BROWNSTOWN, Ind. — In chasing a championship, it’s crucial to win early and often. That’s exactly what Mike McKinney started in Wednesday night’s DIRTcar Summit Racing Equipment Modified Nationals opener at Brownstown Speedway with a feature win in convincing fashion over Nick Hoffman and Ryan Thomas.
Starting on the pole in the 25-lap feature, McKinney gave up the lead to Will Krup right away and quickly fell back to third behind two-time and defending Summit Modifieds champion Nick Hoffman.
But a quick yellow after just four laps re-stacked the field and allowed McKinney the opportunity he needed to get the lead back, which he did immediately, digging under Krup on the low side on the restart and taking the lead back for good one lap later.
From there on out, it was all The Magic Man. He led the field around Brownstown virtually unchallenged for the remaining 20 laps to collect his 10th career Summit Modifieds victory.
“They drove by me on the [original] start, but then on that restart, I don’t know, it was just the light switch, I guess,” McKinney said. “Whoever was in second gave me a shot and [the track] might’ve took some rubber there, so I moved up and was able to hold them off.”
His competition was tough, but McKinney’s No. 96 Elite Chassis held strong and even showed his haters a thing or two before the race was out.
“Starting with Nick and Will, I knew it was going to be tough. They’re the best-of-the-best when it gets slick like this. Everyone always gives me crap and says I can only run the cushion at Fairbury, so I hope I proved everybody wrong,” McKinney said.
Hoffman held strong inside the podium throughout the race to claim the runner-up spot, while Ryan Thomas was able to slide his No. T9 by Krup with 10 laps remaining to collect third. Jacoby Hines rounded out the top five.
Feature (25 Laps): 1. 96M-Mike McKinney [$10,000]; 2. 7-Nick Hoffman [$5,000]; 3. T9-Ryan Thomas [$3,000]; 4. K19-Will Krup [$2,500]; 5. 115-Jacoby Hines [$2,000]; 6. 25W-Allen Weisser [$1,700]; 7. 34J-Jordan Wever [$1,400]; 8. 99-Hunt Gossum [$1,300]; 9. 66-Cole Falloway [$1,200]; 10. 9H-John DeMoss [$1,100]; 11. 93W-Brayden Watson [$1,050]; 12. 7D-Brad DeYoung [$1,000]; 13. 23-Ryan Cripe [$950]; 14. 7L-Mark Lamont [$900]; 15. 16C-John Clippinger [$850]; 16. 11J-Jarod Fleetwood [$800]; 17. 36-Kenny Wallace [$770]; 18. 35-David Stremme [$750]; 19. 46-Derek Groomer [$730]; 20. 21A-Nick Allen [$700]; 21. 24-Zeke McKenzie [$700] Hard Charger: 25W-Allen Weisser[+10]