David Marcuccilli battled his way from his fifth-place starting position to pick up his first Sportsman Modified win at The Dirt Track at Charlotte Saturday night. The New York native made a late-race charge to outrun Ronnie Davis and Rocky Warner for the World Short Track Championship victory.
“This is a huge place and awesome dirt track facility, so we love coming down here and put on a show in front of a crowd that doesn’t necessarily get to see us race on a weekly basis,” Marcuccilli said. “Plus, it’s so cool to be able to come here and be competitive like we were.”
Eric Giguere set the pace for the 30-lap feature event Saturday night and took an early lead over Kevin Ridley. As Giguere worked on extending his lead over the rest of the field, Ronnie Davis was quickly gaining ground on the second-place competitor of Ridley. Within five laps, Davis had maneuvered his way into second and had set his sights on the leader. Davis wasted no time as he dove to the bottom of the track to make the pass around Giguere for the lead.
Not only had Davis set a torrid pace early on, Marcuccilli had steadily worked his way to second on the bottom groove of the race track.
For the next several laps, Davis and Marcuccilli had an ongoing battle for the lead all while navigating through lapped traffic. With 10 laps to go, Marcuccilli made the crucial move of the night and slid up in front of Davis for the lead.
As Marcuccilli continued to battle through lapped traffic and extend his lead, Davis and a hard-charging Rocky Warner were toe-to-toe coming to the checkered flag for the second position.
Marcuccilli went on to capture the World Short Track Championship victory over Warner, Davis, Giguere and Brad Rouse.
“What an awesome race that was,” Marcuccilli stated. “I think we had a little bit of a better car than what Ronnie did and tire selection was a major player for this race. We were able to run him down and slide by him without any contact. After that, I was just focused on getting through lapped traffic and hitting my marks.”
Marcuccilli captured 20 wins this season, including wins at Super DIRT Week and Eastern States Weekend, but this specific win meant just as much.
“Winning here is definitely an accomplishment that ranks very high on my list,” Marcuccilli claimed. “We were able to win at Oswego and that was pretty cool, so this is right up there with that win.”
Race fans can find on-demand Trackside Now coverage of Saturday’s World Short Track Championships by clicking here.
-By Madison Mabry, Speed51.com Southeast Correspondent
-Photo credit: Speed51.com