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Grassroots roundup: Harrison Burton wins ARCA race at Pocono in first superspeedway start

Editor’s note: This is the first installment of “Grassroots roundup,” covering everything you need to know about the grassroots racing world from the past week.

Harrison Burton is one of the most gracious and talented teenagers you’ll come across in the NASCAR garage.

On Friday evening, he put both of those admirable traits on full display. The 17-year-old wheeled his No. 12 DEX Imaging-MDM Motorsports Toyota to victory in the ARCA General Tire #AnywhereIsPossible 200 Friday at Pocono Raceway, capturing his second series win in his first superspeedway start.

And Burton was sure to thank many and pay homages in Victory Lane.

“That was awesome,” Burton said after the win. “It’s my first superspeedway race, but it doesn’t matter to us. I have the best team behind me. This win is for John Andretti. Their family is going through a lot right now. He’s the toughest guy on the planet. If anyone can do it, he can.”

Burton, 17, took the led for good on lap 72 of the 80 and eventually beat teammate Sheldon Creed by four-and-a-half seconds. Zane Smith, another teammate of Burton’s, finished third. Travis Braden and Riley Herbst rounded out the top five.

Gus Dean, Joe Graf, Jr.; Brennan Poole, reliever of Natalie Decker; Chase Purdy and Noah Gragson completed the top 10.

Gragson, the General Tire Pole winner, dominated early, leading 37 laps before being penalized for a loose wheel in the pit box, which prompted sent him to the tail end of the field. The 19-year-old never regained his momentum and Burton, who led 24 laps total, took full advantage.

“I’m really proud of my guys. They really helped me with my handicap, which is my inexperience,” Burton said in the media center. “It’s really cool to come out and win in my first superspeedway race. My crew chief Shane Huffman hit it right on the head. … He just nailed it. It’s not what you do right or wrong; it’s the whole picture you have to paint.”

Burton was sure to thank his parents, Kim and Jeff Burton, too.

“I wouldn’t be where I am without my mom and dad,” he continued. “When my dad was off racing when I was really little, my mom was with me everywhere when I was racing. When I came across the line, I looked up at the big screen, and there she was. Family is everything.”

ARCA Racing Series: After series part-timer Harrison Burton snagged the victory at Pocono, Zane Smith (three wins, six top fives) maintains a 10-point lead on Sheldon Creed (no wins, six top fives) in the standings through seven of 20 races. Riley Herbst (four top 10s) is third, 225 points back; Travis Braden (three top 10s) sits fourth, 285 points off the pace; and Natalie Decker (three top 10s) rears the top five, 320 points back.

Up next: Zomongo 200 at Michigan International Speedway this Friday at 5:30 p.m.

CARS Super Late Model: After a two-week break, the series heads to Ace Speedway in Altamahaw, North Carolina, for The Race at Ace 125 on Saturday. Bobby McCarty (two wins, five top 10s) holds a 12-point lead on Lee Pulliam (two wins, four top 10s) through five of 13 races. Deac McCaskill (19 points behind), JR Motorsports driver Sam Mayer (29 points behind) and Ronald Hill (34 points behind) complete the top five of the standings. Josh Barry, another JR Motorsports driver, is sixth, 35 points back.

Champion Racing Association Super Series: Austin Kunert topped Justin Alsip by 2.301 seconds to claim the Gem City 125 at Kil-Kare Raceway on Saturday night. Kyle Crump, Chad Pendleton, and Robbie Pyle comprised the top five. Series points leader Josh Brock finished sixth.

Up next: Money in the Bank 150 at Berlin Raceway (Marne, Mich.) on Monday, June 11

K&N Pro Series East: Ruben Garcia Jr. led the final 38 laps to win the Memphis 150 presented by AutoZone at Memphis International Raceway on Saturday night. It was the Mexico City native’s first K&N East victory. Series points leader Tyler Ankrum, who led a race-high 54 laps, finished second, 0.598 seconds behind Garcia. Tyler Dippel came third and sits second in the standings, 14 points back of Ankrum. Chase Cabre and Ronnie Bassett Jr. round out the top five.

Up next: JUSTDRIVE.com 125 at New Jersey Motorsports Park on Saturday, June 16.

K&N Pro Series West: The series returns from a two-week hiatus this Saturday for the NAPA/Toyota 150 at Colorado National Speedway. Ryan Partridge clings to a three-point lead in the standings over Derek Thorn. Derek Kraus (10 points behind), Cole Rouse (12 points behind) and Kody Vanderwal (17 points behind) make up the top five.

Lucas Oil Late Model Dirt Series: The Salute the Troops 75 at LaSalle Speedway got canceled this past weekend due to the weather. LOLMDS is off this week for the $100,000-to-win Dirt Late Model Dream at Eldora Speedway and is back in action June 14-16 for the Clash at the Mag at Magnolia Motor Speedway in Columbus, Mississippi. Jonathan Davenport (six wins) looks to keep up his torrid pace, as he holds a 260-point lead over Scott Bloomquist (four wins) through 22 of 55 races. Josh Richards (325 points back, two wins), Earl Pearson (335 points back, two wins) and Bobby Pierce (360 points back, two wins) complete the top five.

World of Outlaws Craftsman Sprint Car Series: David Gravel picked up his third win of the year and Brent Marks won his first WoO Sprint Series this past weekend. Gravel powered from third to first on a Lap-16 restart and never looked back to take the Rumble in Michigan at I-96 Speedway. Marks, meanwhile, won the Badger 40 at Wilmot Raceway (Wisconsin) by 4.514 seconds. Tony Stewart Racing’s Donny Schatz (nine wins) maintains a 96-point lead over Kasey Kahne Racing’s Brad Sweet (two wins) through 23 races. Gravel (192 points back, three wins), Shane Stewart (232 points back, no wins) of Kyle Larson Racing, and Daryn Pittman (256 points back, three wins) complete the top five.

Up next: Four races in five days, starting Tuesday at Fairbury American Legion Speedway and finishing with the 40th Annual AGCO Jackson Nationals from June 7-9 at Jackson Motorplex.

World of Outlaws Craftsman Late Model Series: Tennessee favorite Cory Hedgecock and national ringer Jimmy Owens picked up wins this past weekend. Hedgecock outlasted Owens on Friday night at his home track, 411 Motor Speedway in Seymour, Tennessee, for the upset triumph. Owens returned the following night in Victory Circle at Volunteer Speedway in Bulls Gap, Tennessee, after motoring around Chris Madden for the top spot with four to go. Madden (two wins, 11 top 10s) takes a 34-point series lead over Mike Marlar (one win, 11 top 10s) through 12 of 47 races. Brandon Sheppard (70 points back, three wins), Shane Clanton (80 points back, no wins) and Rick Eckert (132 points back, no wins) make up the top five.

Up next: An off weekend for the Dirt Late Model Dream at Eldora Speedway and then Stateline Speedway (Jamestown, N.Y.), Ransomville Speedway (Ransomville, N.Y.), and Wayne County Speedway (Orrville, Ohio) on June 14, 15 and 16, respectively.

Whelen Modified Tour: Points leader Justin Bonsignore led 100 of 150 laps to win the Seakonk 150 on Saturday at Seakonk Speedway in Massachusetts. Bonsignore (two wins in four races), who has a seven-point lead on second-place finisher Chase Dowling, regained the lead for good on Lap 23 from Matt Hirschman. Craig Lutz (19 points back), Timmy Solomito (32 points back), and Rob Summers (34 points back) complete the top five in the series standings.

Up next: Thomspon 125 on Wednesday, June 13 at Thomspon Speedway Motorsports Park in Connecticut.

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