Dustin Ash Cruises At Vegas Bullring

Dustin Ash on his way to victory Saturday night at The Bullring at Las Vegas Motor Speedway. (Barry Ambrose Photo)

LAS VEGAS – A midweek decision paid off in a big way for NASCAR Super Late Models driver Dustin Ash.

The Las Vegas wheelman decided to get some seat time at The Bullring at Las Vegas Motor Speedway before resuming his NASCAR K&N Pro Series West schedule and cruised to victory in the 50-lap Super Late Models feature on Military & Veterans Appreciation Night on Saturday. Ash finished 4.457 seconds ahead of 2017 super late model track champion Justin Johnson for his 59th career win, breaking a tie for second place on the track’s all-time wins list with Phil Goodwin.

Ash now trails only six-time track champion Scott Gafforini, who has 67 Bullring wins.

“It’s pretty awesome,” Ash said. “We worked on this thing so hard this week and lost the brakes at the end, but it was cool to come out and race with some of these guys I grew up racing with like Justin Johnson and Chris Clyne. This was kind of a fluke thing, and I wasn’t even going to come race until about Wednesday or Thursday. Man, that was fun.”

Ash’s win snapped Clyne’s five-race winning streak, with Clyne coming across the line in fifth place despite running on older tires. Tyler Fabozzi finished third, while Gafforini took fourth.

Jason Irwin pulled off a rare double on Saturday night, taking the checkered flag in the USLCI Legends 25-lap race and returning to the Winner’s Circle after winning the nightcap in the NASCAR 602 Modifieds division. It was Irwin’s ninth Legends victory in 11 races, but his first Modifieds triumph since 2015.

Irwin – who now has 47 career Bullring wins – was driving the Modified for Shawn Morga, who is trying to sell the car. Its price may have just gone up.

“We just try to come out here when we can, have fun with it and try to get wins, and so far it’s been a pretty good season,” said Irwin, who makes the long drive from Albuquerque, N.M., to race at The Bullring. “I’ve got to thank Shawn Morga for the opportunity to run his car, and it was a really good race. These cars are a blast to race, it’s tight racing and I hope the class just keeps growing.

“It’s a long trip, about eight-and-a-half hours, and we’ll make the drive back tonight. I couldn’t do it without my crew, especially Matt, who busts his butt getting all these cars ready.”

Sam Jacks ran his winning streak to six and all-time Bullring wins total to 21 by taking the 25-lap NASCAR Super Stocks feature by .986 of a second over Ethan DeGuevara. Camden Larsen led the race early before relinquishing it to Jacks following a re-start around Lap 16, taking third place 1.675 seconds off the pace.

“I want to thank all the veterans and the military who are out here tonight,” said Jacks, who joined Peyton Saxton and Jason Kiser as 21-time Bullring winners. “Camden really stepped it up this race and was doing really well, but it just seemed like his car was falling off a little bit more than mine was toward the yellow. I play iRacing with him during the week, and it was like video game racing we were doing.

“It was so much fun.”

Reigning NASCAR Bombers track champion Vinny Raucci Jr. won a wreck-plagued feature by .860 of a second over Adam Simon. This season’s points leader, Kyle Jacks, was running second when his engine blew to bring out the final caution, relegating him to 13th place and ending the race due to expiration of the time limit.

“I’ve got to thank everyone in the pits, and it’s just awesome,” said Raucci Jr., who now has 15 career Bullring wins. “I got a new tire compound, so I was trying to bottom in the high side to see which one goes better for the longer runs and wasn’t really paying attention to the people behind me. I was out front, getting pushed from behind, and I was like, ‘Oh no,’ but it held together and here I am.”

Landon Gresser held off points leader Chloe Lynch by just .217 of a second in the 12-lap USLCI Bandolero Outlaws feature to win for the second time in three races and the 14th time overall at The Bullring, while Hank Hall of Bakersfield, Calif., won for the second time in a row in the USLCI Bandolero Bandits division. Scott Stockwell made it two straight in the Skid Plate Cars division, taking the checkered flag by more than 12 seconds ahead of Dennis Dowell.

In addition, Chris Bosley stayed perfect on the season by winning the Thunder Cars feature on Friday night.