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Koch Utilizes High-Side to Claim Sprint Series of Oklahoma Opener!


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Koch Utilizes High-Side to Claim Sprint Series of Oklahoma Opener!

Ardmore, Oklahoma – March 25, 2017 - The Sprint Series of Oklahoma IMCA Racesaver Sprint Car Series presented by Smiley’s Racing Products opened their 2017 race season Saturday night and when it was all said and done it was Wichita Falls, Texas driver Chad Koch leading the final five laps to claim his first-ever victory with the series at Southern Oklahoma Speedway in Ardmore, Oklahoma. This event was also co-sanctioned with the Sprint Series of Texas IMCA Racesaver Sprint Series.

Jake Martens and Michelle Melton started on the front row for the twenty-lap feature and it was Martens quickly jumping out front to take the lead as the green flag fell. Fourth starting Koch quickly moved into the runner-up position, utilizing the top of the three-eighths mile oval while Martens Myers powered Eagle chassis was working the bottom.

Three laps were complete before the first of two caution flags fell when SSO rookie of the year contender and third starting Josh Toho spun in turn four.

Martens paced the field on the restart with Koch, Melton, sixth starting Gary Owens and fifth starting Michael Day lined up on his rear bumper as the green flag fell. Martens would quickly open a half-stretch lead over Koch while Melton was working on Koch for the runner-up position.

The leader began approaching slower cars on lap eleven yet Martens and his Martens Machine Shop/Fortune Auto & Truck Supply sponsored sprinter worked it to perfection, still maintaining a full-stretch lead.

The final caution would wave on lap thirteen when Tristan Oakes spun off the top of turn two and into the tractor tire.

On the final restart with Martens still running low, Koch was still utilizing the top side and entering turns three and four, got a run around Martens to take the lead on lap fourteen.

From then on there was no stopping Koch as he led the rest of the way unchallenged to claim the victory aboard his home-built KMS powered Triple X chassis; Koch Motorsports/TNT Signs and Graphics/PAposseracing.com/Newlin bars sponsored sprinter.

“Man, what a night,” said an elated Koch. “Had ignition issues and didn’t get to hot lap, got it ready just in time for the heat. We won that, entered the pits and caught on fire. Luckily Chip (Graham) was there to help me get out of the car. I was stoked just to be in the top five, was hoping the top would come in and it did.”

Owens got around Martens with three laps to go and held off a last-corner slide job from Day exiting turn four to finish second while Martens faded to a fourth-place finish. Eighth starting Daccus rounded out the top five.

Defending SSO and IMCA National sprint car champion Andy Shouse was running sixth when mechanical gremlins forced him pit side around the races midway point and finished twentieth.

The four, eight lap heat races for the thirty-one-car field were won by Oakes, Melton, Daccus and Koch while Dale Wester passed race-long leader Loyd Clevenger with two laps to go to claim the twelve lap “B” feature.

Next up for the SSO presented by Smiley’s Racing Products will be next Saturday night, April 1, at Longdale Speedway in Longdale, Oklahoma in a combined event with the Kansas based United Rebel Sprint Series.

The next event for the SST will be on Friday night, April 21, back at Southern Oklahoma Speedway when they will once again be joined by the SSO.

The Sprint Series of Oklahoma IMCA Racesaver Sprint Car Series would like to thank the following for their involved
with the tour in 2017: Smiley’s Racing Products, Danny Halloway, Martens Machine Shop, Messmer Racing LLC, Saldana Racing Products, Hoosier Racing Tires, Pyrotech, Rod End Supply, CSI and Outlaw Wings.

Sprint Series of Oklahoma/Sprint Series of Texas

Southern Oklahoma Speedway/Ardmore, Oklahoma

March 25, 2017

31 Cars

1st Heat: 1) Tristian Oakes, 2) Robert Vetter, 3) Joe Wood, Jr., 4) Dillon Laden, 5) Jerry Jumper, 6) Shayla Waddell, 7) Blake Scott, DNS) Cody Whitworth

2nd Heat: 1) Michelle Melton, 2) Jake Martens, 3) Brandon Anderson, 4) Chris Kelly, 5) Justin Filfield, 6) Dale Wester, 7) Zach Blurton, 8) Tanner Conn

3rd Heat: 1) Blake Daccus, 2) Josh Toho, 3) Michael Day, 4) Chase Parsons, 5) Loyd Clevenger, 6) Blake Baccus, 7) Jeff Day, Jr.

4th Heat: 1) Chad Koch, 2) Gary Owens, 3) Brandon Long, 4) Andy Shouse, 5) Justin Fisk, 6) Michael Baccus, 7) Jesse Graham, 8) Warren Fields

B Feature: 1) Dale Wester, 2) Loyd Clevenger, 3) Zach Blurton, 4) Jesse Graham, 5) Shayla Waddell, 6) Warren Fields, 7) Jerry Jumper, 8) Tanner Conn, 9) Blake Baccus, 10) Justin Fisk, 11) Jeff Day, Jr., 12) Blake Scott, 13) Michael Baccus, 14) Chase Parsons, DNS: Cody Whitworth

A Feature: 1) Chad Koch (4), 2) Gary Owens (6), 3) Michael Day (5), 4) Jake Martens (1), 5) Blake Dacus (8), 6) Michelle Melton (2), 7) Joe Wood, Jr. (13), 8) Justin Fifield (16), 9) Dale Wester (17), 10) Brandon Long (9), 11) Zach Blurton (19), 12) Jesse Graham (20), 13) Loyd Clevenger (18), 14) Brandon Anderson (14), 15) Josh Toho (3), 16) Dillon Laden (10), 17) Robert Vetter (12), 18) Tristan Oakes (14), 19) Chris Kelly (15), 20) Andy Shouse (11)

Laps led: Martens 1-14; Koch 15-20

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