Martin Wins Make-Up Race At Magic Mile



Last night the MRolfeDesigns Pro Late Model Series returned to New Hampshire Motor Speedway for a make-up race, after some timing and scoring issues forced the series to cancel the results of their first trip to the track. 32 drivers made the trip up to the Magic Mile and when things got started in open qualifying, it was Bill Martin that took the top time with a lap of 33.003 seconds, just ahead of Cody Kelley who qualified 2nd. Kelly had won the previous two races, and would have to start at the back of the field however.

At the drop of the green, Martin got the jump into the lead, but a couple quick cautions from incidents near the back of the field would slow the pace of the race. On one of the early restarts, Martin would again get the jump but Jared Fountain, who had moved up into 2nd at the start of the race, would challenge Martin for the spot but they would get together off of turn 2, pinching Fountain into the wall and dropping both drivers back a few spots. On the lap 12 caution, many drivers headed down pit road early to make changes, while some drivers stayed out to gain track position.

Tim Bills benefited from the caution and the pit stops to take over the lead, and he would bring the field to the green on lap 17 for the races longest run of the night. Bills pulled out front while the rest of the field settled in nicely to begin the 20-lap run. Martin ran in the 2nd spot on the restart but put pressure on Bills quickly and made his move to regain the top spot. They would battle closely for a few laps before Martin was able to pull ahead and grab the lead on lap 24. Behind those two, James Linkiewicz ran not too far behind them in the 3rd spot, with Matt Rolfe and Kevin Myers running in the top 5 as well. Myers ran down Rolfe and took the 4th spot on lap 25, but wasn’t able to gain anymore ground on the front runners as the run went on. Also running in the top 10 at the time was Jarrett Lawrence, TJ Graves, Michael German, Parker Traves and Cody Leland.

The long run would end on lap 37, with Martin out front by over 2 seconds, but the gap would go away when the field headed down pit road under caution. A couple drivers would take a gamble on the stop, taking just 2 tires, and Myers would be the first one to do so and won the race off pit road. Martin came out 2nd ahead of Tim Bills, Clay Snider who also took just 2 tires, and Rolfe who would all run in the top 5 on the restart. Throughout the remainder of the race, the field would have a hard time getting in any more long runs, but instead would run a few green flag laps at a time before cautions would come out again.

On a lap 48 restart, Martin’s new tires would be too much for Myers and Martin would take over the top spot once again, while Myers, and Snider looked to hang on near the front of the field with the older tires. Bills would also battle it out with Myers on the restarts, with Rolfe hanging tough in the top 5 as well. A restart on lap 56 would take out a couple of drivers within the top 10 as they would get stacked up a little bit on the start, which then led to more contact in turn 1, dropping some of those guys to the back after they had been running well up until that point.

As the race began to get closer to the finish, a lap 73 restart would set up a 3-lap dash to the finish, and it would be Martin that got the jump and it would be all he needed as the yellow would fly coming to the white flag, securing the victory for Martin. He would lead the field to the checkers to pick up his 3rd PLM victory of the season, and his 5th career SARA win. Myers would hang onto the 2nd spot, while Bills and Rolfe finished off their top 5 runs in the 3rd and 4th spots, with Graves finishing off a strong run in 5th.

1. Bill Martin
2. Kevin Myers
3. Tim Bills
4. Matt Rolfe
5. TJ Graves
6. James Linkiewicz
7. Clay Snider
8. Parker Traves
9. Dale Owen
10. Cody Kelley
11. Kyle Wood
12. Ken Belanger
13. Jeff Hoggard
14. Mike Rhyno
15. Cody Leland
16. Darren Daves
17. Jarrett Lawrence
18. Mike Belanger
19. Ryan Borges
20. Jared Fountain
21. Cameron Hobbs
22. Jeff Kendrick
23. Matt Eddy
24. Scott Dunlap
25. Mike Testa
26. Anthony Celentano
27. Mike Whited
28. Michael German
29. Jason Miller
30. Ian Layne
31. Russell Berry
32. Devan Rittall

Next week the series will head to Phoenix for the first time for what now becomes the 2nd straight race on a 1-mile track for the series.

With his 3rd win, Martin extends his points lead to 63 points over 2nd place. For full results and standings, click HERE.