A John Battista victory at Martinsville has put himself at a deadlock with Rick Jackson for the Championship with six races remaining. Jackson comes in as the pre-race favorite with Battista starting mid-pack. Johnny Reed Foley and Alex Crapser will lead the field to the green, both looking to rebound their title hopes.
The green flag came out with everybody frenzying in a 42-car mob. Jimmie Stevens, Randy Dobbins and Logan Sheets took turns at the lead early, with Sheets making a three-wide move on the bottom. Pole-sitter Foley and Alex Crapser would drop towards the back.
The top-guns pushed their way to the front early, with Zach Michael and Ryan Heuser leading 30 of the 48 laps during the first green flag run. The W.A.S.P. Motorsports cars looked strong from behind and looked to charge, though pit stops would only leave Werkheiser in the lead pack. Eleven cars would come out up front, with Tim McDonnell leading nearly the entire run.
The lead would be given to Dave MIller just before the halfway mark, giving him his five bonus points along with the bacon. One of the fastest cars in the field in Zach Michael would terminate around the lap-100 mark, finishing last after being at the front all race long. He dropped from 5th to 9th in the standings.
Points leader Rick Jackson nabbed his first bonus point later in the go, leading nine total laps in the event. A debris caution bundled the field into three-wide insanity as Michael Henson and Logan Sheets dominated the front of the pack. They would lead 8 and 4 laps respectively.
An enormous lap 130 crash took out many of the chase contenders. Contact between Zakk Miller and Randy Dobbins pushed the #96 into Matt Raboin, ricocheting both off the wall and into traffic. Raboin launched into points leader Rick Jackson and Dave Miller. Miller slid back up onto the apron, getting t-boned by Dakota Wilkins from behind. Jackson got sandwiched between Rob Scarberry and Cristian Torres against the outside turn-3 wall. Dobbins slid into John Battista, who slapped the inside wall hard and kept on trucking. Scott Drake, Steven Spears, Alan Nesfeder, Donald Stewart, Jimmie Stevens, Rod Weston and Jonathan Skrabacz were also involved in the incident.
The following restart saw Michael Henson and Ken Pettit stay out on fuel, despite the possibility of the other teams able to stretch to the finish. Henson led through lap 147 before an inside-line move by Bill Werkheiser sent him to the top. He and Ryan Heuser would swap the top-spot twice heading to 30 laps remaining.
John Tharp took the top-spot away on lap 157 with Tim McDonnell following through. Markell Murphy blew an engine behind them in third, leaving Team Danger Zone in disarray after their second failure of the race. Both Tharp and McDonnell would swap the lead multiple times, with several hot-guns lurking from behind.
The Crapser brothers were side-by-side for the lead between laps 168 and 173. Adam took the spot on the high side with little help from behind, in high hopes of recording the first victory of his young career. Tim McDonnell would push teammate Johnny Reed Foley to the front, bookending back to the lead after scoring the pole 175 laps ago.
Adam Crapser and Ryan Heuser took turns at the front before the crew chiefs realized that their drivers had to pit before the finish. Each Quick-Silver Motorsports and Corbat-McDonnell-Foley Racing team came in to pit. Only Lucas Racing, Race-2-Win and John Tharp had the fuel capacity to possibly make it to the finish. With all of the pit-road strategy and chaos at the forefront of the finish, a debris caution came out with three laps to go. Alex Crapser was your leader coming to the caution. Scarily, he was running on fumes during the first caution lap. By way of complete miracle, he was able to make a stop-and go through the pits and still come out up front! Second-place John Tharp ran out of gas on the second yellow flag lap, forcing him to drop to 13th place coming to the checkered flag.
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