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Trevor Huddleston Dominates Evergreen For Second Career Victory

MONROE, Wash. — Nobody had anything for Trevor Huddleston.

The Agoura Hills, California native cruised to his second K&N Pro Series West win of this season and his career at Evergreen Speedway in the NAPA Auto Parts 150 on Saturday night, leading the most laps (85) en route to the victory.

“The car unloaded pretty quick, the guys at the shop were on top of it, and the guys at the track were on top of it even more because we just kept making the thing better and it showed out there,” Huddleston said.

The win is also Sunrise Ford’s second of the season. Thus far, only two events in the series (Sonoma, JPR and Iowa, GMS) have been won by teams other than Bill McAnally Racing (5) and Sunrise (2).

Derek Kraus led 20 laps, but struggled with a tight condition and wound up coming home second, his sixth top five and first runner-up finish this season. His BMR teammate and polesitter Brittney Zamora led 45 laps from the pole and wound up third, tying her career-best finish.

Monroe native, 2017 track and Washington state champion Trenton Moriarity, making his K&N Pro Series debut for newly formed JP Racing, finished fourth, with Jagger Jones rounding out the top five.

Todd Souza, Hailie Deegan, Devin Dodson, Jack Wood and Travis Milburn completed the top 10.

With his second-place effort, Kraus extends his championship points lead to 18 over Huddleston, who jumped Deegan and now sits second.

The NAPA Auto Parts 150 presented by ENEOS is scheduled to be broadcast on NBCSN on Thursday, August 22 at 6 p.m.

The next K&N Pro Series West event will take place next weekend at Worldwide Technology Raceway at Gateway, the second of two combination events with the K&N Pro Series East.

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OBSERVATIONS: Bush’s Beans 150 at Bristol Motor Speedway

A little bump and banging, drivers making their way up and down the field, and a bump and run for the win – it sounds like the perfect short track event. The NASCAR K&N Pro Series East was able to check each of those boxes on Thursday evening.

Despite having a small field with just 16 entries, the top-five were close throughout the event, with battles for position from the drop of the green flag to the checkered. With everybody fighting for the bottom, passes became tough at times and it showed with contact throughout. 

Throughout the Bush’s Beans 150, certain drivers showed their ability behind the wheel. Spencer Davis dominated a good chunk of the race, while Hailie Deegan displayed her ability to make passes and move forward. The young talent of Ty Gibbs and Tanner Gray was shown with them being able to run solidly in the top-five.

Though just like he was able to in the spring, Sam Mayer was a step above the rest.

After having to go back to the field at the beginning of the race, he methodically made his way forward, making passes as he went to continue gaining ground. He was then able to catch Davis in the closing laps, perfecting the bump and run to get the lead and cruise to the win.

Not only as he proven to be a master at one of NASCAR’s toughest short tracks, his ability behind the wheel has shined at other speedway. He won at Iowa, and now holds a 22-point advantage in the standings.

Driving for GMS Racing and under the Driver’s Edge Development program, the potential for him to move forward in his racing career there as he ran top-10 until contact with the wall in his NASCAR Gander Outdoor Truck Series debut at Bristol Motor Speedway.

Though it’s not all sunshine for the driver of the No. 21 Chevrolet as his day was not all clean at Bristol. He got put to the back on the first lap due to spinning fellow competitor Chase Cabre right off the drop of the green flag. 

While these two haven’t had the smoothest season racing each other in 2019 with contact throughout, it’s not a good appearance to be causing trouble right away. It also looks worse when you show no remorse about the contact. Mayer would admit he “didn’t mean it at all,” but went on to add that Cabre “kind of deserves it.” 

It’s a tough balance because as a young driver, creating enemies with dirty racing as some would call what happen is not the approach you want in attracting sponsors to back your dream. However, rivalries are always great for the sport as they create conversation. Perhaps that can help get the series back to the star power it used to be.

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The thoughts and opinions expressed here are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of PopularSpeed.com, its owners, management or other contributors. Any links contained in this article should not be considered an endorsement.

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Sam Mayer Wins Second In A Row At Bristol In Comeback Effort

BRISTOL, Tenn. — The end result was the same, but the race itself couldn’t have been more different.

Sam Mayer wound up in Victory Lane in Thursday’s Bush’s Beans 150 at Bristol Motor Speedway, sweeping the season at “The World’s Fastest Half-Mile” and earning his third win of his career.

The race began with a bang, as Mayer made contact after starting on the outside of polesitter Chase Cabre in Turn 3 on the opening lap, sending Cabre into the wall.

