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Wednesday, August 10, 2022
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Taylor Gray Scores ARCA Victory in Wild Rain Race at Mid-Ohio

 

Taylor Gray burns it down after winning the Dawn 150 at Mid-Ohio. Screen grab from FS1.

As we’ve seen in the past, a rain race at Mid-Ohio will lead to chaos. Add ARCA into that equation? Oh, we got a whole different ballgame.

Cars were flying, spinning, and sliding everywhere and the #TobyTracker probably broke in half, but in the end it was Taylor Gray who got the job done and scored the win in the Dawn 150 at Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course.

Gray, 17, powered to the lead after getting into Kris Wright – the current leader at the time – after a wild sequence of events with three laps to go. Gray wouldn’t look back as he’d lead the final three laps and cruise to victory by more than 12.5 seconds over Parker Chase.

This is Gray’s second ARCA Menards Series win of the 2022 season and it comes in his fifth start of the year.

John Hunter Nemechek led and dominated the majority of the race, lapping everyone but seven cars before the halftime race break even took place.

While drivers were fighting just to stay on the racetrack, incidents were happening left and right.

In the midst of all that, a clean battle did take place between Gray and Rajah Caruth for fifth place.

Once the race break hit, JHN and the majority of the field opted to stay on wet tires. However, Chase, Rajah Caruth and Nick Sanchez all swapped to slick tires — keep this in mind, it’ll be important later.

The re-rack, due to the race break, stacked up the field once again and Sammy Smith prevailed by taking the lead from JHN, which seemed impossible all day long, on lap 29.

The battle was clean UNTIL tempers got the best of the competitors, as JHN made contact sending Smith off the racetrack for the lead with 12 laps to go.

Nick Sanchez, who had the click tires, took the lead briefly as the track had begun to dry out. But then the next caution came out with six laps remaining. As the caution flew, Sanchez and the remainder of the field went to pit road, except Kris Wright. This handed the lead over to Wright, but chaos ensued on pit road under the yellow.

Sanchez and Caruth were both penalized for changing to new slick tires from a current set of slicks under the caution, which was against ARCA rules. At road courses, teams are allowed to change from slick tires to wet tires or from wet tires to slick tires. But you can’t change from wets to wets or slicks to slicks.

As a result, Sanchez and Caruth, who had been near the front all race long, were penalized two laps by ARCA officials.

On the restart, it looked as Nemechek and other contenders would able to make their way back to the front to challenge Wright for the lead, until chaos in the final corner with four laps to go.

Sometimes, it be your own.

Jesse Love ran into Nemechek, spinning both Venturini Motorsports cars around and wiping them out of race winning contention.

That left Gray and Wright up front to battle for the win, and the David Gilliland Racing driver got it done once again in the ARCA Menards Series.

Parker Chase – known as a road ringer – salvaged a second place finish in the wet conditions, running a solid and clean race all day long.

Smith, Nemechek, and Love rounded out the top five finishers for Toyota. And after leading with three to go, Wright finished in the sixth position after contact from Gray caused damage to his car, which sent him fading through the field.

Stanton Barrett, Daniel Dye, Caruth, and Dale Quarterly all finished inside the top ten respectively, with championship contender Sanchez finishing in 11th after a last lap incident.

Here are the full race results from the ARCA Menards Series Dawn 150 at Mid-Ohio:

Race Results: 2022 ARCA Menards Series Dawn 150 at Mid-Ohio

Even after a crazy day, Caruth still leads the standings by six points over his teammate, with Dye just eight points behind as well.

The ARCA Menards Series hits the road to Pocono Raceway for their next event, July 22nd on FS1.

RJ Starcevic
RJ Starcevic
Owner/founder of @NASCARReport on Instagram - Host of The Drivers Meeting Podcast - Contributor for TobyChristie.com

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