Sometimes in racing, the fastest car doesn’t always win the race. On Saturday night at Flat Rock Speedway (MI), the fastest car did win the race, but it didn’t take the checkered flag first. Brian Campbell led much of the final stages of the 125-lap ARCA/CRA Super Series feature, but Scott Hantz drove by Campbell on the outside on a restart with five laps to go. Hantz took the checkered flag first, but was disqualified in post-race technical inspection after Champion Racing Association officials found illegal suspension components in the rear end of his car.
“It hasn’t quite soaked in yet. I feel pretty bad for (Scott) Hantz,” Campbell told Speed51.com powered by JEGS. “Obviously we’re happy to take the win, but definitely don’t want to win like that. It’s kind of mixed emotions right now. I don’t think it would’ve helped him at this particular kind of racetrack, but it is the rules. There’s no question about it. It’s black and white. We’ll take the win and move on to the next race, but we feel awfully bad.”
“We had a spring loaded up on the car, and I guess it was an oversight on my part. I printed the rules off of the internet. Thought I had read them; thought the rear trailing arms couldn’t be spring-loaded. But I’ve got the oldest car in the field with the most basic suspension you could have on the car and I was disqualified.
“(Tech Director) Eddie Chew, he did disqualify me. I think he did a good job. CRA did a good job. It’s one of the reasons why I’m running the series. I just got caught by an infraction that I didn’t really realize, I just wish they would’ve caught it beforehand. I don’t think it would’ve changed the outcome of the race. Just totally on me. I put it on there, I read the rulebook. Hopefully something good will come out of it, but I don’t know what happens.”
Local driver Eric Lee dominated much of the race, leading the first 68 laps, but he was involved in a couple of cautions, ending his day early.
“We lost the lead, not sure what happened yet, we just picked up a really bad push. It cut out the left front then the 97 (Chase Purdy) got a little aggressive on that start and got into the back of me and turned us around. He came over afterwards and apologized and said it was his fault. I thought we were going be good but the car went away. It was only our second race with this car, so I’m still kind of learning about it. But it felt good to get out front and show some speed. We’ll tune on it and get it going again.”
Harold Fair Jr would end the night in second-place in his first ARCA/CRA Super Series start in 17 years, followed by David Gilliland Racing teammates Raphael Lessard and Chase Purdy. Flat Rock Speedway Outlaw Late Model competitor Jimmy Thiel rounded out the top five.
The ARCA/CRA Super Series is in action next on August 26th for the Battle at Berlin 251 from the Berlin Raceway in Marne, Michigan. It is the second race of the JEGS Triple Crown Series.
For an on-demand replay of Saturday's Trackside Now coverage presented by FK Rod Ends, click here.
-By Koty Guyer, Speed51.com Midwest Correspondent
-Photo Credit: Speed51.com