When Erik Jones came to take the green flag for his CRA SpeedFest 2017 qualifying effort, he stepped on the throttle and his red and white No. 20 Super Late Model spun around. Fortunately for Jones he had yet to officially start his qualifying lap. Two laps later and Jones found himself with the pole position for Sunday’s 200-lap Super Late Model race.
“I just got really tight so I tried to get it to turn with the throttle and it just spun out,” explained the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series rookie. “I didn’t think the laps were going to be that good. I thought I probably had flat-spotted the tires. We never really put down a great lap in practice on our mocks, but I think we got it good with the weather. It hasn’t been an easy weekend, but we’ve done a nice job getting the KBR Development car to this point.”
“It’s kind of hard to know if you really missed it somewhere when it’s that close,” said Burton. “It’s nice having good competition. We always want to be the best, but we’ve got our car really close for tomorrow and that’s what our goal is to be first at the end of the day tomorrow.”
Scotty Ellis, Chase Purdy and Brandon Setzer completed the top five in qualifying.
Unlike in year’s past at SpeedFest, this year there will not be an invert for the Super Late Model race. That will leave Jones and Burton on the front row as they both seek their first SpeedFest win.
Jones has won his fair share of Champion Racing Association events, including two Winchester 400’s, the Battle at Berlin 251 and the Redbud 300, but he still has yet to win SpeedFest. He said he believes Sunday may be his best chance yet.
“It would be nice to knock this one off the bucket list,” said Jones. “This is one that I’ve wanted to win for a long time. I’ve only had a few shots at it, but I’ve never finished well in this race. We’ve run well, but we’ve never finished well. We’ll see how it goes tomorrow, but it would be a nice feather in the cap for me and this team.”
Race fans can watch Erik Jones, Harrison Burton, Zane Smith, Bubba Pollard and 22 more of the best that Super Late Model racing has to offer on the Speed51 TV PPV broadcast of CRA SpeedFest 2017 by purchasing here.
For an on-demand replay of Saturday’s Trackside Now coverage presented by Five Star Race Car Bodies, click here.
Speed51.com will have more from SpeedFest 2017 Qualifying Day later this evening on the Speed51 Network. Subscribe to the Speed51 Network by clicking here.
-By Rob Blount, Speed51.com Southeast Editor – Twitter: @RobBlount
-Photo Credit: Speed51.com/Heath Lawson Photo
ARCA/CRA Super Series SpeedFest 200
Crisp Motorsports Park, Cordele, Georgia
|12||01||Derek Scott Jr.||15.901|