CLEARFIELD, Pa. – At the midway point of the 2012 season, the championship race in the NASCAR K&N Pro Series East couldn’t get much closer.
The series’ return to CNB Bank Raceway Park could perhaps set the tone for the home stretch in the Samuel 150 Saturday evening.
Chase Elliott will take just a one-point lead to Clearfield on Corey LaJoie after LaJoie earned his second win of the season last time out at Langley Speedway on June 23 in Hampton, Va.
With seven races down and seven to go, it’s the closest that the competition has been since the 2012 season took the green flag in mid-March.
While Elliott and LaJoie – two sons of past NASCAR champions – may have positioned themselves as the frontrunners, they’re far from the only title contenders as the second half of the campaign gets underway in Clearfield.
Kyle Larson sits in third, just eight points back of Elliott, while Brett Moffitt ranks fourth, two tallies behind Larson.
The top four contenders have shown little signs of blinking under pressure through the first half either. All four have at least five top-10 finishes through the first seven races and all four have reached Victory Lane.
This week’s Samuel 150 will provide a new set of challenges for the championship contenders as well as the rest of those in attendance.
CNB Bank Raceway Park is one of three tracks new to the series schedule this year, but the .625-mile oval presents the most unknowns of any race with no previous NASCAR races at the reconfigured facility.