ANDERSON, S.C. — In poker, a pair might be the worst hand, but for Joey “The Ace” Aguilar, a pair was exactly what he was looking for at Anderson Motor Speedway.
Aguilar, a longtime pavement sprint car ace from Tampa, Fla., powered around the outside of 2012 Carolina RaceSaver Sprint Car Series champion Jake McLain in turn one on lap 14 of Saturday night’s United Sprint Car Series filter charged by K&N 40-lap Summer Nationals finale A-main and drove away to his second victory in two nights in dominating fashion, despite a late-race charge from 1998 series Rookie of the Year Johnny Bridges.
The victory was Aguilar’s third career USCS feature win and seventh straight sprint car victory across three different sanctions. The result also locked Aguilar into next month’s USCS Wind Creek Casino/Hotel Wetumpka Sprint Car Shootout at Atlanta Motor Speedway on August 29th.
“This is incredible; it’s truly been a blast running up here this weekend,” Aguilar said. “The series, the track staff, all the fans who came out tonight, everyone has treated us well and we really appreciate it. We had another unbelievable car tonight; it took a lot of work after we broke the axle in hot laps, but we did it and this means a lot.”
Bridges, who worked his way around McLain after a restart on lap 20, closed the gap between he and Aguilar substantially over the final ten laps, but ran out of time to make a challenge for the win.
“We just needed about five more laps,” Bridges said. “We were faster than he was there late in the run but we just didn’t catch traffic and breaks quite like we needed to there to be close enough. Still a solid result though, and we got to roll the car on the trailer in one piece tonight so that’s a huge improvement.”
Bridges set the K&N Filters Fast Time during two-lap time trials on Saturday evening with a lap of 13.040 seconds (103.528 mph), shattering the all-time track record of 13.260 seconds that he set the day before.
Joey Aguilar, Johnny Bridges, Jake McLain, Morgan Turpen, Tim Perry, Tom Paterson, Bill Moore, Jay Dunham, Dave Thorman, Brandon McLain, Greg Smyre, Terry Gray, Jim Payne, Joe Larkin.