Jay Middleton Has Up and Down Speedweeks Runner-Up Finishes, Crashes All Part of Eight Nights of Racing LAKE CITY, FL (February 21, 2005) -- Speedweeks was a mixed bag of racing for Florida hotshoe Jay Middleton. He had second-place finishes in...
Jay Middleton Has Up and Down Speedweeks
Runner-Up Finishes, Crashes All Part of Eight Nights of Racing
LAKE CITY, FL (February 21, 2005) -- Speedweeks was a mixed bag of racing for Florida hotshoe Jay Middleton. He had second-place finishes in the Super Late Model division and led the point standings early in the week. Yet, he also was frustrated having a few less horsepower than some of the guys he was racing against and then late in the week, he took a hard hit in the Friday night event.
Even though he is just a teen, Middleton knows a racer can expect just about anything to happen in eight nights of competition during Speedweeks.
On the first two nights of racing, Middleton started on the pole and finished second. He led the point standings through the early part of the week despite having an engine that was 2 ½ years old. Middleton wanted to win and even though he beat all but one guy that first two nights out, he wasn't satisfied.
"We had an awesome racecar the last two nights," said Middleton. "We should have won both nights by far. The motor was just killing me. Everyone was out-motoring me. Every time we got beside someone and the drag race was on, they just killed me to the corner."
On Sunday night, Middleton had a battle with eventual Speedweeks Super Late Model champion Louie Mechalides for the race win.
"The 47 (Mechalides) knocked me sideways, which is alright, but he gassed it up and just blew me away to the corner," said Middleton. "We are trying to get all we can out of this two-and-a-half years old motor."
Middleton kept logging top-ten finishes as the week's races got rougher. However, a nasty wreck on Friday night, one that may have had its roots from a previous wreck during the week, put a damper on his Speedweeks. Middleton walked away unhurt, but his car was in bad shape.
"Something bad is broken on there," said Middleton. "We need to take it to the shop and look at it. I think something is junk in the rear-end after that accident. It felt like the rear-end was shaking some side to side. Every time I would hit the gas, it would jump around. It was just shaking. I was waiting for something to break and to hit the wall. There is nothing broken, though. It is a little scary.
"Whatever was wrong and whatever we end up finding, I think it has been happening since Sunday," said Middleton. "After Tuesday and the throttle linkage coming off, I think that it might be a related problem. "
But Middleton isn't going to let the wreck define his overall week.
"We've had the wreck, but we had some good finishes too," said Middleton. "Overall, we are loading up our primary car and not our backup car here from Speedweeks. I'm pretty happy with that, I guess."