Gaulding Wins First Race At PIR
In the final laps of the Casino Arizona 50 at Phoenix International Raceway on Saturday night, Gray Gaulding closed in on runaway leader Cole Custer. With only a single turn to go before the drop of the checkered flag, Gaulding tapped the back of Custer and spun out the leader.
It appeared Custer had lost speed by getting loose when steering into turn 3. Gaulding motored on to his first victory on the K&N Pro Series West tour as Custer dropped to sixth. Gaulding explained the controversial finish by saying, "I was able to catch up to him when he had to go through lapped traffic. I barely touched him, and that's all it takes around here."
Pole-sitter Custer raced his way to an enormous 8.338-second lead just past the 50-lap halfway mark, but a caution flag bunched the field on lap 27. When the cars went back to racing, Custer built more than a second-and-a-half edge over Gaulding with 10 circuits to go. But, that lead gradually narrowed until the fateful conclusion.
Brandon McReynolds, son of former NASCAR Cup crew chief and Fox TV analyst Larry McReynolds, started 20th after bottoming out on his qualifying run but stormed his way to a fifth place finish.
Jesse Little copped second place, while Cameron Hayley was third and David Mayhew fourth. Derek Thorn finished 15th, but it was enough to clinch the series title for 2013.
Related PIR News
In an effort to enrich communication with fans, Phoenix International Raceway launched a new design for its website, PhoenixRaceway.com, to kick off the 2015 season. Featuring a data-driven, more engaging user experience, the new site includes a crisp, vibrant design as well as streamlined navigation and enhanced fan content.
Kevin Harvick drove his No. 4 Budweiser Chevrolet car to Gatorade Victory Lane in Sunday’s Quicken Loans Race for Heroes 500, but the race itself was a winner for Phoenix International Raceway. The track sold out of grandstand seats a week before the race and sold out of reserved camping spots more than two months early.
Kevin Harvick dominated Sunday’s Quicken Loans Race for Heroes 500, leading 264 of the 312 laps in his No. 4 Budweiser Chevrolet on the way to Gatorade Victory Lane to conclude Phoenix International Raceway’s 50th anniversary season. The win clinched a place for Harvick in the Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup Championship Round next Sunday in Miami.
Brad Keselowski, a second-place runner nearly all afternoon at Phoenix International Raceway, flew by Kyle Busch on the beginning of the last lap of an unexpected green-white-checkers finish to steal victory in the DAV 200 Honoring America's Veterans, NASCAR Nationwide Series race on Saturday.
Erik Jones dominated from the pole in the Lucas Oil 150 NASCAR Camping World Truck Series race at Phoenix International Raceway on Friday night. Leading 114 of 126 laps, Jones made his way through the night under a full moon and won for a second straight time at “ZOOMTOWN USA.”