Matt Kobyluck finishes a close second at Nazareth Speedway. Matt Kobyluck looked to repeat his winning performance from last year at the one-mile Nazareth Speedway but he had his work cut out for him. Having to go to a back-up Mohegan Sun ...
Matt Kobyluck finishes a close second at Nazareth Speedway.
Matt Kobyluck looked to repeat his winning performance from last year at the one-mile Nazareth Speedway but he had his work cut out for him. Having to go to a back-up Mohegan Sun Chevrolet after discovering engine problems in the primary car, Kobyluck still managed a fourth-place qualifying effort and led 29 laps of the Burnham Boilers 100 before finishing a close second, crossing the line just one tenth of a second behind race winner Ted Christopher.
The back-up car was the same car that Kobyluck raced with at New Hampshire International Speedway the previous week and finished fifth with, so the team knew it was good equipment. Though preparing it for Nazareth took some time out of practice, Kobyluck still was able to set the car up for qualifying, and turned in a lap of 28.083 seconds (128.191 MPH), good enough for fourth on the grid.
"For not doing anything to the car all week long, we just rolled it out of the trailer from how we loaded it after Loudon, I guess we can happy with a fourth place qualifying effort," Kobyluck said. "The car was good, the track was good, and we'll be ready for the race. The car's pretty close, we just have to fine-tune things. We have to go back through the whole car to make sure things are 100%.We'll take what we have and work on improving it."
Kobyluck took third place on the start of the race, and took second on a lap 29 restart. When then-leading Paul Wolfe made a pit stop on lap 50, Kobyluck assumed the top spot and held it for the next 29 laps, holding off many challenges from Ted Christopher. Lapped traffic came into play, though, and as Kobyluck was trying to negotiate around two lapped cars on the high side, Christopher dove low and took the lead. Kobyluck never stayed too far behind, and a pair of late yellows gave him two restarts to try to retake the lead. He got underneath Christopher in turn four of the last lap, but just couldn't get past him by the time they reached the checkers. The official margin of victory was 0.107 seconds.
"The only downside to running here is that lapped traffic has no place to get out of your way," Kobyluck said after the race. "That's how Teddy got by me. Coming through the tri-oval, lapped traffic was running two-wide. They ran two-by-two, didn't drop to the bottom, came together with each other, and washed up the track in front of me. Teddy got the bottom line and got to go, and he had just enough of a car to just barely stay in front of me at the end. I got a run on him coming off the last corner there, had a good shot at it but we'll take second. It's a back-up car and to roll out with a back-up car and take second place, this team has a lot to be proud of.
"I could have held Teddy at bay the whole rest of the way," Kobyluck continued. "On a ten- to fifteen-lap run we were way better than him, and over a more than fifteen-lap run he was just a little bit better, but not enough for him to get by us. When he got by us it was in a twenty, twenty-five lap run and he was just a little bit better. But we came here, got a podium finish two years in a row, and came home second in a back-up car. I'm proud of the whole team, they did a heck of a job."
The NASCAR Busch North Series heads back to the short tracks next Saturday when it visits the third-mile Seekonk Speedway just outside of Providence, Rhode Island.