“He’s got a good car and he’s definitely coming on here at the end of the year,” Lanigan said of Heckenast. “I never did see his nose there, but I had a guy on the backstretch giving my signals. He gave me a big signal there at the end, so I just kinda bided my time with those lapped car.”
Heckenast, who switched to a Club 29 car in late June, fell short of claiming his first career WoO LMS victory, but the 26-year-old driver strengthened his command of the WoO LMS Rookie of the Year chase with his solid performance.
“Everything went our way and we had a pretty good night,” said Heckenast, who recorded his first top-five of the season in a WoO LMS A-Main. “Darrell, he’s got a lot of experience racing in traffic and being out front. I don’t have the confidence just yet to move around on the racetrack.
“He was so much better through traffic, so he’d get out on me. But after the restart… my car was really good. I hung with him there for a while and didn’t wanna show him everything. But he’s so good, he normally gets faster from lap 40 to 50.”
The third-place finish leaves Eckert still looking for first WoO LMS victory of the season, but the 2011 series champion was pleased with his team’s progress.
“It’s not from lack of effort because we’ve been working hard to get there,” Eckert said of the frustration of his current winless streak. “We couldn’t race by them tonight, but we were pretty close. We’ll take that.
“The guys have been working real hard and giving me a good car. Tonight was about as good as we’ve got. We had a really decent car, so I think we can work from that.”
Darrell Lanigan, Frank Heckenast Jr., Rick Eckert, Tim McCreadie, Billy Moyer, Jimmy Mars, Tim Fuller, Shane Clanton, Eric Wells, Morgan Bagley, Brian Birkhofer, Chase Junghans, Wendell Wallace, Clint Smith, Boom Briggs, Tyler Bruening, Dustin Virkus, Jason Rauen, Spencer Diercks, Chad Smith, Chub Frank, Curt Martin, Chris Simpson, Mike Fryer.