LAWRENCEBURG, Ind. — When Brian Carber won the KKM Giveback Classic at North Carolina’s Millbridge Speedway last fall, he hoped the door it opened for him would lead to greater things.
That was proven true when, fresh off his Lucas Oil Chili Bowl Nationals appearance in Tulsa, Okla., in January with Keith Kunz/Curb-Agajanian Motorsports, Carber was hired to be the program director for Hayward Motorsports — a deal that included some driving opportunities.
The Pennsylvania micro sprint veteran repaid team owner Brodie Hayward’s faith in his abilities with a charge through the field from last in the 22-car field to finish 10th during Indiana Midget Week competition Saturday at Lawrenceburg Speedway.
Carber methodically worked his way through traffic en route to the solid result, showing continued progression as he learns to adapt to midget racing – a stark contrast from what he’s used to in micros.
“It’s starting to click for us, I think,” Carber tipped. “This place [Lawrenceburg] is a little different; it’s kind of overwhelming when you get up on the boards. There in hot laps and time trials, it was a little crazy, but we’ve been working hard in the back of the pit area every single night to get better. I think we’ve finally gotten all the wounds [worked] out of it now, so the rest of the week we should be better than where we’ve been the last two nights. I feel we’re going to be driving forward and have something to compete with.
“First and foremost, I have to thank Sarah and Brodie Hayward. It’s a dream of an opportunity to actually be out here, racing in front of all these great fans in Indiana,” Carber added. “We’ll give it a heck of a week and we’ll see what we’ve got for it by the end of it all.”
Carber received the KSE Hard Charger Award Saturday night for advancing more positions than anyone else in the 22-car field at the racy, three-eighths-mile Lawrenceburg dirt oval.
— A 13th-to-fifth run at Lawrenceburg for Brenham Crouch marked the continuation of the Lubbock, Texas, native’s maturation with Keith Kunz/Curb-Agajanian Motorsports this season.
Crouch, who flipped his car during the Indiana Midget Week opener Thursday at Paragon Speedway and then won the B-main that night, took his best finish of the three races held so far on Saturday night.
“We’re making progress,” Crouch said. “These guys are giving me all the tools I need to succeed; it’s just a matter of putting myself in the right positions to be able to capitalize on them.”
— Fast-qualifier Corey Day led the speed charts in time trials for the second time in three nights, and this time, Day posted a finish that he felt was “representative of where we are.”
After being inverted to sixth on the starting grid by USAC procedures following the heat races, Day maintained that position through the 30-lapper and secured his best USAC finish.
It was his fifth start with Clauson Marshall Racing and team owner Tim Clauson believes Day “has a lot of potential” based on what he’s already shown in midget racing.
— In her quest to become the first female driver to win a national midget feature, Kaylee Bryson came out of the B-main and advanced from 19th to eighth Saturday night.
It marked Bryson’s best finish of the USAC NOS Energy Drink National Midget Series season and a much-needed rebound after failing to crack the starting lineup for the first two Indiana Midget Week events.
Bryson is a two-time winner in asphalt late model competition this season in the Pacific Northwest.
— Despite a flip on lap 19 of the Lawrenceburg feature, Keith Kunz/Curb-Agajanian Motorsports rookie Bryant Wiedeman held on to a top-10 spot in the weeklong Indiana Midget Week standings.
Wiedeman, who was scored 20th Saturday night, ranks ninth in Indiana Midget Week points with 137, just 11 points behind Paragon winner Thomas Meseraull for seventh.
— Though this writer may not always be a race track food connoisseur, an off-track luxury at the ‘Burg Saturday was the track’s pretzel bites at the turn-four concession stand.
Wrangled during one of two red flags early in the 410 sprint car main event, the snack went well with some cheese dip and provided a satisfying cap to an enjoyable, albeit long, night of racing.
— The Indiana Midget Week flip count stands at seven through three nights of racing, including three by Chase Randall alone. It jumped by five on Saturday night between the B-main and the feature.