The Nascar boys had their most “Driver VS Track” race of the season, “The Track Too Tough to Tame” at Darlington.
Qualifying was as tight as the racing line is at Darlington, as the Top 6 drivers were all within a quarter of a second of each other. Mitchell Riggs (MithcMan009) picked up his league leading 5th Pole of the season. Rob Besaw (Xsyse) snagged the outside of Row 1, a PRL career best for him. Christopher Herring (CJHerring), Adam Zemke (Zeke_H30) and Charles Sumner (Hootius) rounded out the Top 5.
The race started off with a few too many cautions than the league would have wanted, but it’s hard to place blame at a very unforgiving track like “The Lady in Black”. If damage could be turned on in this game, every driver in the field would have had their paint job smudged on the right side of the car, along the painting the Safer Barriers a wide variety of colors throughout the turns. As all the smoke cleared at the end of Lap 45 for Segment 1, Christopher snagged his league leading 7th Stage win. Kyle Spencer (KDawgHonda777), Kyle Ely (Rocksson2Kyle), Rob and Charles rounded out the Top 5 respectively and earned the remainder of the Stage Bonus Points. The remaining 139 laps flew by at a pretty rapid pace, as we saw only 2 caution periods during that time frame (including the race ending on a 74 lap green flag run). The battle of survival saw Mitchell come away with his 4th win of the season, followed by Adam, Christopher, Rob and Kyle Ely rounding out the Top 5 respectively.
The top 10 finishing order was:
1st – Mitchell Riggs (MithcMan009) – 4th win of the season. 3rd Hat-Trick of the Pole, Win and Fastest Race Lap
2nd – Adam Zemke (Zeke_H30) – 6th Top 5 of the season
3rd – Christopher Herring (CJHerring) – 9th Top 5 of the season
4th – Rob Besaw (Xsyse) – 4th Top 5 of the season
5th – Kyle Ely (Rocksson2Kyle) – 9th Top 5 of the season
6th – Charles Sumner (Hootius) – 18th Top 10 in 20 races this season
7th – Christopher Johnson (MeattyLoaf) – 6th Top 10 of the season
8th – Brian Mosser (Brianmosser88) – 7th Top 10 of the season
9th – Matthew Wilson (MattWilson20) – Top 10 in his first PRL league race
10th – Kyle Spencer (KDawgHonda777) – 12th Top 10 of the season
Darlington had big implications on the Driver’s Championship, but for better or worse depends on the outlook of the specific driver. The point’s leader going into the race was Michael Caterino (vWardude), who was out of town, but managed to start and park to receive incredibly valuable points towards the championship (unlike how Charles Sumner (Hootius), was not able to do, and missed Indianapolis completely 2 weeks ago). Charles was also unable to capitalize and take advantage of Micheal’s last place points as Stage Bonus Points and finishing positions were left on the table. Charles’ spring in his Thrustmaster throttle gave out during the race, and dropped him out of the Top 5 in the final 10 laps of the race, as he only gained 7 points on Michael. With 2 races to go, Michael has a 14 point lead over Charles. Even if Charles pulls off the Hat Trick and wins the Stages in the final 2 races, Michael’s lead is still enough for him to control his own destiny for the Championship. Christopher Herring (CJHerring) is on the outside looking in as he sits 30 points back of Michael, but still mathematically in the hunt for the Championship. The Battle for 4th place is incredibly close after 21 races, as Aaron Webb (AaronWebb85), Kyle Spencer (KDawgHonda777), Adam Zemke (Zeke_H30), and Kyle Ely (Rocksson2Kyle) are only separated by a combined 9 points. With 2 races to go in the season, all 4 of the drivers can control their final point’s standings with strong runs.