Columbus racer starts season with 4 Florida wins


Jason Setser of Columbus dominated the racing action in Florida last month.

The defending UMRA King of the TQ Midgets champion won four out of five events at three different racetracks. Setser won races at Marion County Speedway in Ocala, Florida; Bronson Speedway in Archer, Florida; and Show-Time Speedway in Pinellas Park, Florida.

He finished second in the Feb. 25 event at Show-Time after leading until the final lap, when Kirby Petry passed him for the win coming off Turn 4.

Setser’s car is owned by John and Lynn Whittington of Columbus. Their sponsors include The Cure Starts Now, Setser Fabricating, Hoosier Tire, Simpson Race Products and Mensendiek’s Auction Services.

The chassis is a Lynch Chassis, powered by an Adams Performance Built engine. The crew consists of Corey Cain, Beau Binder, Tim Lynch and Bradley Kelso.

The next UMRA King of the TQ Midgets event will be March 25 in the No-Way Out race at Brownstown Speedway.

Let’s race: Practice today at Brownstown

Weather permitting, Brownstown Speedway will conduct an open practice session from 2 to 7 p.m. today.All classes of cars are welcome to practice. Grandstand admission is free, and pit admission is $15.

For more info, visit

Former Brownstown champion driver dies

Gene Sutton, one of the top late-model drivers in Southern Indiana in the 1960s, died Feb. 23.Sutton, a native of Freetown, lived in Scott County for the past several years. He began his racing career in the 1950s and raced for 26 years. He was 83.

Sutton’s most productive years were from 1965-69, when he won nearly a dozen feature events at Brownstown Speedway in his famous triple-6 car owned by Bob Ratcliff. He was the 1967 Late Model Track Champion at Brownstown and raced regularly at tracks in Columbus and Bedford.

Sutton was teammates with several local drivers during the late ‘60s, including Jim Reichenba of Cortland and Columbus natives Pete Willoughby Sr. and Mel Vails.

USAC sprint season gets underway

The AMSOIL USAC National Sprint Car Series opened its 2017 season racing at Bubba Raceway Park in Ocala, Florida. The series got two of the scheduled three events in the books, with the Feb. 23 show being rained out.On Feb. 24, the season-opener was won by Justin Grant. Grant led Chad Boespflug, Chase Stockon, Brady Bacon and C.J. Leary across the line. The event marked the first race for Boespflug driving for the famed Hoffman Racing Team out of Milford, Ohio.

Completing the top 10 in the opener were Hunter Schuerenberg, Josh Hodges, Chris Windom, Jerry Coons Jr. and Thomas Meseraull.

The Feb. 25 finale went to Schuerenberg over Grant, Meseraull, Boespflug and Bacon. The rest of the top 10 were Stockon Dave Darland, Kyle Cummins, Jarett Andretti and Carson Short.

The next AMSOIL USAC National Sprint Car event will be on April 1 at Lawrenceburg Speedway.

Current points standings: 1. Justin Grant 155; 2. Hunter Schuerenberg 144; 3. Chad Boespflug 141; 4. Chase Stockon 139; 5. Brady Bacon 128; 6. Thomas Meseraull 120; 7. (tie) C.J. Leary and Jarett Andretti 99; 9 (tie) Chris Windom and Jerry Coons Jr. 96.

O’Neal earns 1st at Outlaws series win

Don O’Neal of Martinsville won his first career World of Outlaws Craftsman Late Model Series event Feb. 25 at Volusia Speedway Park in Barberville, Florida. O’Neal the 2014 Lucas Oil Late Model Dirt Series National Champion, drives for NASCAR’s Clint Bowyer.O’Neal started 13th in the main event. Tim McCreadie finished second, followed by Billy Moyer Jr., Kyle Bronson and Chris Madden.

O’Neal’s next local events will be March 17 at Atomic Speedway in Chillicothe, Ohio, and March 18 at Brownstown Speedway, with both events sanctioned by the Lucas Oil Late Model Dirt Series.

Bloomington opens season March 31

Bloomington Speedway has announced a 22-race schedule for the 2017 racing season. The first event will take place on March 31 with Sprint Cars, Super Stocks, Modifieds, RaceSaver Sprints and Hornets.The biggest event on the schedule will be the annual Indiana Sprint Week, featuring the AMSOIL USAC National Sprint Car Series on July 14.

Defending track champions at Bloomington include Jeff Bland Jr. of Bedford (Sprints), Jared Fox of Bloomington (RaceSaver Sprints), Jacoby Hines of Nineveh (Modifieds), Chris Hillman of Camby (Super Stocks) and John Mayer Jr. of Edinburgh (Hornets).

James Essex covers motorsports for The (Columbus) Republic, a sister paper to The Tribune. Send comments to [email protected].

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