MDM Motorsports picked up another ARCA Racing Series victory on Thursday night as Brandon Jones put the Mobile 1, JBL TRD Toyota No. 12 in the winner’s circle after an impressive late- race drive in the General Tire 150.
It was another successful day for the MDM Motorsports team, as Sheldon Creed finished third, Zane Smith came home fifth and Chase Purdy ran well before a crash relegated him to a 24th place finish.
The checkered flag for Jones gives him five wins, three poles and 15 top-five finishes in his 22 career start in the ARCA Racing Series.
“MDM always gives me stout cars,” the winner said. “When Sheldon put us three-wide I wasn’t sure if we were all going to be able to come out of it, but it worked out and then the 18 (Riley Herbst, who finished second) came on really strong there. I knew if I could keep him in the dirty air we had a chance. I cannot thank my crew chief Shane Huffman and everyone on this team enough for giving me a car to win this race.”
Huffman was very pleased with the result. “That was a hard-fought win. We really missed it in qualifying. I felt like it would race well, but in the long run the 28 (Creed) was the best and on the short run the 54 (Todd Gilliland) was the best. Brandon did a fantastic job behind the wheel. I’m excited about this win. Now I really want to get Harrison (Burton) in victory lane.”
Creed came into the race second in points with his United Rentals, A.M Ortega, RTL Toyota No. 28 led by crew chief Jeff Stankiewicz. His third-place finish helped him gain a few points on teammate Zane Smith in his quest for the series championship. He qualified 8th fastest and ran in the top five for most of the race, leading briefly and ending up finishing third.
“Man, I’m starting to sound like a broken record, but I really thought it was our night after we took the lead,” Creed smiled. “We just had so much speed on the long runs. Everyone on this team is working so hard to get a win. If we keep running the way we did tonight, the wins will come, hopefully starting with Pocono this weekend.”
Smith came into Charlotte having won previous two ARCA starts (Talladega and Toledo) after picking up a win earlier in the season at Nashville. He had also taken the series points lead with his La Paz Margarita Mix, Icon Vehicle Dynamics, Speed Vegas Motorsports Toyota No. 41, led by veteran crew chief Mardy Lindley.
He qualified third fastest for Thursday night’s race and ran inside the top five all night long. He got as high as second and came across the finish line fifth. He remains in the points lead going into this weekend’s race at Pocono.
“You always want to win every race you run,” Said Smith. “I wanted Charlotte really bad, but it’s hard to complain too much when you’ve won three times, you’re leading the points and you finish fifth. Mardy Lindley and this team have given me winning cars all season. I can’t thank them enough for their faith and confidence in me and all the work they put into keeping these cars fast. If I can’t win I always want one of my teammates to win so I’m happy for Brandon and the 12 team tonight. We run Pocono next week and I feel like my road course experience gives us a really good shot there.”
Purdy qualified seventh with his Bama Buggies, Polaris Toyota No. 8. He spent much of the race running inside the top five before a crash while racing for fifth ended his night short of the finish.
“We were definitely in contention at the end of the race for a solid finish,” Purdy explained. “But a mental mistake on my part took us out of the game. I hate to end the night like we did, especially for my guys. I’ll learn from it and move forward to Pocono.”
Smith, Creed and Purdy will be joined once again by Harrison Burton in the MDM Motorsports lineup for this Friday’s General Tire #AnywhereIsPossible 200 at Pocono Raceway in Long Pond, Pa. The race will be the 66th time the series has taken on the “Tricky Triangle”. The green flag is scheduled for 5:45 pm eastern time.
Currently, Smith leads Creed by 15 points in the quest for the series championship.
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