ARCA Points Battle Heats Up as Mason Mitchell, Grant Enfinger Have Issues in Madison

ARCA Points Battle Heats Up as Mason Mitchell, Grant Enfinger Have Issues in Madison

by August 25, 2014 0 comments

Photo credit: Kyle Pokrefky/The Fourth Turn

MADISON, Wisc. — The battle for the 2014 ARCA Racing Series’ drivers’ championship has tightened up with four races remaining in the championship after a dramatic conclusion to the Herr’s Live Life with Flavor 200.

The points deficit between leader Mason Mitchell and Grant Enfinger entering Sunday’s race was at a figure of 25 points. Leaving Madison International Speedway, the points gap still remains at 25 points as the series makes the turn south to the DuQuoin State Fairgrounds for next Monday’s Southern Illinois 100.

Mitchell and Enfinger would both have their share of problems during the race after dominating the first three quarters of the 200-lap event.

Enfinger would retire with engine issues after losing a gear after completing 172 laps. Mitchell would retire just nine laps later on Lap 181, and while the exact cause of his retirement has not been made completely clear yet – Mitchell was able to pinpoint where the issue came from.

“Something electrical there,” he explained. “I really don’t know for sure what it was, but we’re going to find out tomorrow when we get back to the shop. We’ll just fix it and come back stronger. It’s unfortunate, we had a really good car and we were in a position there to win and, stuff happens.”

With the way things shook out at the conclusion of the race, Mitchell (14th) would finish one position ahead of Enfinger (15th). However, Enfinger would lead the most laps of the race with a total of 120 circuits in front of the field while Mitchell would lead a total of 54 laps. With Enfinger scoring five extra bonus points by leading the most laps, he would neutralize any gains Mitchell could have made in the championship by finishing one spot ahead.

Justin Boston, Frank Kimmel, Tom Hessert, and Austin Wayne Self were all able to make gains on the points leaders with their respective first, fourth, fifth, and eighth-place finishes.

With the points lead still in his possession heading into the Southern Illinois 100, Mitchell will now head to another dirt track in the DuQuoin State Fairgrounds. The driver of the No. 98 Musselman’s-Wildlife Foundation of Florida-TTS Ford recorded a second-place finish at the Illinois State Fairgrounds – another dirt track – in Springfield and will bring a solid dirt package down to southern Illinois for next Monday’s race.

When asked if he felt confident heading into DuQuoin based off of his Springfield result, Mitchell had the following to offer.

“I think so,” he said. “I know we have a good package on the dirt – we finished second last weekend. We’ve just got to keep on doing what we’re doing and try to put some more points between us and Grant.”

Kyle Pokrefky
Follow Kyle Pokrefky on Twitter at @KPokrefky

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