BLOOMINGTON, Ind. — August 9, 2014 — Kraig Kinser had to wait a couple extra days to get on the track for his preliminary night at the 54th FVP Knoxville Nationals Presented by Casey’s General Store due to Mother Nature, but he made the most of it, finishing second to lock himself into tonight’s 50-lap, $150,000-to-win main event. Kinser started second and led 23 laps on Friday night, before Shane Stewart executed a last-lap pass to take the win.
“You never want to finish second, after leading so many laps, but we really didn’t know what we had coming into the Nationals, so to content for the win and lead so many laps, we’ll take it,” said Kinser. “Getting locked in for tonight was the main thing and we can fine-tune on the car now today, rather than have to worry about running earlier in the day.”
Kinser lined up second in the Mesilla Valley Transportation/Casey’s General Store/King Racing Products Maxim and battled pole sitter Mark Dobmeier right from the start of the 25-lap preliminary feature. The pair raced side-by-side on the opening circuit, with Dobmeier credited with leading the lap. Kinser took the top spot on the second circuit when the first caution flag of the night flew.
A strong restart kept Kinser in the lead as Dobemier closed in a couple of times. A battle for second between Dobmeier and Stewart allowed Kinser to open a bit of a gap as he got into lapped traffic. The second yellow flag of the night came out on lap-12, with Kinser maintaining his lead on the restart. On the 23rd lap, the final caution of the race flew, setting up a two-lap shootout.
Kinser led on the restart, with Stewart drawing even as they took the white flag, and moving in front down the backstretch. Kinser would cross the line second, which put him ninth in event points and on the inside of the fifth row for tonight’s A-Feature.
“I knew the laps were getting down and I was in lapped traffic,” said Kinser. “I was a little free the last few laps. Going down the back straightaway I thought I heard Shane (Stewart) on top. I felt good everywhere, so I really didn’t know quite where to go. Shane took advantage of the opportunity and that’s what you have to do at the Nationals. We’ll come back tonight and see what we can do.”
Kinser opened the Wednesday qualifying night, which was run on Friday, due to rain, by recording the 13th-fastest lap in time trials of the 51 entrants that took to the half-mile. He lined up sixth in the third 10-lap heat race and powered his way to a second-place finish. With an invert of eight for the preliminary feature, that put Kinser on the front row.
Live audio of the finale of the 54th FVP Knoxville Nationals Presented by Casey’s General Store can be heard live on Dirtvision.com, with live pay-per-view video available at TheCushion.com.
Kraig Kinser Racing would like to thank Casey’s General Stores, Mesilla Valley Transportation, King Racing Products, Maxim, Aerodine Composites, Sander Engineering, Integra Shocks, All Star Performance, FK Rod Ends, Brown & Miller Racing Solutions, Bell, KSE Racing Products, ButlerBuilt, Schoenfeld Headers, Donovan Engineering, Fel-Pro, Brodix, Wilwood, Dyer’s, Barnes Systems, Ringer Gloves, Jakes Custom Golf Carts, and Ben Cook Racing Limited for their continued support.
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