FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE Contact: Ben Shelton (email@example.com) August 3, 2021 Top-5 Run in Prairie Dirt Classic for Rocket1 Racing Four Nights of WoO Wisconsin Action on Tap this Week SHINNSTON, W.Va. (08/03/21) – Brandon Sheppard and Rocket1 Racing rolled into the famed Fairbury Speedway over the weekend for the 31st edition of the Prairie Dirt Classic. Saturday night’s $50,000-to-win finale found Sheppard recording a fifth-place finish in his Valvoline No. 1 Seubert Calf Ranches/ Durham Racing Engines-powered XR1 Rocket Chassis Super Late Model. “Really late in the race when my car came to me, I was a few spots too far back,” Sheppard said. “We just had to make the most out of it and made a few passes on the restarts and just came up short. It’s disappointing because we had a better car than where we finished. We’ll head to Wisconsin this week to go after some more big checks. Thanks as always goes out to all of our marketing partners and supporters.” Taking part in one the biggest weekends of the year with the World of Outlaws (WoO) Morton Buildings Late Model Series, Rocket1Racing and Brandon Sheppard invaded Fairbury Speedway (Fairbury, Ill.) on Friday afternoon for the 31st annual Prairie Dirt Classic. With the massive 74-car field split into two separate groups for time trials, Sheppard recorded the 11th fastest time in his group. Starting his $3,000-to-win preliminary feature in sixth, Brandon improved three spots in the 25-lapper to register a third-place finish. With his third-place finish in preliminary action on Friday placing him 11th on the starting grid for Saturday night’s $50,000-to-win Prairie Dirt Classic, Sheppard advanced six spots in the 100-lap affair to finish fifth. He followed Kyle Larson, Bobby Pierce, Shannon Babb, and Chris Madden across the line. Brandon now sits 86 points ahead of Chris Madden atop the World of Outlaws point standings. For complete results from these events, please visit www.WorldofOutlaws.com . The upcoming week has the team set for four nights of WoO action in Wisconsin. The week opens on Tuesday evening at Outagamie Speedway with a $10,000-to-win event, which is co-sanctioned with the Dirt Kings tour. On Thursday evening three rounds of WoO action kicks off at Cedar Lake Speedway with a $6,000-to-win affair. On Friday and Saturday the 2021 USA Nationals take center stage with double heat races on Friday evening followed by B-mains and the $50,000-to-win finale on Saturday night. Rocket1 Racing would like to thank all of their marketing partners, which include Valvoline, Seubert Calf Ranches, Rocket Chassis, Ace Metal Works, Durham Racing Engines, FiveStar RaceCar Bodies, Gunters Honey, Hoosier Racing Tire, Integra Racing Shocks, Keyser Manufacturing, Petroff Towing, Slavic Custom Racing Shirts & Decals, Sweet Manufacturing, Sunoco Race Fuels, Accu-Force Shock Service, ATL Fuel Cells, Aurora Rod Ends, Barnes Dry Sump Oil Systems, Bazell Race Fuels, Beyea Custom Headers, Brown & Miller Racing Solutions, Brinn Transmissions, Cometic Gasket, COMP Cams, CP Carrillo, Dohm Cycles, Edelbrock, Fibreworks Composites, Hardrock Powder Coating, Howe Racing Enterprises, Jones Racing Products, Kenny’s Components, Maxima Racing Oils, MSD, NGK Spark Plugs, Tel Tac, Performance Bodies, Peterson Fluid Systems, Powers Performance, Performance Rod & Custom, Quarter Master, QuickCar Racing Products, Rocket Pre-Owned Motors, Safecraft, Show Trucks Unlimited, Simpson, Stealth Carburetors, Strange Oval, Suave Talk, Total Power Valvoline Pro-V Racing, Walker Performance Filtration, Weld Racing, Wiles Driveshafts, Wilwood Brakes, Winters Performance Products, Wrisco Aluminum, Xceldyne Valvetrain, and MSR Mafia Marketing Services. For the latest information on Rocket1Racing please visit the team website at www.Rocket1Racing.com as well as their social media channels at www.facebook.com/Rocket1Racing, www.twitter.com/Rocket1_Racing, and www.instagram.com/rocket1racing .
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BROWNIE POINTS: Brian Brown Tops Thursday's Wild Knoxville Nationals Prelim
26 Drivers Locked-In for Saturday's Finale, Rest of Field to Friday's Hard Knox Program
KNOXVILLE, IA - August 13, 2021 - All it took was a little motivating factor for Brian Brown to return to the stage he loves more than any other.
