Ty Majeski will have to wait at least one more night to record his first Super Late Model victory at the 51st Annual World Series of Asphalt Stock Car Racing. Majeski, who crossed the finish line first during the 75-lap Super Late Model race Tuesday night at New Smyrna Speedway (FL), was disqualified in post-race technical inspection for a fuel safety valve infraction.
As a result of the disqualification, Harrison Burton will be credited with the official race win, his second in two nights.
According to the track’s Head Technical Inspector Ricky Brooks, Majeski and his Toby Nuttleman (crew chief) led No. 91 team “gutted” the fuel safety valve. While it isn’t an infraction that would necessarily help increase the performance of the car, Brooks explained that it’s a very important safety feature.
“We have a mandated fuel shut-off valve on the fuel cell, so if a car gets into a crash and backs into a fence, like the one did here that burned to the ground. We put those fuel valves on them so in the event you get in a crash the valve shuts the fuel off so there’s no danger,” Brooks told Speed51.com powered by JEGS. “Tonight, we checked those valves to see if they were intact, the 12 (official winner Harrison Burton) still had them in it and the other two had gutted them.”
Stephen Nasse's 51-car was the other Super Late Model disqualified in post-race technical inspection for the same infraction. Nasse crossed the line in third after leading a good portion of the race and is now credited with a 20th place finish.
Brooks went on to explain what exactly the teams did to “gut” the fuel safety valves.
“They had taken all of the parts out of the internal and basically if those cars had all backed into the fence they would have burned to the ground,” Brooks said. “We wouldn’t have been able to put it out.”
Nuttleman, the man who makes the wheels turn fast for Majeski, accepted the penalty and understood why the rule was put in place.
“I’m accepting it; I was wrong,” Nuttelman said. “I knew as soon as they asked for it that we were in trouble.
“It’s the safety feature, but we were home and on a really hot day it takes more fuel to fill a two barrel than it does a four barrel sometimes because you only have one float-ball to fill and the motor wouldn’t run. Three quarters of the cars up north did the same thing that I did, but it is a safety feature.”
Nasse explained that that his team took out the “o-valve” in the fuel shut-off valve while trying to diagnose a stumble in the engine earlier this week.
“We did that and it didn’t help the problem, but we forgot to put it back in and that’s what happened tonight,” Nasse explained. “We rolled through there and right when they said they wanted to check that we knew we had forgotten to put it back in.
“It wouldn’t make us any better; it’s not a performance booster or anything like that; it’s just safety so you don’t have a car burn to the ground. It’s a silly mistake on our part. I promise it won’t happen again, but it’s hard to swallow.”
Earlier in the night, Majeski and Nasse had put on a thrilling, paint-swapping battle throughout the 75-lap feature. After the final contact between the two drivers, Majeski was able to pull away to record the unofficial victory.
Burton slipped by Nasse late in the race and crossed the finish line in second before being named the official winner after post-race technical inspection.
“Not the way we wanted to do it; we wanted to come out here and beat everyone by half a race track," claimed the second-generation racer Harrison Burton. "Sometimes it’s better to be lucky than good; we still have won two in a row. We had to pass Nasse with five to go to be able to win that race; that’s why you never give up and never quit. You never know what can happen on and off the race track, like we saw here tonight.”
The Super Late Models will return to action for a 35-lap feature on Night #6 of the World Series of Asphalt Stock Car Racing.
On-demand coverage of Tuesday racing can be found by visiting 51's Trackside Now presented by Progressive Racing Engines.
-By Brandon Paul, Speed51.com Editor - Twitter: @Brandon_Paul51
-Photo credit: Speed51.com/Bruce Nuttleman
Super Late Model Official Finish
|3||5||Daniel Keene, Jr.|