>> Tanner Carrick had a busy week. Running a sprint car in California and picking up some very nice results, the Lincoln, CA driver would cap his weekend in Wisconsin in a midget and would pick up a big Pepsi Nationals win in a photo finish on Sunday night.
“It was a pretty solid week, and I have to thank Clark and everyone on the Sprint Car team, and Keith, Pete, Big Al, and all the Keith Kunz guys on the midget side for all of their hard work,” Tanner Carrick said.
Sunday night would prove to be a big one for the 2017 USAC National Midget Series Rookie of the Year. Checking in at the famed Angell Park Speedway in Sun Prairie, WI for the 37th Pepsi Nationals, Carrick kicked off what would be a stellar night by earning quick time honors aboard the CVC/TRD/Spike Chassis backed No. 71K before racing his way to a heat race win.
Moving into the feature event, the invert would put the Californian in the third row to kick off the 30-lap feature event.
From his third row starting position, Carrick would be one of the few drivers who dared to run the cushion and it would pay off as he would rip around a slew of competitors to find himself in the second position and charging after Zach Daum.
With his KKM teammate, Logan Seavey joining the fray, Carrick would find himself back in third as the Top-Three continued to fight hard. Late in the race, Carrick’s line would come in as he was able to get by Daum and make serious headway on Seavey.
Out of turn four on the last lap, Carrick stayed committed up top and was able to use a monster run to nip Seavey at the line in a photo finish to claim the Pepsi Nationals crown in an absolute thriller of a finish.
“It is a huge testament to our team to have the finish come down to two of us like that,” Carrick said. “I was glad to see Logan stay down there and I was able to use my momentum and pull it off.”
Saturday night saw Carrick and the Keith Kunz team in action at Fairbury American Legion Speedway in Fairbury, IL where Carrick would pick up a heat race win and move directly into the feature event where he lined up in the sixth starting position.
Running solidly all night, Carrick would find himself in the fifth position when the checkered flag flew on the race.
“It is a busy week for the Midget team, and to get off to a good start like that is huge,” Carrick added. “I have the hardest working guys in the business on my side, and hopefully we can keep this machine up front.”
Sprint Car racing in California also went pretty well for Carrick who took part in a slew of races in what was an unofficial speedweek in the Golden State.
After a wild night in Chico, CA back on June 29th that saw Carrick go toe-to-toe with Andy Forsberg and come up short in search of his first sprint car win, the team would return to action on July 1st in Petaluma, CA with the Sprint Car Challenge Tour.
The Petaluma Speedway surface on this night would be extremely heavy and fast and would prove to be tough to pass on for most, but that would not be the case for Carrick.
Coming from the semi, Carrick would line up 23rd in the feature event. Making some daring moves and able to avoid some of the wild action that took place, Carrick would seemingly get stronger as the race moved along. Continuing to fight forward, Carrick would end up gaining 13positions as he finished 10th on this night.
Tuesday saw the team travel to Marysville Raceway for a special July 3rd event and Carrick would continue to show tremendous speed in his winged 360 machine as he combat a tough time trial with a third place finish in his heat race, as he lined up 14th in the feature event.
A racy Marysville Raceway surface allowed Carrick to make up some serious ground as he carved his way forward. Continuing his hard charging ways of the week, Carrick would again gain double digit positions as he capped Tuesday night off with a fourth place finish.
July 4th saw Placerville Speedway set the stage for a Fourth of July spectacular. Timing the CVC/Cemex/Spiked backed machine in fifth quickest in time trials, Carrick would finish fifth in his heat race.
By way of his time trial effort, Carrick would find himself in the nightly redraw where the five pill put him in the third row for the 25-lap feature event.
On a slick surface, Carrick would find himself again battling with Andy Forsberg as the duo fought for position within the Top-Five. In a fast paced feature event, Carrick would close out a busy week of Sprint Car racing with a sixth place finish.
“We are getting better and better with each Sprint Car race it seems,” Tanner Carrick said. “Clark Riolo, my dad, and everyone works extremely hard for me and I am appreciative for all they do for me.”
Tanner Carrick and the Keith Kunz Motorsports team would like to thank CVC, TRD, Spike Chassis, Cemex, Arai, and Shell Shock for their support.
2018 BY THE NUMBERS- Starts-19, Wins-2, Top 5’s-5, Top 10’s-11
ON TAP: Tanner Carrick and Keith Kunz Motorsports continue a very busy week that will see them back in action tonight in Meeker, OK, Wednesday night in Beloit, KS, Friday and Saturday night in Fairbury, NE, and Sunday in Sweet Springs, MO all with the USAC National Midget Series.