Five divisions of racing were in the spotlight Saturday night during the final night of the World Series of Asphalt Stock Car Racing at New Smyrna Speedway. While the Super Late Models were the main focus during the Orange Blossom 100, the Florida Modifieds crowned a champion, while the Sportsmen, Pro Trucks, and Super Stocks were also in action.
The Florida Modifieds saw Wayne Parker in victory lane for the third time during this year’s World Series. He had more wins in the class than anyone else over the nine nights, but a jumped restart early in the week ultimately costed him a shot at the points title. Parker was happy with how his team performed throughout the week.
“It feels real, real good,” Parker told Speed51.com. “This is our third time winning this week and my guys have been working on the car all week day and night. They’ve been doing awesome on the car.”
Six-time Florida Modified Speedweeks champion Jerry Symons had a sizable point lead going into the final night; however, a flat tire with 10 laps to go forced Symons to hit pit road while running second, ultimately relegating him to a 10th-place finish.
Travis Eddy finished second and the Florida Modified points would come down to a tiebreaker. The first tiebreaker was on wins, where both Eddy and Symons had one win during the week. The next tiebreaker came on second-place finishes, which gave Travis Eddy the Florida Modified title for the second time in three years.
“We never thought we had a chance at winning it after night one after we got disqualified,” Eddy said. “We had one win after that and then it seemed like every other night we were finishing second. It worked out and other people had their bad luck so once it ran full circle we ended up back on top. I would’ve never guessed it.”
George Gorham won the Sportsmen feature for the second night in a row. After setting fast time in qualifying, he drove from his eighth starting spot to the lead in just two laps and cruised to an easy win.
“This thing has been on a rail the last four races we’ve raced this thing,” Gorham said. “It’s unbelievable to have a good race car. It makes me look like a hero when a car’s that good. This is the fourth win of the season with this car. 2019 is looking really good for us.”
The Pro Trucks feature also saw a driver win for the second night in a row, but the race winner had to work harder than Gorham to earn it. Cody Haskins started eighth after the inversion, running down and taking the lead from Derek Pugh with 10 laps to go for his second win in a row.
“I really had to work for that one,” Haskins said. “They’re very strong and I didn’t think I was going to catch them. We had a good piece. I knew we were going to be there in the long runs and just try to bank on having a green flag run, which we were very fortunate we had one.”
The final race of Speedweeks saw the Super Stocks on track for their only appearance. Justin Reynolds went from eighth to first on the first lap and checked out early before mechanical problems ended his chance of winning just shy of halfway. Michael Trocki inherited the lead from Reynolds’ misfortune and cruised to the win.
“We had our struggles in practice and qualifying, but it’s awesome to get the win here,” Trocki said. “Jason Boyd set this thing up perfect. I can’t thank everyone else for helping out on it enough.”
The 53rd Annual World Series of Asphalt Stock Car Racing is now in the record books. The 2019 champions were Bubba Pollard (SLM), Sammy Smith (PLM), Chuck Hossfeld (Tour-Type Modified), and Travis Eddy (Florida Modified).
For more coverage of Saturday night’s finale, visit Speed51.com’s Trackside Now.
-Story by: Koty Geyer, Speed51.com State Editor (IN & MI)
-Photo credit: Speed51.com