KINGSPORT, Tenn. – It was bound to end sometime.
J.P. Morgan’s streak of four-straight Rev-Oil Pro Cup Series victories came to an end Sunday at Kingsport Speedway as local favorite Wade Day dominated the Food Country USA 250 presented by MAHLE Motorsport for his first series victory.
The victory wasn’t easy for May, who started from the pole in his first series start since 2008. The Tennessee native jumped into the lead at the outset on the three-eighths-mile concrete oval and looked to have the best car from the beginning.
However, during a restart on lap 69, Day was black flagged for jumping the restart. His punishment was a pass through penalty, which handed the lead to the No. 75 Henderson Motorsports Dodge driven by Caleb Holman.
Holman held that position through the halfway break and was lucky enough to remain the leader after the halfway draw resulted in a straight-up restart. On the restart second-place Gus Dean got the jump on the field, grabbing the lead away from Holman as Day made his way to third.
Only a few laps later Day made his move, bypassing Dean to take the lead for good. Despite two more caution flags that slowed the field, Day was unbeatable the rest of the way as he bagged his first Rev-Oil Pro Cup Series triumph in his 19th start.
“It just takes one mistake ruin a race,” Day said. “I just kind of bided my time. We got to halfway there and we didn’t really make any adjustments on the car, just a little bit of air pressure. Actually, as the track rubbered up the car got better.”
Morgan ended up second, breaking his streak of four-straight series victories. It was the first time he hasn’t visited victory lane in the series since June 9 at Motor Mile Speedway in Radford, Va.
“I guess he was definitely the best,” Morgan said. “He was the class of the field today. He could get his car in at a little different line and I tried every line in the book that I could to try and mimic it. I got him in (turns) one and two, but I just couldn’t catch him in three and four. We ended up coming home second.
“We’re here for wins, we’re not here for second,” Morgan concluded.
Dean finished third after leading his first laps in the series Sunday at Kingsport. He admitted he was a little frustrated because he still finished behind Morgan, despite the fact that Morgan didn’t win the race.
“I really liked this concrete track. My car was great, the crew did a heck of a job,” Dean said. “J.P., man, he got us again. Hopefully we’ll get him here soon. If the crew keeps giving me cars like they do and Modoc stands behind us like they have, then I’m sure we will be finding victory lane soon enough.”
Tyler Young finished fourth in his No. 02 Chevrolet, followed by Nathan Russell, who made a nice recovery after being involved in a crash earlier in the day, to finish fifth.