NEW SMYRNA BEACH, Fla. and CHARLOTTE, N.C. – Recap by Race Chaser Online Mid-Atlantic Correspondent Marshall Gabell – Getty Images for NASCAR photo –
Despite their team owner’s injuries after Saturday afternoon’s NASCAR XFINITY Series event at Daytona International Speedway, there was one positive for Kyle Busch Motorsports on the penultimate day of Florida Speedweeks.
Christopher Bell soared to the winners circle in the Super Late Model feature on champions’ night in the 49th Annual World Series of Asphalt Stock Car Racing.
Bell won the finale at New Smyrna Speedway after fending back Harrison Burton – son of former NASCAR Sprint Cup Series driver Jeff Burton – on a late race restart.
“It’s really special to me,” Bell said once climbing from his machine. “When we came down here, we didn’t know what to expect. We thought we’d have a pretty good car, but it’s so tough. These guys have been running all week long. But we were able to get going really good right off the bat.”
The multi-surface pilot from Norman, Oklahoma won 24 times last year across multiple disciplines of racing, including sprint cars, midgets and a super late model win at Orange County (N.C.) Speedway.
Bell started 10th and charged forward — stalking Burton’s tire tracks for the majority of the feature until he made the winning pass on Lap 80. He survived two late-race cautions and pulled away down the stretch to nab his second career super late model victory.
After winning twice during the World Series this week, Burton rounded out his performances with a second place result in the 100 lap feature tonight and finished third in the overall championship battle.
“We got a bit snug in the center and that played into his hands really good,” Burton expressed. “I had a lot of fun racing and (Bell’s) car was really, really quick and so was ours, so it made it a really good race. Once he got passed us, he kind of drove away a little bit.”
“I can’t thank the guys enough. They worked hard every day throughout the week. This week has been a lot of fun, I’m glad we finished on a high note.”
Zane Smith, who had little experience in Super Late Models entering this week, captured the title by a mere three points after finishing fourth tonight and winning earlier this week.
“We’re probably the happiest guys out here,” an ecstatic Smith said. “We didn’t expect to win and to win the championship is even bigger. I have the best team out here.”
NASCAR WHELEN Southern Modified Tour competitor Spencer Davis, who pulled triple duty this week (running in the Pro Late Models, Super Late Models and Modifieds), closed out his week with a strong third place result.
Garrett Jones, who finished second in the point standings, showcased impressive consistency throughout the week, but was unable to climb into Victory Lane after finishing in fifth tonight.
2015 Chili Bowl champion and HScott Motorsports driver in the NASCAR K&N Pro Series East, Rico Abreu capped off his week with a 10th place finish – the best of his short pavement career.
Tyler Thomas won the 35-lap Pro Late Model Division finale after Michael Lira crossed the line first but was disqualified in post-race technical inspection for a weight infraction. Dalton Armstrong won the Pro Late Model crown with a second place result.
Doug Moff won the Florida Modified division race and Tim Moore claimed the title.
RESULTS: Bruce Gowland Memorial 100; New Smyrna Speedway; February 21, 2015
- Christopher Bell
- Harrison Burton
- Spencer Davis
- Zane Smith
- Garrett Jones
- Steve Wallace
- Ty Majeski
- T.J. Duke
- Alex Labbe
- Rico Abreu
- David Rogers
- Joey Mucciacciaro
- Derek Kraus
- Josh Collins
- Chuck Tuck
- Steve Weaver
- Drew Brannon
- Claire Decker
- Brandon Johnson
- Bobby Good
- Anthony Sergi
- Denver Foran
- Kyle McCallum
- Gus Dean
- Daniel Keene Jr.
- Brad May
- Natalie Decker