Illinois State Fair Racing Kody Swanson Preview Story

Springfield Win Gives Swanson Chance to Tie Foyt, KenyonBy Jay HardinTrack Enterprises

(Springfield, IL) Kody Swanson, leading USAC Silver Crown points and a favorite coming into Springfield, has to seem like a broken record to race fans.  In fact, a sportswriter could have written the exact same story for the last 8 years, simply changed a few words and the date, and have his pre-race story for the Bettenhausen 100 presented by Hunt Brothers Pizza covered.  The racing world seems to have the same “groundhog day” pattern this year as well.  The six-time USAC champ out of Kingsburg, California is contending for a seventh USAC championship.  The defending Bettenhausen 100 can’t be counted out either when the big cars roll onto the Illinois State Fair Mile August 20.

A win at Springfield gives Swanson a great chance to tie legend A.J. Foyt and Mel Kenyon for the most championships in USAC history.  Kenyon won 7 USAC midget championships, while Foyt won 7 USAC national championships.  Swanson’s 6 titles have all come in championship style machinery, the Silver Crown cars being the name given to the series ten years after the championship dirt track machines were removed from the national championship.  No matter the series name, a Silver Crown machine is still an upright version of the same cars used on the championship trail prior to 1971.

Swanson has never driven a rear engine “Indy Car”.  All of his record 36 wins have come in the Silver Crown Series and the upright machines, with 11 of the 36 coming on one mile dirt tracks.  His six Silver Crown titles far surpass the three of former record holders Jimmy Sills and Bud Kaeding.  Three of the eleven mile track victories have come at Springfield, including last August.

Last August Swanson set fast time but started 23rd due to a tire change.  In true Swanson fashion he bided his time, and by halfway was close to the lead, taking the top slot on lap 61 and never looking back as rain shortened the event to 76 miles.  Swanson also did it in a new ride taking over the Chris Dyson owned machine for the first time at the 2021 Bettenhausen 100.

Swanson is the winner of two points paying events in the 2022 USAC Silver Crown season, at Winchester and Toledo plus a special event at Lucas Oil Raceway Park.  He has an 18-point lead over Logan Seavey and a 38-point lead over C.J. Leary.  The series also has one event prior to Springfield, at World Wide Technology Raceway August 19.  The potential points available at Springfield could give Swanson quite a boost toward title number seven.

The event is all part of a huge weekend of racing that begins Friday night, August 19 at Lincoln Speedway featuring MOWA Sprint Cars, Saturday afternoon, August 20 with USAC Silver Crown and Sportsman at the Illinois State Fairgrounds, Saturday night at Macon Speedway with POWRi National Midgets, and Sunday afternoon, August 21 with ARCA and Sportsman at the Illinois State Fair.Advance tickets for the Illinois State Fair races are available by calling the Track Enterprises office at 217-764-3200, by calling the Illinois State Fair box office at 217-782-1979, or by stopping by the Illinois State Fair box office. Advance sale discounted tickets for the ARCA Menards Series event on Sunday, August 21 can be purchased in Central Illinois area Menards stores for a price of just $20.