Photo by: Brian Lawdermilk
Kyle Larson overcame the obstacles he faced in Wednesday night’s Aspen Dental Eldora Dirt Derby to score his second Camping World Truck Series victory and his first series victory at Eldora Speedway.
“It means a lot, especially losing the way I did the two years I ran,” Larson said during his celebration. “Thanks to everyone on this GMS Racing team, DC Solar for coming on-board for this, this is very special for them.”
Larson was leading on lap 52 when he blew a tire and spun out, bringing out the caution. He was forced to do a pass-through penalty after NASCAR determined that he intentionally spun to bring out the caution.
Larson was not to be denied, however. After regaining his lap, he charged to the front of the field and battled with Bobby Pierce until Pierce crashed into the turn 4 wall after suffering transmission issues. Pierce, who finished second in last year’s event, led 102 of 150 laps and finished 25th.
After Larson reclaimed the lead with 30 to go, he extended his lead as the remaining laps dwindled and won by a 0.767-second margin of victory.
Last year’s winner, Christopher Bell, went home second, followed by Rico Abreu, Jake Griffin, and Tyler Reddick.
Photo by: Jonathan Ferrey
When the Camping World Truck Series roll onto the track at Eldora Speedway on Tuesday to prepare for the Aspen Dental Eldora Dirt Derby, the driver of the Brad Keselowski Racing No. 29 Cooper Standard F-150 will practically be at home.
Before making his way to the NASCAR scene, Reddick raced in the Dirt Late Model Series, breaking records as he went. The, then 15-year-old, became the youngest winner of a feature event in the series. He also holds the record for youngest driver to make the World 100 at Eldora Speedway.
So why are these two facts so important? It’s because Tyler Reddick’s average at Eldora is 7.0, given that is only from two races, but the young talent knows his way around the infamous dirt track owned by NASCAR veteran, Tony Stewart.
Every week Reddick applies his knowledge from his dirt days and puts them to the test. His truck is often described by announcers as “too loose”, but more often than not it is just the right fit for Reddick.
And when it’s not?
He makes wicked saves that are often only seen by drivers who have years and years of experience under their belts. Earlier this year at Charlotte Motor Speedway when Reddick’s truck became looser as the laps continued to advance, Reddick overcame his obstacles for a fourth-place finish.
A win at Eldora would not only qualify Reddick to run for the series championship, the chase-style format implemented for the 2016 season to bring more exciting racing and prepare the young stars for the Sprint Cup Series, but it would be a highlight victory for the California native’s resume. One that already includes a Daytona victory and a 2nd place finish in the 2015 title run.