MORGANTOWN, Ky. — With just five laps left, deep in lapped traffic and two fierce competitors closing the gap behind him, Will Krup knew it was time to make a move to secure the win.
Krup had led since the drop of the green, through several caution flags and now had home-state favorite Tyler Nicely and newly crowned champion Nick Hoffman breathing down his neck as he approached a sizable pack of lapped traffic at Cedar Ridge Speedway.
Krup stuck mainly to the lower side of the track and began to pick each car in the pack off, one-by-one, until he was forced to move up to get around some others.
With two laps left, Krup made some contact with one of the slower cars that nearly stumbled his momentum as he came out of Turn 4 to collect the white flag. But his JHA Motorsports No. K19 was strong and stable, and Krup was able to get through the late-race traffic jam to collect his fifth DIRTcar Summit Racing Equipment Modified Nationals Feature win of the season in the preliminary night of action at the seventh annual Hope for Harlie benefit race.
“I just kept looking up at the flagman, just wishing he’d throw that checkered,” Krup said after the race. “It was getting awfully thick there. But all-in-all, I survived that deal and came home with a good victory.”
Leading the pack for an all-Elite Chassis podium once again, Krup knew the pressure was coming from Nicely and Hoffman behind him, and he kicked it into high gear at just the right time.
“I had a stick guy up there that I was watching and the gap never got any bigger, never got any smaller, but I just knew that you can’t mess-up in those situations because if you get out of line a little bit, they’ll get underneath you and they’re gonna be hard to pass back,” he said.
Nicely actually viewed the thick traffic at the end as an interesting added element to maneuver around.
“That lapped traffic got pretty heavy there at the end,” Nicely said. “I was kinda looking forward to it; it was just gonna help throw another car into it.”
Feature (25 Laps) 1. K19-Will Krup ; 2. 25-Tyler Nicely ; 3. 7-Nick Hoffman ; 4. 22H-Josh Harris ; 5. 18-Brandon McDowell ; 6. 24-Zeke McKenzie ; 7. K7-Gabriel Kirtley ; 8. 21D-Danny Schwartz ; 9. 16C-John Clippinger ; 10. 55L-Alex Love ; 11. 55-Blaze Melton ; 12. 13-Charlie Mefford ; 13. 22-Wade Wenthe ; 14. O3-Zach Dennis ; 15. 11-Dennis Vincent ; 16. 46-Johnny Madden ; 17. 37-TY Shearon ; 18. 81-Mark Cole ; 19. 8-TJ Armour ; 20. 81C-Christopher Cole ; 21. 59R-Jacob Rexing ; 22. R4-Ricky Arms  Hard Charger: 21D-Danny Schwartz[+8]