By the URSS
OBERLIN -- Adam Trimble said he doesn't know how to perform a perfect slide-job.
After Sunday afternoon, he might have figured it out.
Trimble used a pair of nifty slide-jobs during the waning laps of the second annual Bob Salem Memorial at Decatur County Speedway to win the final United Rebel Sprint Series show of the season.
"They were pretty hefty slide-jobs, in my opinion," Trimble said. "I don't know how to throw slide-jobs at all. I was just throwing them in there, hoping I wouldn't fly off the track. They stuck, and lucky for me, we ended up winning."
What made the day even better for Trimble was the fact he also clinched the Colorado Region championship by finishing ahead of Jake Bubak -- who ended up winning the URSS national title. It was the first time in series history a Colorado driver won the national crown.
"We came in with only two points between us," Trimble said about battling Bubak for the regional title. "Honestly, I didn't think I was going to win it. To actually pull out a win and the (Colorado) championship, that's great."
Trimble started ninth, alongside Cody Salem. Keefe Hemel and Kade Hagans started on the front row, and Hemel took control from the drop of the green flag.
Hemel paced the way through the first five laps before Hagans -- who was running seventh -- hit the berm in turn one and bicycled his sprint car. That forced him off the track, where he hit the guard rail at the bottom off the turns. It ended his night, but he was OK.
Hemel paced the field back to green, followed by Dewell, Darren Berry, Trimble and Steven Richardson.
Hemel would pull away again, only to have the field bunched back up after lap 13 when Walinder spun off turn two.
By that time, Trimble had moved up to third behind Hemel and Dewell.
"We got really lucky on the first couple laps," Trimble said. "The bottom really wasn't there the whole race, but it worked out really well for us on the first couple laps. Everybody kind of stayed in the middle or went to the top. Then once I got the chance to go to the top, that's where I really wanted to be. That's where the good groove was. We got really lucky, I think."
Hemel pulled away on the restart once again, putting several car lengths between him and Dewell.
"The way the track was, where it was pretty much one groove. On the restarts if anybody was going to do anything, it was going to be a slider," Hemel said. "I was trying to get myself a good restart to avoid the slider. There just wasn't anywhere to go down and try to block one. The first time, I think I started in between three and four, just trying to sucker him. The second one, you would normally think they would wait until they get to the cone, so I just back it up farther. That's what I was doing, trying to protect against the slider in one and two."
Trimble kept working on Dewell until lap 21, when he made a slide-job stick in turns one and two to move into the runner-up spot.
That's when the leaders hit lap traffic again. Two laps later, Hemel hesitated entering turn one with lap traffic in front of him. That opened the door for Trimble, who slid his way to the top spot.
"Just that one hesitation. That's all it was," Hemel said. "If I would have just drove it down in there and tried the slider, I think I would have been all right. I just hesitated that one bit, and that's all it took."
Trimble led the final three laps to take the win.
"The track held up really good," Trimble said. "I thought when we got here it would be around the bottom, but it turns out it had a pretty heavy, heavy cushion really. It was a lot heavier than we're used to in Colorado anyways. You just kind of put it up there and hoped for the best. I can't believe we finished, to be honest."
Hemel finished second, followed by Dewell, Richardson and Zac Taylor.
"I don't want to sound like a butt because I got second," Hemel said. "There's a lot of other people that would have taken second. It was just that close, though. I got around those lap cars, and I thought I would try to run him down. Then there was the checkered flag. I was counting back in my head, and I gave it up with a few laps to go. Ugh."
Luke Cranston was credited with a 14th-place finish, enough to earn him the Kansas Region crown.
Heat race winners were Darren Berry, Richardson and Bubak.
The Keizer Aluminum Wheels Hard-Charger Award went to Trimble, who moved up eight spots.
1. Adam Trimble, 2. Keefe Hemel, 3. Richie Dewell, 4. Steven Richardson, 5. Zac Taylor, 6. Zach Blurton, 7. Jake Bubak, 8. Brian Herbert, 9. Darren Berry, 10. Cody Salem, 11. John Webster, 12. Brian Hardman, 13. Mark Walinder, 14. Luke Cranston (DNF), 15. Coby Pearce (DNF), 16. Jake Greider (DNF), 17. Kade Hagans (DNF), 18. Nate Berry (DNS), 19. Aaron Ploussard (DNS), 20. Chad Salem (DNS), 21. Josh Hudson (DNS).