Hearn Breaks Florida Ice
BARBERVILLE, Fla. — Brett Hearn is back. He said as much in victory lane on Friday night after he held off Matt Sheppard and Danny Johnson at the 40th DIRTcar Nationals at Volusia Speedway Park.
When Johnson selected the outside on a restart with eight laps complete, Hearn took full advantage of the bottom groove in his Speed Energy/Wentworth Custom Homes Teo. Hearn shot out quickly, then Matt Sheppard passed Johnson and the three-car battle was on. Johnson slid back past Sheppard while Hearn, who lost the Feb. 16 opener on a final-lap pass by Stewart Friesen, never let up.
Hearn was determined. He remembered vividly what happened in the opener. He wasn’t going to relax at all on Friday. The green waved with nine laps to go, Hearn drove away while Sheppard, Friesen and Johnson battled on the half-mile oval.
“I tried to stay with it a little bit harder the last couple of laps, not get comfortable,” said Hearn. “I was just trying to concentrate on my line and keep the car underneath me. The car was really good right from the first lap of the race…I missed winning last year (at Volusia). I’m back.”
It was Hearn’s 20th career victory at Volusia.
Sheppard finished second, ahead of Johnson, Friesen and Bobby Varin.
Hearn was the third different winner in as many nights.
Brett Hearn, Matt Sheppard, Danny Johnson, Stewart Friesen, Bobby Varin, Rob Bellinger, Tim Fuller, Jimmy Horton, Michel Chicione, Matt DeLorenzo, Rich Scagliotta, Andy Bachetti, Kevin Bates, Tim Kerr, Mike Iles, Chris Higgins, Randy Chrysler, Tim Currier, Dave Rauscher, Rick Laubach, Darwin Greene, Billy VanInwegen, Danny Hieber, Roger Chrysler, Jeff Schaffer, Willy Decker, Jeremy Markle, Ray Swinehart, Danny Varin, Brian Truppi.