Hocevar Dominates 49th Winchester 400

0
1783
Hocevar Dominates 49th
Carson Hocevar in victory lane after winning Sunday's Winchester 400. (Randy Crist photo)

WINCHESTER, Ind. – Carson Hocevar turned in a dominant performance in winning the 49th running of the Winchester 400 at Winchester Speedway.

Driving for car owner Johnny VanDoorn, Hocevar led 341 of the 400 laps Sunday, with only Kyle Crump and Stephen Nasse able to run with him throughout most of the race.

He took the lead for the final time on lap 282 when Nasse ran out of fuel.

The final 73 laps went caution free, with no changes among the top five running order.

Following Hocevar to the checkers were Crump, Nasse, Brandon Oakley and Mason Keller.

With an 11th-place finish Josh Brock was crowned the ARCA/CRA Super Series champion.

It was only Hocevar’s second start in a Winchester 400. By winning Sunday, Hocevar made it a perfect five for five in victories in CRA Super Series races this year.

The Michigan driver earned victories this year in the Show Me State 100 at Lebanon I-44 Speedway, Redbud 400 at Anderson Speedway, at Lebanon I-44 Speedway and in the Glass City 200 at Toledo Speedway.

“This is awesome,” Hocevar said in victory lane. “The car was on rails.”

Crump was pleased with his second place after finishing his first Winchester 400.

“I’m extremely happy,” he said. “We struggled a little at times this year so it was good to come back strong.”

Crump started in the sixth position and ran in the top three for most of the day.

Nasse said it wasn’t his day.

“We had a throttle hang-up and ran out of fuel,” he said. “People know what car should have run today, it wasn’t our day.”

Fast qualifier Cayden Lapcevich led the opening seven laps before pitting on the first caution period, which put Hocevar on the point.

Hocevar stayed out front until lap 196 when Lapcevich led one lap during a round of pit stops.

That caution followed a 75-lap green flag run with Nasse moving from eighth to third.

On the restart, and for the first 25 laps past the halfway point, Hocevar was chased by Nasse in a battle for the lead with the two running side by side coming off the fourth corner for several laps.

Hocevar then went back out front until lap 234, when Nasse made an inside move entering turn three.

Nasse pulled away to more than a six-second lead over Hocevar when he ran out of gas.

Following the final round of pit stops, Nasse was not able to keep pace with Hocevar and Crump.

The race was slowed nine times by the caution flag for 58 laps and one red flag for a five-car incident on lap 119 coming off the fourth corner.

There were five lead changes among three drivers.

It was a rough weekend for Bubba Pollard, who qualified 23rd in the 29-car field and struggled finding the handle before retiring on lap 64.

The finish:

1. Carson Hocevar; 2. Kyle Crump; 3. Stephen Nasse; 4. Brandon Oakley; 5. Mason Keller; 6. Sammy Smith; 7. Cayden Lapcevich; 8. Jeff Fultz; 9. Travis Braden; 10. Chandler Smith; 11. Josh Brock; 12. Greg VanAlst; 13. Michael Simko; 14. Dan Leeck; 15. Zachary Tinkle; 16. Chase Burba; 17. Cody Coughlin; 18. Dalton Armstrong; 19. Augie Grill; 20. Albert Francis; 21. Jack Dossey III; 22. Brandon Varney; 23. Kodie Conner; 24. Dakota Stroup; 25. Hunter Jack; 26. Jake Garcia; 27. Bubba Pollard; 28. Jake Hinton; 29. Jaren Crabtree