ROSSBURG, Ohio — The Tezos All Star Circuit of Champions presented by Mobil 1 championship chase came down to the wire, but when the dust settled Saturday night at Eldora Speedway, it was Rudeen Racing’s Zeb Wise who came out on top.
Wise not only earned a 4-Crown Nationals title, but ultimately, an All Star team championship for Rudeen Racing. In addition, the Eldora Speedway win was a first for the Angola, Indiana, native, chased to the line by championship rival and fellow Hoosier Tyler Courtney.
The final championship margin of victory was just eight markers over Clauson Marshall Racing and Tyler Courtney — the closest battle in All Star history.
“Eldora Speedway is awesome…I love coming here,” Zeb Wise, ace of the Rudeen Racing/Sundollar Restoration/Rayce Rudeen Foundation/No. 26 sprint car, said. “I really, really can’t say enough about the four guys standing behind me. I’m just so proud of this team. Kevin and Monika Rudeen have wanted an All Star championship for the last few years. I’m glad we were able to earn it for them. They pour their heart and soul into this race team.”
Although he was there at the end, it was not until lap six when Wise first battled into a podium spot, working by Parker Price-Miller and Sye Lynch to drive ahead from fifth in the running order.
Early race leader, “Sunshine” Courtney, was next on Wise’s hit list, battling side-by-side with the Clauson Marshall Racing entry on laps 15 and 16 before solidifying the runner-up spot the following circuit.
A dramatic finish, at that, Wise led only the last four laps at Eldora Speedway, inheriting command after mid-race leader, Rico Abreu, made contact with the turn four retaining wall. The St. Helena, California, native and Befour the Crowns Showdown champion suffered too much damage and was unable to continue.
Once the lone restart finally commenced, the final four circuits were a breeze for Wise, racing off to a $10,000 4-Crown Nationals payday, and an $80,000 team championship for Rudeen Racing.
“I’ve had to work really hard to get better at this place,” Wise continued. “I’m now really comfortable with racing up near the top..right up against the wall. I’ve watched a lot of videos of Tyler [Courtney] and Rico [Abreu]. Just trying to do whatever it took to get better. Thank you so much, Ford Performance for making such an incredible engine. I’m not sure I’d be standing here without it.”
Feature (30 Laps): 1. 26-Zeb Wise; 2. 7BC-Tyler Courtney; 3. 42-Sye Lynch; 4. 9P-Parker Price Miller; 5. 23-Cale Thomas; 6. 13-Justin Peck; 7. 88-Austin McCarl; 8. 11-Cory Eliason; 9. W20-Greg Wilson; 10. 5T-Ryan Timms; 11. 21-Brian Brown; 12. 9R-Chase Randall; 13. 8-Aaron Reutzel; 14. 9-Kasey Kahne; 15. 45-Kyle Reinhardt; 16. 50YR-JJ Hickle; 17. 70-Kraig Kinser; 18. 4-Chris Windom; 19. 16THH-Kevin Thomas Jr; 20. 19-Ayrton Gennetten; 21. 6G-Garet Williamson; 22. (DNF) 29-Carl Bowser; 23. (DNF) 24-Rico Abreu; 24. (DNF) 21H-Brady Bacon