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Sanders snares USMTS checkers in Elk City
posted: Jun 24, 2013 3:00:37
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ELK CITY, Okla. -- The United States Modified Touring Series visited the Elk City Speedway for the first time Sunday night with Rodney Sanders visiting the winners circle for the fifth time during the 2013 USMTS Casey’s Cup Series campaign.

Thomas Tillison Jr. grabbed the lead at the drop of the green flag and led the first seven laps before Sanders blasted into the top spot.

‘The Rocket’ never relinquished the lead after that point and led the remaining 33 laps to score a $4,000 victory with 2010 USMTS national champion Jason Hughes breathing down his neck.

Hughes got around Chris Brown on lap 18 and hounded Sanders the rest of way but came up a half-car-length short at the finish line.

Brown, who started tenth, held on for third with Johnny Scott finishing fourth and Dereck Ramirez taking the fifth spot.
Zack VanderBeek qualified for the main event through one of two Real Racing Wheels “B” Mains, and then rolled past ten of his fellow competitors to secure the sixth spot and his second Mesilla Valley Transportation Hard Charger Award in as many nights.

Nine-time USMTS national champion Kelly Shryock was seventh, Clyde Dunn Jr. started and finished eighth, Daniel Hilsabeck nabbed ninth and Tillison wound up tenth.

The win was Sanders’ 15th career USMTS win, tying him for tenth on the all-time wins list with Friday’s winner, Jeremy Payne. It also propelled him back into the points lead in the Allgayer, Inc. Southern Region presented by Day Motor Sports.

Scott slipped to second in the rankings, but lurks just five points behind Sanders while VanderBeek remains third and 65 markers in arrears to the leader. Hughes, Shryock, Brown, Dunn, Ramirez, Stormy Scott and Steve Whiteaker Jr. round out the top 10 in the standings.