Thursday, May 23, 2024

1992 - Maier Wows 'em at Knoxville Limited Nationals

Garry Lee Maier waves from victory lane after capturing the Knoxville Limited Nationals A-main at the Marion County Fairgrounds. – Gordon O’Field Photo

Knoxville, Iowa (May 23, 1992) – He’s the hottest 360 sprint car driver in the central states' region if not the nation and Saturday night at Knoxville Raceway Garry Lee Maier lived up to his reputation.

He drove to a remarkable victory at the second annual Knoxville Limited Nationals.

Maier, who started on the outside tail of the event, was only able to make the championship lineup after winning the B feature, likewise from a tail end start. The Dodge City, Kan., resident lost a magneto during Friday’s qualifications and the resultant poor time trial run placed him far down the line in this first year of a point system.

The 25-lap feature saw a two-car battle develop as the defending race winner Dave Hesmer and Danny Young engaged in a torrid fight for the top spot for the first dozen laps of the event. Young captured the initial lap of the race but soon trailed Hesmer until lap 12 when he overtook the frontrunner on the back chute. A red flag for a single accident negated the position change.

During the Young-Hesmer duel, Maier had surged through traffic to pot a third-place showing at the lap 12 red banner. Maier had posted a runner-up finish at last year’s event after starting 22nd.

The restart saw another battle for the top spot develop as Maier passed Young on the 14th circuit and for five laps, he and Hesmer put on a driving clinic not soon to be forgotten at the half-mile oval. Maier took the lead for good on lap 20 when Hesmer became hindered in lap traffic.

With Hesmer exiting turn four, Maier took the checkers $3,000 richer for his amazing efforts. Hesmer, who had started on the pole with a perfect 120 score, maintained second place but was pressed at the flag by Young.

Results –

1. Garry Lee Maier, Dodge City, Kan.
2. Dave Hesmer, Marshalltown, Iowa
3. Danny Young, Des Moines
4. Billy Bell, Colfax, Iowa
5. Randy Nygaard, Hartford, S.D.
6. Dwight Snodgrass, Indianola, Iowa
7. Mike Twedt, Huxley, Iowa
8. Bill Dusenberry, Burlington, Iowa
9. Mike Chadd, Lincoln, Neb.
10.Todd Wessels, Ellsworth, Minn.
11.Chris Walraven, Knoxville, Iowa
12.Mark Wilson, Des Moines
13.Larry Neighbors, Oklahoma City
14.Duane Van Heukelom, Des Moines
15.John Hunt, Tulsa, Okla.
16.John Gerloff, Lincoln, Neb.
17.Rick Salem, Denver, Colo.
18.Tom Lenz, Strawberry Point, Iowa
19.Chad Mellenberndt, Sioux Falls, S.D.
20.Terry Alexander, Knoxville, Iowa

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