Colton Salek takes the Checkered for Back-to-Back wins at Kentucky and Homestead-Miami.
[Below] Colton Salek #09 crosses the finish line under caution winning his second consecutive Valhalla Cup Series race.
The Norse Force League Drivers have run 2 practice sessions this week in preparation for tonight's run at Homestead-Miami Speedway's Ford EcoBoost 100. Qualifying was a good indicator that this was going to be a very entertaining showdown as the spread for the entire field was within 1 second, all drivers delivering qualifying runs in the 30.xx second range.
As the Pace Car dropped back into the pits the Flagman wasted no time in giving the field the green. Drivers hammered into turn one and began settling into their lines.
From the get-go, Jonathon Hernandez #88 makes a very early move and passes Alek Martinez #51 on the outside in Turn One of Lap 2. The outside line proved to be the quicker chute on the bare pavement compared to the more popular inside.
Coming out of turn four on Lap 18, Kaleb Isenhour #05 Passes Jonathon Hernandez #88 going down the front stretch to take P1. Isenhour would hold onto P1 for 43 laps until pitting.
On Lap 21, Collin Jerabek #95 came off turn 4 too wide in which he clipped the wall and became airborne across the infield entering lap 22. This brought out the first caution of the night.
In Lap 27 - Turn 3, Mark Striker #077 makes contact with Eric Roice #72 to bring out the second caution of the night.
On Lap 43, Colton Salek #09 Passes Alek Martinez 51 on Lap 43 to take 2nd
On Lap 61, Kaleb Isenhour #05 pits and Colton Salek #09 Moves into First
On Lap 83, the 3rd caution of the night was summoned by two drivers that shall remain anonymous.
Logan McAnally #19 takes 1st on lap 87 under caution.
On Lap 99, a big wreck on home stretch shook up the field and brings out the 4th caution of the night.
Following the wreck, Chandler Parsons #007 moves into first as leaders pit, following are Aspen Belvin #84 - 2nd, and Colton Salek #09 -3rd.
On Lap 101, the leaders go 3 wide on restart and Colton Salek takes 1st.
Coming out of Turn 4 on lap 104, Colton Salek makes his run and separates himself from the pack coming down the front stretch as the white flag waves.
But... another caution would appear as the biggest wreck of the night occurred as Colton Salek crossed the line.
The race finished under caution on lap 107 with Colton Salek taking the win, followed by Logan McAnally for 2nd, and Alek Martinez for 3rd, Justin Botelho 4th, and Josh Crane 5th.
Following the Race I spoke to Logan at the Winner's Circle to get his thoughts and assessment of the race, here's what he had to say:
Was there anything in particular you did to prepare for tonight's race at Homestead?
C.S. Not particularly, I just went in with the mindset of getting to the front and committing to my groove and trying to run away.
What did you think about your car setup? Did it handle OK or did it not behave like you expected?
C.S. I thought the car was on the tighter side especially in dirty air, and I had to back up my corners to make sure I would be successful.
What do you feel was the key moment in the race that allowed you to take the victory?
C.S. The caution coming out before the white flag followed by a good, clean pit stop was definitely the moment that allowed me to win tonight.
You have back to back Wins at Kentucky and Homestead, How does it feel to be on top for two weeks straight?
C.S. It feels amazing, really glad to be on a roll and hopefully carry the momentum into Talladega next weekend!