Season 4 of our Nascar Heat League kicked off Wednesday night from Atlanta Motor Speedway. Before we start the recap, we would like to recognize the Champions from Season 3. Sean Ryan (Sean420Cali) took home the Driver’s Championship. Sean had a great season taking home 3 wins, and was the most consistent finisher with 9 Top 5’s on the Season. Unfortunately scheduling issues will prevent Sean from defending his title in Season 4. Micheal Caterino (vWardude) won the Playoff Championship, being the top finisher of the Championship 4 at Homestead with his runner-up finish and edging out Sean by 0.095 seconds. Michael and Nick Michaud (NickCM12) formed One Two Racing and took home the Team Championship. Consistency was the key for One Two Racing as while they did not have any wins, the team lead the league in Top 5’s for the Season. As for Atlanta, this will be the 2nd visit for the league to the super-fast 1.5 Quad Oval. Kyle Spencer (KDawgHonda777) will look to defend his only Career win in the Nascar League after taking the checkered flag back in Season 2.
Qualifying would be all about the draft at Atlanta. Repeating the feat when he made is League debut at the Season 3 finale at Homestead, Mathew Billingsley (ScoutBonk18) snagged his 2nd Pole in as many races. Mathew edged out Charles Sumner (Hootius) and denied him of repeating his Pole performance from back in Season 2. Brian Mosser (BrianMosser88), Adam Zemke (Zeke_H30) and Micheal Caterino (vWardude) rounded out the Top 5 in a very competitive qualifying, were the Top 7 drivers were within .200 seconds of each other.
The race started out with very close action before the 1st round of pit stops. Mathew held the lead from the start, and Brian moved himself in 2nd place with a move on the 3rd lap. While still in 2nd place, Brian’s in-game fuel calculator would not do him any justice as he would run out of gas exiting Turn 2, which resulted in a spin and Brian going several laps down with a car that had the speed to contend tonight. After the 2nd round of pits stops, we would see our only caution of the race. This jumbled up the field as everyone came back in to top off on fuel. Mathew and Charles would now find themselves in the middle of the pack after running up front for the first half of the race. The field would stay pretty close together until the next round of pit stops. Mathew would eventually find himself up front again, with Kyle Spencer (KDawgHonda777) and Charles a few seconds behind, but with a decent gap over the rest of the field. Mathew would spin trying to enter pit road, with his car almost completely blocking the entry. This caused both Kyle and Charles to slide their cars in an evasive maneuver to avoid Mathew, thus resulted in 15 second penalties for both driver for the pit entry. With no other cautions and running mistake free for the rest of the race, Mathew took advantage of that situation to pull away in the last fuel stint and captured his 2nd Career win in as many starts in the PRL. Charles and Kyle would both fall outside of the Top 5 for the finish. Rob Besaw (Xsyse) would run a clean race and used the consistency to take home 2nd place, with Adam, Nick Michaud (NickCM12) and Bobby Marshall (Lilmanr3dn3ck) rounding out the Top 5. To go along with his 2nd Career Top 5, Bobby also took home his 1st Career Fastest Lap of the Race Award! Also to go along with their great finishes, Rob and Bobby both found themselves going +5 from their qualifying positions to share the Hard Charger of the Race Award.
Here are the Top 10 finishers from Atlanta:
1. Mathew Billingsley (ScoutBonk18) – 2nd Career Win
2. Rob Besaw (Xsyse) – 7th Career Top 5
3. Adam Zemke (Zeke_H30) – 12th Career Top 5
4. Nick Michaud (NickCM12) – 9th Career Top 5
5. Bobby Marshall (Lilmanr3dn3ck) – 2nd Career Top 5
6. Christopher Johnson (Meattyloaf)
7. Charles Sumner (Hootius)
8. Kyle Spencer (KDawgHonda777)
9. Micheal Caterino (vWardude)
10. Noah Michalski (TheNoahCat)
The Driver’s Championship looks like the finishing order of Atlanta, with Mathew Billingsley (ScoutBonk18) out to an early 6 point lead over Rob Besaw (Xsyse).
The Playoff Championship has Mathew Billingsley (ScoutBonk18) clinching a spot into the 2nd Round with his win. Also, several drivers ended up missing the Atlanta race due to life obligations, so the 11 drivers who participate all find themselves in a good early spot to transfer to Round 2 (top 12 drivers in points advance).
The Team Championship is just about as close as anyone could imagine. Due to no team having both drivers with strong finishes at Atlanta, we currently have 2 teams tied for the lead, One Two Racing (Michael and Nick) and Wall Riders Inc. (Adam and Brian). The next 3 teams are within 2 points of the lead, and the 6th place team just 7 points off of the lead. We will have to wait another week to see if a team can start separating themselves from the rest of the field.
The 2nd race of the Season next week will show no mercy or forgiveness as the crew heads to the “Monster Mile” of Dover. The high speed, high banked oval is super tight and will require just about perfection to take home the checkered flag. Feel free to join in on one of the many drivers in the League who stream their POVs on Twitch every Wednesday night at 9PM EST for all of the fast paced action.