Wing damage not enough to slow Kaeding PUTNAMVILLE, Ind. -- Tim Kaeding sure likes the special Kinser-themed National Sprint Tour shows. Kaeding won his 14th race of the season Tuesday night Sept. 26 in the Bob Kinser Fall Classic at...
Wing damage not enough to slow Kaeding
PUTNAMVILLE, Ind. -- Tim Kaeding sure likes the special Kinser-themed National Sprint Tour shows.
Kaeding won his 14th race of the season Tuesday night Sept. 26 in the Bob Kinser Fall Classic at Lincoln Park Speedway in Putnamville, Ind.
Kaeding's boss Steve Kinser wanted to win the race named after his dad, a seven-time track champion, but struggled to an eighth place finish.
At Bloomington Speedway June 2, Kinser also struggled with a seventh place run as he was honored for racing at his home track.
The winner that night? None other than Kaeding.
"I know Steve wanted to win his dad's race," Kaeding said following his latest triumph. "At least we kept it in the family. It's great to be associated with the Kinser name."
"At least that part of it went well," Steve Kinser said.
Following Kaeding in the 40-lap main event were Travis Rilat, Brandon Wimmer, Paul McMahan and points leader Danny Lasoski.
Kerry Madsen took the lead on the initial green while Kinser, starting a disappointing 14th, bicycled and nearly flipped to bring out the yellow. Kinser was one of many drivers getting airborne on the night.
"We didn't have much of a track to race on, but I messed up in qualifying so that's what really hurt us," the Hoosier driver said. "After that I was just trying to stay out and finish it."
Wimmer took the lead on lap 2 and held the top spot until Rilat got by on lap 11.
For a while, it looked like Rilat was going to pick up his first NST win as Wimmer and Kaeding battled hard for second. During that battle, Kaeding suffered wing damage.
"A lapped car got sideways in front of Brandon, and then I hit Brandon," Kaeding said. "I'm glad (the contact) didn't spin him out, because then he would have collected me. The damage was more mental than anything. My first year back home, I knocked off the front wing off about 30 of 32 races. We were good all night tonight."
Kaeding showed just how good his car was, damaged wing and all, on a lap 18 restart following one of many caution periods that made an already long night even longer.
After nearly squeezing by a couple of times previously, Kaeding finally got around Wimmer for second on the restart.
The next lap, Kaeding went low in turns 1 and 2 to grab the lead from Rilat, who himself was battling a situation with his front wing.
"My wing was going back and forth, which definitely didn't help," Rilat said. "I would come off the corner, and the wing would come all the way back. I'd go into the corner, and it would go all the way forward. It took me a while to adjust to it. I slacked up a little, but then Brandon was showing me his nose a few times so I had to gas it."
Following the last of four reds for a Jason Meyers flip on lap 29, Kaeding opened a gap while Rilat kept Wimmer at bay. Rilat pulled away from Wimmer in the closing circuits, but ran out of time as Kaeding notched the win at the 5/16-mile bullring.
Rounding out the top-10 were Wayne Johnson, Chad Hillier, Kinser, Madsen and Shane Stewart, who was the first out for qualifying but flipped during his run.
When Kaeding pulled to a stop on the frontstretch following his win, he pumped his fists a few times and pounded the damaged front wing in celebration.
"It was good," Kaeding said. "I thought we were in trouble early, when I started bicycling real bad in turns 3 and 4. Travis and Brandon were real quick. I slid it in there and got both of them. It's great. Anytime you get a win here it's a feat in of itself. I have the opportunity of a lifetime here."
Rilat, meanwhile, felt he squandered a great opportunity for a win.
"I think I could have done a better job," Rilat said. "I slacked up a little there for a few laps. I started to catch Tim at the end. I feel we had the car to win the race, and I just didn't do the job.
"Second is disappointing in that a win would have been nice, but that's our best finish in the NST," Rilat added. "We'll take it."
Wimmer had originally hoped to run the full NST schedule, but the funding didn't materialize. Following Tuesday's strong showing, he was left to wonder what could have been when one of the yellows cost him.
"We were by Rilat before that last red, but when the yellow came out it hurt us," Wimmer said. "But as much as we've raced this year, a third is good. This deal with Alan Barton came together right before Knoxville. I ran against these guys all last year, and learned a lot. I hate to see the season come to an end."
Heat races were won by Stewart, Kinser and Levi Jones. Jones, a Tony Stewart Motorsports driver in another series, ran a team car to McMahan and both raced with their boss in attendance. Lasoski was the fastest of 30 qualifiers with a time of 11.186 seconds, which broke the track record of 11.503 held by Kelly Kinser. The B-main was won by Kyle Cummins.
The NST next races Oct. 7 at Southern New Mexico Speedway in Las Cruces, New Mexico and finishes the season Oct 13-14 at Tulare Thunderbowl Raceway in Tulare, Calif.