Hoosier Loving McCarl Conquers Volusia
BARBERVILLE, Fla. — “T-Mac is back, now that we’re back on Hoosiers,” declared Terry McCarl from Volusia Speedway Park’s victory lane Saturday night.
The popular Iowan had just delighted the half frozen crowd by holding off Friday night winner Daryn Pittman to clinch a flag-to-flag victory in the evening’s 30-lap World of Outlaws STP Sprint Car Series and couldn’t have been any happier if he’d won the Daytona 500.
Kraig Kinser was third ahead of Tim Shaffer, Brad Sweet, Jason Sides and fast-timer Craig Dollansky on a track that started wet but rolled out slick and gritty, much different than Friday night’s bitey, super-fast surface.
McCarl, who earned the outside front row slot by winning his heat, then running second to Steve Kinser in the dash, dusted Kinser on the initial green and led Kinser and a rapidly closing Donny Schatz, up from eighth, into the tail of the field on lap five.
His lead changed constantly as traffic first held him up, then cleared, with Kinser both trying to pass him and hold off Schatz. That ended at the halfway mark, when Schatz got inside Kinser off turn two and they both ended up in the same place as they hit the backstretch, sending Kinser around and into the infield fence while Schatz rolled to a stop in turn three.
This put Kraig Kinser alongside McCarl for the race’s only restart, with Pittman and Brad Sweet in row two. T-Mac got a big jump on the green while Pittman shot to second. By lap 20 they were back in traffic, with McCarl holding a full turn advantage but over the last 10 laps that went away and it appeared that Pittman might have a shot at back-to-back wins.
“I was worried about Daryn because he’s really fast in that new car, but I never saw his nose,” said McCarl. “I was actually slowing down toward the end to avoid having to lap more cars, miss the ruts in turns one and two and get a good run off the corners. With the track the way it was, I figured that was the best way to keep him behind me.”
“I got to his rear bumper and from 11th, that’s not bad, considering how tricky the track was tonight,” offered Pittman. “I just wish the flagger had thrown the white. I would have pulled the trigger and taken a shot at him if I knew it was the last lap. But I’m happy — this car is just so good.”