Now that was a good race last night: high speed, hard competition and no nonsense. Loved it! Everyone was competitive and stayed on the lead lap for the most part. Ok, so there were one or two that were getting lapped, but it was certainly nothing like some races that are full of start and parkers, and cars that are way off the pace. Last night, 20 cars were up to speed and racing with each other. There was lots of give and take, passing and re-passing. Enough parity so everyone was fast, but enough difference that the faster cars could climb through the field. I don’t know how it was so balanced, but it was.
I don’t remember any destruction either. Stephen Nasse had the race won, but somehow ended up in the turn 1 wall in a single car incident. Did something break on 51? Too bad, he drove perfectly. Although there was close racing, and more than a little bumper, I think 51 was the only car to get towed off.
Before the World Series this year, I was in the legions that dislike Steven Wallace. But he made me a believer over so many nights last February, and he backed it up by winning last night. Is he aggressive? Yes! Is he generous and forgiving on the track? Hell no! That sounds a lot like the racing heroes from the old days…
Of course I am a David Rogers fan too, and I loved the way his car seemed to get faster and faster as the race went on. He pressured Steven Wallace for the last 20 laps and finished a close second. I am sure he would have had an ovation from lots of happy fans, myself included, if he won, but he looked pretty damn good in last nights race.
Thank Goodness the track ran the SLM first! They got it in before the rain affected the night.
A closing thought: I loved the salute that announcer Dave gave to veteran driver Mario Maresca during driver intros. Mario was back in the seat last night after a difficult year of serious health problems. He was one of the stars at Hialeah when I first started going 40+ years ago, and Mario still had his foot in it last night.