Burkett Takes Atlantic Championship Finale
THOMPSON, Conn. – The Atlantic Championship Series concluded its 2014 season on Sunday at Thompson Speedway Motorsports Park and it was series champion Daniel Burkett who took his eighth victory of the year.
Ethan Ringel of COMPREP finished in second with Keith Grant of Polestar finishing third after a tight fight for the position with Conner Kearby.
Burkett, driving for K-Hill Motorsports and backed by Champion Spark Plugs and Roam Mobility, started the race in front and stretched out his lead quickly. There was a full course caution that caused a restart in the middle of the race, which proved to be no challenge for the 19-year-old, who immediately pulled away from the field.
“I’ve driven ovals and just about every track in America but the tight twisting Thompson Speedway has been hardest one I have done. It totally depleted my energy and I couldn’t wait to see the white flag. I am happy to bring the K-Hill entry home in first,” said Burkett.
Ringel was able to maintain his starting position throughout the race and the restart, bringing the COMPREP No. 49 in at second for the last race of the season. That finish was his second podium of the weekend following his win from Saturday’s race.
“It was a long race, I thought I had a gap back to Keith Grant but a lapped car held me up and Keith kept me on my toes. I’m happy to finish the year with a podium,” said Ringel.
Grant was also able to maintain his third place starting position throughout the race. However, Grant faced a hard assault from Kearby, who had made it up to second in turn one but dropped backed to sixth after going off in the gravel.
“I was fighting the setup all weekend but Polestar got it dead on for the final race. Conner kept the pressure on me and wore me out,” said Grant.
The champion of the Atlantic season was crowned after Saturday’s race at Thompson Speedway, however second and third were still under contention. After Sunday’s season closing race the remainder of the championship titles were decided. Jimmy Simpson, who was unable to attend the weekend due to the start of his fall semester at Purdue University, locked in second place in the Atlantic Championship Series.
Daniel Burkett, Ethan Ringel, Keith Grant, Conner Kearby, Bruce Hamilton, Connor Burke, J.R. Smart, Gaston Kearby, Bruce Crockett, John Burke.