BRISTOL, Tenn. – Audio, recap and photo by Race Chaser Online Managing Editor Jacob Seelman –
On a night that was about cancer awareness and raising support for a longtime friend to the motorsports community, a “Monster” tamed racing’s “Last Great Coliseum.”
Timmy Hill Motorsports pilot David Comstock started from the GMercer.com Pole Position during Monday night’s Thunder Valley 225 in Support of Steve Byrnes and Stand Up to Cancer and dominated the event, leading 210 of the race’s 225 laps and only giving up the top spot to Dan Murray twice through alternate pit strategy en route to his second =RSR= Full Throttle Cup Series victory of the season.
The win was Comstock’s third career series win, locking him into the Chase for the Full Throttle Cup.
“It was really [a] good [race],” Comstock said in Gatorade Victory Lane. “Keeping out of the traffic, especially after the tires wore out, was what I wanted to do. I didn’t want to get trapped behind anybody. New tires were good for a short period of time, but it would really equal out quickly and stay steady – so track position was really important.”
Citing how special a win at Bristol is, Comstock also referenced longtime FOX broadcaster Steve Byrnes, who was honored in the race’s title and is fighting a valiant battle against stage IV head and neck cancer.
“This one is really special. It’s a small little bullring, but it can tear you up quick – that’s why they call it ‘The Last Great Coliseum’. It’s big too with all the initiatives with Steve this week, and all the support for cancer and those affected that we’re trying to raise, so this one ranks as one of my biggest wins for a lot of reasons. I’m going to remember it for a long time.”
Boomtown Sim driver Corbin Himstreet came home runner-up to Comstock after running in the top five for the entire race – sporting a special “Stand Up for Steve” paint scheme in honor of the 30-year motorsports veteran.
Himstreet closed several times on the back bumper of the No. 14 Monster Energy Chevrolet in the closing stages, but could not make the final move on the bottom lane of the race track to fight for the win.
“I’m really not disappointed at all,” Himstreet said of his result. “I would have liked to have won the race, but it means so much to run as well as we did tonight with Steve on the car – and get a finish that validates that run. It was a really hard-fought battle with David and Dwayne, but I’m just glad we didn’t wad up any cars. This is a great finish for Boomtown [Sim].”
“If I could go back and do it again, though, I’d pay less attention to Dwayne and more attention out the front windshield,” Himstreet admitted. “If I could have gotten a really good shot at him and been able to move [David] without spinning him out I probably would have taken it.”
Vincent rounded out the podium in third and retained the championship lead by 15 markers over Comstock. The One Up Motorsports veteran cited the lack of ability to pass on the bottom as a major factor in the flow of the race over the closing third of the event.
“It’s so hard to pass [at Bristol]. You can get on the inside of someone but if you can’t complete the pass then you get railroaded on the outside,” Vincent explained. “I just settled into third and tried my best [there at the end]. There was just nowhere to go, even on fresher tires. It was a fun race though, a good race overall.”
Greg Evans and defending series champion Eric Brundies rounded out the top five.
Behind them, Mitch Rollo finished sixth to give Boomtown Sim their best two-car showing of the FTCS season to date. Jose Gonzalez, Johnathon Caddell, Thomas George and Stefan Marinak were the rest of the top ten at the checkered flag.
The lead changed hands four times between two different drivers, Comstock and Murray, over the course of the 225 laps run.
The event was a largely un-Bristol-like affair, with only nine cautions for 45 laps slowing the pace for an average race speed of 85.925 miles per hour. The final caution at lap 183 – sparked when C.J. LaVair spun in turn two off of the front bumper of Adam Benefiel – set up a 37-lap run to the finish that remarkably, went without incident.
The =RSR= Full Throttle Cup Series now takes a week off for the end-of-segment break, before returning on May 4 for the start of segment two and round nine of the 2015 season – the Full Throttle 225 from Talladega Superspeedway.
For more information on Real Sim Racing and the =RSR= Full Throttle Cup Series, visit www.realsimracing.com.
Audio with race winner David Comstock:
Audio with runner-up Corbin Himstreet:
Audio with third-place Dwayne Vincent:
RESULTS: =RSR= Full Throttle Cup Series; Thunder Valley 225 in Support of Steve Byrnes and Stand Up to Cancer; Bristol Motor Speedway; April 20, 2015
- David Comstock
- Corbin Himstreet
- Dwayne Vincent
- Greg Evans
- Eric Brundies
- Mitch Rollo
- Jose Gonzalez
- Johnathon Caddell
- Thomas George
- Stefan Marinak
- Chad Cole
- Dan Murray
- Nathan Little
- Steve Gottschalk
- C.J. LaVair
- William Kempf
- Bryan Clark (subbing for Doug Roth)
- Brennan Mercer
- Kevin Linden
- Scott Stenzel
- Matt LaCross
- L.D. Sarabia
- E.J. O’Rourke (subbing for Shawn Breitzman)
- Nicholas Kohan
- Joey Gattina
- Rich Jette
- Scott Simley
- Sean Casto
- Adam Benefiel
- Anthony DeBaro (subbing for Brian Macklin)
- Rett McBride
- Nick Silver
- Sean Boundy (subbing for Jason Lester)
- Jeff Ward
- Jimmie North
- David Lanza
- Brandon Peterson
- Glenn Campbell
- Mark Bratcher
- John Abbott
- Keith Brooks Jr.
- Bryan Harvey