by Jacob Hord @HordRaceWatcher

For a racer, being able to keep yourself in position to win, even when you may not have the winning car is a key skill to learn. For Stratton Briggs, that lesson was executed to perfection tonight at Limaland Motorsports Park for the inaugural Mike Streicher Memorial race.

30 of the USAC Speed2 Midwest Thunder Midgets helped open up Limaland for the first time since August of 2019. The future of the sport was on full display and they put on quite the show for the crowd. 

It was Briggs and Ian Creager leading the field to the green flag, with Briggs claiming the early lead. By lap two, fourth starting Jacob Denney had made his way to second already. On lap three, Denney was second and set his sites on Briggs for the lead. Before the end of lap three, Denney slid Briggs in turns one and two, and held off Briggs in three and four, claiming the lead.

Denney would build a steady five car-length advantage. On lap 10, Denney was approaching lapped traffic, but a yellow flag put him back in clean air. Denney still held a consistent five car advantage through the middle stages of the race.

Briggs had figured out turns three and four in the late stages, but Denney would pull away in turns one and two. With three laps left, Denney had some lapped traffic to deal with and disposed of easily, seemingly sealing the deal for the win. 

“I definitely had the track figured out in turns three and four and I was able to get in, and get off through the bottom and middle. Jacob had me beat in one and two and would pull me almost every corner. I just had to hit one and two right to stay with him,” Briggs said.

Coming to the checkered flag, in turns three and four, a lapped car spun, leaving Denney nowhere to go and he was collected, giving Briggs the lead.

Briggs nailed the restart, and cruised his way to the inaugural Mike Streicher win over Chett Gehrke and Ian Creager rounding out the podium.

“We definitely lucked into that one,” said Briggs. “Jacob [Denney] had it won, but those lapped cars got together and collected him. It’s a win in my book, and bad luck on his part.”HordRace

“It’s an honor to win the first ever Mike Streicher Memorial. It’s close to my hometown, and with the amount of fans here cheering for me tonight, I couldn’t be happier,” the race winner added.