NASCAR sent Mayer to the rear of the field following the incident, and he quickly made his way back through the field. By the Lap 50 scheduled break, he was already back inside the top five.

For the next 80-plus laps, Mayer followed Spencer Davis and company around Thunder Valley, waiting to pounce when the time was right.

With 13 laps to go, Mayer used the bump-and-run on Davis, who led the most laps for Rette Jones Racing, and didn’t look back, cruising to the victory by almost two seconds.

“There’s always that little bit in your mind that has doubt, but I felt pretty confident in the race car,” Mayer said of coming from the rear. “(Crew chief) Mardy (Lindley) put together a really good one, everyone at GMS […] with the aero and and all that, I couldn’t get by the No. 30 (Spencer Davis) to save my life until he made a mistake. It did pay off that we were there to get an opportunity to pass him. There was a little doubt in my mind, but I was pretty confident as well that we’d get it done.”

Ty Gibbs came home second for the fourth time this season, leading the DGR-Crosley brigade, with Ruben Garcia Jr. third, Mason Diaz fourth and Davis fifth.

Max McLaughlin, Cabre, Hailie Deegan and Joe Graf Jr. rounded out the top 10.

Following the Lap 1 accident, Cabre began experiencing lower back pain. He was assisted climbing out of his car post-race and has been transferred to a local hospital for further evaluation.

When asked about the Lap 1 contact, Mayer said Cabre “kind of deserves it” due to the way he’d been racing Cabre all season long.

“I did flat out dump him,” he said. “I didn’t mean it at all, but I did get in there way too hard and get into him.”

With the win, Mayer extends his championship points lead over Cabre to 22, the biggest margin of the season. McLaughlin and Gray now sit third and fourth with Derek Kraus’ absence at Bristol.

The Bush’s Beans 150 is scheduled to be broadcast on NBCSN on Wednesday, August 21 at 7 p.m.

The next K&N Pro Series East event will take place next weekend at Worldwide Technology Raceway at Gateway, the second of two combination events with the K&N Pro Series West.

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OBSERVATIONS: King of Beers 150 at Thompson Speedway Motorsports Park

No matter where they go, the NASCAR Whelen Modified Series puts on a show. They once again displayed that with their Wednesday night special at Thompson Speedway Motorsports Park.

With the top being the preferred groove around the speedway for the most part, it brings forth the question of who can make their car turn through the center to roll by someone on the bottom. Some drivers were able to be smooth, while others weren’t as much.

From the drop of the green flag to the checkered, there was action all the way around the track with drivers making their way forward, as others slipped back through the field. The high horsepower using up the 15-inch tires, and only one pit stop allowed during the event to change them, had drivers fighting for grip in hopes of being at the front.

The competition also proved to be close, as you did not know who was going to win throughout the event with different stars emerging. Bobby Santos III ultimately became the unsung hero in finding his way to the front late, but transmission issues on a late race restart burst those hopes. Craig Lutz also had a shot at his first career series victory, but he came up short after fading late. 

In a time when young faces are emerging as the ones to watch, the veterans are still proving they are the ones to beat in the modifieds with the final showdown being between Doug Coby and Justin Bonsignore. Bonsignore tried all he could, challenging Coby right down to the line, but ultimately came up short on hitting another win out of the park at Thompson.

The veterans have proved to be the ones to watch all season, and no doubt will be in the final five races of the season. Though you cannot count out possibly seeing Ron Silk join them in victory lane, as he was coming late until issues.

EMAIL ASHLEY AT ashley.mccubbin@popularspeed.com

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The thoughts and opinions expressed here are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of PopularSpeed.com, its owners, management or other contributors. Any links contained in this article should not be considered an endorsement.

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PREVIEW: Bumper to Bumper 300 at Riverside International Speedway

There may be 13 races on the NASCAR Pinty’s Series calendar, but the Bumper to Bumper 300 at Riverside International Speedway always seems to play a big role in deciding the champion. The past three years, the eventual driver to hoist the crown at the season finale visited victory lane in Nova Scotia.

L.P. Dumoulin knows that feeling all too well, as he dominated last year’s event en route to winning the series championship. He enters this weekend with momentum on his side, after the Les 50 Tours Hotel Le Concorde at Circuit de Trois-Rivieres. Another dominant run would go a long way, as he enters this weekend ranked third in the standings, 20 points behind.

As he has done most of the season, Andrew Ranger holds down the top spot in the series standings despite coming up eighth at Circuit de Trois-Rivieres. Though being one of two drivers to score a top-10 in each event, aided by three victories, it allowed him to hold the advantage. In nine starts at Riverside, he has visited victory lane once (2009) and scored five top-five’s, including a fifth and fourth the past two years.

