Eighth Place Lime Rock Park Finish Winds up Matt Kobyluck's Season Matt Kobyluck concluded his third full season of NASCAR Busch North Series racing on Saturday by placing his Mohegan Sun Chevrolet eighth in the final race of the season, held at...
Eighth Place Lime Rock Park Finish Winds up Matt Kobyluck's Season
Matt Kobyluck concluded his third full season of NASCAR Busch North Series racing on Saturday by placing his Mohegan Sun Chevrolet eighth in the final race of the season, held at the Lime Rock Park road course. Kobyluck's eighth top ten finish of the year only happened after a late-race pit stop forced Kobyluck to race through the field.
Friday found Kobyluck running practice and qualifying. After working through practice to get his car to work in all parts of the track, Kobyluck made his qualifying attempt and took the fifth starting position.
"We were struggling all day trying to make the car better in the downhill corner and the better we made it there, the worse it made it everywhere else on the track," he said after qualifying. "At the end of practice we decided to give up that one corner to be better everywhere else, and I could still get through that one corner pretty decent, it wasn't a total loss. So we changed it back to where it was when we got here today and I was surprised, it was really good through the downhill corner too."
Kobyluck hung in fifth position at the start of the race, moving up to third after some early leaders made their pit stops. Kobyluck himself pitted under caution on lap 23, and started working his way back to the front. He returned to the top ten just before the 50-lap mark, continuing to sixth on lap 59.
The left rear tire started losing air and Kobyluck was fortunate to catch a caution on lap 60, and pitted to replace the tire. This put him back in 21st position for the restart, and there would be no more cautions for the balance of the race to help Kobyluck catch up. He was back to eleventh with ten laps to go, and moved up to eighth when the checkers waved.
"We were better than eighth, but with twenty laps to go we had a left rear tire go flat.," he said after the race. "When the 93 [Travis Benjamin] and the 47 [Kelly Moore] wrecked on the short chute before the bridge, I had to pit and put on a left rear tire. I went back out to fight back through traffic. We made it all the way back to eighth. It's unfortunate for the Mohegan Sun Casino team, we really had a top three car today. Some things you don't have any control over so you just make the best of them. We raced our heart out today and did the best we could and brought it home eighth.
"The car was pretty darn good all race," Kobyluck continued. "Right from the get-go to when we pitted for gas to after we changed the tire, it didn't change. The car was very consistent. A couple times towards the end I wanted to make up more spots than I could and I was driving my heart out. I overdrove a couple corners and got a couple wheels off. It got a little hairy a couple times with me trying to make up as many spots and track time as I could. It's unfortunate that we didn't get a caution with ten to go, we would have had a chance to race with lead lap cars, and that would have been a different story, we would have picked up a couple more spots."
Kobyluck's season ends with his record showing him recording his first series win at Nazareth Speedway in August, along with three top-five finishes and eight top-tens. He finished the year eleventh in the championship points standings.