Ryan Timms tames red dirt for USAC Midget State of Origin triumph
Meeker, Oklahoma — Played as the driver of a Keith Kunz/Curb-Agajanian Motorsports car for the first time in his career in the USAC NOS Energy Drink Midget National Championship, Ryan Timms performed to perfection.
When it came time to roll the credits, the Oklahoma City, Okla. native. starred at Tuesday Night Thunder at Red Dirt Raceway in Meeker, Okla., where he celebrated his second career USAC National Midget victory.
2022 USAC Midgets at Red Dirt Raceway
If running the bottom is in quotes like “having a job,” then Timms earned a time and a half for his dedication and effort. Starting fourth, Timms dropped back to sixth as the field came out of lap two on the opening lap of his Keith Kunz-Curb-Agajanian Motorsports/iBuyPower – TRD – Toyota/Bullet By Spike/Speedway Toyota.
Rather than take the long road, Timms found a shortcut by taking matters into her own hands. Midway down the back straight, Timms sliced from the top to the bottom of turn three. This put his nose under Crouch and, by the time he came out of turn four, Timms had come out of the turn one lane lower in front of Crouch to secure second.
On lap five, Timms briefly jumped uphill in turns one and two, stepping on the left front on the pad and losing ground before quickly deciding it was a “no go” and tucked all the way in. bottom behind race leader Thomas Meseraull. .
Timms trailed Meseraull for the first 12 circuits, but as soon as Meseraull slipped a lane out of turn four on lap 13, Timms sunk his teeth into the surface and got the bite that propelled him into the lead, heading into the lead. using the path he had an idea he needed to be on.
“After the micro sprint feature I knew the bottom was definitely going to be a lot better,” Timms said. “I started on the outside and went down as fast as I could, then just waited for T-Mez to make a mistake, took advantage of it, and then went from there.”
VIDEO: Hear Ryan Timms and the rest of the podiums from Tuesday night.
From then on, Timms maintained a steady five-to-six-car lead over Meseraull until lap 17 of Bryant Wiedeman’s 23rd lap into corner three which brought out the warning and erased the 1.176 second lead from Timms.
However, Timms picked up where he left off on the ensuing restart, bouncing back to a five-car lead as Meseraull, Brenham Crouch and others dug to the bottom amid his vapor trail. In the lead was Justin Grant who restarted sixth but picked his challengers one by one while forging his own path as a lone ranger on the pad, dropping from 6th to 5th to 4th to 3rd in quick succession.
Leading the field, Timms had covered the pack as he sailed smoothly through the night with a triumph of 0.993 seconds. Meanwhile, Grant rode the long way around the 1/4 mile dirt oval to pinch Meseraull at the line for second place. Meseraull grabbed the final podium spot while Crouch scored a fourth and Buddy Kofoid rounded out the top five after starting all the way back in 18th.
For the second year in a row, an Oklahoman native was the hero of Red Dirt. Last year it was Daison Pursley, also in a KKM race, who kept the glory within the confines of the Sooner State. Tuesday night was Timms’ turn, as he handed car owner Kunz his 129th series victory as a participant, putting him within four wins of the all-time record held by Steve Lewis at 133.
Timms has one of the most interesting stat lines in the USAC National Midget ranks. In 19 career series to date, he has only twice top-five finishes. Both of those top-five finishes ended in wins.
It takes a full team effort to jump into a car mid-season in a ‘plug and play’ situation and have the pairing work as smoothly and successfully as Timms, KKM and crew chief Jarrett Martin participated on Tuesday. It’s like comfort. It’s like Oklahoma. It’s like home for Timms.
Justin Grant (Ione, CA) committed to the top for most of the time while most never strayed far from the bottom. Starting from the outside of the front row, Grant dropped to seventh near the halfway point, then charged from sixth to second in the final eight-lap streak to finish second for the second straight year at Red. dirt. in his RMS Racing/NOS Energy Drink – EnviroFab – Response Management Services/Spike/Speedway Toyota.
“It took me half the race to clean (the top) and shape it properly,” Grant explained. “We weren’t very good down there; I’m never very good deep down. So, I just kept beating on it and trying. I figured I was going to get up there and fight up there or line up and run fifth down. I would much rather be up there working. At the end it was really fun and everyone was starting to come back to us. We just needed to start a little earlier.
Thomas Meseraull (San Jose, Calif.) admitted he wasn’t the best bottom runner. Nevertheless, this is where he led the first 12 laps of the final. In the end, he came home with a career-best third place finish at Red Dirt in his RMS Racing/EnviroFab – Response Management Services – Engler Machine/Spike/Speedway Toyota.
“I’m not the best down there so I was probably the second best car down here; we’ll just take that,” Meseraull said.
At Fatheadz Eyewear Qualifiers, Taylor Reimer (Bixby, Okla.) became the first woman in USAC National Midget history to record three fast time awards in her career. Although she’s originally from Oklahoma, Tuesday was her very first visit to Red Dirt.