LUBBOCK, Texas (May 19, 2023) — Touring Modified standout Tanner Mullens, regional open-wheel ace John Neal Reid and local Stock car master Austin Huskey all earned feature wins in their respective divisions, as officials hosted a full card of racing on Friday evening at West Texas Raceway.
Mullens powered to victory in a 30-lap A Main for the headlining USRA American Racer Modified Series (ARMS); Reid dominated the 20-lap tilt for USRA Limited Modifieds; while Huskey prevailed in a talent-filled feature for USRA Stock Cars.
Nate Hammond (305 Racesaver Sprints); Brandon Williams (WTR Street Stocks); and Hunner Haskins (Jr. Cyclones) were also feature winners on a beautiful evening for short track racing in West Texas.
Mullens, of Wichita, Kansas, started ninth on the 24-car grid, drove to the outside of Israel Ortega to take command at lap nine and hung on to earn top honors. Carlos Ahumada crossed the stripe in second, while Nathan Smith came all the way up from 16th to fill out the podium.
Jake Gallardo (Las Cruces, NM) and Mark Smith (Anthony, NM) completed the top five. Mullens earned a cool $2,000 for his efforts.
Finishing sixth through 10th in the 30-lap American Racer Modified Series A Main were Joe Duvall, Kale Westover (started 24th), Sean Gaddis (started 23rd), Philip Houston (started 21st) and Kenny Gaddis. Seven cautions slowed the pace (laps 0, 1, 5, 6, 15, 17, 19), all for minor incidents.
Mullens' margin of victory over Ahumada was a tick over two seconds, as his car was really motoring. Ahumada, Kenny Gaddis, Xavier Ortega, Mullens and Kade Ogle won their respective qualifying Heats earlier in the evening, while Jimmy Ray and Nick Rivera won the B Mains.
Reid, of Loving, NM, started fifth on the 21-car grid, drove to the outside of Ryan Reeves to take control at lap five and checked out on the field. Reeves finished a distant second, while Hunter Welch came from eighth at the start to claim third.
Brandon Jones (Lubbock) drove up from 14th to finish fourth, while Travis Graves (New Home, TX) wheeled his way up from 15th on the grid to cross the stripe in fifth.
Finishing sixth through 10th in the USRA Limited Modified feature were Trevin Graves, Braden Howell, Dawson Bradford, J.P. Vasquez Jr. and Andy Miller. Three cautions slowed the pace (laps 1, 1, 9), all for minor issues. Reid's margin of victory was 4.3 seconds, as his car was the class of the field.
Huskey, of Lubbock, started second on the 16-car grid and led all 20 laps of his feature. Colin Deming drove up from eighth to claim the runner-up position, while Jimmy Breeding filled out the podium. Charlie Hicks (Lubbock) and Dakota Folsom (also of Lubbock) finished fourth and fifth, respectively.
Finishing sixth through 10th in the USRA Stock Car feature were Drayton Roberts, Kaiden Black, Justin Loera, Brandon Arthur and Blaine Spann. One caution slowed the pace (lap 8) for a minor spin. Huskey's margin of victory over Deming was a comfy 1.113 seconds, as he had momentum on his side.
This first touring series event of the year at West Texas Raceway drew a whopping 132 entries spread across six divisions. Led by 43 ARMS Modified teams, there was talent in every corner of the pits on Friday evening. Fans enjoyed non-stop action from the minute the first green flag waved.
Officials knocked out 17 qualifying Heats (and two B Mains for ARMS teams) in short order, then proceeded to run off their features in a timely manner. Despite having that many cars, officials kept the program rolling along steadily throughout the evening.
You can replay all every lap of Friday night's program at West Texas Raceway featuring the American Racer Modified Series with a subscription at RaceOnTexas.com. With over 450 events on the Live steaming schedule this year, it's home to some of the best short track content available online.
When you sign up today, select one of two options (OnDemand or All Access), choose your favorite or hometown track, and start enjoying great content while supporting your local track even when you can't attend in person.
By Phil Whipple, RaceOnTexas.com Staff Writer. Photo By: Tanner Mullens Motorsports