August 8th, 2015: Thomas Messeraul Snags POWRi Victory at Federated Auto Parts Raceway at I-55

Thomas Messeraul

Thomas Messeraul


Pevely, MO – The series’ first appearance at Federated Auto Parts Raceway since 2008, Tanner Thorson of Minden, Nevada survived a grueling battle with Keith Kunz/Curb-Agajanian Motorsports teammate Christopher Bell to earn his second POWRi Lucas Oil National Midget Series victory of 2015, taking the “Prelude to the Ironman.”

Thomas Messeraul of San Jose, California led the field to green in the 5ive-6ix, Inc. Esslinger-powered Triple-X Chassis with Zach Daum to his outside. Daum would take the jump on the initial start, only to be called back for the spun machine driven by Andy Malpocker. Relining up, Thorson would lead the first lap from third while running the bottom, as Messeraul took to the extreme top. With three laps complete, the red would come out for Andy Malpocker who clipped the outside wall in turn one, going for a ride. Malpocker would be alright, but his machine would find itself on the business end of the wrecker.

Coming back to green, Messeraul would try to challenge Thorson by again using the furthest way around the race track. On lap five, Austin Prock would clip the outside wall in turn one, almost identical to Malpocker, and flip hard. Prock would be alright, but done for the remainder of the event. Thorson would get a nice jump on the restart as Messeraul again wasted no time and took straight to the top side of the track. With eight laps in the books, the action would be interrupted as Austin Brown’s Toyota-powered BOSS Chassis slowed entering turn one. Brown would enter the work area and then restart at the tail.

On the restart, Messeraul would go back to the top, but this time Thorson would pull a few car lengths away as Bell would get a grasp on the second position for lap 11. Before lap 12 could be completed, the caution would fly for the slowed machine on the front stretch piloted by Andrew Felker. Felker would restart at the rear of the field. Coming back to green, Bell would rip the top as Thorson worked the bottom through turns one and two, but immediately the red flag would come out as Daniel Robinson took a ride in turn one. Robinson would alright, but done for the night.
Returning to racing, Thorson would be faced with Bell’s repeated challenges until Thorson relinquished the lead on lap 16. Regaining the lead for lap 18, Thorson would take brief control as the duo continued their slider-fest, until Bell came out on top for lap 19, as Darren Hagen took third from Messeraul. Thorson and Bell’s battle would be put on ice as Austin Brown got sideways off turn two, collecting Travis Berryhill and bringing out the yellow.

Restarting the race and reigniting the battle, Bell would continue to tail Thorson, but before his Toyota-powered Bullet could make a move, Kyle Schuett would get upside down in the middle of turns one and two, bringing out the fourth and final red flag of the night. Returning to racing, try as he might, Christopher Bell could not steal the lead from Tanner Thorson. Coming in third at the stripe was Spencer Bayston, edging Darren Hagen for the final podium spot. Zach Daum rounded out the top five in the Daum Crop Insurance, Toyota-powered Eagle.

“All in all, this car was awesome all night,” stated Thorson. “Keith [Kunz] gives me an awesome car. It’s pretty incredible to be racing with Christopher that close. It was one heck of a race; it was probably one of the fun-est races I’ve been in. I just can’t thank these guys in the pits enough. They work their butts off and it was an awesome win.”

“That was a lot of fun,” said Bell. “It’s hard to beat that right there. It’s just so close and that’s a lot of fun being able to race with my teammate like that. So congrats to him, he did a really great job. I kind of snookered him there on a couple restarts; he wasn’t sure whether he should go to the top or the bottom and I had a little time to move around, but those yellows sure weren’t helping me at all.”

“We were running about seventh or eighth there for a long time and finally found the middle and got good in the middle for the last five laps,” Bayston said. “I have to thank Tim, Tyler, Connor and those guys for working their butts off to get me here tonight.”

POWRi National Midgets
I-55 Raceway
Car Count: 30

Heat 1
Finish Car # – Driver Name
1 39 – Spencer Bayston
2 56 – Thomas Messeraul
3 52 – Anton Hernandez
4 50 – Daniel Adler
5 79J – Jacob Patton
6 52C – Isaac Chapple
7 23 – Hannah Adair
8 76 – Kellen Conover

Heat 2
Finish Car # – Driver Name
1 3N – Jake Neuman
2 39C – Payton Pierce
3 5D – Zach Daum
4 11A – Andrew Felker
5 35 – Matt Sherrell
6 85 – Shane Hollingsworth
7 71 – Ryan Robinson
8 35T – Tyler Robbins

Heat 3
Finish Car # – Driver Name
1 97 – Rico Abreu
2 32 – Garrett Aitken
3 57D – Daniel Robinson
4 21 – Ty Hulsey
5 27 – Tucker Klaasmeyer
6 22 – Andy Malpocker
7 1K – Brayton Lynch

Heat 4
Finish Car # – Driver Name
1 17 – Darren Hagen
2 67 – Tanner Thorson
3 7 – Austin Brown
4 9K – Kyle Schuett
5 14E – Eric Fenton
6 4A – Travis Berryhill
7 1OU – AJ Burns

Finish Car # – Driver Name
1 71 – Ryan Robinson
2 21 – Ty Hulsey
3 52C – Isaac Chapple
4 14E – Eric Fenton
5 85 – Shane Hollingsworth
6 23 – Hannah Adair
7 4A – Travis Berryhill
8 79J – Jacob Patton
9 27 – Tucker Klaasmeyer
10 1OU – AJ Burns
11 1K – Brayton Lynch
12 22 – Andy Malpocker
13 35T – Tyler Robbins
14 76 – Kellen Conover

Finish Car # – Driver Name
1 56 – Thomas Messeraul
2 97 – Rico Abreu
3 17 – Darren Hagen
4 5D – Zach Daum
5 39 – Spencer Bayston
6 67 – Tanner Thorson
7 32 – Garrett Aitken
8 11A – Andrew Felker
9 27 – Tucker Klaasmeyer
10 35 – Matt Sherrell
11 7 – Austin Brown
12 71 – Ryan Robinson
13 9K – Kyle Schuett
14 3N – Jake Neuman
15 85 – Shane Hollingsworth
16 52C – Isaac Chapple
17 14E – Eric Fenton
18 57D – Daniel Robinson
19 52 – Anton Hernandez
20 21 – Ty Hulsey
21 50 – Daniel Adler
22 39C – Payton Pierce
23 23 – Hannah Adair
WINNER: Thomas Messeraul

For more information, visit
Derek Schuett
POWRi Media

Print Friendly, PDF & Email