SDS: Brett Hearn Powers to 11th Career Eastern States 200 Victory

RaceChaser Staff Dirt Track Racing, Featured, Northeast, Super DIRTcar Series 0 Comments

MIDDLETOWN, N.Y. — official release — Dave Dalesandro photo —

Brett “the Jet” Hearn has been making a habit of winning at Orange County Fair Speedway. He picked up his 11 th career Eastern States Big Block Modified victory there Sunday, October 26, his third in a row.

“It takes a lot of people to make this happen,” the Sussex, N.J. said in Victory Lane after Sunday’s 200 lapper. “There’s a lot of hard work, a lot of preparation goes into this thing and you come here on race day and try to put it all together.”

Hearn made a clean sweep during Eastern States Weekend, fast timing Friday with a lap time of 20.763 and winningSaturday’s 358-Modified feature race. He started Sunday’s Super DIRTcar Series event on the pole, with Tim Hindley at the outside pole. At the green flag, Hearn took the lead, but it was Stewart Friesen, of Sprakers, N.Y., who cruised to second over Hindley.

Several cautions early in the race kept the leaders from picking up momentum, but Hearn was strong enough on every restart to maintain his position over Friesen. In lap 60, Bob McGannon went into the wall in turn four to bring the eighth caution of the race, and soon after the pits opened for mandatory pit stops.

Hearn pulled into pit road to fuel up, and most of the field followed him, either refueling as well or changing a tire. Jerry Higbie and Gary Edwards, Jr. inherited the front row and Higbie took the lead position off the lap-70 restart. Within 10 laps, Hearn had advanced to 16th place. Super DIRTcar Series point leader Billy Decker was running in 26th at lap 80 and Matt Sheppard, second in point standings, was in 13th.

Edwards soon started gaining ground on Higbie, and in lap 82 was at Higbie’s back bumper. Edwards went for the pass in lap 83 to become the new race leader, but lost his position in lap 115 when he pulled off to make a pit stop. In those 30 laps, Hearn, Sheppard and Decker had rapidly progressed through the field. By the lap 122 green flag, Sheppard and Hearn shared the front row and Decker restarted from fourth place.

At the restart, Hearn charged ahead of the field to reclaim the lead.

“The fact that I even beat him on an outside restart like that, I have to give Kevand Cross a lot of credit for taking the carburetor out today and making sure that thing took off like that on restarts. That was awesome. I don’t think anybody beat anybody off the outside today except off that one restart,” Hearn said. “I just went and gave myself a little bit of room there, started on my line, and tried to stay off the right rear tire.”

Hearn outlasted a number of cautions throughout the second half of the race, fending off challenges from Sheppard.

A hard-charging Sheppard, who struggled all weekend, starting the race in a backup car at the rear of the field, finished second.

“I had a great team for it. We started in the last row and we finished in the front row,” Sheppard said. “I can’t say enough about this whole team. We had some trouble in the Consi, and we ended up going to a backup car. The thing never even saw the race track until the start of the feature here tonight. It was just awesome, the guys really worked their tails off.”

The hard work paid off, earning Sheppard enough to surpass Decker, who finished seventh, for the series point lead. Hindley finished third, Kenny Tremont finished fourth and Jimmy Phelps finished fifth.

The Super DIRTcar Big Block Modified Series is racing into its final rounds, a pair of 40-lap feature races at The Dirt Track at Charlotte in Concord, N.C. World of Outlaws World Finals at The Dirt Track kicks off Thursday, Nov. 6, with practice and qualifying rounds for the Super DIRTcar Series, World of Outlaws STP Sprint Car Series and World of Outlaws Late Model Series. The next two nights, Friday and Saturday, Nov. 7 and 8, all three premier series will take on the Charlotte clay oval. Champions in each series will be crowned Saturday, Nov. 8.

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