HARTFORD, Ohio – Kyle Larson finished off Cometic Gasket Ohio Sprint Speedweek Sunday night at Sharon Speedway the exact same way he capped Pennsylvania Speedweek eight days earlier, by parking the Silva Motorsports No. 57 in victory lane.
Larson, who started third in the Justin Snyder’s Salute to the Troops feature, worked to second on the opening lap and then chased polesitter and early leader Skylar Gee for the first third of the race.
After applying pressure but not finding a way by, Larson capitalized at the end of lap nine, when Gee washed wide off turn four and smacked the outside wall with his No. 99.
Larson took the lead as Gee slowed to a stop in turn one, pacing the final 21 laps from there en route to his third win of Ohio Sprint Speedweek and seventh overall All Star Circuit of Champions win this year.
Only a yellow at halfway for the slowing car of Adam Kekich could slow Larson’s roll down the stretch, with the Elk Grove, Calif., native driving out to an eight-tenth-of-a-second victory over Aaron Reutzel.
However, Larson did have a nervous moment with three to go, when he made contact with the outside wall that nearly opener the door for Reutzel to pounce.
“I hit it, and I kind of got stuck in it,” said Larson of the outside wall. “I was just figuring I’d end up with a flat tire or something, but I was just trying to stay calm. I guess I just lost focus for a minute going down into (turn) one, and I didn’t know how close Aaron was, but I knew he’d be pushing hard. I felt like I hadn’t made any mistakes up to that point, so I just had to keep going.
“It was just too difficult to hit the top every lap, so I just moved down and tried to listen for Aaron.”
Though Reutzel could do nothing with Larson throughout the feature, his second-place finish was more than enough to lock up his first Ohio Sprint Speedweek championship.
Cory Eliason filled out the podium finishers, followed by Dave Blaney and Greg Wilson, who came forward from 16th to cross fifth after 30 laps.
Rico Abreu, Danny Dietrich, Paul McMahan, Gerard McIntyre and Zeb Wise were the balance of the top 10.
The All Star Circuit of Champions season continues Friday night at Williams Grove Speedway with the $5,000-to-win Tommy Hinnershitz Memorial.
Feature (30 laps): 1. 57-Kyle Larson , 2. 87-Aaron Reutzel , 3. 26-Cory Eliason , 4. 10-Dave Blaney , 5. W20-Greg Wilson , 6. 24-Rico Abreu , 7. 48-Danny Dietrich , 8. 13-Paul McMahan , 9. 07-Gerard McIntyre , 10. 11-Zeb Wise , 11. 40-George Hobaugh , 12. 3c-Cale Conley , 13. 08-Dan Kuriger , 14. 23-Cole Macedo , 15. 81-Lee Jacobs , 16. 3z-Brock Zearfoss , 17. 28-Tim Shaffer , 18. 8m-TJ Michael , 19. 17-Josh Baughman , 20. 70-Sye Lynch , 21. 2-AJ Flick , 22. 5k-Adam Kekich , 23. 33-Brent Matus , 24. 99-Skylar Gee .
Lap Leader(s): Skylar Gee 1-9, Kyle Larson 10-30.
Hard Charger: W20-Greg Wilson (+11)
SPEED SPORT’s Ohio Sprint Speedweek coverage is presented by Cometic Gasket Inc., a leading worldwide supplier of gaskets and engine sealing solutions for the automotive performance, powersports, original equipment and remanufactured engine industries. No matter what you ride, Cometic Gasket can seal your machine so you can focus on the finish line.
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