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Thiel returns to MSA 360 Sprint Car roots with Plymouth A-main win, McMullen earns fifth MSA title



(PEDAL DOWN PROMOTIONS) September 30, 2023 – In one of his infrequent starts behind the wheel of an Akright Auto Midwest Sprint Car Association - Plymouth Dirt Track Racing – 360 Sprint Car, Scotty Thiel of Sheboygan outdueled newly crowned five-time Midwest Sprint Car Association and three-time PDTR 360 Sprint Car champion Brandon McMullen of Oshkosh to capture the 25-lap Fuzzy Fassbender Tribute A-main, during the sixth annual Wisconsin Sprint Car Championships Presented by A-Main Apparel at The Plymouth Dirt Track in Plymouth, Wis. on Saturday, Sept. 30.


Despite falling just short in his A-main victory bid, Brandon McMullen celebrated his fifth Midwest Sprint Car Association title and third Plymouth Dirt Track Racing 360 Sprint Car title by wrapping up the 2023 MSA and PDTR 360 Sprint Car championships.


On the initial start of the 25-lap Akright Auto PDTR-MSA 360 Sprint Car main event, contact in turn two resulted in the machine of Brandon Berth of Cascade flipping in turn two.


Following a complete restart, Bill Taylor of Boltonville grabbed the lead from the pole with outside front row starter Alex Pokorski of West Bend following in second. On lap 5, Pokorski made contact with the back stretch wall, which brought out the second caution flag of the event and ended the fourth-year 360 Sprint Car driver’s night.


When the race resumed, Taylor again bolted in the lead, while 2011 Plymouth Dirt Track Racing and Midwest Sprint Car Association 360 Sprint Car champ Ben Schmidt of Plymouth moved into second after starting fifth and ninth starter Scotty Thiel vaulted in third on lap 6.


Two laps later, the high riding Thiel bolted around Schmidt to advance into the runner-up spot before the now five-time Midwest Sprint Car Association 360 Sprint Car champion Brandon McMullen worked his way past Schmidt to seize third on lap 9.


One lap later, Thiel closed to within striking distance of Taylor for the top spot before surging into the top spot along the high groove in turn one on lap 12.


Thiel, who launched his Sprint Car career by earning the PDTR 360 Sprint Car Rookie of the Year Award in 2008, caught lapped traffic on lap 13, which allowed McMullen to gradually reel in the leader. After following in Thiel’s tire tracks for several laps, McMullen utilizing the inside groove to briefly surge into the top spot exiting turn four on lap 24.


In his first PDTR-MSA 360 Sprint Car start of the 2023 season, Thiel was not to be denied as he powered Randy Sippel’s 39s car back around McMullen in turn two on the final lap en route to his third career PDTR 360 Sprint Car A-main victory and 13th career MSA 360 Sprint Car main event triumph.


With the victory in the 24th and final event of the 2023 MSA season, Thiel became the eighth driver to post an MSA A-main triumph this season.


“I felt comfortable in the car and I thought we were getting through lapped traffic pretty good,” Thiel said in victory lane. “I was kind of falling out of the seat there near the end of the race, but then I saw [Brandon McMullen] pass me on the second-from-last lap and I had to get up on the wheel. It was a pretty fun night with the 360 Sprint Car. I have to thank Randy Sippel for everything he does to get this 39s 360 car on the track and providing me with a fast car all night.”


McMullen had to settle for second, Schmidt placed third, Taylor wound up fourth and eighth starter Kevin Karnitz of West Bend rounded out the top five.


Justin Erickson of Plymouth won the 15-lap PDTR-MSA 360 Sprint Car B main.


Kevin Karnitz of West Bend recorded the fastest lap in the Akright Auto Plymouth Dirt Track Racing – Midwest Sprint Car Association 360 Sprint Car division by touring the third-mile clay oval in 12.194 seconds.


The 18th and final event of the 2023 campaign at The Plymouth Dirt Track, which was sponsored by Jensen Sales & Service, drew a season-high season-high 33 Akright Auto Plymouth Dirt Track Racing-Midwest Sprint Car Association 360 Sprint Cars.


The 2023 Plymouth Dirt Track Racing Awards presentation will take place on Saturday, Oct. 14 at Racers Hall in Plymouth, Wis. starting at 7 p.m. The top three finishers and special award winners in the PDTR 360 Sprint Car division will be honored during the event.


The Plymouth Dirt Track at the Sheboygan County Fairgrounds is located at 229 Fairview Drive in Plymouth, Wis. For more information, visit www.plymouthdtr.com or check out Plymouth Dirt Track Racing on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.