On Tuesday evening, prior to any event of the 60th NOS Energy Drink Knoxville Nationals pres. by Casey's, Brown said "They're already counting us out. They really don't think we can do it. I hear what people say and I read it too. I love it. Keep motivating me."
On Thursday night, which turned into Friday morning, Brown proved the doubters wrong and returned the FVP Parts, Casey's General Stores #21 to victory lane at Knoxville Raceway in a wild and wacky Nationals prelim.
The Grain Valley, MO native scored his 56th career win at the iconic 1/2-mile by leading the final 24 of 25 laps, but it wasn't without challenge from a man Brownie himself declares "The GOAT:" Kyle Larson. Charging from 21st-to-2nd, Larson put pressure on Brown in the closing stages, but there was no stopping "Blackjack" on this night.
Brown ultimately earned his third Knoxville Nationals preliminary win, locking himself into Saturday's A-Main for the 11th time in his career, this time with a ninth-place starting position for the 50-lap, potentially $200,000/Win race.
"These two guys right here are probably the two hardest runners in the country," Brown praised podium finishers Larson and Brent Marks. "I honestly didn't think it was going to be a good race, but the Duncan's made their magic work. I was overthinking myself early in the night, but we got that solved real quick. Once we were in clean air, I felt like we were as good as anyone at all."
Before the checkered flag flew at 1:10am CT, a whole barrage of storylines presented themselves in Thursday's second Knoxville preliminary.
To kick things off, substitute pilot Kasey Kahne drove the Roth Motorsports #83 throwback design of the 1998 Beef Packers machine to Slick Woody's QuickTime honors over Tyler Courtney by two, one-thousandths of a second.
Come A-Main time, it seemed near impossible to get the 25-lap race rolling. After the initial start was called back, the red flag flew when Parker Price-Miller was launched into the turn one fence and went for a scary ride. He climbed out under his own power, though.
From there, it only took one more laps to bring more carnage to the table. Shooting the gap in turn three, Carson Macedo made contact with Paul McMahan battling for fourth and sent both cars beelining to the wall. They hit the fence and flipped over, but more cars came piling in as Kerry Madsen, Sammy Swindell, Marcus Dumesny & Sawyer Phillips.
Once underway, Sam Hafertepe Jr. of Sunnyvale, TX paced the opening circuit. His lead was short-lived, though, as Brown came firing in on all cylinders to slide by for the race lead on Lap 2. He had seized a lead that he would never relinquish.
The middle stages were plagued by more cautions, but finally the last restart resumed on Lap 13 and went the distance. Larson, who started 21st and charged to second, was catching Brown until the #21 found something extra and snuck away to win it 1.130-seconds.
For Larson, who had hoped for a seventh at best, the wreckage became his friend and allowed him to steal several positions away. Aboard haul Silva's #57, he inched his way forward until he ran out of space once reaching second. He'll start Saturday's A-Main in the third position with his first Knoxville Nationals title on the line.
"I got extremely lucky missing that big wreck," Larson admitted. "That deal took out a lot of good people, so I think I came from like 10th, you know, not the very back. This is my favorite week of the year. I can't wait for Saturday."
Closing out the podium was Brent Marks in his own operation, who has earned the fourth starting spot in Saturday's A-Main.
Rounding out the top ten at Knoxville is Brad Sweet in fourth. Rico Abreu in fifth, Kasey Kahne in sixth, Austin McCarl in seventh, Ian Madsen in eighth., Kraig Kinser in ninth, and Sye Lynch in tenth.NOS Energy Drink Feature (25 Laps): 1. 21-Brian Brown ; 2. 57-Kyle Larson ; 3. 19-Brent Marks ; 4. 49-Brad Sweet ; 5. 24R-Rico Abreu ; 6. 83-Kasey Kahne ; 7. 17A-Austin McCarl ; 8. 49X-Ian Madsen ; 9. 11K-Kraig Kinser ; 10. 42-Sye Lynch ; 11. 3P-Sawyer Phillips ; 12. 15H-Sam Hafertepe ; 13. 35P-Skylar Prochaska ; 14. 97-Greg Wilson ; 15. 11T-TJ Stutts ; 16. 55W-Mike Wagner ; 17. 7BC-Tyler Courtney ; 18. 70-Sammy Swindell ; 19. 5-Paul McMahan ; 20. 41-Carson Macedo ; 21. N47-Marcus Dumesny ; 22. 14-Kerry Madsen ; 23. 5X-Parker Price-Miller ; 24. 71-Shane Stewart . Lap Leaders: Sam Hafertepe Jr. 1, Brian Brown 2-25. KSE Hard Charger Award: 57-Kyle Larson[+19]