Current ARCA Midwest Tour points runner-up Austin Nason will make the trip south from his Roscoe, IL home to Anderson Speedway for the Redbud 400 for the second straight year. The 23-year-old has one win to his credit so far this year and it came at racing’s return to the Milwaukee Mile last month.
Nason finished third in his Redbud 400 debut one year ago in what was only his second career ARCA/CRA Super Series start. He has competed at two high-banked quarter-mile tracks similar to Anderson in the past couple weeks, with the ARCA Midwest Tour All-Star 100 at Rockford Speedway and the Slinger Nationals at Slinger Super Speedway, though neither race had the desirable outcome. Despite the recent misfortune, his result at Anderson last year has him feeling good going into the Redbud 400 Monday night.
“I’m feeling pretty good,” Nason told Speed51.com. “We were off a little bit this weekend, but the last time we were down at the Redbud, we ended up finishing third, and we were running pretty good at Rockford and they are kind of similar. We’ll be bringing the same setup and hopefully we can improve a couple positions.”
After his first trip to the quarter-mile bullring resulted in a third place finish in last year’s Redbud 400, Nason has been looking forward to returning to the quarter-mile bullring and competing in what he considers one of the more fun races of the season.
“It’s four hundred laps on a little bullring that you can barely fit Super Lates on,” he said of the race. “It’s a small track, it’s a fun track that has two grooves you can race on, you can pass on the outside and the inside. It’s just good, hard short track racing.”
Having competed in just a handful of extra-distance races prior to the Redbud 400 last year, it was the longest race he has ever taken part in. With a few more long-distance races under his belt, including the Snowball Derby and the Rattler 250 since then, he comes into Anderson more prepared for four hundred laps.
“Just patience, I mean it’s a four hundred lap race, it’s a long race,” he said. “You got to make sure you save your stuff until the end. You definitely have to be there at the end, I think that’s where we struggled a little bit. I had never ran a race that long and I think I used the stuff up just a little too soon. This year, we’ll be a little more patient and ride around and be there at the end.”
A second big win of 2019 following his Milwaukee Mile triumph on Father’s Day weekend would be big for his team as the ARCA Midwest Tour season continues its summer stretch back home. After mechanical issues at Rockford and struggling at Slinger last Tuesday, he is looking to get back on track at Anderson.
“It would boost our confidence for the whole team,” he said. “We struggled on Tuesday at Slinger, we don’t know what happened. The Redbud would put us on the map again and for another huge win for this team. We’ve been good all year, so hopefully we can go down there and show our strength."
-Story by: Koty Geyer, Speed51 State Editor (IN & MI)
-Photo credit: Speed51