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Matt Hirschman already has one win in 2017, the Richie Evans Memorial at New Smyrna. (Speed51.com photo)

Hirschman Wins Evans Memorial; Preece World Series Champion

February 25, 2017 • App, Archives, Modifieds, Region - National, Region - Northeast, Region - Southeast, Speedweeks Central, Speedweeks Central - Pavement, Ticker

Much like the John Blewett III Memorial 76 a night ago, the Richie Evans Memorial 100 for the Tour-Type Modifieds was decided on a final restart.  “Big Money” Matt Hirschman used his inside position on a green flag with 13 laps remaining and was able to get by the leader from a majority of the race, Ron Silk, coming out of turn two.

 

It was the Northampton, Pennsylvania driver’s second win in the prestigious race at New Smyrna Speedway (FL).

 

“It’s the big race of the week and for a good reason,” Hirschman powered by JEGS.  “To honor Modified racing’s all-time greatest, it’s something they’ve done every year down here since the mid-1980s.  If you’re going to win one, it’s the one you want to win.”

 

Silk continued making gains as he did all week, improving one more position.  Unfortunately, it was still one position short of the victory and as the result of another late-race caution that bunched the field.

 

Jon McKennedy rounded out the podium for his best run of the week, but finishing one position right behind him was the winner from the previous night, Ryan Preece.

 

Ryan Preece claimed his third straight World Series title (Rick Ibsen/Speed51.com photo).

Ryan Preece claimed his third straight World Series title (Rick Ibsen/Speed51.com photo).

Preece came into the night with only a five point lead on Hirschman and started from the rear of the field for making an adjustment during pace laps.  Despite some beating and banging that slowed his effort down, the finish was just good enough to claim his third straight World Series of Asphalt Stock Car Racing championship.

 

“This was probably the most competitive year I would say and that’s why we race hard,” Preece commented.  “That one point makes a difference.  Obviously it wasn’t the finish I wanted, but looking at the front bumper and how it’s hitting the sway bar and not letting it move that kind of explains why.”

 

While the good results may give him optimism, Preece knows the team will have to continue working to keep the success going into the regular season.

 

“New Smyrna is so different because you are racing at the same track for four days, but I would say it was good to get four races on our belt and just keep digging and hopefully it starts the year off right.”

 

-By Aaron Creed, Speed51.com Central NY & PA Editor – Twitter: @aaron_creed

-Photo credit: Rick Ibsen/Speed51.com

 

2017 Richie Evans Memorial 100 Results

Fin Str # Driver Laps
1 6 60 Matt Hirschman 100
2 7 82 Ron Silk 100
3 4 29 Jon McKennedy 100
4 12 6 Ryan Preece 100
5 8 51 Justin Bonsignore 100
6 9 16 Timmy Solomito 100
7 2 22 Chuck Hossfeld 100
8 3 82x Spencer Davis 100
9 1 2 J.R. Bertuccio 100
10 14 17 Richie Pallai Jr. 100
11 13 54 Tommy Catalano 100
12 18 33 Ricky Moxley 100
13 15 71M Matt Montineri 100
14 11 32 Tyler Rypkema 100
15 16 40 Calvin Carroll 99
16 20 73 Paul Hartwig Jr. 98
17 5 23D Jimmy Zacharias 98
18 17 64 Amy Catalano 73
19 19 70G Shawn Balluzzo 70
20 10 45 Jimmy Blewett 40
21 24 6X Matthew Gallo 5
22 23 70 Jeremy Gerstner 2
23 21 39 DJ Wagner 2
24 22 2X Al Ermmarino 2

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