The return of the Super DIRTcar Series to Outlaw Speedway after 27 years came with all the trimmings you’d want in a race. Great competition, a little drama, and a battle for first place up to the checkered flag. In the end it was three-time Super DIRTcar champion Billy Decker who was the ultimate victor in Dundee, NY; holding off Matt Sheppard and Larry Wight, both of whom also had shots at the win.
Wight led the most laps of the Ultimate Outlaw 100, taking the lead early from Stewart Friesen, but Decker chipped his way forward to second, getting the lead on a Lap 69 restart with a powerful outside run in turns one and two, clearing Wight on the backstretch. Sheppard later took second from Wight, chasing Decker for the lead over the closing laps as both drivers navigated lapped traffic.
“For starters, the car was really good. You have to show up with a good racecar. We were quick off the trailer. From a racer’s perspective you want that opportunity to be competitive at the end of a race,” Decker told Speed51.com powered by JEGS. “I just got the right lines. We had a good restart with Larry, we were pretty doggone good in three and four and adequate in one and two. Just a matter of picking the right line at the end of the race.”
Sheppard had an adventurous evening, recovering from a quick spin while battling Wight for the lead on Lap 42. While it hampered his night, in the end lapped cars proved to be his undoing in his bid for the lead late against Decker.
“There was a few differences, (the spin) certainly didn’t help any, probably that or even just every time I rolled up next to Billy at the end we’d catch a lapped car. We’d get by the lapped car, I’d roll up next to him and again we’d catch another lapped car and it just continued like that until the end of the race. I think I had a faster car, I just never got by him,” Sheppard explained.
Wight’s downfall in the end came down to lane choice and a subpar restart, both costing him the lead.
“We had a good car, we just unfortunately gave Billy the top and I thought the bottom would’ve been a little better coming out of four. He was able to stay with me so I couldn’t slide in front of him and take the top away going into one, but it is what is and to run with Billy and Matt right now is a good stepping stone for us. We know we are in the right direction, we just have got to fine tune the car a little bit,” Wight said confidently.
As the series heads to Albany-Saratoga Speedway in Malta, NY for Brett Hearn’s Big Show 9, Decker is the first driver to hit the two-win mark on the year. While he’s happy with the start, Decker knows that next week begins an intense summer stretch for the series drivers.
“It’s a grind, the Super DIRT Series, we’re just starting to race now. We’re looking forward to it. It’s just fun to come out of the box good. We know we’ve got a good racecar. Hopefully we can make this series exciting and keep pace with what we are doing now.”
-By: Connor Sullivan, Speed51.com CT, MA & Long Island Editor – Twitter: @Connor51CT
-Photo Credit: MoJo Photos/Speed51.com