As drivers and race fans know nationwide, when you find that perfect setup for a track at which you are trying to master, you can become almost unstoppable. Scott Hantz has seemingly found that for his number 72 machines. The 'Hurricane' has won every event he has entered at Toledo Speedway this season including three Outlaw Late Model races, and the Allen Chevrolet Cadillac 100 CRA Super Series race Friday night.
The defending CRA Super Series champion visited victory lane for the second time this season with CRA, and his closest point competitors had difficult nights. Coopersville, Michigan's Johnny VanDoorn came into the event with the series points lead, but suffered a power steering failure mid-race and was forced to baby his Chevrolet home to a 13th place finish. VanDoorn set the new track record earlier in qualifying with a 15.4 second lap. Hantz cut his point deficit down to under 30 after leading 88 laps on the night. Former open wheel ace Aaron Pierce was racing with a broken collarbone, an injury he suffered earlier in the week while on a motorcycle, but still managed an 11th place run.
Hantz was so excited about his victory in front of the packed grandstands, that he decided to climb the fence.
“My little boy, he's been wanting me to climb the fence” Hantz said. “C'mon dad lets climb the fence', so I'm going to climb it every time we win now.”
The tradition first started back at New Paris Speedway, where he picked up a cool $20,000 winning payday in his Outlaw car a week and a half prior.
With dominating success at the half-mile racetrack known to be the home of ARCA, also has given Hantz extra motivation to help his team owner smile through difficult times. And winning can certainly the best medicine for that.
“Richard Poe my car owner, [with his wife] Jackie Poe. His health's not real good. We're running every race like its our last, and it may be. We're having a great year and having a lot of fun.”
Busch Has Part Failure After Strong Start
Kyle Busch absolutely loves the CRA Super Series, and the stellar competition that it brings to short tracks across the country. Kyle was looking to go back to back, after winning the Redbud 300 at Anderson Speedway a few weeks ago. Flying over from the Michigan International Speedway, Kyle quickly got himself up to speed in the car that had been practiced by Brian Ickler, as he placed himself second fast in qualifying.
“Unfortunately it was a part failure. The left rear shock mount, look liked it broke when I ran over the rumble strips in turn two, and it just steered right in the fence. I had no left rear shock,” said Kyle after climbing from the car.
Busch started fifth for the 100-lap race and was quickly moving to the front of the pack early on, before having the failure that would place him 23rd in the finishing order of the 25 starters.
“[It's] Unfortunate that we can't have people engineer the right parts to keep these cars alive and running well. We were running third, just biding our time, just kind of riding.”
Turner Finds Trouble in Practice But Finishes Strong
Rick Turner was looking to place his Great Deals Ford in victory lane, but trouble from the very start hurt that effort. Only six laps into practice, he found himself tangled up with Rick Brown who had bounced off the wall, mangling Turners right side door.
“Only got six laps of practice today, cause we crashed it in practice, and my guys did an awesome job putting it back together, and were lucky to come out with a fourth place finish.”
First Timer Comes Home with a Solid Top Five Finish
The sponsor-less number 36 got a lot of people's attention Friday night. The driver was competing in his very first template body CRA Super Series event. Nick Diano has racing experience around the country, and wheeled his super loose Chevy to a fifth place finish.
“I was pretty happy with this fifth place, we had real tough field out here. I had a loose car the whole entire race, had a heck of a time with it.” said Diano in post race tech.
The young driver was pretty satisfied with his first CRA race. “I'd give that performance a 10 out of 10!”