Kevin Lacroix enters the weekend ranked second in the standings, just 14 points behind Ranger following a fourth-place finish on the streets of Quebec. The french driver has finished in the top-10 in each of his three starts at Riverside, highlighted by a runner-up to Alex Labbe in 2017.

Labbe could use another trip to victory lane as a rebound after scoring an 18th-place finish in Quebec after being involved in a crash. His return to the NASCAR Pinty’s Series hasn’t been all that spectacular, with just three top-five finishes in eight races. As noted, he knows his way around Riverside, virtue of the win and the best average finish (fifth) of active drivers.

Another driver you have to consider for the win outside of the points battle should the trend change is Mark Dilley. Statistically, he has the second-best average finish (5.9) of active drivers in the series, and won in Nova Scotia back in 2007. Despite finishing 18th in his last trip out east, he had posted a top-10 in each of his 11 prior starts at Riverside. Like Labbe, the return to full-time competition hasn’t treated the Micks Motorsports driver well, with no top-fives this season. His best finish, though, was sixth at Autodrome Chaudiere.

22 Racing has been very vocal about their struggles on the ovals, and that was on full display when the Pinty’s Series headed out east with Alex Tagliani scoring no top-five’s in those three races after winning on the streets on Toronto. As a result, he currently sits fourth in the standings, 37 points behind Ranger. Coming off a runner-up at Trois-Rivieres, a podium performance at Riverside could help give the team momentum as they look towards 2020.

On the flip side, D.J. Kennington has shown his capabilities on the ovals this year, virtue of a runner-up while at Wyant Group Raceway in Saskatoon. He also enters this weekend at Riverside with momentum following a fifth-place finish on the streets of Quebec. The Nova Scotia oval has treated him well in the past, with a pair of thirds the past two years to go with eight top-five’s in 12 starts.

EMAIL ASHLEY AT ashley.mccubbin@popularspeed.com

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The thoughts and opinions expressed here are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of PopularSpeed.com, its owners, management or other contributors. Any links contained in this article should not be considered an endorsement.

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LP Dumoulin Claims Emotional GP3R Victory

Trois-Rivières, Que – There’s no telling when the party will end in Trois Rivieres tonight.

In the 50th running of the Grand Prix de Trois-Rivières, and the 50th year of Dumoulin family racing, hometown hero LP Dumoulin grabbed perhaps the biggest win of his career.  To make it even sweeter, he was surrounded by his family from start to finish.

Prior to the race, family patriarch Richard Dumoulin paced the field in the car he raced during the first GP3R. JF Dumoulin finished third, joining LP on the podium for the first time in their NASCAR Pinty’s Series career.

“There’s no way to describe the feeling,” LP Dumoulin said. “I’m on the podium with my brother JF in front of all our family and friends.”

Dumoulin’s No.47 Weathertech Canada/Bellemare Dodge was locked in a fierce late race battle with Alex Tagliani with the laps winding down. The two-time champion needed help, and it came when T.J. Rinomato spun with five laps to go, causing Tagliani to run wide and allowing Dumoulin to steal the lead.

“It’s perfect. My team has worked so hard to give me a great car all season long and we proved once again that we are capable of winning on both ovals and road courses,” LP Dumoulin said. “In the end, we caught a little bit of traffic and that helped me pass Tagliani, we set some quick laps and we won.”

It was the second win for Dumoulin at his home track, and ninth of his career.

Tagliani who was in prime position to score his third straight at GP3R win, finished second. The Lachanaie, Quebec driver took the lead on Lap 20 after Andrew Ranger came down to pit. Tagliani would go on to lead 25 laps en-route to his second podium of the season.

“It was a great finish for our sponsors,” Tagliani said. “Unfortunately, we were just in the wrong place at the wrong time. There was a spin and we took evasive action through the marbles and second place was able to take advantage of it.”

The elder Dumoulin, JF, mounted a hard charge late in the race to catch the leaders. JF’s No.04 Spectra Premium Dodge, shifted to a part-time schedule in 2019, but had this race circled on his calendar. In the end, the Trois-Rivères, Quebec driver would ultimately tie his best career finish in third and scoring his third career podium in the process.

“It’s awesome. It’s our first podium at Trois-Rivières in the Pinty’s Series,” he said. “I’ve been fourth a lot of times, so I’m really excited to be up on the podium with my brother. It’s a great day for us and our sponsors.”

