CASA GRANDE, Ariz. – The third race on the IMCA Arizona Mod Tour was similar to the night before, in that two drivers were set to take away main event wins late in the race.
This time, neither was able to get the task done and Ricky Thornton Jr. made it back to back in IMCA modified racing.
Jim Horejsi took the sport mod finale.
Thornton matched his Saturday heat race draw when he started from the outside of row two. Winning the heat from that spot is necessary to have a shot at being among the top six in points and part of the important redraw to set the first three rows.
Thornton won his heat and redrew fourth on Saturday and made it one better Sunday, picking the outside the front row. He led all 25 laps of the nonstop main, but just like Saturday, the lack of yellows meant traffic would eventually come into play.
Again, it was Jake O’Neil who was chasing Thornton and with seven laps left, O’Neil was right on the rear of Thornton’s Lethal chassis. Also again, it was Thornton who got through traffic smoother and he stretched his lead to take the $1,500 win over O’Neil.
Clint Reichenback, Casey Arneson and Jason Noll completed the top five.
Hunter Marriott, the two-time defending tour champion, finished 11th and has been hampered by not making the key redraw in the first three races.
A field of 80 IMCA modifieds raced Sunday.
The sport mods drew 34 cars for a three-heat plan. Horejsi won his heat to qualify for the top six in points redraw.
Drawing the outside pole put him alongside Jake McBirnie, the prior night’s winner.
Horejsi quickly established a substantial lead until McBirnie closed in turn three on the next to last lap. A long stretch of green flag laps helped McBirnie close on Horesji.
Final-lap dramatics looked likely, but this time McBirnie didn’t have the opening and finished a close second. Kelly Jacobson was third ahead of opening night winner Ethan Braaksma.
Central Arizona Speedway hosts the fourth round of the series Monday night.