AUDIO/RECAP: Right Place, Right Time; Rich Jette Survives Late Race Mayhem for Daytona 250 Win

Jacob Seelman Audio, Featured, iRacing, Southeast 0 Comments

DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. — Audio and recap by Race Chaser Online Managing Editor Jacob Seelman — Real Sim Racing photo —

Monday night contained one of the most bizarre finishes in =RSR= Full Throttle Cup Series history, so it was only fitting that a surprise winner ended the night in Gatorade Victory Lane at the Daytona International Speedway.

Real Sim Racing veteran Rich Jette took the lead of the season-opening Daytona 250 with six laps to go — following a crash on the backstretch that collected race leaders L. Bryce Whitson Jr., Dan Murray and Scott Stenzel — and then held off a furious charge from David Comstock and Garrett Atwell over the final 15 miles to secure his first FTCS victory in 62 races and end a nearly two-year winless drought with the biggest win of his =RSR= career.

Jette’s spot in history was secured when the caution flew with two laps to go after the No. 40 of Joey Hilton spun following a blown motor and collected several other cars. The win was Jette’s second career FTCS triumph and his first on a superspeedway.

“This feels good, I haven’t won in a very long time and you start to doubt whether you’re ever going to get back here,” Jette said in Victory Lane. “I know some people say it takes skill and luck to win here — and it does — but to win here in anything is very good to be able to accomplish.”

“I knew you had to get up high to get around anybody. When I saw the 14 (Comstock) coming I tried to get in front of him and couldn’t,” Jette said of his attempted charge. “So I was in the middle of a three-wide situation and when they wrecked right in front of me, the seas just parted and I was just able to slide on through. It’s a cool feeling, a very fun night.”

Comstock and Atwell finished second and third, respectively. Defending FTCS champion Eric Brundies rallied from the back in the late stages to come home fourth and his teammate Nathan Little rounded out the top five.

While the first three-quarters of the 100-lap affair were relatively calm, the chaos of the final quarter made up for all of the missed opportunities.

The Daytona “Big One” struck on lap 78 after the No. 23 Steel Horse Racing Chevrolet of Greg Evans blew up running second in the outside lane, causing a massive accordion effect and resulting in Brandon Peterson getting into the back of Brian Macklin and sending him headlong into the pack. From there, the carnage was fast and furious, as 17 cars received a piece of the melee and Matt LaCross, Brennan Mercer, Steve Gottschalk, and Rett McBride were forced to the garage as a result of the incident.

On the lap 82 restart, Whitson Jr. and teammate Atwell hit the button and shot to the front, and shuffled the lead with Murray until the lap 94 incident that cleaned out the top three, putting Jette to the lead and changing the complexion of the top five.

But the chaos didn’t end there.

With three laps to go, the No. 40 of Joey Hilton and the No. 41 of Nathan Little got together coming off of turn four and scrambled the six-car pack behind the top three, somehow managing to not draw a caution — but Hilton’s motor went south in the crash, leading to his spin with Nick Kohan and Thomas George with two laps to go that ended the event under yellow.

After the smoke cleared, Murray rebounded for a sixth place finish, followed by Johnathon Caddell, Dwayne Vincent and Ralph Nolen Jr. Polesitter Ronnie Potts led 15 laps early, but faded to tenth at the checkered flag.

In all, the race featured four caution flags for 13 laps and 16 lead changes between seven different drivers.

The =RSR= Full Throttle Cup Series returns to action on Monday, March 2 for their second race of the season at the Atlanta Motor Speedway. Green flag coverage begins at 9:30 p.m. Eastern time live on LSRTV.

 

Audio with race winner Rich Jette:

 

RESULTS: =RSR= Full Throttle Cup Series; Daytona International Speedway; Daytona Beach, Fla.; Feb. 23, 2015

  1. Rich Jette
  2. David Comstock
  3. Garrett Atwell
  4. Eric Brundies
  5. Nathan Little
  6. Dan Murray
  7. Johnathon Caddell
  8. Dwayne Vincent
  9. Ralph Nolen Jr.
  10. Ronnie Potts
  11. Chad Cole
  12. Steve Ritter
  13. Thomas George
  14. Scott Stenzel
  15. Jeff Ward
  16. John Abbott
  17. Corbin Himstreet
  18. Nicholas Kohan
  19. C.J. LaVair
  20. Joey Hilton
  21. Brandon Peterson
  22. Scott Simley
  23. Joey Gattina
  24. Nick Silver
  25. Jason Lester
  26. L. Bryce Whitson Jr.
  27. Mark Bratcher
  28. Brian Macklin
  29. Doug Roth
  30. Kevin Linden
  31. Rett McBride
  32. Steve Gottschalk
  33. Brennan Mercer
  34. Greg Evans
  35. Matt LaCross
  36. Landon Huffman
  37. Chad Coleman
  38. Bryan Harvey
  39. David Lanza
  40. Jimmie North
  41. Glenn Campbell
  42. Stefan Marinak
  43. Joe Hassert

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