Salem, IN — Richmond, Michigan native and third generation racer Brandon Varney got the biggest win in his career in Saturday night’s Vore’s Welding CRA Late Model Sportsman Powered by JEGS 75 lap feature at Anderson Speedway. Varney patiently waited until 65 laps to go to work the high side of Dan Leeck to make the pass and get his first ever CRA victory.
“I’ve always wanted to win at Anderson Speedway,” remarked an elated Varney in victory lane. “I can’t believe I pulled that pass off on the outside to get the lead. My dad was spotting and telling me to save my tires and just wait. I kept pressuring Dan (Leeck) and I think his tires started to go making him loose. My dad said it’s time to go when they gave us the ten to go and I went for it and it worked. I want to thank Dan for racing me clean. I have to thank my dad, my brother and everyone who helps us get to race. Thanks also to all my sponsors, with out their help we wouldn’t be here!”
Austin Coe grabbed the early lead from his pole starting position after Allstar Performance Fast Qualifier James Kirby III drew a six for the events inverted start. 2007 series Champion Billy Hutson started outside pole as the two raced side by side for several laps with Hutson leading lap two. Coe grabbed the lead back on lap three as Hutson fell back several positions on the outside.
While running in the top three Ronnie Rose’s car broke on lap nine with a tight pack of cars racing hard behind him causing the events only red flag. Hutson got the worst of the incident with heavy front-end damage that ended his night along with Rose and July 25th series Anderson winner Jeff Marcum, who had front-in suspension damage.
On the lap 10 restart two-time JEGS/CRA All-Stars Tour Champion Leeck powered by on the outside to grab the lead from Coe while Varney had worked his way into the top five from his ninth place starting position.
A lap 24 caution on a restart ended the night for Cassten Everidge, Danny Adams and Kent Carson.
Varney was battling leading series Rookie Tanner Jack for third, the pair racing hard side by side with Austin Coe in front, when Coe’s car suddenly moved up the track in front of the pair, making contact with Varney and Jack. Jack and Coe would spin to the inside creating the events last caution.
Varney was now in second place and began his pursuit of Leeck on the last restart, making the outside pass on lap 66 and going on to win by almost a second. For his pass for the lead, Varney picked up the KRJ Race Products Sweet Move of the Race Award and he earned the Racing Electronics Hardcharger Award for advancing the eight positions from his starting spot.
Leeck would finish in second with a car that was getting loose coming off the corners towards the end of the race.
“When I saw him (Varney) go to the outside, I gave him a lane,” remarked Leeck. “I wanted to get the win, but the car just wasn’t handling good enough for me to hold him off.”
Kirby III finished in third, with a car damaged in an earlier incident. Kirby picked up the AR Bodies Cool Move of the Race Award for some great passes using the outside groove.
Jack would come back through the field to finish in fourth with a damaged nose. Brian Janes would come back from going to the tail in an early incident on the track to finish in fifth place.
The next Vore’s Welding CRA Late Model Sportsman event will be on Labor Day Weekend September 5th and 6th at Mt. Lawn Speedway. More event information and information on all the CRA Series is available at www.cra-racing.com.
-CRA Press Release
-Photo Credit: John Lund