BARBERVILLE, Fla. — Larry Wight blasted around the high side of Volusia Speedway Park en route to winning Friday night’s Super DIRTcar Series big-block modified feature during the penultimate night of the DIRTcar Nationals.
Early leader Matt Sheppard was overtaken by Gypsum Racing teammates Wight and Pat Ward, but seven-time champion Sheppard battled back and eventually slid under the veteran pilot Ward to retake second place. Polesitter Peter Britten challenged for a top-three, running the high side as well, but was forced to settle for fourth.
Wight, the defending NAPA Super DIRT Week champion, brought the crowd to its feet with his distinctive high-side racing. While Sheppard and Ward searched for the right line late in the race, Wight powered to the checkered flag.
“There was enough of a cushion there where you could really drive it in hard,” Wight said. “As long as the car would turn off the cushion to be able to run the middle up in four, it seemed to pick up a lot of ground. I saw Matt [Sheppard] try a couple times, and he really shoved the nose bad, but I think we were a little bit freer and was able to do it.”
With his second-place finish, Sheppard now takes over the Gator Championship lead.
“In the middle of the race I fell back to fourth or fifth there,” Sheppard said. “I finally caught a groove where I was able to steer in the center of the corner and get back by a couple guys. It’s a solid second tonight.”
Ward had his best finish of the 2019 DIRTcar Nationals. Ward was pleased with how the track conditions played to his favor. When the track slows down it, “puts it back into the car and driver’s hands a little bit more. Hats off to Larry [Wight]. If there’s a little bit on top, you don’t want to want to leave it open, because he’ll go by you. I kind of overdrove trying to catch back up to him. We’ll take third.”
Feature (30 Laps): 1. 99l-Larry Wight ; 2. 9s-Matt Sheppard ; 3. 42p-Pat Ward ; 4. 21a-Peter Britten ; 5. 25-Erick Rudolph ; 6. 18-Anthony Perrego ; 7. 1-Billy Pauch ; 8. 20-Brett Hearn ; 9. 7-Rick Laubach ; 10. 88-Mat Williamson ; 11. 3-Justin Haers ; 12. 27j-Danny Johnson ; 13. 19m-Jessey Mueller ; 14. 9t-Will Thomas ; 15. 23-Kyle Coffey ; 16. 1g-Darwin Greene ; 17. 118-Jim Britt ; 18. 5-Ryan Godown ; 19. 111-Demetrios Drellos ; 20. 2L-Jack Lehner ; 21. 65-Scott Hitchen ; 22. 5st-Tyler Siri ; 23. 91-Billy Decker ; 24. 42-Kyle Sheldon ; 25. 21-Yan Bussiere ; 26. 19-Tim Fuller