By Ken de la Bastide
2014) - The past season brought
plenty of good racing action to Anderson
Speedwayon a weekly basis, but without
question the speedway’s top event was atthe
top of the list.
The best race of the
year was the Pay Less Little 500 with
Crawfordsville driver Jacob Wilson claiming
the win in a thrilling finish with Kokomo
hot shoe Shane Cottle.
Wilson grabbed the lead
from Cottle on lap 335 when Chet Fillip
blocked the leader as the field was coming
to a restart and Fillip was trying not to
fall a lap down.
Wilson and Cottle raced
in lock step for the next 155 laps when
things got really interesting. Cottle closed
to the rear bumper of Wilson and challenged
for the lead with five laps remaining.
Unfortunately for Cottle his Larry Contos
owned sprint car lost an engine. Instead of
bringing out the caution flag, Cottle dove
into the pits.
For Wilson it was his
first Little 500 win. He was followed to the
checkers by pole sitter JoJo Helberg, Eric
Gordon and Tony Elliott, all on the lead
lap. Fillip finished fifth, two laps down
followed by Cottle.
I have attended most
Little 500 races since 1973 and I can’t
remember one where five drivers were on the
lead lap with ten circuits remaining. One
for the record books and makes me anticipate
the 2014 race.
The Stoops Freightliner
Red Bud 300 is next with Michigan driver
Johnny VanDoorn passing Travis Braden on the
back straight following a restart with 146
laps remaining. For VanDoorn it was a win in
the second leg of the $100,000 challenge
sponsored by JEGS.
He held off T.J. Reaid,
Ross Kenseth, Eddie VanMeter and Braden for
Next on my list is the
National Crown at Anderson Speedway for the
outlaw Figure-8 cars, a race that saw
several early leaders eliminated by
incidents in the cross-over.
Jeff Shackleford and
Jesse Tunney staged a heated battle for the
victory over the final 86 laps with Robbie
Loving, R.J. Norton III and Steve Durham
rounding out the top five.
Jeff Marcum’s first ever
win at the speedway in the McGunegill Engine
Performance Late Model feature on Aug. 24.
Marcum started on the
pole position thanks to the invert of the
fast qualifiers and held off VanMeter for 32
laps. VanMeter was hampered by a loose race
car exiting the corners and Marcum wouldn’t
surrender the preferred racing line.
Other races on my list
included Curtis Chapman’s bump and run pass
of Johnny Magee on lap 57 to win the NASH-FM
100-lap feature on the final weekend of
racing and Josh Poore’s dominating win in
the CRA Street Stock 200.