The five-time USAC Silver Crown champion took the lead away from Carson Hocevar with 10 laps to go and pulled away on a late restart to score the win in the hills of Southern Indiana. It was a clean sweep of the day for Swanson, who had also set fast time in qualifying.
After setting fast time, he and Team Platinum struggled to find speed early in the 100-lap event. As the race went on, however, the No .26 came to life in a big way.
“I’m really proud of everyone on Team Platinum for all their effort and taking a chance on me. They stuck with me all day and we made some good changes,” Swanson told Speed51. “This is a tough racetrack and I felt like I couldn’t do what they can do. Luckily, in 100 laps it sometimes comes to you and today it did for us.”
While it was his first win in a Super Late Model, it wasn’t his first win at Salem. Swanson now owns six wins at the half-mile over the course of his career, with the other five coming with USAC Silver Crown.
For Swanson, his familiarity with the track played a key part in helping him get up to speed in what’s still a relatively new discipline of racing for him.
This is the first time I’ve raced with these guys at a track I’ve been to before. Even the little things like knowing how to get on and get off pit road, knowing where the bumps are at a place like this with a lot of character really helps. I knew where the trouble spots are and where to stay away from.
Sunday was his first Super Late Model race since the World Series of Asphalt back in February, where an early wreck hampered his efforts the rest of the week. Even when the results weren’t there during the week-long event, it was that experience that helped him and Team Platinum go on to win at Salem.
“Aside from getting caught up on lap one of the Pro race, I felt like we had a really good day. I’m still very new to Late Models and I haven’t run a Super besides New Smyrna and we struggled a lot there. We got involved in a crash and were racing in a wounded car all week. The guys put the effort in to do it and we took our tough licks but the idea was to get the experience to get better, come home and get a straight one and try again.”
Scott Tomasik finished second, with Hunter Jack, Kyle Crump and Brett Robinson rounding out the top-five.
-Story by: Koty Geyer, Speed51 National Correspondent – Twitter: @kgeyer3
-Photo Credit: Speed51 Photo
ARCA/CRA Super Series Results:
- Kody Swanson
- Scotty Tomasik
- Hunter Jack
- Kyle Crump
- Brett Robinson
- Michael Simko
- Dalton Armstrong
- Josh Ebbert
- Carson Hocevar