Kevin Lacroix came into Les 50 Tours Hotel Le Concorde trailing Ranger by 18 points. Lacroix started from the outside of the front row and would lead the first 15 laps, before being hit with a penalty after taking his fuel can out of the pit box. Lacroix’s N0. 74 would eventually fight his way all the way up to fourth. D.J. Kennington completed the top five finishers.

Jason Hathaway and Raphael Lessard were sixth and seventh respectively.

After leading four laps, Ranger would end up finishing eighth. Ranger will now carry a 14-point lead over Lacroix heading into Riverside next week.

Simon Dion-Viens and Donald Theetge rounded out the rest of the top-10 finishers.

The NASCAR Pinty’s Series will now continue on their run of three races in three weeks this August. The Series will be back in action next Saturday, August 17 for the Bumper to Bumper 300 at Riverside Speedway before finishing the month off at Canadian Tire Motorsport Park.

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Ron Silk Survives Chaotic Overtime Restart For Second Straight Win

STAFFORD, Conn. — Perfect timing for one, worst timing for another.

Doug Coby dominated the Stafford 150 at Stafford Motor Speedway, leading the first 147 laps before a caution flew for the first time. After a chaotic overtime restart, Ron Silk was the beneficiary of some fresh tires and a daring three-wide move to the take the lead and the win.

The former series champion earned his second consecutive NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour checkered flag — which was also his 13th career and second at the Connecticut half-mile.

“We are just continuously putting ourselves up towards the front, in position to have things happen like what happened tonight,” Silk said. “A lot of times, you make your own luck. My team has improved dramatically and the guys are doing a great job.”

It was Doug Coby’s night before a crash in turn three suddenly changed the complexion of the race. Coby was fastest in practice, earned his sixth Mayhew Tools Dominator Pole Award in qualifying, and drove away with the race early. It was looking like Coby was going to celebrate a complete sweep of the night and his 13th career Stafford win.

But the caution changed everything.

With only six cars on the lead lap, pit strategy was key in the finishing order. Teams are only allowed to take one tire per pit stop under caution, but most of them made their way down pit road more times than one during the yellow. Coby’s Mayhew Tools team elected to take three tires, but he was also down pit road another time for fuel only. After four stops, he restarted sixth for the final dash.

Matt Swanson and Justin Bonsignore took the green flag on the front row, but it wasn’t long before Silk took the top spot with a daring three-wide move off turn two. From there, it wasn’t quite clear sailing, as Jon McKennedy was on the back bumper looking to pounce. But Silk was able to hang on for his third Whelen Modified Tour win of the season.

“I knew there were only six of us on the lead lap at that point and I thought you had to take the tires,” Silk said of the mindset during the yellow. “There were 146 green flag laps, our tires were shot.”

After restarting sixth, Coby managed to charge back to a third-place finish, while Swanson was fourth, and Craig Lutz fifth.

Justin Bonsignore was sixth, followed by Jimmy Blewett, Bobby Santos III, Sam Rameau and Patrick Emerling.

Coby leads by 24 over Silk in the championship point standings, while defending series title holder Bonsignore is third, 42 back.

The Stafford 150 will air on NBCSN on Wednesday, August 7, at 7 p.m.

The NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour returns to the track on Wednesday, August 14, at Thompson Speedway Motorsports Park for the Bud ‘King of Beers’ 150.

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Max McLaughlin Claims First Career Victory at Watkins Glen

WATKINS GLEN, N.Y. — Not bad for a first timer.

After setting quick time in practice and earning his second career pole, Max McLaughlin led every lap before Mother Nature forced the premature ending of the Great Outdoors RV Superstore 100 at Watkins Glen International, declaring the driver of the No. 1 the winner.

“It’s awesome. I can’t believe it–I’ve never even raced on a road course before,” he said in disbelief. “We come here, fastest in practice–sweep the weekend. It’s beyond words, man. My dad won here, it’s always been my favorite track as a kid. To get my first NASCAR win here. This is priceless. Coming to 10 to go or whatever, I had tears in my eyes, ‘oh my god, this ain’t really happening, is it?’ […] I love this place, really looking forward to getting back here soon.”

With weather in the area, what would be the final restart was a bit hairy for McLaughlin. He briefly lost the lead to Tanner Gray, but quickly regained it before a lightning strike delayed the event.

Then, the rain began to fall. After about 30 minutes, NASCAR deployed the track drying team in an attempt to go back racing. But shortly thereafter, the rain picked back up, forcing NASCAR to call the event six laps before it’s full distance.

