Burt Myers flexes muscle in “KOMA Unwind Modified Madness 125 Modified” tour victory at Ace
Credit Adam Smith / Burlington Times-News
ALTAMAHAW June13,2014 — Whether it was dropping out of the lead for his mandatory pit stop, rallying to the front during the closing stages or the restart at the end that decided the winner, Burt Myers faced each significant situation with extreme confidence.
His race car was that good.
Myers added to his résumé at Ace Speedway, a veritable second home for the standout driver, with a victory in the 125-lap KOMA Unwind Modified Madness Series feature Friday night.
And when he arrived in victory lane, he raved about what made it possible.
“Hands down this is the best race car I've ever had here,” he said, “we've won some big races here, so that's big. Man, what a race car. That's the most fun I've here in a long time.”
Walnut Cove's Myers, who stars at Bowman Gray Stadium in Winston-Salem, led a total of 93 laps and won for the first time in what was the traveling Modified circuit's third event of the season. It registered as his fourth touring series victory in 15 such appearances here at Ace.
His No. 1 car proved to the class of the 16-car field throughout, all the way from pre-race qualifying, when his blistering lap of 14.598 seconds produced the top time, to the conclusion, when he bolted away on a decisive restart with 10 laps remaining.
Tim Brown positioned his No. 02 car alongside Myers on the front row for that double-file restart. What followed was minimal drama, as Myers broke away to secure the victory.
“You're just thinking, ‘Go like crazy and try to win this race,' ” Myers said of his end-game strategy. “Once we got up to the front row, especially in first, I knew it was going to be up to me to lose the race.”
Walnut Cove's Jason Myers, the younger brother of Burt Myers, placed second. Mooresville's Johnny Sutton finished third, ahead of Tobaccoville's Brown in fourth and Mooresville's Bobby Sheffield in fifth.
“I didn't have any power steering and that was hurting us a little bit,” Jason Myers said of a worsening condition that affected his No. 4 car. “Who knows if I would've had anything for Burt or not. It looked like he had the best car. He sat on the pole and won the race. What more can you ask for?”
Burt Myers started from the pole position and led the opening 82 laps before finally choosing to take his mandatory pit stop, which dropped him from first in the running order to sixth.
“I said, guys, ‘We've made our bed. We've got to lay in it. But when we do come in, we are getting a tire,' “ Myers said. “We knew that was the way that we could come back through the field because those guys had a lot of laps on their right rear (tire).
“As good as the car was, I knew it was going to be up to timing more than anything, if I could put myself in the right position to catch a guy at the right time.”
That decision to pit and change his car's right rear tire — all except three cars in the field had opted to pit at earlier junctures — cycled Zach Brewer to the front. He led 32 laps while Myers gave chase and ultimately stalked him for 17 laps.
Myers delivered what amounted to the winning pass by riding the outside line and working his No. 1 car wheel to wheel against Brewer's No. 31 car.
Moments later, Brewer, dealing with a tire going flat, spun out between turns one and two, necessitating the race's fifth and final caution period and subsequent restart, which Myers conquered with ease.
Other notables in the event included Jeremy Mayfield, the fallen former NASCAR Sprint Cup driver, who finished a lap off the pace in eighth and Burlington's Gary Young Jr., an Ace regular, who placed 14th after dropping out near the midway point of the event
FINISH: KOMA Unwind Modifieds (125 laps): Burt Myers, Jason Myers, Johnny Sutton, Tim Brown, Bobby Sheffield, Dan Speeney, Zach Brewer, Jeremy Mayfield, Jimmy Wallace, Tommy Neal, Austin Pack, David Calabreese, Joseph Brown, Gary Young Jr., Willie Chilton, Spencer Davis.