Saturday, 4/26, was the third race of the Paramount Kia Big 10 Challenge series at Hickory Motor Speedway. There were 21 late model cars entered for the 100-lap event.
Justin would start p. 14 for the feature. For the first lap the entire field was double file when the first caution came out for a car spinning on the backstretch during lap 2. Everyone stacked up but there didn’t appear to be any damage to Justin’s car. On the re-start Justin quickly gained 4 spots to p. 8 by lap 15.
The second caution came out on lap 22 when a car’s engine let go. The red flag was displayed to clean up the oil that was around the entire track. Justin’s car needed a push from the wrecker to get going once the red flag was lifted. Then again the same thing happened when the field stopped while they were single file under yellow clearing the speedy dry from the track.
The race would go green from lap 31 to the end. Justin was running p. 8 at Lap 40 when the car slipped out of gear as he was coming out of turn 2. Justin was able to recover, get the car back in gear and continue on but lost a full straightaway to the car running p. 7.
With the transmission problem, Justin had to hold the gear shift in place and drive with one hand for 60 laps. All this time driving with one hand, he was able to maintain the 8th spot and re-gain the full straightaway he had lost when the car slipped out of gear.
In three starts, Justin has two top 10’s. It is called the “Challenge Series” and we certainly have been challenged so far this season. The bad luck last week with the weight hitting the front end of the car prevented a top 10 finish. The transmission problem this race held us back from advancing. Hoping everything comes together soon and we can get the Lee Faulk Racing #15 late model up front. The next 100-lap race will be May 10.
It was beautiful weather on Saturday, 4/12, for the second 100-lap Paramount Kia Big 10 Challenge race at Hickory Motor Speedway in NC. There were 26 late model cars entered in the event. Justin qualified p. 15.
At the outset of the race, the first 10 cars quickly spread out running single file. Mid-pack on back was a different story with mostly everyone doubled up. Justin did some great side by side racing running the inside line for most of the first 15 laps.
Laps 16 to 26 the drivers settled down and were running single file with Justin in p. 18. Lap 26 saw Justin begin to move forward doing again some great side by side racing until the first caution came out on lap 31. Justin had advanced to p. 15.
Lap 31 seemed to go on forever. The first re-start saw an engine let go putting oil down on the track. There were three more re-starts with three more quick cautions before they finally were able to go onto lap 32. Only the first six cars were running single-file. Everyone else was doubled up. Justin had fought his way up to p.10 when on Lap 42 he was turned coming out of turn 2. He did an amazing save to keep from hitting anything but he would re-start in the back of the field.
Racing hard on the outside now coming up through the field while running p.18 there was a huge pile up on the front stretch before the entrance to turn 1. Justin again did a great job of getting the car stopped in time before being collected in this pile up of at least 10 cars. This brought out the red flag for the clean up.
On the re-start, Justin began to move up through again on the outside. He had made it back up to p. 10 when a 30 lb. lead weight came off the car ahead of him and went through the front of the car into the radiator causing Justin to spin going into turn 1. He drove out of the spin keeping the car from hitting the wall but with the damage to the radiator he was unable to continue at Lap 57.
Very unfortunate end. This race showed excellent car control by Justin in running side by side for most of the race, for being able to make split second decisions to miss all the wrecks, to be able to drive the car out of a spin so as to not hit the wall after such an unexpected event of a lead weight flying through the front of the car, as well as the great communication from his spotter, Bobby, throughout the entire race.
The next 100-lap race will be held 4/26.