MDM Motorsports sent four ARCA Racing Series teams to compete in the Scott 150 Friday night at Chicagoland Speedway in Joliet, Illinois, and when the checkered flag waved, three of them were running in the top five and all of them finished in the top ten.
Series points leader Sheldon Creed finished second, NASCAR Next 2018 class members Zane Smith and Chase Purdy finished fourth and fifth, and Austin Hill wound up tenth.
Creed continued his season-long string of top performances in the United Rentals, A.M Ortega, RTL Toyota No. 28 led by crew chief Jeff Stankiewicz. He qualified first, ran in the top three all night long and nearly pulled off the win with a charge for the lead on a late race restart, but fell just a couple of car lengths short.
“It’s great to be fast and to be in contention week after week,” Creed said with a smile. “Yeah, it sucks to lose but we’re on a pretty good streak right now and have been for most of the season. Hopefully, we can continue to ride this wave. Iowa’s next, so we’ll spend this week preparing to go chase a win there.”
Smith qualified second with his La Paz Margarita Mix, Icon Vehicle Dynamics, Speed Vegas Motorsports Toyota No. 41 led by crew chief Mardy Lindley. He ran a strong race, falling as low as 12th briefly in the first 30 laps but then rebounding to run up front for most of the event. He took advantage of a late race restart to grab the fourth spot and that’s where he finished.
“It was a bit of an off day,” The California racer noted after the race. “We weren’t quite as strong as we normally are, but the guys never quit, and we worked hard to get to fourth place at the end. Fourth isn’t bad, but we want wins and that’s what it’s going to take to win the championship.”
Purdy started the race in sixth with his Bama Buggies, Polaris Toyota No. 8. He battled a loose car early in the event, but the team was able to make some adjustments to dial him in as the race went on. Like his teammate Smith, Purdy used the final restart to gain some spots to finish fifth. Purdy was upbeat after the race.
“We had a decent car, but it just seemed like we couldn’t quite find the balance all day. We never quit, and we came home with the car in one piece. I’ve been to Iowa before so I’m really looking forward to going back next week.”
Hill made his MDM debut in the No. 12 Toyota. A veteran of the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series, Austin qualified tenth fastest and drove a consistent race to finish where he started, learning more and more each lap.
“It was a tough night for us,” Hill said. “I just didn’t get as much practice as I wish we could have gotten. These cars are so much different than the Trucks. Hopefully, we can work something out for another race later in the year with these guys. I can’t thank everyone enough for their effort. This is a very strong team.”
Creed’s advantage over Smith has grown to 165 points in the series championship standings. The next race for the team will be this Saturday night at Iowa Speedway in Newton, Iowa. The Fans With Benefits 150 gets underway at 8 pm Central time and will be televised live on MAVtv.
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