Jason McCord won tonight's USAC Valvoline National Sprint Car Series "Showdown at Sundown" 60 lap feature race at Richmond International Raceway. This is the first USAC Sprint race held at the three-quarter mile "Action Track." The race was ...
Jason McCord won tonight's USAC Valvoline National Sprint Car Series "Showdown at Sundown" 60 lap feature race at Richmond International Raceway. This is the first USAC Sprint race held at the three-quarter mile "Action Track." The race was divided into two 30 lap sections. The break between halves was a refueling stop, with minor adjustments only - no tire changes - allowed.
McCord jumped into the lead at the start, while pole sitter Jay Drake faded back and sixth-place starter Michael Lewis worked his way forward. During green flag runs, McCord drew away from the field, but a series of yellow flags kept him from building his lead. After a restart halfway through the first 30, Lewis captured the lead with a flyer entering Turn 3. Lewis never built an advantage, with McCord constantly on his bumper. McCord re-took the lead as the pair encountered lapped traffic on the penultimate lap. In the second half, McCord was untouchable, drawing out a lead of over six seconds.
"The car was good all night long," he said. "In the first half, when we went back to green after a restart, I don't think I got my tires cleaned off really good, and Michael did get by me. I think we were running right back on the outside, and we were still in the ballpark. In the second segment we didn't change anything - we barely had time to get fuel in it. Pretty much from the outset the car felt really good, and I was able to hold the top and get through lapped traffic. I think that's what saved me."
Jason starts tomorrow's Silver Crown race from the outside pole, the same starting position he had tonight. "All in all, my Silver Crown car felt a lot more comfortable than my sprint car did," he noted. "Hopefully that's a sign of good things to come."
Second place Brian Tyler came up to speed quickly with a new team. "Last week I got a phone call that I got fired out of my other ride," he said. "We had two and a half days to build a new car. We built it and came here, and never turned a lap in it until we rolled it out here. I'm pretty proud of the crew and the car owner."
Third place Dave Steele came up from thirteenth starting position to take third place. Steele, the winner in the past two Silver Crown races here, commented that tonight "We learned that we need to pick up two more spots."
Pole sitter Jay Drake eventually finished in ninth place. Despite this result, he still retains a strong lead in the National Standings, with 621 points to Cory Kruseman's 490 points.
The next National Sprint Car race will be the "Rocky Mountain Classic" at Pikes Peak International Raceway on July 3-4.