In the 23-year history of the Oval Nationals, four drivers have been able to score two consecutive victories in the event at California’s Perris Auto Speedway.
And no driver has found victory lane in three-straight years on the final night. But this year, Kevin Thomas, Jr. faces that opportunity.
Nov. 7-9 | 9am ET
Thomas, of Cullman, Ala., joined Bud Kaeding (2001-02), Cory Kruseman (2003-04) and Dave Darland (2005-06) as the winner of two consecutive Oval Nationals final nights a year ago at Perris, leading the final eight laps en route to victory. In 2017, Thomas captured the first of his two Oval Nationals triumphs, leading the final six circuits to get the big win. Three-straight wins in the event would be an enormous accomplishment for Thomas, something of which Kaeding, Kruseman and Darland each took their shot at during the early to mid-2000s.
Kaeding, who guns for his fourth overall final night win in this year’s Oval Nationals, won his first two in 2001 and 2002. He came the closest to accomplishing the feat in 2003, finishing 3rd behind winner Cory Kruseman on the final night. However, he did win the second preliminary night feature in 2003 to capture Oval Nationals victories, prelim or otherwise, three years running.
The 2003 score for Kruseman was the first of two-straight Oval Nationals wins for himself after another win the following year in 2004. He wound up 10th in 2002 prior to his pair of wins and 27th in 2005 as he pursued his third.
Nov. 7-9 | 9am ET
The all-time winningest driver in USAC AMSOIL National Sprint car history, Dave Darland, went back-to-back in 2005 and 2006. He was 10th in 2004 and 27th in 2007 at the bookends of his two wins.
Thomas has made a late-season surge in recent times with a win in his latest series outing at Lawrenceburg (Ind.) Speedway in early October and has finished in the top-six in six of his last eight starts. The team he's equipped with is an Oval Nationals winning combination that’s gotten the job done before with team owner Brodie Hayward the entrant for Bryan Clauson’s winning performance on the final night in 2015, a race in which Thomas led the opening 22 laps of the 40-lap event.