Sprint Showdown Brings USAC Sprints to TSS

Sprint Showdown Brings USAC Sprints to TSS

Four past Spring Showdown winners head the field for this Saturday night’s USAC AMSOIL National Sprint Car race at Tri-State Speedway.

Apr 16, 2021 by Richie Murray
Sprint Showdown Brings USAC Sprints to TSS

Four past Spring Showdown winners head the field for this Saturday night’s USAC AMSOIL National Sprint Car / Midwest Sprint Car Series co-sanctioned event, April 17, at Tri-State Speedway in Haubstadt, Indiana.

The 47th USAC National Sprint Car event held at the ¼-mile dirt oval also marks the ninth edition of the Spring Showdown, which had its inaugural running captured by Hunter Schuerenberg in 2012.

Tri-State begins a sensational weekend of USAC National Sprint Car racing at three classic southern Indiana venues, beginning with the Friday, April 16 trip to Bloomington Speedway, then onto Tri-State Speedway on Saturday before concluding the action-packed weekend with Paragon Speedway on Sunday, April 18.

Just two drivers have started all eight previous Spring Showdown events: local favorites Chase Stockon and Kyle Cummins.

Stockon (Fort Branch, Ind.) was the victor of the most recent USAC National Sprint Car event held at Tri-State in September 2020.  In fact, he’s never finished worse than 11th in the Spring Showdown, with a 3rd in 2013 and 5th place finishes in both 2012 & 2015 among his bests.  Additionally, the series’ ironman led the final 19 laps to win in the spring of 2016 at TSS.  Stockon also possesses the 12-lap track record for the series at TSS, a 2:42.02 set on 9/14/2013.

It’s almost hard to believe, but Cummins (Princeton, Ind.), who’s won just about everything under the sun at Tri-State, has never won the Spring Showdown.  He’s been quick time once, in 2016, finished 2nd once, also in 2016, and finished 3rd in 2015 for his best career results in the event.

Thomas (Cullman, Ala.) is the lone multi-time winner of the Spring Showdown, capturing victories in both 2013 and 2018, and has only finished outside the top-ten once in seven tries.  He also boasts 3rd place results in both 2012 and 2020.

Both Cummins and Thomas own five wins apiece in USAC National Sprint Car competition at Tri-State, which is tied with Daron Clayton for the most all-time.

Brady Bacon and Chris Windom have also been victorious in the Spring Showdown once in their careers.  Bacon (Broken Arrow, Okla.), the three-time USAC National Sprint Car king, scored the Spring Showdown in 2015 and was 2nd the year prior in 2014.  Windom (Canton, Ill.) notched his victory in the 2017 event, and was 6th in both 2018 and 2020.

Brady Short (Bedford, Ind.) is a two-time winner at Tri-State with the USAC National Sprint Cars, earning back-to-back wins in 2015.  The first of those two visits to victory lane resulted in a 30-lap track record, a mark of 7:31.50 that was set on 7/18/2015 and still stands to this day.  B. Short has never finished outside the top-ten in his seven Spring Showdown starts, with 4th place results in 2013-15-17, and a 5th in 2014, the best on his resume to this point.

Robert Ballou (Rocklin, Calif.) was victorious with USAC at Tri-State in July of 2014, his lone win at the track under USAC sanction thus far.  He’s been the runner-up at the Spring Showdown on three occasions, in 2013, 2015 and again in 2020 for his best finish of last year’s season.

Carson Short (Marion, Ill.) will wheel the Epperson Racing No. 2E in this weekend’s USAC National Sprint Car triple, which also includes stops on Friday at Bloomington and Sunday at Paragon.  Short has finished inside the top-11 in all six of his Spring Showdown starts, including three top-fives in his last four: 3rd in 2016, 5th in 2017 and 4th in 2020.  He’s also the only driver to have both his first career USAC National Sprint Car (2016) and World of Outlaws (2020) wins come at TSS.  He finished 8th with the Outlaws last Saturday at TSS.

C.J. Leary (Greenfield, Ind.) has made a start in each of the past seven Spring Showdown features, leading a lap and finishing 5th in 2016, then setting fast time in qualifying, leading a race-high 14 laps and finishing in the runner-up position in 2018 behind Kevin Thomas Jr.

Justin Grant (Ione, Calif.) has been solid in his past three Spring Showdown runs, all of which have resulted in top-five finishes: a 3rd in 2017, a 5th in 2017 and another 5th in 2020.

Several returnees aim to shine in Saturday’s Spring Showdown once again after satisfying results in recent years.  Logan Seavey (Sutter, Calif.) took 3rd in 2018, while 2020 series Rookie of the Year Jadon Rogers (Worthington, Ind.) was 9th in 2020.  Kent Schmidt (Owensville, Ind.) earned a 10th in 2016.

Five-time USAC National Sprint Car winner Shane Cottle (Kansas, Ill.) returns after finishing 2nd at TSS during Indiana Sprint Week last season.  He joins four-time Spring Showdown starters Brandon Mattox (Terre Haute, Ind.) and Donny Brackett (Fort Branch, Ind.); three-time starters Chet Williams (Newburgh, Ind.) and Aric Gentry (Robards, Ky.); two-time starter Brandon Morin (Jasonville, Ind.) and one-time starters Kendall Ruble (Vincennes, Ind.), Max Adams (Loomis, Calif.) and Chayse Hayhurst (Evansville, Ind.).

