With one eye toward October's Big Buck 50 and the other on a repeat trip to victory lane, Kyle Slader made it two-for-two in 2019 at Lucas Oil Speedway.
Slader, of Muskogee, Oklahoma, started up front and led all 25 laps to earn the 25-lap $750-to-win Street Stocks main event Saturday, July 27, according to a speedway news release.
Other feature winners were Darron Fuqua ( USRA Modifieds), JC Morton ( USRA B-Mods) and Aaron Marrant (ULMA Late Models).
According to the release, Slader won his only other appearance at Lucas Oil Speedway Sunday, July 14, during CMH Diamond Nationals. That win was worth $1,000. The stakes will be higher Thursday through Saturday, Oct. 3-5, when the Street Stocks will chase a $10,000 first prize at the Big Buck 50.
"We came here a couple of weeks ago to do some testing. We came up here tonight to do some testing," Slader said in the release. "We picked up two wins. You can't get much better than that."
Slader was working his way through lapped traffic and had opened a 1.8-second lead over James Flood Saturday when the race's first caution came out on lap 12. Flood, Toby Ott, Johnny Coats and Cody Frazon were engaged in a tight battle for second.
Slader and Flood broke away after the restart when a yellow again bunched the field on lap 14, according to the release.
Slader held off runner-up Flood by 1.59 seconds. Season points leader Ott edged Coats for third, and Frazon rallied for fifth.
"I knew I wasn't running away with it," Slader said in the release. "I kind of fought an ill-handling car there. We just made it work and figured out what it needed and drove it."
Fuqua back in USRA Mod victory lane
Fuqua emerged from a caution-plagued Pitts Homes USRA Modified feature to claim his first victory of the season at Lucas Oil Speedway, the release stated.
Fuqua, the 2018 Lucas Oil Speedway track champ and USRA Modified National Champion, broke through in his fifth try at the speedway this season. He’s had two runner-up finishes, a ninth-place finish and a 12th-place finish at the track this year. Fuqua won at the speedway eight times last year, according to the release.
"It worked out. I'm sorry it took so long," Fuqua said in the release. "The track has a lot of traction and everybody's fast."
Pole-starting Brian Green finished third, and Ryan Middaugh was fourth. Points leader Robert Reed, who started 15th, rallied to finish eighth.
Morton breaks through in B-Mods
Morton of Springfield snapped Kris Jackson's six-race winning streak Saturday, starting on the front row and building a lead before rallying after six caution flags to take the win.
Ryan Gillmore was second with Robbe Ewing third and points leader Jackson fourth, according to the release.
"Our car was really good," Morton said in the release. "I got on the bottom and ... I kind of conserved a little bit so I didn't hit the tires (guarding the infield) or spin out or something stupid."
Jackson’s car lost power while leading his heat race and had to race through the B Feature to get into the main event, which he did by going from 10th to first.
Marrant picks up Late Model win
Marrant of Richmond picked up his second ULMA Late Model feature victory of the season, taking command with five laps remaining.
"I can't thank the crew enough. They've been working their tails off on this car," Marrant said in the release. "We just keep working at it and keep getting it better and better. They're getting it really good."
Chad Richwine started on the pole and led the first 14 laps. Marrant used the inside line to get past on the straightaway to complete lap 15.
The race's first caution flew a few seconds later, as Bob Cummings spun out in turn two and set up a five-lap shootout with Marrant in front of Richwine, Larry Ferris, Kaeden Cornell and Johnny Fennewald.
Before a lap was completed, a six-car pileup behind the leaders again brought things to a halt. After the restart, Marrant took the win by 1.6 seconds over Ferris.
Richwine was a season-best third with points leader Fennewald fourth and Cornell fifth.