The World’s Fastest Half Mile proved it’s title again this weekend with 6 ARCA competitors breaking the existing ARCA track record at Winchester.
With a smoking hot field of cars, Thomas “Moose” Praytor timed in his DK-LOK For in the 18th position for the Winchester 200.
“We had a really good balance on our DK-LOK Ford in practice but we just never really gained any speed. At a place that eats tires we took balance and it probably hurt us qualifying but we were thinking long term.”
With the drop of the green flag the leaders set a torrid pace continuing to run under the old track record during the race. It wasn’t until lap 50 in the field had a chance to breath and come to pit road for tires and adjustments.
With all the leaders coming to pit road, the call was made for Praytor to stay out and take the wave around getting a lap back in the process. Plus trapping other cars a lap down the Moose was competing for position with.
In order for the wave around to work there needs to be a caution shortly thereafter so you can get the service you should have gotten while taking the wave around. 60 laps later the next caution flag flew and the Moose looked like a worm on a hook with now 110 lap tires against fresh General Tire rubber.
“We finally got to pit road on the second caution but our competitive day was really over other than trying to complete all the laps. Our pick up crew from the Stock race the night before did a great job and kept us on our lap changing all 4 General tires and Sunoco fuel.”
Back under green Praytor was turning laps times faster than his qualifying effort but there was no one left to race, they had all left him on the long green flag run.
While Praytor wasn’t racing for position it didn’t mean he wasn’t racing, he went from the slowest car on the track to passing people back. Fresh tires will do that for you and they will also get you in trouble.
With 50 laps to go the Moose was racing with a wad of cars when the pack in front had trouble and Praytor ended up clipping the right front of his DK-LOK Ford against the left rear of Mike Basham.
“Everyone started to check up coming off of turn 2 and I was looking for a place to go. The bottle neck off of turn 2 can eat up cars in a hurry and I was glad we got away with just a glancing blow.”
At Winchester even a glancing blow will take its toll and Praytor brought his DK-LOK Ford to pit road for some band aids.
As the roughest, toughest track on tour continued to eat race cars it allowed Praytor to salvage a 14th place finish.
“Not much went our way today but it could have really been so much worse. Happy to escape with a top 15 and I’m looking forward to the Springfield dirt in two weeks.”