BROWNSBURG, Ind. — The first time Brandon Jones won an ARCA Racing Series presented by Menard race, he needed a turn-four pass on the last lap to get to victory lane.
This time, by the time he reached turn four, his win was secure.
Jones, 17, came alive late in the SCOTT Get Geared Up 200 presented by Federated Car Care Friday, winning his second ARCA Racing Series race in as many starts, this time at Lucas Oil Raceway.
“Things definitely went our way tonight,” Jones said. “I’ll take it.”
Jones’ win was as much about survival as it was anything. ARCA point leader Mason Mitchell led the most laps, but exited the race with a gear problem. Justin Boston had a big lead, then got into an accident during a caution, ending his victory hope.
“I think the 98, 25 and us were definitely the three best cars out there,” Jones said. “I hated to have that happen to them, but we were fast there, especially late. We were saving our tires a little bit during the race.”
Austin Wayne Self finished second, Frank Kimmel third, Grant Enfinger fourth and Matt Tifft fifth in the 200-lap race at the .686-mile track.
Boston’s lead was up to six seconds when Bobby Gerhart spun in turn two. Boston said he didn’t know the caution came out and, by the time he found out, he had locked up the brakes and hit Gerhart. Both cars drove away, but the damage was enough to ruin Boston’s night.
“We feel like we kind of had that one in the bag,” Boston said. “We gave that one away. It was no one’s fault but mine. I feel bad for my fans and my team. We gave that one away.”
Boston took over the lead on lap 118 and stayed there until the incident on lap 156.
Mitchell, in the Musselman’s-Wildlife Foundation of Florida-TTS Ford, entered the race with the series point lead and a 20-race streak of finishing in the top 10. He grabbed the lead from the polesitter Jones and stayed out front for the first 52 laps of the race and regained the lead briefly later. He led a race-high 63 laps but will leave the Indianapolis area trailing Enfinger by 40 points in the standings.
Enfinger, in the Motor Honey-Casite/Allegiant Travel Chevrolet, led nine laps in his first race for GMS Racing. He officially joined GMS Thursday and arrived at Lucas Oil Raceway with a new team.
“For the first time with GMS, everybody did a great job,” Enfinger said. “We put the car up near the front and had a top five car at the end.”
Self, in the AM Technical Solutions Dodge, and Kimmel were both pleased with their top five finishes. Self, the SCOTT Rookie Challenge leader, was coming off a 20th place finish at Chicagoland.
“For a lot of the race, we were just sort of riding around, making our laps,” Self said. “It is good to finally get back to the top three. Hopefully, this is the momentum we need to win a race soon.”
Kimmel, who was working with crew chief Mark Rette for the first time, scored his best finish since Salem in April in the No. 44 Ansell-Menards Toyota.
“It was a great run,” he said. “We really struggled with the car earlier today; it just wasn’t that great. We made some changes and Mark made a great call and that helped a lot. It turned us into a top-five car.”
Tifft, in the Ken Schrader Racing Chevrolet, led seven laps and sixth-place finisher John Wes Townley, in the Zaxby’s Toyota, led 13.
Boston still finished eighth in the ZLOOP Toyota, Tom Hessert ninth in the Caregard-AxiomWarranty.com Dodge and Kyle Weatherman 10th in the No. 60 Roulo Brothers Ford.
Jones, in the Exide Chevrolet, is the third polesitter and winner on the season for Turner Scott Motorsports.
The race, broadcast live on Fox Sports 1, will re-air at 8 p.m. July 27 on Fox Sports 2 and at 10 a.m. July 29 on Fox Sports 1. All times are Eastern.
The ARCA Racing Series heads back to Pocono Raceway for its second stop of the season at the 2.5-mile ‘Tricky Triangle’. The race, live on Fox Sports 1, will be at 5 p.m. Friday, Aug. 1.