It may have taken an extra day of work, but Bubba Pollard is coming back from his extended visit to Canada $75,000 richer after winning the second running of the Canadian Short Track Nationals at Jukasa Motor Speedway (ON).
Pollard took the lead from Eddie MacDonald on Lap 237 of the 250-lap feature, outdueling the New England standout to claim his second consecutive win in the Canadian crown jewel.
“We were tight that last run,” Pollard said in victory lane. “Wish we could have turned a little better. Eddie’s a great race car driver, it was fun to race with him. I don’t get to race with him much. It was fun.”
The $75,000 (CAD) win is the richest in Pollard’s illustrious career, and his seventh career win in an event paying at least $20,000 to win. That experience proved valuable in the closing stages, as Pollard managed his tires to time his last-gasp charge to the win.
“You have to be there at the end to win them,” Pollard stated. “We took our left side tires and we just needed to ride. We looked at our right-rear and it was barely hanging on. I don’t know if we could have went all the way to the end without it blowing out. We got a caution there, so I saved with about 40 to go. I was like, ‘Man, I’ve got to pick it up and go with it.’ If it blows out, it blows out.”
MacDonald crossed the finish line second in his Canadian Short Track Nationals debut before being disqualified in post-race technical inspection for an ignition box violation.
MacDonald's disqualification moved Matt Pritiko into the runner-up position, making him the highest-finishing Canadian in the event. The London, Ontario native overcame an early incident to race his way to the second-place finish.
“It’s an honor to be with these guys,” Pritiko said. “The car was super quick all day. We weren’t too quick in practice or qualifying but we made up for it in the race. Unfortunately, we got caught up in a wreck early on.
“We went to the back and worked our way up to the front. I wish there was a caution with a couple of laps left, I would have loved to run with these guys.”
J.R. Fitzpatrick finished third after leading during the middle stages of the race, Virginia's Colin Garrett finished fourth in a rare Pro Late Model start and multi-time Canadian Late Model champion Brandon Watson completed the top five.
Race fans who missed Monday’s Canadian Short Track Nationals can watch an on-demand replay of Speed51’s broadcast of the event by clicking here. They can also click here to view Trackside Now updates from the race, presented by PFC Brakes.
Canadian Short Track Nationals Unofficial Results – Jukasa Motor Speedway
|39||41F||Harold Fair, Jr.|
-Story by: Zach Evans, Speed51.com Southeast Editor – Twitter: @ztevans
-Photo credit: Speed51.com