For those of you who didn’t see this race let me write a little synopsis for you. Jason was quickest in practice and had the pole wrapped up until the very last second when Jake Zemke squeezed in a lap .3 seconds quicker. There was no doubt that there was going to be a hand full of guys that could win the race. It is really hard to break the draft at Daytona and get a big enough lead so the pack doesn’t swallow you up on the banking, so it was any man’s race to win really.
The race started and sure enough there was a group of seven guys that were running nose to tail and even going four wide on the banking at some spots. Jason’s engine let go after the first pit stop and it looked like his day was over. However, on that same lap a red flag was waved for a tire safety concern. All the riders were to come into the pits and swap out for a fresh front tire. Since Jason was on the lead lap and was active on the track when the flag came out he was able to rejoin the race. His crew went to work and thrashed on the bike and threw in the motor from his back up bike, which was legal.
Jason restarted in the 3rd position since they went in order of the lap previous to the red flag and he was in 3rd on that lap. Due to the intermission of the race there was no need for a second pit stop and the race turned into a 15 lap sprint to the finish.
Again, the same seven guys were in a pack and there was no telling who was going to win the race, let alone know who was going to lead from lap to lap. With a hand full of laps to go Jason thought that he was having a tire issue and he backed off the pace to check his bike over. He quickly realized there was actually nothing wrong with the bike so he got on the gas hard to catch up to the pack before he lost the draft. He was successful and was dicing it with the leaders again.
With one lap to go Jason crossed the line in seventh place. He made a tight pass on JD Beach going into the first hairpin and then made a stunning move on Jake Zemke on the OTSIDE of the really fast kink. Coming onto the banking for the last time Jason was in 4th or 5th and hit the draft perfectly and even was able to use a lapper to get in the lead and pass Cory West. He was BARELY able to hold off Cory at the finish line and won the race by a foot or two. At that same time Josh Herrin collided with Dane Westby and touched his front brake lever locking up the front wheel and sending Dane flying over the handle bars at 180 mph. Taylor Knapp was also caught up in the accident and went sliding down the infield grass. Both men were very lucky to walk away from that crash. I am just glad Jason was ahead of the carnage and took the victory!
This is the most prestigious win for Jason and for Censport Graphics. Jason is in good form to take the title and Censport will be behind him 100%.