Swanson Sweeps To Third Consecutive Hoosier 100 Victory

Kody Swanson gives victory salute after winning third straight Hoosier 100. [Joe Jennings Photo]

Kody Swanson gives victory salute after winning third straight Hoosier 100. [Joe Jennings Photo]

by Joe Jennings

INDIANAPOLIS – Kody Swanson moved into the land of the elite with his third consecutive Hoosier 100, making it all happen in the 62nd running of the USAC Silver Crown race on the mile dirt track at the Indiana State Fairgrounds.

Winning the last three races moved him into a tie with racing legends Jimmy Bryan and Al Unser. Unser holds the all-time record with four straight victories.

Swanson wheeled the DePalma Motorsports/Radio Hospital – Champion Oil/Maxim/Hampshire Chevy, the same car used in all three wins.

Starting third behind pole winner Brady Bacon and Jerry Coons Jr., Swanson stayed in top-five during the early going before methodically picking off his foes and speeding into the lead with 34 laps to go. Once in the lead, the champion wasn’t to be denied as he led to the checkered flag.

“This is my favorite track, and there’s something special about it,” Swanson said. “Running here means it is the Hoosier 100, which is so cool. The track is narrow and challenging. Anytime I run the No. 63 car I know I have a chance to win.

“It is hard to say how special it is to win three times, as it has only been done three times with guys I shouldn’t be classified with. I didn’t win this race three times, I just happened to be on the team that did. We won this race together.”

Concerning the winning pass, Swanson added, “It seemed like now or never as Shane (Cottle) was so good. I had a run and took a chance, and it worked out. This was my toughest race here.”

Throughout the 100 miles, the 32-car field was tightly bunched with passing and side-by-side action non-stop.

Shane Cottle gave it his all chasing Swanson but wore out his tires, coming up short by a few yards.

Coons, one of the early leaders, ended up third.

Indianapolis 500 starter Bryan Clauson came home in fourth.

Jumping into an unfamiliar car, Chris Windom advanced 12 positions to fifth.

Sixth through 10th were C. J. Leary, David Byrne, Davey Ray, Mark Smith and Dave Darland.

Flips by Russ Gamester and Jeff Swindell stopped the race twice and each was able to walk away unscathed. Gamester flipped high and went over several times.

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