On a night filled with fierce battles and side-by-side racing, the second of two Pro Late Model features at New Smyrna Speedway (FL) certainly didn’t disappoint. Matt Wallace and Tim Sargent put on a battle for the ages on Wednesday night as the two swapped paint and battled for the lead throughout the final 10 laps.
In the end, despite missing most of his left fender, it was Wallace earning the hard fought victory at the 49th Annual World Series of Asphalt Stock Car Racing.
“It’s amazing. It’s basically my fifth race here on the race track,” Wallace said on the FansChoice.TV powered by Speed51.com live broadcast. “We got dumped the other night by the 2 car (Sargent) so we raced him the same way he wanted to race the other night. We just drove her to victory lane.”
After the two drivers made contact with five laps to go, allowing Wallace to extend his lead, Sargent closed back in to make a final run at Wallace. It wasn’t enough, however, as Wallace used as much of the race track as he could in order to secure his first win at the prestigious half-mile Florida oval.
“I just tried to hit my marks every lap,” said Wallace. “When I found out where he was coming on the last lap, I just kind of drove in a little deeper.”
With three nights of racing remaining during the World Series of Asphalt Stock Car Racing, Sargent didn’t want to put himself in a position where would risk damaging his car for the remaining events. He also didn’t want to be the victor of the race if it came down to him having to make a dirty move to win the race.
“I was getting tight,” said Sargent. “I got the lead the one time from him, not the way I’d like to, so I let him go back by. I just couldn’t get around him clean, so second is where we’re at.”
In earlier feature action, Dalton Armstrong picked up his first Pro Late Model win of the World Series by fending off Ryan Miles.
At the end of the night, it was the Wallace family doing the most celebrating, however. Mike Wallace’s dad, NASCAR Sprint Cup Series driver Mike Wallace was in attendance on Wednesday night and enjoyed watching his son score the victory.
“It’s incredible because my wife is here, my brother Kenny is here and that was a race right there guys. He was on the outside, inside and got the left front fender knocked off with six or seven laps to go and came back to win the race.
“I couldn’t be more excited for Matt. That’s what he’s here for is to try to learn and get experience, as well as show some people how good of a race car driver he is. I think he showed that tonight.”
-By Brandon Paul, Speed51.com Editor – Twitter: @Brandon_Paul51
-Photo credit: Speed51.com
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