PGRL S4 R10 Recap
25 April 2023
Pretty Good Racing League | Season 4 | Round 10
Premier Series | Talladega Superspeedway
Photograph by: Michael Chrobok
At the *Chuckles* I’m in Danger 250 presented by MC2 Editing Services in the Pretty Good Racing League at Talladega Superspeedway, Scott Eckrich of Loud Pedal Motorsports secured his fifth win of the season in dramatic fashion, crossing the finish line backwards ahead of Cody Dempster. The race started with Clarence Bonner on pole, while Eckrich started in 16th.
The drivers quickly shuffled lines, experimenting with 3-4 wide racing, and forming well-organized top lines. Lap 9 saw a close call when the majority of the field had to fan out to avoid a pile-up. All drivers maneuvered without making contact, and the racing continued, with packs splitting into smaller groups going into lap 10.
Jake Silvia led the front pack, while Cosmin Ioanesiu led the second group in 9th. Ioanesiu closed in on the leaders, swelling the leading pack to over 20 drivers. Meanwhile, Joe Hassert led the next pack back in 22nd, 1.5 seconds behind the main pack.
After the first 15 laps, Dempster led with Silvia pushing him. On lap 21, Loud Pedal Motorsports, consisting of Eckrich, Michael Chrobok, Jeff Ward, Brian Greenlee, Brian Yaczik, and Woody Mahan, came down pit road to try and overtake the lead in the coming laps. Seven laps later, Apex Simsport drivers, Silvia, Dempster, and Jordan Harnish, along with drivers from other teams, joined them.
Loud Pedal Motorsports’ strategy paid off, and they cleared ahead of Apex Simsport as they rejoined the track. The leading pack, with Eckrich out front, worked together more effectively than the other groups, with a gap growing between them and Dempster leading the 2nd pack.
On lap 38, Aiden Graetz and Brady Cure had a miscommunication while bump drafting, causing the only caution of the night and collecting Joe Hassert and Gael Brooks. The drivers took the break to come down pit road for fresh tires, and Saif Faries took control of the field to take the green flag.
The drivers shuffled to link up with teammates and charged towards the front. Pete Baskins, with Jeff Ward pushing, took the lead away from Dempster, crossing the halfway point of the night and taking bonus points before dropping back and giving the lead back to Dempster.
With 30 laps remaining, the front three packs merged back together, and Apex Simsport drivers worked hard to maintain the lead with Ioanesiu in tow. The front pack settled into a single file line on the bottom of the track to check off laps leading up to the end.
In the final laps, Loud Pedal Motorsports made their move, and Apex Simsport moved back up to the high line. Chrobok pushed Yaczik, getting alongside Dempster and Silvia. Coming out of the final corner, Eckrich moved up as Silvia and Dempster went side by side trying to block the track. A bump from Dempster sent Eckrich onto the apron and under Silvia. The move sent Silvia up the track, across Dempster’s nose, spinning down the front stretch. Dempster came down again, trying to stop Eckrich’s advance, but a hit from Vincent Crow and another from Saif Faries knocked Eckrich across the line to take the checkered flag backwards 0.004 seconds ahead of Dempster.
With the win, Eckrich extended his lead in the point standings by 79 points over Chrobok. The next Pretty Good Racing League event is the MARSS Properties Vacation Rentals 200 at Dover Motor Speedway on May 2nd, with the action going live at 8:55PM ET only on the Virtual Grip Network.