by Jacob Hord, @HordRaceWatcher
After the dust settled on Friday night’s racing, it was time to reset, recharge, and then do it all over again on Saturday. The back half of the Attica Ambush featured the largest All Star payday in Attica Raceway Park history, upping the ante just a little bit. Pair that with a tight All Star owners championship battle, and a bunch of Ohio’s best locals looking to take home a $12,000 check, and the recipe was set for another excellent edition of racing from Attica.
Friday night’s winner, Kerry Madsen, found himself right where he ended Friday night: in first place, alongside All Star points leader Zeb Wise, as the green flag flew for the 40 lap feature. Madsen, looking to sweep the weekend, jumped out to the early lead over Wise, as fifth starting Tyler Courtney worked his way into third over Creed Kemenah and Carl Bowser. Madsen scooted away as Courtney went to work on Wise for second, and Bowser and Chris Windom both got by Kemenah. Courtney, whose 7BC car leads the All Star owners points over the Rudeen 26 of Zeb Wise, got by Wise for second on lap three, as Madsen’s lead grew to 1.357 seconds.
Madsen’s lead held steady around the 1.2-1.3 second mark as he inched towards lapped traffic. Meanwhile, Windom, Kyle Reinhardt, and Bowser were having a triple-threat match for the fourth spot. Windom held the fourth spot, then Reinhardt got by on lap seven. Lap eight saw Windom get back by, only to lose it to Reinhardt again before the lap was over.
By the time the leader Madsen got to lapped traffic on lap 10, his lead had been cut to .971 seconds, but the yellow flag would come out. No traffic and clean air for Madsen. There was an attempt at a restart, but the yellow would immediately come out for Zeth Sabo, Stuart Brubaker, and Kraig Kinser– none of whom made it to the line, and were all facing a direction that wasn’t forward. They all rejoined the field. On the ensuing restart, Madsen got another good jump, as Reinhardt challenged Wise for third, but Wise held his ground. Madsen got his lead up to 1.124 seconds on lap 15 before another yellow came out.
This is the restart where things would get fun. Madsen got a decent jump on Courtney and Wise, but it was Wise who got a great jump on Courtney. They went side-by-side before Wise claimed the second spot down the backstretch on lap 16. Then Wise went to work on Madsen on lap 17. Wise threw a slider in turns three and four and claimed the top spot on lap 18. Courtney would also get by Madsen for second in the process. Wise’s lead was 1.033 seconds on lap 20, the midway point of the race, as war raged on for fourth between Windom and Reinhardt, with Reinhardt clinging on to the spot.
Wise grew his lead to 1.770 seconds on lap 23, but lapped traffic loomed. Wise took a 1.542 second lead on lap 24 into lapped traffic and immediately saw his lead shrink a little bit. Fortunately for Wise, Madsen had caught back up to Courtney and they had a brief battle that allowed Wise to sneak away. By lap 27, the lead for Wise was up to 2.706 seconds, but he was still mired in traffic.
With ten laps remaining, Wise had a solid 3.246 second lead, but the lapped traffic was difficult to pass, and Courtney was done dealing with Madsen, his eyes set on the lead once again. The lead shrank. 2.763 seconds on lap 32, 2.114 seconds on lap 34, 1.608 seconds on lap 36. Sunshine was looking to steal a win. 1.047 seconds on lap 37, with no lapped cars between your leaders now. Wise’s lead was just big enough on the last lap that Courtney had no real shot at a divebomb, and for the second time this season, Zeb Wise visited the horsetrack at Attica Raceway Park as the winner. Tyler Courtney, Kerry Madsen, Kyle Reinhardt, and Chris Windom rounded out the top five.
“I was struggling early, but I knew that was a good thing,” said Wise post-race.
“The way the car felt, I knew that we’re going to be pretty good late. Then I just waited for the right time. I thought that I would have a chance if we got to traffic, but I fired off really well on that restart and just kind of tried to roll off of Tyler’s right rear and just found something there in the middle of the racetrack and basically did the same thing to get by Kerry,” continued Wise.
“It felt really good. My car was spot on. We struggled a little bit last night, just kind of off, and they made some adjustments for tonight, and we were a whole lot better.”
Zeb Wise’s full post-race interview can be found here: Zeb Wise Wins at Attica 9/2/23