Article and photo by Jacob Hord, @HordRaceWatcher
Back in July, Spencer Bayston won the Brad Doty Classic at Attica Raceway Park. It was his first World of Outlaws win worth $10,000 and the weather was threatening all night long. Sound familiar? Bayston may have been having deja vu at the Attica Ambush Saturday night. He got by Zeb Wise on lap 36 to claim the All Star win, worth $10,000 as a light rain fell the entire feature.
Mother Nature was bound and determined to take over the night, but the All Stars and Attica officials bumped the race time up to 6pm, and then just after 5:30pm as the weather got closer. The 40 lap feature was pushed to the track at 6:48pm, and it was Jac Haudenschild and Craig Mintz that led the field to green. Mintz jumped out to the early lead as Friday’s winner Zeb Wise got by Haudenschild for second.
On lap four, Mintz had built a .804 second lead over Wise, but Wise started closing in. By lap seven, Wise was on Mintz’s tail tank. Wise showed a nose in turns one and two the following circuit, but Mintz held his ground as the yellow came out for Henry Malcuit. On the restart, Wise showed a nose once again in one and two, but Mintz was able to retain the lead. Wise tried the same move again on lap nine and Mintz held once again. Then, things got fun.
Wise threw a slider in one and two, and Mintz fended off Wise with a crossover move. Wise threw another slider in three and four, and this time Wise was able to take command. Mintz didn’t back down, he wanted to pick up his first All Star win since 2012. Mintz did what Wise had done; he threw a slider in one and two, which didn’t quite work, but the slider in three and four sure did. Mintz was quickly back on top and he started to gap Wise. Five laps later, Mintz had a 1.167 second lead, but he was approaching lapped traffic.
Mintz reached that lapped traffic on lap 20 with a 1.238 second lead over Wise. Wise chipped into the lead slowly but surely, and by lap 24, Wise had cut Mintz’s lead down to .403 seconds. Oh, and Spencer Bayston had worked his way up to third. That’s important. Mintz and Wise were nose-to-tail for the lead on lap 27.
On lap 28, Wise made his move on Mintz, who’s car seemed to be going away from him. Wise had a run off of turn four and retook the lead, eyes set on getting back-to-back wins. Wise then split two lapped cars in an impressive move, but Mintz followed and they were still nose-to-tail. Wise had some clean air in front of him, which was crucial in building a .833 second lead over Mintz, who was now dealing with Bayston. Bayston made his move on Mintz with eight laps left, but Mintz fought right back. The following lap, Mintz couldn’t stop Bayston.
“I started to figure out how to run one and two better,” said Bayston. “There was a little bit of grip in the center that I could hit and transition my momentum. Once I figured out how to do that I could cover the back half of the track. I would diamond three and four so that I could get down the straightaway and get a lot more wing speed into turn one. /
Two laps later, Bayston caught Wise’s attention, ripping the top of turns one and two. Wise and Bayston were nose-to-tail at the line, and Bayston went back up top, and all Wise could do was watch him go by. Bayston quickly built a 1.321 second lead and cruised to his second Attica Raceway Park win by 2.377 seconds over Wise and Tyler Courtney.
“That was going back to what we did at the Doty, the track slicked off early and I feel like we were able to do a lot of the same things. I had the top working really good in turns one and two, and I feel like that is where I was making a lot of my ground. No one else was really up there, so I was able to capitalize on that in traffic and stay up in clean air,” said Bayston.
“I knew it was a forty lapper tonight, so I had a little more time. I tried to capitalize on mistakes or a hiccup behind lappers. I didn’t want to force the issue because if I made a costly mistake, it would be hard to run them back down. I saw the five to go, and knew we were home free after that. I just had to stay patient, and calm. It’s a different kind of emotion, because we got to really battle throughout the race, which was satisfying,” Bayston added.