O’Neil Sails To Casino USMTS Victory

— A packed house of fans made their annual pilgrimage to the high-banked quarter-mile Casino Speedway on Sunday for the 13th Annual NAPA Summersota Modified Nationals, and the USMTS delivered yet another nail-biting barn-burner for the faithful.Looking to return to victory at his home track and the location of his first and only Summit USMTS National Championship presented by RacinDirt victory in 2007, Scott Ward shot from the pole position to lead the first lap of the 42-lap feature race.Dan Ebert started next to Ward and beat him to the flag stand by a whisker to lead the second lap before giving way to Ward once again as they wrapped up the third lap.Ward was able to fend off his challenger through the next few laps but Ebert powered ahead on lap 9 and stayed out front until 13th-starting Jake O’Neil began to pressure the leader.O’Neil passed Ward to steal second place with 17 laps to go, and then closed in on the rear bumper of Ebert’s machine with 10 to go.With five more trips around the speedway, the lead pair completed the 37th orbit side by side before O’Neil slammed the door to take the lead.Ebert fought back but lapped traffic and a flawless effort by O’Neil left him in second place when crossed beneath the checkered flag while O’Neil padded his bank account by $5,000 while recording his series-best seventh win of the 2022 campaign.It was the 27th career USMTS victory for the 30-year-old from Tucson, Ariz.Ward followed Ebert to the flag stand while Terry Phillips and Rodney Sanders posted solid efforts in fourth and fifth, respectively.

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