The win was Hattori Racing Enterprises’ second consecutive in the event, as Brett Moffitt earned the checkered flag last season in this very car. The year prior, Ryan Truex led 26 laps from the pole before being sidelined due to an accident.

Two-time winner in 2019 Chase Cabre, championship points leader Sam Mayer, Ty Gibbs and Ruben Garcia Jr. rounded out the top five, with Dylan Murry, Spencer Davis, Dale Quarterley, Derek Kraus and Colin Garrett completing the top 10.

The Great Outdoors RV Superstore 100 is scheduled to be broadcast on NBCSN on Wednesday, August 7 at 6 p.m.

The next K&N Pro Series East event, the Bush’s Beans 150, will take place in two weeks on Thursday, August 15 at Bristol Motor Speedway. Mayer won earlier this season at “The World’s Fastest Half-Mile.”

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Grassroots Racing Returns to ISM Raceway in 2020

Earlier this year, it was announced that NASCAR’s championship weekend would move from the sandy beaches of Homestead-Miami Speedway to the valley of the sun at ISM Raceway. The desert jewel continues making waves with track president Julie Giese revealing that grassroots racing would be making a return to Avondale, Arizona – and in a big way.

The ARCA Menards Series will be making its inaugural debut at Zoomtown U.S.A on March 6, 2020. For those unfamiliar with this series, it’s essentially the final stage of racing for developmental drivers spanning from the East and the West hoping to compete in one of NASCAR’s three premier series.

The currently unsponsored ARCA race is scheduled to kick off the Spring race weekend, along with the Gatorade Pole Day for the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series FanShield500. Following Pole Day, the NASCAR Xfinity Series will make its return to the one-mile tri-oval on March 7, with the Cup Series on March 8.

In what could be deemed the most exciting news from Giese’s statement, it was announced that ISM Raceway would be host to four of NASCAR’s championship series. The NASCAR Gander Outdoor Truck Series champion will be crowned at the conclusion of the Lucas Oil 150 on November 6, 2020. Saturday will now feature a championship double header with the Xfinity Series and the NASCAR K&N Pro Series West. Finally, the Cup Series will see a new champion, basking in the glory of the Arizona sun on November 8.

“I’m extremely pleased to add these grassroots races to our historic 2020 race season at ISM Raceway,” Giese said. “We are committed to delivering to our ticket holders as much-on track action as possible during our race weekends and these races provide a great opportunity to showcase so many up-and-coming drivers in our sport.”

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The thoughts and opinions expressed here are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of PopularSpeed.com, its owners, management to other contributors. Any links contained in this article should not be considered and endorsement.

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Andrew Ranger Dominates a Wet and Wild Race Edmonton Show

Andrew Ranger left for the western swing with goal in mine: dominate. Following two standout races in Saskatoon, Ranger came into Edmonton looking to finish the job.

Ranger took care of that Saturday in dominating fashion by winning the LUXXUR 300 at Edmonton International Raceway. With rain a factor once again, Ranger’s No.27 Mopar Dodge wasted no time taking the lead from LP Dumoulin on lap 228.

As cautions came out and restarts were ran, Ranger continued to fend off all who opposed him. In the end, the rain came down and NASCAR was forced to call the race on lap 275. The Roxton Pond, Quebec driver lead 253 laps en-route his 27th career NASCAR Pinty’s Series victory.

Ranger ended his western swing with two wins, a third place finish and the points lead.

Since returning to the Pinty’s Series full-time Jason Hathaway has been stringing together good runs. With the rain closing in, Hathaway made a march to front. Mounting pressure until the rains came, the No.3 Kubota Canada Chevrolet would finish second. This marked the Stouffville, Ontario driver’s first podium of the season and highest finish since winning at Kawartha in 2016.

Saskatoon race one winner LP Dumoulin was another driver with a successful western swing. The Trois-Rivieres, Quebec driver  came home third after a strong run at the track he won at last year. Dumoulin will leave Edmonton with momentum carrying into this his home tack at GP3R in August.

Alex Labbe and Donald Theetge brought their battered cars home fourth and fifth, completing the top five.

Marc-Antoine Camirand and Kevin Lacroix were sixth and seventh respectively. Alex Tagliani, Anthony Simone and D.J Kennington rounded out the top ten finishers.

Following the LUXXUR 300, Andrew Ranger will enter the next event with an 18 point lead over Kevin Lacroix. The NASCAR Pinty’s Series will be back in action August 10 and 11 when they go to the iconic Grand Prix Trois-Rivieres for the Les 50 Tours Hotel Le Concorde.