Last week, both the Sportsman Street Stock Series and the MRD Pro Late Model Series were on track for their week #7 race as the second half of their seasons got under way. And it was Ty Majeski who returned after taking nearly a month off, and picked right back up where he left off by securing victories in both races.
On Tuesday night, the Sportsman Street Stock event at Thompson Motorsports Speedway Park started off with Majeski grabbing the pole, and he would lead the field to the green flag. Right away, a couple of cars would get together further back in the pack as they came to the green, collecting four cars in the wreck which would bring out the first yellow.
Ty Majeski (91) and Cody Kelley (75) lead the field to the green flag.
On the restart, Majeski would jump out in front, with Cody Thompson quickly getting in line behind him. In the early laps of the run, the top eight cars would sort things out and ran single file, while cars further back in the field would continue to battle for spots. Cody Kelley settled into 3rd, ahead of James Linkiewicz and Ryan Borges in the top five as the would begin to break away from the field, until lap 11 when the caution would come out for Ty Spearman who had spun into the infield.
Majeski would lead the field back to the green on lap 18, and it didn’t take long for the top five to all fall in line again as they were single file already heading into turn one. Just outside the top five, Ken Belanger was running in the 6th spot with one of his better runs, while behind him, Mike Whited, Todd Sipe and Jeff Hoggard were all battling for position. Justin Mullikin mad his was up into the 10th spot, but as the run continue on, Bill Martin was making a charge after starting at the back of the field and would use the low lane to take the spot away.
Back out front, Majeski had pulled away and built himself a 2 second lead out front as Thompson and Kelley began fighting for the 2nd spot. On lap 26, Kelley made his move to the bottom of Thompson, and the two would run side-by-side. But Kelley couldn’t make it work and had to fall back in line, before trying it again on lap 28. He dove to the bottom in turn one, and they continued to run next to each other entering the next corner in turn three, but with less grip on the bottom, Kelley would slide up and made contact with Thompson, sending Thompson around and out of the 2nd spot. Both drivers would have to go to the rear of the field for the lap 34 restart.
Once again, Majeski jumped out front, and this time it was Linkiewicz who followed him up through into 2nd. These two would begin to pull away, as there was a battle going on for the 3rd spot. Borges was stuck on the inside, which allowed Belanger to use the high lane to move up into 3rd. Just behind him, Martin was right on his trail and would also use the top side to grab 4th away, just before the next caution on lap 38.
On the next restart, this time Majeski would use the high lane to get the jump, which also allowed Martin to follow him right through to the 2nd position, which stuck Linkiewicz down on the bottom. Linkiewicz was able to slide up into 3rd, just in front of Todd Sipe who had moved into 4th, while a small stack up would occur from 5th on back. When things settled down at the back of the top five, Borges had moved back up into the 5th spot, just ahead of Belanger who dropped to 6th. On lap 48, Belanger made his move to the inside of Borges, but the move wouldn’t pay off as he would get stuck on the bottom and shuffled back before the next caution.
Majeski pulled back out front on the restart from the high lane, which this time allowed Sipe to follow him up into 2nd after starting 20th in the race. Martin would get loose on the bottom lane but was able to get back up into 3rd just ahead of Linkiewicz. Borges was using the low lane to try and hold onto the 5th spot, but Thompson was making a charge back tot he front after his earlier spent and would quickly set his sights on Linkiewicz in 4th.
Cody Thompson (2), James Linkiewicz (7), and Justin Mullikin (11) get together in the late stages of the race.
On lap 63, Thompson made his move under Linkiewicz, but they would make contact. Linkiewicz would nearly get turned around, but both drivers would make contact once more to straighten him up, but by the time they both had sorted things out, a couple cars had gotten by and the rest of the field was right on their tails. As Linkiewicz looked to recover, there would be more contact between himself and Mullikin, and by the time he got things going again, he had fallen back to the 14th position. Just a few laps later on lap 66, the caution would come out for Linkiewicz though as he would get loose and spun around.
Things got dicey at the front of the field on the final restart as drivers throughout the field battle for spots.
This set the field up for one final restart with just 3 laps to go, and again Majeski pulled ahead out front. Sipe would fall in line in 2nd, with Martin to his inside and with Kelley just behind him. But as they exited turn two, Kelley would poke his nose in three-wide, and Thompson was right there making a move to his inside when Kelley and Thompson would get together, and Thompson would spin from the 5th position, bringing out the final caution. This allowed Majeski to coast around to the checkered and yellow flags to pick up his 28th career win. Sipe would finish 2nd and tied his career best finish, with Martin, Kelley, and Borges rounding out the top five.
