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Gas City track celebrates Christmas in July

SPRINT WINNER: Brownsburg, Indiana’s Clinton Boyles slid his way to the sprint feature winduring Gas City/I69 Speedway’s Star Spangled Spectacular on Saturday night. Boyles will try to make it back-to-back triumphs in the Christmas in July promotion for Friday’s racing card in Gas City.

By CHUCK LANDIS - clandis@chronicle-tribune.com

Christmas in July is the theme of Gas City/I-69 Speedway’s program Friday evening, but some drivers will continue to want all the presents.

Thomas Meseraull seeks his fifth sprint feature win this season, while reigning track champion Clinton Boyles chases his second straight and third overall. Local driver Andy Bishop can pick up his fifth street stock win, and Wabash’s James Headley Jr. will be out to collect his fourth hornets feature win of the season.

Scott Orr and Derek Losh have been dominant drivers in UMP Modifieds, and while Losh has more feature wins (four), Orr holds a 17-point lead in the latest point standings. 

Track promoter Jerry Gappens Jr. plans to celebrate Christmas with all the trimmings, and he even made a call for one live reindeer on the track’s twitter page. Santa Claus is likely to make a special appearance, and gifts will be handed out.

Pit gates open at 3 p.m. and grandstands at 5 p.m. Hot laps and qualifying commence at 6:30 p.m. and racing begins at 7:30 p.m. Admission is $15 grandstands, $30 pits and children 12 and under are free of charge.

Non-winged sprints headline the program with modifieds, street stocks, hornets and ASMA mini-sprints also to race.

Friday’s show also is a prelude to the track’s @NosEnergyDrink Indiana Sprint Week show on July 18. Gas City kicks off the eight-race series after sitting out last year. With no USAC races scheduled this weekend, many of the series’ top drivers likely will race at Gas City and get in some advance work.

Brady Bacon enters enters Sprint Week with momentum after sweeping the two-day Corn Belt Nationals on the renowned Knoxville, Iowa, dirt track. C.J. Leary leads the point standings, and he won the last Sprint Week feature at Gas City in 2017.

Boyles won Saturday’s Star-spangled Spectacle feature, taking advantage of Meseraull’s absence, and is 139 points out of first place in the latest standings. Meseraull, the 2010 champ, continues to lead even after sitting out the last race and has a 103-point advantage over Tyler Hewitt.

Bishop holds a 45-point lead over Mike Fincher in the street stocks and also sits in fourth place in modifieds. Headley Jr. holds an 84-point lead over Jacob Beard in hornets.