Friday, August 13, 2021

1977 – Parsons Tops USAC Midgets at Paragon

Johnny Parsons is joined by his crew after his victory at Paragon. 

Paragon, Ind. (August 13, 1977) – Severe weather resulted in drastic revisions in the time schedule of Saturday night’s United States Auto Club midget program at Paragon Speedway, but Johnny Parsons didn’t alter his winning formula and scored his third consecutive main event win.

Parsons opened the show by setting fast time with a 17.685-second clocking for one lap around the 3/8-mile dirt oval, which had been soaked by a heavy downpour earlier in the day.

With threatening skies on the horizon and only 24 cars on hand, officials decided to run the 40-lap main event immediately after qualifications, starting all 24 racers in the contest rather than the customary 20.

Making his midget debut, Sheldon Kinser started the feature on the outside of polesitter Dennis Dorsey but had trouble negotiating the first turn and a eight-car pileup ensued.

When the contest was restarted, Wes Stafford vaulted into first place, but on the second lap, Parsons, who had started ninth, took over.

Parsons remained in front the rest of the way to capture his tenth midget triumph of the campaign with Stafford taking second.

Chris Cumberworth was third ahead of Mel Kenyon, Lonnie Caruthers and Larry Patton.

Results –

1. Johnny Parson
2. Wes Stafford
3. Chris Cumberworth
4. Mel Kenyon
5. Lonnie Caruthers
6. Larry Patton
7. Steve Cannon
8. Tom Steiner
9. Dennis Dorsey
10.Tom Burghardt
11.Pancho Carter
12.Mike Schiesel
13.Tom Bigelow
14.Jeff Heywood
15.Sheldon Kinser
16.Robin Miller
17.Jerry Weeks
18.Clark Templeman
19.Rich Vogler
20.Alan Brown
21.Mark Alderson
22.Sleepy Tripp
23.Ken Nichols
24.Tony Bettenhausen Jr.

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