JACKSONVILLE, Ill. (August 24, 2020) – Buddy Kofoid began the A-Main in 19th, then fell back to 22nd due to a first-lap incident, but after that there was no stopping him as he charged through the field passing Clinton Boyles on lap 27 of 30 on the way to winning the POWRi Lucas Oil National Midget League feature at Jacksonville Speedway Sunday. Toyota-powered drivers swept the podium with Emerson Axsom placing second and Boyles taking third on the final night of Illinois Speed Weekend.
Kofoid’s victory is his second of the weekend and his sixth of the season. In the three Illinois Speed Weekend events, he captured two wins and a second. It also marked the 24th national midget feature victory for a Toyota-powered driver in 2020.
Starting from the pole, Boyles went to the lead, but the action quickly came to a halt with a seven-car incident on the opening lap with Kofoid and Cannon McIntosh among the cars getting caught up after a car in front of them spun. Both would rejoin the field, but starting from the tail-end.
On the restart, Boyles would take the lead, with Jerry Coons Jr. in heavy pursuit and Thomas Meseraull in third. Boyles would continue to pace the field in the early going with Coons in second, followed by Axsom, Meseraull and Daison Pursley.
As Boyles ran the top side, Coons would eventually go low coming out of turn four on lap 10 to take over the top spot, but two laps later, Boyles would throw a slider at him in turn two to retake the lead.
A yellow flag would slow the field on lap 15 after Meseraull got upside down coming out of turn four. While the action had been non-stop at the front of the pack, Kofoid had been slicing his way through the field into the top 10.
On the restart, Axsom would overtake Coons for second, while Pursley and Bryson were in a three-way battle with Coons for third with Kofoid closing on them. By lap 20, Kofoid would overtake Bryson for fifth as Boyles and Axsom were in a heated contest for the lead.
By lap 24, Kofoid had gotten past Coons for third and when another caution waved on lap 25, it would close up the field once more, giving Kofoid just the opportunity he needed. He moved past Axsom in turn two on the restart then began chasing down Boyles. After closing down the back-straight, Kofoid would throw a slider through turn three to overtake Boyles coming back to the flag stand to lead lap 27 with Axsom slipping past Boyles for second.
From there, Kofoid simply checked out over the final three laps to take the victory, followed by Axsom, Boyles, Coons and Bryson rounding out the top five.
“Getting caught up early certainly didn’t help,” said Kofoid, who had to climb up from the back of the B Main just to qualify for the feature after a mechanical problem during his heat race. “I figured we’d still have a chance, though, because we knew we had a car capable of running in the top five. We had some long green runs and my car just kept getting better and then we got some breaks to go twenty-second to first. To get my sixth win with Keith Kunz Motorsports (KKM) and have two wins and a second this weekend says a lot about this team. I’m just so appreciative to work with KKM, Mobil 1 and Toyota. I’m just having a lot of fun driving these cars.”
Pursley would finish seventh and Joe B. Miller placed ninth to give Toyota six of the top ten finishers on the night.
The POWRi Lucas Oil National Midget League returns to Jacksonville Speedway, September 11, for the Herb Barlow Memorial.
Toyota POWRi Jacksonville Speedway Results
- Buddy Kofoid – 1st
- Emerson Axsom – 2nd
- Clinton Boyles – 3rd
- Kaylee Bryson – 5th
- Daison Pursley – 7th
- Joe B. Miller – 9th
- Brenham Crouch – 11th
- Ace McCarthy – 14th
- Noah Gass – 17th
- Thomas Meseraull – 18th
- Luke Howard – 22nd
- Cannon McIntosh – 23rd
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