider on Hunter Schuerenberg to win the first heat; third-quick in qualifying, Jarett Andretti was forced pitside after getting into the turn one wall upon the start of the third heat.
“B” Main Winner (starting position in parentheses): Thomas Meseraull (17).
“B” Main Moments: Taking the seat of the Goodnight No. 39 for the evening, T-Mez rallied from the tail to take the win in a “B” that included a brief red flag for a Robert Bell turn over in turn two.
“A” Main Cautions: Four
Three laps – Mitch Wissmiller comes to a stop.
Lap four restart – Carson Short stops.
Five laps – Brady Short stops.
17 Laps – After several others flirted with turn two disaster, including fourth-runner Justin Grant at the time, the turn two wall finally snagged Meseraull and got the No. 39 upside down.
“A” Main Hard Charger: The edge goes to Chase Stockon, who picked up 11 positions with a run from 16th to fifth. Brady Bacon (18th to seventh) and Shane Cottle in the McGhee No. 17 (21st to 10th) both advanced 11 positions as well.
The Box Score…
Qualifying: 1. Mitch Wissmiller, 1w, Wissmiller-21.361; 2. Jerry Coons Jr., 10E, Edison-21.453; 3. Jarett Andretti, 18, Andretti-21.466; 4. Dave Darland, 71p, Phillips/Curb-Agajanian-21.542; 5. Chad Boespflug, 66, Amati-21.597; 6. Kevin Thomas Jr., 17RW, Dutcher-21.685; 7. Justin Grant, 5, Baldwin-21.690; 8. Aaron Farney, 15F, Farney-21.713; 9. Robert Ballou, 12, Ballou-21.723; 10. Jon Stanbrough, 81, Stanbrough-21.734; 11. Chris Windom, 21x, Pollock-21.778; 12. Kyle Wissmiller, 3, Simmons-21.809; 13. Bill Rose, 6, Rose-21.817; 14. Brady Short, 11p, Pottorff-21.830; 15. J.J. Hughes, 76, Hughes-21.835; 16. Scotty Weir, 11, Walker-21.871; 17. Landon Simon, 24, LSR-21.885; 18. Chase Stockon, 32, 32TBI-21.892; 19. Carson Short, 21, Short-21.905; 20. Brady Bacon, 69, Dynamics-21.920; 21. Hunter Schuerenberg, 2E, Epperson-21.923; 22. Lee Dakus, 75, Dakus-21.925; 23. Kent Christian, 1c, Christian-21.935; 24. Logan Jarrett, 29, Jarrett-21.938; 25. Shane Cottle, 17, McGhee-21.969; 26. Jake Swanson, 92, Sertich-22.021; 27. Cole Ketcham, 41K, Ketcham-22.088; 28. C.J. Leary, 30, Leary-22.106; 29. Casey Shuman, 2x, Barnhill-22.310; 30. Chris Babcock, 35, Babcock-22.387; 31. Kurt Gross, 1x, Gross-22.440; 32. Josh Hodges, 4, THR/Hodges-22.520; 33. Thomas Meseraull, 39, Goodnight-22.853; 34. Robert Bell, 71, Bell-23.708; 35. Tony DiMattia, 50, DiMattia-23.788; 36. Nathan Moore, 48, Moore-NT; 37. Shelby VanGilder, 22v, VanGilder-NT.
Heat One (8 Laps): 1. 12-Robert Ballou, 2. 2e-Hunter Schuerenberg, 3. 66-Chad Boespflug, 4. 24-Landon Simon, 5. 1w-Mitch Wissmiller, 6. 39-Thomas Meseraull, 7. 17-Shane Cottle, 8. 6-Bill Rose, 9. 2x-Casey Shuman.
Heat Two (8 Laps): 1. 32-Chase Stockon, 2. 81-Jon Stanbrough, 3. 17rw-Kevin Thomas, Jr., 4. 10e-Jerry Coons, Jr., 5. 11p-Brady Short, 6. 75-Lee Dakus, 7. 92-Jake Swanson, 8. 35-Chris Babcock, 9. 71-Robert Bell.
Heat Three (8 Laps): 1. 21-Carson Short, 2. 21x-Chris Windom, 3. 5-Justin Grant, 4. 76-J.J. Hughes, 5. 1c-Kent Christian, 6. 41k-Cole Ketcham, 7. 1x-Kurt Gross, 8. 50-Tony DiMattia, 9. 18-Jarett Andretti.
Heat Four (8 Laps): 1. 29-Logan Jarrett, 2. 69-Brady Bacon, 3. 15f-Aaron Farney, 4. 71p-Dave Darland, 5. 4-Josh Hodges, 6. 11-Scotty Weir, 7. 30-C.J. Leary, 8. 3x-Kyle Wissmiller.
“B” Main (12 Laps – 6 Advance): 1. 39-Thomas Meseraull, 2. 17-Shane Cottle, 3. 18-Jarett Andretti, 4. 1w-Mitch Wissmiller, 5. 11p-Brady Short, 6. 11-Scotty Weir, 7. 92-Jake Swanson, 8. 4-Josh Hodges, 9. 30-C.J. Leary, 10. 2x-Casey Shuman, 11. 41k-Cole Ketcham, 12. 6-Bill Rose, 13. 1c-Kent Christian, 14. 35-Chris Babcock, 15. 3x-Kyle Wissmiller, 16. 50-Tony DiMattia, 17. 71-Robert Bell, 18. 75-Lee Dakus, 19. 1x-Kurt Gross.
“A” Main Finish (30 Laps): 1. 15f-Aaron Farney (1), 2. 12-Robert Ballou (9), 3. 71p-Dave Darland (5), 4. 66-Chad Boespflug (4), 5. 32-Chase Stockon (16), 6. 81-Jon Stanbrough (10), 7. 69-Brady Bacon (18), 8. 5-Justin Grant (2), 9. 10e-Jerry Coons, Jr. (6), 10. 17-Shane Cottle (21), 11. 2e-Hunter Schuerenberg (19), 12. 17rw-Kevin Thomas, Jr. (3), 13. 18-Jarett Andretti (8), 14. 21x-Chris Windom (11), 15. 11-Scotty Weir (14), 16. 76-J.J. Hughes (13), 17. 24-Landon Simon (15), 18. 29-Logan Jarrett (20), 19. 39-Thomas Meseraull (22), 20. 21-Carson Short (17), 21. 11p-Brady Short (12), 22. 1w-Mitch Wissmiller (7).
Lap leaders: Aaron Farney 1-30.
The Wheatley Chronicles brings insight and highlights from all variety of racing series throughout the nation in 2015 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 www.sprintcarmania.com to Lonnie Wheatley at firstname.lastname@example.org.