For the second straight day, it appeared that there was going to be a first-time winner in a premier Champion Racing Association (CRA) Late Model Series at Winchester Speedway. Kyle Crump led from the start of the ARCA/CRA Super Series race on Monday, having had a three second lead at one point and holding off repeated challenges from Jeff Fultz in the late stages. Unfortunately for Crump, it was not meant to be after being forced to pull off after the final restart with 10 laps to go with a flat right front tire.
What was Crump’s misfortune turned out to be Jeff Fultz’s blessing. Fultz acquired the lead after Crump was unable to get up to speed on the final restart and led the last 10 laps, taking the checkered flag and winning his first ARCA/CRA Super Series race since 2011, when he won at Caraway Speedway in the south portion of the North/South 100 over up-and-coming stars Ross Kenseth and Ryan Blaney.
“We had to ride for a long time,” Fultz told Speed51.com. “We got in a good spot there and tried to put a little pressure on the leader. We were just a little better but he was doing a great job. It was just tough to pass him and go out and take chances at getting into him, so I was gonna race him clean and run second if I had to. Then we hit oil and he hit the wall a little bit and I think that was what messed him up. He was starting to slide around a little bit and so was I, but it would’ve took just the right thing to get by him. I could back off from him and run him back down, but it’s so tough to pass here. These young kids here can just get it done. I was gonna race him clean no matter what it took. If I had to touch him a little bit, that’s good racing, but not wrecking him.”
For Fultz, it was his second win in 2018, following a CARS Super Late Model Tour win at Myrtle Beach Speedway in March. This win was even more special for him. Fultz, originally from Ohio, was able to get the job done at what he considers his home track
“Three races and two wins, that’s pretty good. I only get to do it once in a while with the Fury car,” Fultz stated. “I can’t thank Fury, Furniture by Walker, all the guys and Steve Wallace enough. We just towed it up here to have some fun and that’s a big deal. I come home and it’s real personal to me to win here and put on a good show for the fans because I love everybody up here, and that’s what I come up here to do just because I’m from here.”
Kyle Crump led the first 90 laps of the race after starting on the pole, but he was unable to pick up his first career ARCA/CRA Super Series win. A crew member told Speed51.com that Crump had to receive oxygen and fluids after exiting his car but confirmed a flat right front tire was the cause of the early exit.
2017 JEGS/CRA All-Stars Tour champion Jack Dossey III had a dominating performance in Sunday night’s All-Stars Tour race before his night ended on the hook. On Monday, Dossey was able to rebound from the previous night’s heartbreak with a ARCA/CRA Super Series career-best finish of second.
“We had a really good race car,” Dossey said. “I didn’t want to lead early because that didn’t fare too well last night, so I decided to fall in about sixth place so we could be on the outside. It worked in our favor and we slowly started picking them off about lap 75. I thought we had something for Fultz there, but we lost the motor on the restart, it wouldn’t pull. We had a really good race car and I couldn’t be happier with the outcome to redeem myself today.”
Austin Kunert was the highest finishing “Chase” eligible driver in third, followed by fellow championship contender Hunter Jack and NASCAR K&N Pro Series East points leader Tyler Ankrum.
Race fans can watch an on-demand broadcast of Monday’s ARCA/CRA Super Series race on Speed51.com by clicking here.
-Story by Koty Geyer, Speed51.com State Editor (IN & MI)
-Photo credit: Speed51.com