ROSSBURG, OHIO (July 16, 2022 – Night) – Back in 1984, Earl Baltes along with his wife Berneice – Eldora’s First Lady, had a vision to put on a show that would hopefully grow into a signature sprint car event. That mission certainly has been accomplished as this year marks the 39th annual running of the event that now is considered one of the marquee events on every sprint car racer’s schedule every year – known simply as the King’s Royal. When the race was first presented, Steve Kinser won the inaugural event in 1984 and took home the $50,000 winner’s check which has now ballooned up to $175,000 under Tony Stewart’s direction since purchasing Eldora Speedway. The money alone is not what the drivers are chasing, they also want to add their name to the prestigious list of past winners and ultimately wear the King’s crown. On Saturday night with the energy in the air only being stirred up more by the excitement and anticipation even after the day race edition of the Knight Before the Kings Royal that was postponed from Friday night because of rain, there were 54 teams still lined up in the infield pit area ready to entertain and perform in front of the greatest fans in all of sports – sprint car fans!
The Kings Royal has a unique format for this special event that deviates from the normal World of Outlaws race and qualifying format. There is no split groups for time trials, no matter how many entries, in My Place Hotels Qualifying. Each driver gets their chance on the track in sequential order based on the pill they pulled by the luck of the draw. The lowest numbers go early, the highest numbers go late, and everything in between follows their cadence in order. The Albaugh – Your Alternative #41 Maxim would be the sixth race car out on the track along with Bradley Ashford to hustle around the half-mile. Carson Macedo was ready to wheel the forty-one from the comfort of his high speed office. The Bell Athlete was prepared and ready to set sail when his Kistler Engines/Engler Machine and Tool/All Pro Aluminum Cylinder engine came to life. He rolled up onto turn one as his engine fired. His right K1 Race Gear GTX-1 shoe dropped on the accelerator and he took off. He raced by the flagstand and the clock was ticking. When he charged by the waving white flag to start his last lap, his first one was recorded at 13.282 seconds. His second lap was clocked in slightly slower at 13.333 seconds. When Anthony Macri finished time trials qualifying, Carson’s best time stood as 18th quick overall, which put him on the outside of the front row in heat race #6. Justin Peck established the fastest lap of the night in 13.170 seconds.
Situated on the front row in the last of six 10-lap heat races, the Lemoore, California native pulled up alongside polesitter Travis Philo. Tyler Courtney and Tanner Thorson were in row two, Cap Henry and Dave Blaney made up row three, with Cale Thomas, Bill Rose and Bradley Ashford rounding out the starting grid. The slowly rolled into turn three and when they exited turn four Carson stood on the gas and let his Kistler Engines power do the work to carry him into the lead. He was in command of the top spot for the first two laps before the yellow flag flew as Tanner Thorson and Travis Philo got together racing for the third and final transfer position collecting Cap Henry. Carson would now share the front row with Tyler Courtney for the double file restart followed by Tanner Thorson and Cale Thomas. The winner of this race would start on the pole position in the 39th running of the Kings Royal. The two talented front row starters brought the field back up to speed with Courtney and Macedo exchanging the lead. Courtney executed a slider entering turn one followed by Macedo turning back underneath him to regain the lead out of turn two. Four laps into the race the two made slight racing contact coming down the backstretch. Both drivers maintained their spots in the running order and kept digging. Carson would hang on to take the heat race victory by 0.949 seconds as he was followed across the finish line by Tyler Courtney and Dave Blaney. Those three drivers just locked them into the 2022 edition of the Kings Royal.
With the 24 car field set for the 40-lap 39th Annual Kings Royal feature, the energy of the capacity crowd was bubbling out of the speed arena. The crews were making their final twists and turns. The drivers were climbing aboard their speed machines. It was now time to see who would earn the right to wear the Kings Royal crown presented by this year’s Royal Sovereign – Jac Haudenschild.
Carson Macedo and Kerry Madsen moved into their front row starting positions focused with a purpose in mind. Logan Schuchart and Brian Brown were just as hungry in row two. Cory Eliason and the winner of this year’s Historical Big One on Thursday night, Brent Marks, were poised I row three. The speed stars in the remaining nine rows were looking to be shining stars on this night, too. It was time to go racing at Eldora Speedway in one of the crown jewel events of the year. When the race began it was Kerry Madsen to the lead with Brian Brown in tow as they raced by Carson Macedo. On lap 2, Logan Schuchart was also able to navigate by the Albaugh – Your Alternative/Bandy & Associates/FK Shocks #41 relegating Carson back to the fourth position. The smoke from the pyrotechnics show did not lift and the yellow flag flew to give it time to clear. The running order for the restart was Madsen, Brown, Schuchart, Macedo, Marks and Brad Sweet. Madsen maintained the lead when they went back to green flag racing over Brown as Carson drove the MVT #41 back into third with Schuchart close behind. The next time around though Brent Marks snuck underneath both of them making it three wide in turn one with the #19 coming out in front of both Macedo and Schuchart. They stayed that way until lap 7, when Brad Sweet rolled to a stop on the exit of turn four with a shredded right rear tire. When the green light illuminated again it was Brian Brown driving into the lead over Madsen bringing Marks and Macedo along. Marks was tracking down the FVP Casey General Stores #21 as Carson closed in too. Donny Schatz was also making his presence known as he was tussling with Brown and Macedo now for the spot behind the leader. Marks was leading with 11 laps to go. Carson drove into the runner-up position with Schatz in third. Carson began closing on the leader as the front group was maneuvering through traffic. He was right there with 9 laps to go when the final yellow of the race was displayed, this time for Sheldon Haudenschild’s NOS Energy Drink #17 that was sitting backwards in turn two. Marks would bring them back to the waving green flag with Schatz and Macedo side-by-side heading into turn one. Schatz was in the middle with Macedo riding around the top lane. Schatz eventually got by Macedo but could not catch the fleeting Brent Marks. Marks went on to claim the crown with Donny Schatz coming home second followed by Carson Macedo in third as Logan Schuchart and Kyle Larson rounded out the top five. Truly a gritty and determined effort by the whole JJR #41 team – Carson, Philip, Clyde and Nate – to bring home a podium finish at the prestigious Kings Royal.
A Podium Run for Carson Macedo and the Albaugh #41 Team at the 39th Annual Kings Royal! Photo Credit: World of Outlaws
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To stay up-to-date with Carson Macedo and his success journey on and off the track, as well as to purchase his gear and merchandise directly, visit www.carsonmacedoracing.com.