Watson Wins Third Straight on Eastern Super Mini Cup Series
Matt Watson proved once again Saturday night that Oyster Bed Speedway was his track, as he led the final 14 laps to take the feature win in front of a thrilled hometown crowd. Watson took the lead after he powered around the 22 of Jared Tozer on the races final restart, and never looked back as he cruised to his 3rd consecutive feature win in 2015. Watson also took the semi, after finishing last in the Heat race.
Jared Tozer led the first 6 laps of the race after starting 3rd, and he held off the Penske South Esk teammates for the final green flag run to finish 2nd; his 1st career podium finish. This came after Tozer posted DNF’s in the heat and semi. Finishing in 3rd was Steven Curtis, to get his 3rd podium finish at Oyster Bed Speedway. Curtis gave it all he had, but in the end had to settle for 3rd after challenging Tozer for 2nd.
Mike Weagle came from the back on the final green flag run after he pitted under caution to fix an issue to finish 4th. During the 2nd caution, the throttle cable came loose, and Weagle barely made it back on track in time. Chris Wilson rounded out the top 5, after it looked like he might have a strong shot at the win. Contact with Curtis in the closing laps would result in him falling back, but he hung on to finish 5th.
Rounding out the field Saturday night at Oyster Bed Speedway was rookie Kyle Maher in 6th, Derek Goodwin in 7th, Mark Ferguson in 8th, Don Gaudet in 9th, and Kirk Sheasgreen in 10th.
As mentioned, Watson led 14 of the 20 laps with Tozer leading the first 6. 2 cautions slowed the feature, one on the first lap, and the other on the 6th lap. Both were for spins by Kirk Sheasgreen.
Watson also took the checkers in the 12 lap semi. Chasing him was the 16 of Mike Weagle, 12 of Steven Curtis and 24 of Derek Goodwin, while Mark Ferguson rounded out the top 5. There was 1 caution during the semi.
The 10 lap heat was a rough and tumble affair, but Chris Wilson prevailed to take his 2nd checkered flag of the year. Kyle Maher had his best career race, finishing 2nd. Derek Goodwin took 3rd and Mike Weagle came home 4th. Finishing 5th was Don Gaudet, who picked up his first top 5 finish since 2013.
The heat was marred by 4 incidents, 2 of which resulted in yellows. On the first lap, contact in the middle of the pack sent Steven Curtis and Mark Ferguson sideways, causing drivers to make contact trying to avoid the incident. Among those was Matt Watson, who got significant damage in the wreck. The 2 cautions were for Kirk Sheasgreen hitting the wall, and Mike Weagle spinning, both of which took place while they were fighting for the lead. Mark Ferguson also got a little sideways in turn 3 on the last lap.
Watson had a strong night, but his DNF in the heat eliminated any major gains in the points. When it was all said and done, he picked up just 2 points over Wilson, so the margin is now 15 points. The battle for 3rd intensified as Steven Curtis now leads Mark Ferguson by 3 points. Behind them, just 9 points separate 5th through 10th.
Stay tuned later in the week for Stats & Facts from the 3rd race in 2015. The focus will now shift to the next race, which is at Petty International Raceway on August 2nd as part of the Caleb Dunn Memorial Weekend.
Finally, the Eastern Super Mini Cup Series would like to thank all the drivers, fans, and staff at Oyster Bed Speedway for their hospitality in 2015. We look forward to returning in 2016.
1. 1. Matt Watson #88
2. 2. Jared Tozer #22
3. 3. Steven Curtis #12
4. 4. Mike Weagle #16
5. 5. Chris Wilson #2
6. 6. Kyle Maher #78
7. 7. Derek Goodwin #24
8. 8. Mark Ferguson #41
9. 9. Don Gaudet #3
10. 10. Kirk Sheasgreen #43 (DNF)