BROOKLYN, Mich. — Brandon Jones conjured memories of Danny Sullivan’s famed ‘spin and win’ in the 1985 Indianapolis 500 on Friday at Michigan Int’l Speedway, as the Georgia native came back from an early incident to claim his fourth-career ARCA Racing Series victory in the Corrigan Oil 200.
Jones started on the pole and stormed out to a three-second lead in the early stages, pacing the first 11 laps before Justin Fontaine tagged the backstretch wall and dropped a lot of oil down on the Turns 3 and 4 end of the race track.
The fluid caused Jones to spin in Turn 3 before he came to rest at the bottom of the banking, but Jones did not hit anything and was able to continue as the caution flag came out.
From that point, it was a race back forward for Jones the rest of the day, who finally assumed the lead again with seven laps to go after late leader Kyle Weatherman tagged the wall off Turn 2 and slowed going down the backstretch.
Jones ultimately finished nearly 21 seconds ahead of second-place Austin Theriault at the checkered flag, completing a dominating day in which only nine cars finished on the lead lap.
“This was a crazy race, for sure,” Jones said in victory lane. “I got scared at the end that our car was going away a little bit. We were dominant early on. I told Marty that we needed a little more front turn, and I don’t know if the track started to heat up or the sun started to come out … but I was getting free and a little worried.”
Those worries were of no consequence in the end, as Jones waited until Weatherman slipped up and pounced in an instant.
“I was just waiting for him to make a mistake and unfortunately for him, he did,” Jones added. “All in all, this was a great, great day. We had the pole car, we were fast in practice … everything. I can’t thank MDM Motorsports enough, this is awesome!”
Friday marks MDM Motorsports’ third win in the ARCA Racing Series this season, following Justin Haley’s breakthrough at Talladega Superspeedway and Harrison Burton’s maiden series win at Toledo Speedway.
It was also Jones’ second-straight ARCA win at Michigan, following on from his dominating triumph one year ago.
Jones’ early issues saw Weatherman capitalize, assuming the lead for the first restart of the day on the 21st round and quickly drove out to a second’s lead over the Cunningham Motorsports duo of Dalton Sargeant and Ty Majeski.
But further back, Jones was charging. It took the Georgia young gun just four laps to drive from 16th back inside the top 10, and by lap 34 he was fifth as Sargeant and Majeski began to scrap for the runner-up spot.
The problem? Jones was eight seconds back of leader Weatherman by that time.
Continued on the next page…