HARTFORD, Ohio — Justin Peck continued his early season hot streak with his second FloRacing All Star Circuit of Champions presented by Mobil 1 victory of the season in Saturay’s Buckeye Cup at Sharon Speedway.
The driver of the Buch Motorsports No. 13 entry led every circuit of the 30-lap contest to solidify his $6,000 payday, ultimately withstanding pressure from Cole Duncan and Dave Blaney.
Peck remains in control of the All Star standings, holding down an 18-point lead over Ian Madsen.
“We just keep working. That’s the name of the game. We keep working and we keep getting better,” Peck said. “I tried to lose that race there pretty early on by running the top and smacking the wall. I actually knocked the ladder out of the car before we even got ten laps in. I just had to smarten up a little bit after that. I knew we had a fast race car. I just needed to finish the race.”
Working the very edge of Sharon Speedway’s smooth, but slick racing surface, Peck set the early tone, using his front row starting position to jump to an early advantage over Hunter Schuerenberg, Duncan, Blaney and Madsen.
Soon forced to rely on all available grooves and not just the top, Peck’s first and only hold up appeared in the form of traffic, stacking up quickly and eventually interfering with the leader for the first time on lap 11.
Although Peck did his best to navigate slower cars, a hornet’s nest was brewing behind him in the form of a fast closing Cole Duncan and smooth sailing Dave Blaney, each reeling in the Hoosier with every lap. With Duncan working the middle and Blaney working the bottom, the duo finally caught the tail tank of Peck by lap 16, now with no lappers between them and all separated by less than a second.
Despite a few brake checks in traffic, and continuous pressure from Duncan and Blaney, Peck prevailed, creating distance among the back markers and stretching his legs to almost a second. By lap 22, Peck had pushed his gap to three lappers between himself and Duncan.
With Peck now nowhere to be found, Duncan would have to settle for second, followed by Ian Madsen, Zeb Wise, and Bill Balog.
Dave Blaney, who was battling in the third position at the time the final checkers flew, was eventually disqualified for missing the scales at the conclusion of the main event; he was scored 25th.
“We were able to put a whole night together,” Peck continued. “We qualified good enough tonight where we just had to transfer through our heat race to make the dash. And that’s the name of the game. You need to put yourself in a position early and start up front in these things. We fine tune things as the night goes on. I can’t thank everyone enough. It’s been a dream to drive for these guys.”
Feature (30 Laps): 1. 13-Justin Peck ; 2. 22C-Cole Duncan ; 3. 11-Ian Madsen ; 4. 10-Zeb Wise ; 5. 17B-Bill Balog ; 6. 55-Hunter Schuerenberg ; 7. 81-Lee Jacobs ; 8. 4-Cap Henry ; 9. 5-Paul McMahan ; 10. 26-Cory Eliason ; 11. 97-Gary Taylor ; 12. 3C-Cale Conley ; 13. 42-Sye Lynch ; 14. 7BC-Tyler Courtney ; 15. O8-Dan Kuriger ; 16. 11B-Carl Bowser ; 17. 29-Michael Bauer ; 18. 28-Skylar Gee ; 19. 6-Bob Felmlee ; 20. 5K-Adam Kekich ; 21. 8M-TJ Michael ; 22. 22-Brandon Spithaler ; 23. 12-Darin Gallagher ; 24. 23JR-Jack Sodeman Jr. ; 25. 10B-Dave Blaney