Davies, Conti Rally in Wreck-Filled eNASCAR Run at Charlotte

JR Motorsports | 5/23/2019

Brad Davies Charlotte eNASCAR FilterTime iRacing Michael Conti News The Dale Jr. Foundation Win Dale Jr.’s Ride

Both JRM iRacing drivers Brad Davies and Michael Conti had to overcome contact with other cars to rally and gain valuable points Tuesday night at Charlotte Motor Speedway.

Track Specs: 1.5-mile oval / 200 laps

Davies’ start/finish: 11th/12th

Conti’s start/finish: 17th/24th          

            

MOORESVILLE, N.C. (May 23, 2019) – Contact between cars is a given in any motorsports endeavor, and it’s especially prevalent in NASCAR. Both Brad Davies and Michael Conti, JRM’s eNASCAR PEAK Antifreeze iRacing Series drivers, had their share of it during Tuesday night’s race at Charlotte Motor Speedway.

Davies, driver of the No. 88 Win Dale Jr.’s Ride Chevrolet, had the better of that contact during the 200-lap race despite being part of a most spectacular crash. Conti, on the other hand, was hurt by his encounter.

Starting 11th in the field, Davies quickly found that his Camaro had too much tape on the grille, which helped downforce but encouraged overheating. That forced him to slide back through the pack in an effort to keep air on the nose and manage the overheating. At the first caution on lap 35, Davies ducked into the pits to take some of the tape off and set about regaining track position.

Conti, who started 17th, had focused on race trim during practice and it showed at the drop of the green. The young driver zipped up to the top five in the early run and came off pit road in third place after the lap-35 caution flag. He then spent most of the next run tucked up behind race leader Chris Shearburn on the low line as the field packed up. Davies came off pit road 18th and settled in around mid-field for the duration.

At lap 68, Davies and Nathan Lyon tangled off Turn 4 to bring out a caution, and it was pivotal for Davies’ hopes of winning.

The two were battling for position near the middle of the pack when Davies, on the low line, appeared to wiggle. The two cars never touched, but Lyon’s machine went straight at the wall in the first dogleg, flipping up and over and coming to rest near the entrance to Turn 1. The crash happened as a result of internet lag, fairly common among sim racers. The resulting damage sent Davies to pit road for repairs, which served to slow the No. 88 machine down a bit as the race wore on. Conti, still running third, held serve during the pit-stop sequence and Davies rejoined in 33rd place.

On the restart, Conti had moved to the high side and was alongside leader Shearburn when the caution waved again for a crash back in the field. He was still there, pushing Shearburn when the caution waved again at lap 102. When Caine Cook tried to poke his nose under Dylan Duval on the front straight, the hole closed quickly and sent Duval spinning. Davies, running just behind, got the brakes and missed the crash, but Jarl Teien was late to the brake and plowed the rear bumper of Davies’ machine.

That meant another trip to pit road for Davies, who added the damage to that suffered in the Lyon incident. He rejoined in 27th, and spent the remaining 95 laps working his way to 12th at the finish.

Conti was ensconced in the top six, battling for spots among the leaders on lap 150 when Shearburn, tucked to the inside of Conti’s FilterTime Chevrolet, touched the left rear quarter panel of Conti’s car, which sent the No. 8 toward the inside wall at full speed. After hammering the SAFER Barrier, Conti slid across the track and was clipped by Corey Vincent as the field scrambled to miss the melee. That put Conti on pit road for damage repair, and he returned to the track in 33rd spot after getting it all fixed. He gained nine spots before the checkered flag waved.

Keegan Leahy won the event, with Shearburn second. Blake Reynolds, Ryan Luza and Logan Clampitt rounded out the top five. Davies finished 12th and Conti 24th, and both drivers are now in the top 10 in points. Conti gained a spot to sixth in the standings, five points above the cut line, and Davies is 10th, eight points below the cut.

Next up for the JRM team is the first road course of the season, Sonoma, on June 4.

Brad Davies, driver No. 88 JR Motorsports Chevrolet team

“I couldn’t be happier with the way the car drove tonight. The No. 88 Win Dale Jr.’s Ride Chevrolet Camaro ZL1 just ate everyone up through the corners, especially on longer runs. Unfortunately, the damage sustained (in the crash with Lyon) held us back a little bit on the straightaways. There’s nothing we can do about internet lag, which can sometimes throw a wrench in your plans, but it’s the little mistakes we need to clean up, like having too much tape on the grill to start. Once we can do that, I think we’ll be able to maintain track position at the start of these races and stay away from the trouble that usually happens when running around mid-pack. We have a two-week break coming up but will be looking forward to our next race at Sonoma.  It’s the first road-course race of the year for us and although I’ve not really been known to tear up the roadies, I really enjoy driving them and I think it will be a very interesting race for the fans.”

Michael Conti, driver No. 8 JR Motorsports Chevrolet team

“We had a great FilterTime Chevy tonight and showed a lot of pace through the first 150 laps of the race. When you're racing as closely together as we were, contact was inevitable. I thought were going to get away wreck-free tonight, but I guess it wasn't mean to be. I've raced with Shearburn for years and we've always done well battling with one another, but tonight, we just came together. I moved down slightly and he was already on my quarter panel. We wrecked, but it wasn't really anyone's fault...just hard racing. It's extremely disappointing to think that we could've gained a ton of points tonight on the cutoff line, but on the bright side, we did gain a spot and a few points, so it could've been worse. It was a blast getting to drive the patriotic-themed FilterTime car and I'm extremely excited to get to the next race at Sonoma. With the way this current package is, if I'm going to do well anywhere, it'll be at a road course.”

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XFINITY Series Schedule

  • June 16 05:30 PM ET
    CircuitCity.com 250Iowa Speedway
  • June 29 03:30 PM ET
    Camping World 300Chicagoland Speedway
  • July 5 07:30 PM ET
    Firecracker 250Daytona International Speedway
  • July 12 07:30 PM ET
    Alsco 300 at KentuckyKentucky Speedway
  • July 20 04:00 PM ET
    Lakes Region 200New Hampshire Motor Speedway

XFINITY Series Standings

After LTi Printing 250

Michigan International Speedway | 6/8/2019
RankDriverPointsBehind
1Tyler Reddick6270
2Christopher Bell538-89
3Cole Custer510-117
4Austin Cindric486-141
5Justin Allgaier479-148
6Chase Briscoe #440-187
7John Hunter Nemechek429-198
8Noah Gragson #423-204
9Michael Annett406-221