First-time Spring Showdown starting hopefuls include top USAC National Sprint Car Rookie of the Year contenders Tanner Thorson, Paul Nienhiser and Carson Garrett.  Thorson (Minden, Nev.) finished 2nd in last October’s Harvest Cup USAC National Midget feature at TSS.  Nienhiser (Chapin, Ill.) has wing sprint car experience at Tri-State, including just last weekend with the World of Outlaws.  Garrett (Littleton, Colo.) made his first ever sprint car appearance in 2020 at Tri-State.

Additional drivers aiming to make a first Spring Showdown start are three-time TSS USAC Midget starter Mario Clouser as well as Critter Malone (Pittsboro, Ind.), a 4th place finisher in his most recent USAC Sprint start at TSS last September.  Jake Swanson (Anaheim, Calif.) made his first and only USAC Sprint start at TSS in 2015, in addition to a USAC National Midget start in 2019.  Cole Bodine (Rossville, Ind.) led the opening three laps and finished 11th with the USAC Midgets at TSS in 2020.

Eddie Tafoya Jr. (Chino Hills, Calif.) will make the trip from out west to TSS this weekend, just as he often did in 2020, making his first TSS USAC Sprint start in last September’s Haubstadt Hustler.  However, the 2019 USAC CRA and Southwest Sprint Car Rookie of the Year will shoot for his first Spring Showdown start on Saturday along with TSS regulars Ryan Bond (Haubstadt, Ind.) and Eric Perrott (Sumner, Ill.).

On Saturday at Tri-State, pits open at 3pm CT, grandstands at 4pm, drivers meeting at 5pm and hot laps at 6pm.  Adult general admission tickets are $25, students (ages 13-18) $20 & children 12 and under free.

Flag-to-flag coverage of the event will be streamed LIVE on FloRacing at



2012: Hunter Schuerenberg

2013: Kevin Thomas Jr.

2014: Daron Clayton

2015: Brady Bacon

2016: Chase Stockon

2017: Chris Windom

2018: Kevin Thomas Jr.

2019: Rained Out

2020: Stephen Schnapf



5-Daron Clayton, Kyle Cummins & Kevin Thomas, Jr.

4-Cory Kruseman

3-Rick Hood

2-Hunter Schuerenberg, Brady Short, Jon Stanbrough & Chase Stockon

1-Brady Bacon, Robert Ballou, Steve Butler, Dave Darland, Jay Drake, Tony Elliott, Blake Fitzpatrick, Damion Gardner, Tracy Hines, Kenny Jacobs, Levi Jones, Casey Riggs, Stephen Schnapf, Carson Short, Chris Windom & J.J. Yeley



1983: Rick Hood (9/4)

1984: Steve Butler (5/28) & Rick Hood (9/2)

1988: Kenny Jacobs (8/7)

1989: Rick Hood (6/3)

2000: Cory Kruseman (7/30)

2001: Tony Elliott (5/13) & Jay Drake (7/22)

2002: Tracy Hines (5/19) & Cory Kruseman (7/21)

2003: J.J. Yeley (7/20)

2004: Cory Kruseman (7/18)

2005: Cory Kruseman (7/17)

2006: Jon Stanbrough (7/15) & Daron Clayton (9/2)

2007: Daron Clayton (7/21)

2008: Hunter Schuerenberg (7/19)

2009: Levi Jones (7/18)

2010: Blake Fitzpatrick (7/17)

2011: Damion Gardner (7/16) & Casey Riggs (9/17)

2012: Hunter Schuerenberg (5/12), Jon Stanbrough (7/21) & Daron Clayton (9/15)

2013: Kevin Thomas, Jr. (5/11) & Kevin Thomas, Jr. (9/14)

2014: Daron Clayton (4/26), Robert Ballou (7/19) & Daron Clayton (9/13)

2015: Brady Bacon (4/18), Brady Short (7/18) & Brady Short (9/19)

2016: Chase Stockon (4/16), Carson Short (7/16) & Kyle Cummins (9/17)

2017: Chris Windom (4/15), Kyle Cummins (7/15) & Kevin Thomas, Jr., (9/16)

2018: Kevin Thomas, Jr. (4/28), Dave Darland (7/28) & Kevin Thomas, Jr. (9/15)

2019: Kyle Cummins (7/27) & Kyle Cummins (9/14)

2020: Stephen Schnapf (6/14), Kyle Cummins (8/2) & Chase Stockon (9/19)



1 Lap - 7/30/2000 - Levi Jones - 12.644 - 71.180 mph

6 Laps - 7/07/2005 - Hud Cone - 1:20.59 - 67.006 mph

8 Laps - 7/15/2006 - Shane Hollingsworth - 1:49.6565.664 mph

10 Laps - 9/2/2006 - Dave Darland - 2:09.026 - 9.757 mph

12 Laps - 9/14/2013 - Chase Stockon - 2:42.02 - 66.658 mph

30 Laps - 7/18/2015 - Brady Short - 7:31.50 - 59.801 mph