Scott Bloomquist heads to Mississippi on heels of win and runner-up finishes

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Scott Bloomquist just keeps motoring along in the National Dirt Racing League.

Bloomquist is coming off a strong weekend performance where he was runnerup Saturday at Virginia Motor Speedway, and then for an encore won Sunday’s main event at Winchester (Tenn.) Speedway.

Powered by Roush Yates Engines’ newly designed RY45 motor, Bloomquist set a track record while earning the top qualifying spot at VMS with a lap time of 16.509 seconds on Saturday. He just barely lost the race to winner Jonathan Davenport.

The following night, in his first trip to Winchester in nearly three years, Bloomquist swept pretty much everything there was to sweep at the 3/8-mile oval.

He won the heat race and then took over the lead 11 laps from the finish and never looked back in the Gunter’s Honey 50 event, finshing nearly three seconds ahead of runner-up Kent Robinson.

“I’ll tell you what, it turned into a slick Tennessee racetrack and the RY45 was awesome,” Scott said. “Everyone said there was a specific tire you had to run here and to not run anything else, but I don’t like to listen.”

Bloomquist now has three wins and a runner-up in the NDRL thus far this season. His Team Zero races this weekend (April 17-19) for the NDRL Kings of Dirt Super Late Model Series Special at Magnolia Motor Speedway in Columbus, Miss.

Follow me @JerryBonkowski

Carb Day: Tony Kanaan is fastest in final practice for Sunday’s Indy 500

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Tony Kanaan wants to put legendary driver and team owner A.J. Foyt back into Victory Lane at the Indianapolis 500.

Kanaan took a big step toward achieving that goal in Friday’s final practice for Sunday’s 102nd running of the Greatest Spectacle In Racing.

Kanaan was fastest of the 33-driver field, with a best lap around the 2.5-mile Indianapolis Motor Speedway oval at 227.791 mph, more than 2 mph faster than the second-fastest driver, Kanaan’s former teammate, Scott Dixon (225.684 mph).

Foyt won a record-tying four Indy 500’s as a driver. It’s been nearly 20 years since he also won as a team owner in 1999 with Kenny Brack behind the wheel.

Marco Andretti was third-fastest (225.200 mph), followed by Sebastien Bourdais (224.815), Charlie Kimball (224.712), 2017 Indy 500 winner Takuma Sato (224.083), Will Power (223.942), Danica Patrick (223.653), Spencer Pigot (223.584) and Ed Jones (223.556).

Other notable driver speeds included:

* Pole sitter Ed Carpenter was 14th fastest (223.219 mph).

* Reigning Verizon IndyCar Series champ Josef Newgarden was 15th (223.186 mph).

* Helio Castroneves, hoping to earn a record-tying fourth 500 win, was 17th (222.913 mph).

* Graham Rahal was 21st (222.526).

* Former 500 winner Ryan Hunter-Reay was 26th (221.916 mph), followed by rookie Robert Wickens (221.821 mph), carrying the mantle for Schmidt Peterson Motorsports with James Hinchcliffe having failed to qualify for the race.

* The biggest surprise was 2016 Indy 500 winner Alexander Rossi, who was 32nd fastest (221.374 mph).

We’ll have the full speed grid, as well as full driver quotes, shortly. Please check back soon.

Follow @JerryBonkowski