AKRIGHT AUTO PLYMOUTH DIRT TRACK RACING 360 SPRINT CARS


A Main (25 Laps): 1. 39S-Scotty Thiel [9]; 2. 98-Brandon McMullen [4]; 3. 35-Ben Schmidt [5]; 4. 69-Bill Taylor [1]; 5. 63K-Kevin Karnitz [8]; 6. 69S-TJ Smith [7]; 7. 85J-Logan Julien [13]; 8. 2-Chris Clayton [15]; 9. 16-Anthony Knierim [6]; 10. 10V-Matt VanderVere [10]; 11. 3-Justin Erickson [16]; 12. 44-Hayden Johnson [17]; 13. 51-Chris Larson [19]; 14. 11-Tony Wondra [11]; 15. 21H-TJ Haddy [14]; 16. 30-Doug Wondra [21]; 17. 66-Nick Daywalt [20]; 18. 52-Cody Schlafer [22]; 19. 6K-Kurt Davis [3]; 20. 12P-JJ Pagel [18]; 21. 4-Alex Pokorski [2]; 22. (DNF) 22B-Brandon Berth [12]


B Main (15 Laps): 1. 3-Justin Erickson [1]; 2. 44-Hayden Johnson [5]; 3. 12P-JJ Pagel [2]; 4. 51-Chris Larson [4]; 5. 66-Nick Daywalt [3]; 6. 30-Doug Wondra [6]; 7. 08-Katelyn Krebsbach [9]; 8. 66T-Tristan Koenings [10]; 9. 53A-Spyder Akright [14]; 10. 54-Randy Post [8]; 11. 22-Greg Alt [7]; 12. 38-Ben Doak [11]; 13. (DNF) 7-Kristian Wagner [13]; 14. (DNF) 25-Kasey Schlafer [12]; 15. (DNS) 29J-Ralph Johnson; 16. (DNS) 26-Al Schlafer; 17. (DNS) 55S-Ryan Sawusch


Heat 1 (8 Laps): 1. 16-Anthony Knierim [1]; 2. 6K-Kurt Davis [2]; 3. 4-Alex Pokorski [4]; 4. 21H-TJ Haddy [3]; 5. 3-Justin Erickson [5]; 6. 30-Doug Wondra [6]; 7. 54-Randy Post [8]; 8. 7-Kristian Wagner [7]; 9. (DNS) 26-Al Schlafer


Heat 2 (8 Laps): 1. 69S-TJ Smith [2]; 2. 98-Brandon McMullen [3]; 3. 35-Ben Schmidt [6]; 4. 44-Hayden Johnson [1]; 5. 66-Nick Daywalt [5]; 6. 52-Cody Schlafer [8]; 7. (DNF) 66T-Tristan Koenings [4]; 8. (DNF) 55S-Ryan Sawusch [7]


Heat 3 (8 Laps): 1. 39S-Scotty Thiel [4]; 2. 53A-Paul Pokorski [1]; 3. 11-Tony Wondra [2]; 4. 85J-Logan Julien [3]; 5. 2-Chris Clayton [5]; 6. 22B-Brandon Berth [8]; 7. 08-Katelyn Krebsbach [6]; 8. 38-Ben Doak [7]


Heat 4 (8 Laps): 1. 63K-Kevin Karnitz [4]; 2. 69-Bill Taylor [1]; 3. 10V-Matt VanderVere [3]; 4. 51-Chris Larson [2]; 5. 12P-JJ Pagel [5]; 6. 22-Greg Alt [6]; 7. 25-Kasey Schlafer [8]; 8. (DNS) 29J-Ralph Johnson


Qualifying 1: 1. 4-Alex Pokorski, 12.238 [1]; 2. 21H-TJ Haddy, 12.249 [8]; 3. 6K-Kurt Davis, 12.269 [7]; 4. 16-Anthony Knierim, 12.326 [3]; 5. 3-Justin Erickson, 12.557 [5]; 6. 30-Doug Wondra, 12.740 [4]; 7. 7-Kristian Wagner, 13.203 [9]; 8. 54-Randy Post, 13.511 [2]; 9. 26-Al Schlafer, 14.590 [6]


Qualifying 2: 1. 66T-Tristan Koenings, 12.296 [1]; 2. 98-Brandon McMullen, 12.334 [3]; 3. 69S-TJ Smith, 12.376 [7]; 4. 44-Hayden Johnson, 12.506 [2]; 5. 66-Nick Daywalt, 12.602 [6]; 6. 35-Ben Schmidt, 12.704 [4]; 7. 52-Cody Schlafer, 15.020 [8]; 8. 55S-Ryan Sawusch, 15.043 [5]


Qualifying 3: 1. 39S-Scotty Thiel, 12.218 [3]; 2. 85J-Logan Julien, 12.275 [7]; 3. 11-Tony Wondra, 12.361 [5]; 4. 53A-Paul Pokorski, 12.484 [6]; 5. 2-Chris Clayton, 12.507 [2]; 6. 08-Katelyn Krebsbach, 12.560 [4]; 7. 38-Ben Doak, 13.204 [8]; 8. (DNS) 22B-Brandon Berth, 13.204


Qualifying 4: 1. 63K-Kevin Karnitz, 12.194 [3]; 2. 10V-Matt VanderVere, 12.447 [6]; 3. 51-Chris Larson, 12.528 [1]; 4. 69-Bill Taylor, 12.791 [7]; 5. 12P-JJ Pagel, 13.010 [5]; 6. 22-Greg Alt, 13.065 [4]; 7. 29J-Ralph Johnson, 13.386 [2]; 8. 25-Kasey Schlafer, 16.515 [8]


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