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Watson Returns to Victory Lane

By: Jamie Maudsley | APC Racing Series | August 21, 2021 at 10:40pm
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After the  support classes finished their events, the APC United Late Model Series presented by Grisdale, took to Sauble Speedway for the Stewart’s Equipment 75  lapper, the nightcap of a twin bill.

Hometown  driver Stade was on the pole with Kimball joining him on the front row  following the inversion, while Sims and Shaw were in row two.  Gresel and Sheridan, the winner of the first  feature, took up spots in row three, while Lapcevich and Ellis occupied row  four.  Rounding out the top-ten were  Farley and Fitzpatrick.

Kimball was  able to take the lead in the early stages, as Sims tucked into line in second,  and Sheridan to third, with Stade holding fourth, and Gresel in fifth.  On lap 10, Sheridan dispatched Sims, moving  to second, while Stade and Gresel also filed under Sims.

The first  yellow of the event flew on lap 14 when Tom Gibbons, of Southampton, spun into  the infield in turn two, and on the restart, Kimball chose the outside, giving  the bottom grove to Sheridan who made short work of ‘Flying Ryan’.  Jake jetted into the lead on lap 15, and set  sail in search of his second win of the night.

On lap 19  the race would be slowed again as Box spun out in turn four, and on the restart,  Sheridan picked up right where he left off, taking control, but on lap 20 the  championship chase was turned upside down and Lapcevich was turned by Shepherd  off turn four.  Entering the second  event, Shepherd chased Watson, the point leader, by just one marker with  Lapcevich four points behind.  This duo  would have to fight from the back of the field to salvage what they could in  the last 55 laps.

Kimball got  a great start on the high side and powered back into the lead on the restart,  but he couldn’t shake Sheridan and Gresel who followed in lock step with the  leader.  Another big winner on the  restart was Fitzpatrick who found his way through to fourth after rolling from  10th on the grid, and paced a trio that included himself, Stade and  Sims.

Stade was  able to wrestle fourth away from Fitzpatrick, while Sims moved into fifth.  Shaw, Fitzpatrick, Pritiko, Watson, and  Shepherd rounded out the top-ten as the field reached the halfway point.

Another  yellow flew on lap 46 as Danny Benedict, or Orono, and Conner James, of  Hamilton, got mixed up in turn four, the third yellow of the feature event.

This time  Sheridan was able to take control form the outside lane, snatching the lead  again, and as Gresel was also trying to get past Kimball, the hood on his car  flapped up in front of his windshield.   Gresel tried to continue, but finally a yellow was called, the fourth of  the race on lap 49, as Sheridan was leading Kimball, with Stade, Shaw and Sims  joining them in the top-five.  Pritiko,  Lawrence, Watson, Shepherd, and Lapcevich rounded out the top-ten, Lapcevich  pulling off the spot after restarting at the back just 23 laps prior.

The next  yellow flew on lap 53 for a turn one incident involving Goetz, and Tyler Di  Venanzo, of Guelph, giving the fans another episode of Sheridan versus Kimball.

Jake took  the inside lane, and took the lead, but after one lap, Zach Sprung spun in turn  one to force race officials to get the yellow out for the fifth time, and after  another successful restart by Sheridan Kimball got mixed up with Sims off turn  four, putting both of them into the grass and to the back of the field after  they got rolling.

This set  the order as Sheridan, Stade, Shaw, Lawrence and Shepherd in the top-five, and  Pritiko, Watson, Gemmell, Lapcevich, and Ellis rounding out the top-ten.

Sheridan  took control again, but with less than one lap run under green Shaw and Stade  tangled off turn four, spinning Stade into the infield with them both going to  the back of the pack for the next green flag.

This time  Sheridan would have to go toe-to-toe with Lawrence, the defending series  champion, and the pair raced door to door for over a lap before Lawrence  squirted out front to take the lead, but the green flag run was short lived as  another yellow flew on lap 54 when Jackson ended up stopped in turn three.

Lawrence  took control on the break, leaving Sheridan to battle with Pritiko who moved to  second, and then took the lead from Lawrence, but shortly after they completed  lap 56 Sheridan and Gemmell tangled in turn four, bringing the yellow out one  more time.  Sheridan would be pushed from  the track with no power, while Gemmell was sent to the rear of the pack.  This would leave Pritiko, Lawrence, Watson,  Lapcevich, and Benedict as the top-five.

Pritiko had  a perfect restart, taking control, while Watson bypassed Lawrence as well.  Lawrence struggled as he was pinned in the  high groove, and watched Lapcevich and Benedict to get past as well, shuffling  him back to fifth.

With less  than 10 to go, Watson arrived on Pritiko’s bumper and started putting the heat  on Matt before swinging to the inside in turn one on lap 71 to take the top  spot.

The point  leader, and 2017 champion, was able to hold on for the final few laps to  capture his third win of the season, and grow his championship lead heading to  the final month of racing.

Pritiko  finished second, with Lapcevich rallying to wind up third.  Benedict finished fourth, with Lawrence  clinging onto fifth.  James finished  sixth, with Ellis in seventh.   Fitzpatrick would up eighth, as Box and Gresel rounded out the top-ten. 

The series  will be back in action on Saturday, September 4th, at Flamboro  Speedway for round six of the APC United Late Model Series presented by  Grisdale Racing Enterprises, The London Recreational Racing 100.  The Quick Wick Super Stocks will join them on  the card for their third of five races on the season.

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