Many of Seekonk Speedway’s race car drivers, along with spotters and mechanics, threw their names into the crucible that is iRacing on Saturday afternoon. Taking on the sim version of another Northeast bullring, Oxford Plains Speedway, the 62 entrants were whittled down to 33 for the Seekonk Speedway #LetsGoRacing v250 on Speed51.
When the day was all said and done, it was a former track champion and ace sim racer who came away with the bragging rights.
For much of the race, including a yellow filled first 125 laps, Legend Car driver Mason Tessier led from pole position. That was until 2018 Seekonk Late Model division champion Ryan Kuhn cranked up the pressure after trailing in the runner-up position through the middle portion of the race.
Taking a chance by staying out on old tires the whole race, Kuhn led the rest of the way, avoiding disaster when a near collision while lapping past Ryan Vanasse Jr. put Thomas Axsom right on his back-bumper. But, Kuhn was able to keep the wheels straight and hold off his iRacing teammate for the win.
“The first half of that race was a little chaotic, but the second half I really enjoyed. That was fun,” Kuhn said. “We didn’t have a lot of cautions, we had a few long runs and that’s where I prevailed. Got a little damage there at the end which hurt me a little bit, but I still ran a good race, and had a good strategy there. I knew tires were going to even out at some point, so I stayed out all race, and it worked.”
The normally patient Kuhn admitted that his big pass for the lead did come with a bit of aggression.
“I got a little aggressive there, the door was open and I had to take it. Probably the only way I was going to win the race, I already knew he was going to stay out the whole race, he told me before. Once we got by him we set sail.”
Despite the close encounter when Vanasse Jr, Kuhn did not let the scare rattle him in the slightest.
“The kid driving it is my biggest fan, I love him so much. Just made a little mistake there and it happens to the best of us. He’s still learning and I’ll always continue to support him.”
There was plenty for Kuhn to celebrate, including a $400 prize which had been put up by a number of Seekonk Speedway’s usual contingency sponsors. All in all, a profitable afternoon for the 2020 Kulwicki Driver Development Program semi-finalist from East Bridgewater, MA.
While Thomas Axsom came up one spot short of the top, he was still proud of what he had been able to do, finishing second after starting the day in 30th.
“Started right at the tail in 30th, I don’t know what lap it was I think it was 75, I was P13, and then I got to ninth. I had Estrella behind me and it was just a good spot on restarts, he just let me in, we would ride, I sat in ninth for a hundred-plus laps. Slowly made my way up when people started pitting, I got the call from Ryan, no tires, no point, so we stayed out and it turned out older tires were faster,” Said Axsom.
“At the end of the day it was a good race, I was shooting for a Top 5, going for the hard-charger, and found myself here. Very satisfied.”
Get full race replay of the Seekonk Speedway #LetsGoRacing v250 by clicking here.
-Story by: Connor Sullivan, Speed51 Northeast Editor – Twitter: @Connor51CT