Ty Majeski (91) leads all 75 laps of the event to pick up the dominating victory.
With his 4th place finish, Cody Kelley remains the points leader by 53 points over 2nd place. The Streets Stocks are off next week, but return on March 17th with their next event at Irwindale.
On Wednesday night, the Pro Late Model race started much like the Street Stock race. Majeski picked up the pole once again, and a lap 1 crash would slow the pace of the event early on.
Ty Majeski gets the jump on Cody Kelley as they lead the field to the green flag.
This time the lap 1 incident would happen closer to the front of the field and would collect a majority of the 27-car field as 16 drivers would receive some sort of contact. It started near the front as Tim Bills would go into turn one and slid up the track a little bit from the 4th spot, and behind him a couple of cars would put him three-wide. But on the exit of turn two, things got tight and it ended up with Bills going across the nose of James Linkiewicz and into the inside wall which triggered the big pile up.
The early caution would set up a string of early race incidents, as an addition three cautions would come out during the opening third of the race, setting the field up for a lap 33 restart where they would finally get some green flag racing in. And from this point on, there was plenty of green flag racing which allowed the field to sort things out and battle for the remainder of the race.
An opening lap incident leads to contact between Tim Bills (37) and James Linkiewicz (7) which collects a number of other cars behind them.
Majeski pitted during one of the early cautions, but would retake the lead off of the restart on lap 33 and quickly began to pull away out front. He had taken the lead away from Mike Belanger who fell back in line in 2nd, but after a few laps into the run, Majeski had already pulled out to a full second lead and was continuing to stretch that out. Belanger held onto the 2nd spot for a few laps, but Josh Kotten was right on his bumper looking to get by, and he would take the spot away on lap 40. Belanger would then get stuck on the high side, which allowed a few guys to get by before he fell back in line back in the 8th position.
Cody Kelley would follow Kotten up into the 3rd spot, with Parker Traves and Ty Spearman moving up into the top five as well. Shortly after on lap 46, Kelley made his move to the low side of Kotten for 2nd, with Traves in his tire tracks as well for 3rd, but by this time, Majeski had already built himself a five second lead at the head of the filed. The run would continue on until lap 52, when the Traves machine would go up in smoke down the backstretch, and Spearman’s car would do the exact same thing on the same lap. Traves would try to get his car down on to pit lane as he coasted to a stop, but the caution would come out which bunched the field back together for one last restart.
A majority of the field would use the caution to head down pit road for new tires, and Kelley was able to win the race off of pit road. But one car would stay out as Jason Batis took over the lead, forcing Kelley to restart on the undesired outside lane, and Majeski in 3rd on the bottom. Batis would take off on the lap 58 restart but as Kelley tried to fall in line behind him entering turn one, some contact would move both cars up the track which allowed Majeski a clear lane on the bottom into the lead. Belanger, Kotten, and Justin Riggsbee also moved up as Kelley would drop back to 5th before finding a spot in line.
Kelley would quickly jump up to 4th, and then tracked down Kotten for 3rd, and Belanger for 2nd as Kelley would move up into the runner up spot by lap 65. But by the time Kelley had moved up, Majeski was already out in front by nearly three seconds in the lead. Kelley would begin to separate himself from the drivers behind him, but wasn’t making any ground on the leader as they ran nearly identical lap times.
Belanger continued to run in the 3rd position, but Kotten was right there looking to get by once again. Kotten would ride right on his bumper for a number of laps before making his move on lap 77, ducking to the inside of Belanger for the spot. Belanger would get the run off the outside lane down the backstretch though, and the two would make slight contact before continuing on, but from that point on, Belanger would settle in and began to pull away with the 3rd position.
Riggsbee ran in the top five as the run continued with Ryan Borges chasing him down from behind in the 6th spot. With the laps winding down, the fight for positions from 3rd to 9th was beginning to tighten up, as the group of cars were running just car lengths apart. Mickey Kudlicki made his move to get up into the 6th spot, with Linkiewicz following him up through dropping borges back to 8th. And as they battled, this allowed Joshua Hart to join the battle with under 10 laps to go.
None of those battles mattered though, because out front, no one was catching Majeski and he would come around for the final time to the checkered flag, picking up the dominating win after leading 77 laps en route to his 29th career SARA win. Kelley would finish 2nd, with Belanger, Kotten, and Riggsbee rounding out the top five.
Ty Majeski had the car to beat all night long and coasted to the victory.
With his 2nd place finish, Cody Kelley also continues to lead the PLM standings, by 77 points over 2nd place. The Pro Late Models will return to the track on March 18th with a 100 lap race at New Smyrna.