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Mr. Enduro Wins Number Five; Harmon Scores Bud Light Front Wheel Drive Challenge Victory

(October 20, 2012) – It has been three years since Johnny “Mr. Enduro” Magee won a WMDH ThunderCar 200 lap race, but he returned to victory lane at Anderson Speedway on Budweiser Night at the Races on Saturday.

Magee and Eric Evans staged a spirited battle for the top spot through the first 100 laps of the Budwesier Enduro, swapping the top spot five times before the midpoint break.

But during the final 100 laps Magee was in control leading the final 108 laps for his fifth Enduro win.

Evans hopes for a third win took a hit, literally, on lap 135 when the car of Trent Gossar spun in turn two and the two cars made contact. Evans was able to remain on the lead lap to finish second, but was more than 5-seconds behind Magee.

The late stages of the race saw several of the front running drivers befallen by problems. Phil Jenkins slid on lap 162 after contact with Earl Adams II and broke a suspension mount. Adams was sidelined on lap 172 with a mechanical problem.

Following Magee and Evans to the checkers were Doug Dugger, Hannah Lundy and Randy Hoppes.

Magee previously won the Enduro three times in 2008 and the last time on Oct. 17, 2009. Evans entered the night with three wins, one in 2005 and two in 2007.

“The car was really good tonight,” Magee said. “The track was getting bad (slick) at the end. I had fun racing everyone. It was a good, clean race.”

The race was slowed only eight times for mostly single car incidents. Thirty-five cars started the final event of the season.

Kevin Harmon ran with the top four cars the entire G.W. Pierce Front Wheel Drive Bud Light Challenge taking the lead on the final restart with 12 laps remaining to record the victory.

The top four drivers Harmon, Jerry Dane, Chris Jennings and Nick Warner ran in a tight pack the entire 100 laps, swapping positions on just about every lap. They exchanged the top spot five times.

Pole sitter Nick Warner led the first four laps before Dane used the outside line to gain the top spot. Dane stayed in front until lap 37 when Jenning used the outside line on a restart to go to the point.

Dane retook the lead on a lap 59 restart with an outside pass on the front straight. Lapped traffic had an impact on lap 75 when Dane got trapped on the outside and fell to fourth with Jennings, Harmon and Warner all slipping past on the inside.

The sixth and final caution flag waved on lap 85 when fifth place running Ricky Puckett spun in turn four. On the restart Harmon got the jump on Jennings to take the lead and winning by almost three-seconds over Dane.

“I was hoping there wasn’t another caution,” Harmon said. “I didn’t know how far back they were. I worked hard tonight, I really wanted to get this win.”

Jennings, Warner and Elliott McKinney rounded out the top five, the only cars of the 36 that started running on the lead lap.

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