Tony Stewart goes from last to first in Eldora SRX win
Tony Stewart made it back-to-back victories in the Camping World SRX Series by winning in dramatic fashion at his own Eldora Speedway on Saturday night.
The NASCAR Hall of Famer started last in the 12-driver field to lead twice for six laps – all in the last seven laps – and held off local star Kody Swanson to win the 50-lap feature.
It was the SRX Series’ second straight race on dirt and Stewart completed a sweep of both. He also won last week at Knoxville (Iowa) Raceway.
“Kody found the bottom. I couldn’t roll the bottom as good as he could. I was real dependent on being up on the top,” Stewart said. “I just think that’s what Eldora does – the complexion of the track changes during the race.
“I thought the top was good in the beginning in the main and then Kody got just crushing everybody on the bottom and got rolling through there. But the good thing was when he went by, everybody else followed him down there like they were in a parade and left the top open.
“And the longer we went, I finally got the momentum going on the top to get back by him.”
SRX track action at Eldora
Photo by: True Speed PR
Swanson, the five-time USAC Silver Crown champion, ended up second and 2021 Indianapolis 500 champion Helio Castroneves was third and moved into second in the series standings.
Several drivers were left fuming at 2003 IndyCar champion Paul Tracy, who got into several incidents while trying to protect his position on the track, including one late in the race involving Bobby Labonte.
“I know I’m going to have some Bobby Labonte fans after me because he’s super pissed at me, and rightly so,” Tracy said. “He got by me on the restart. I was running on top and I decided I was going to cut to the bottom like Tony did and I just got it all wrong.
“He turned in a little earlier than I thought he would and I tagged him and that was it. So that was my bad and I went over to apologize to him he was having none of it.”
Superstar Racing Experience (SRX), founded by Stewart, Ray Evernham, Sandy Montag and George Pyne, features six short track races on a mix of pavement and dirt with drivers running identical cars.
SRX heads next to Lucas Oil Raceway near Indianapolis on July 3; next is July 10 at Slinger (Wisc.) Speedway; and its season finale is July 17 at the Nashville (Tenn.) Fairgrounds Speedway.
Every Camping World SRX Series race is broadcast live at 8 p.m. ET on the CBS Television Network with streaming live on Paramount+ Premium.
Feature Results (50 laps):
Note: Starting lineup was based on average finishing positions in Heat Race Nos. 1-2.
1. Tony Stewart (Started 1st, but went to back after pace laps; led laps 44-45, 47-50)
2. Kody Swanson (Started 9th; led laps 26-33, 34-35, 46; completed 50/50 laps)
3. Helio Castroneves (Started 4th; completed 50/50 laps)
4. Marco Andretti (Started 3rd; completed 50/50 laps)
5. Paul Tracy (Started 2nd; led laps 1-25, 34-35; completed 50/50 laps)
6. Scott Speed (Started 6th; completed 50/50 laps)
7. Tony Kanaan (Started 10th; completed 50/50 laps)
8. Ernie Francis Jr. (Started 8th; completed 50/50 laps)
9. Willy T. Ribbs (Started 12th; completed 50/50 laps)
10. Michael Waltrip (Started 11th; completed 50/50 laps)
11. Bobby Labonte (Started 5th; completed 45/50 laps)
12. Bill Elliott (Started 7th; completed 45/50 laps)
Camping World SRX Series Standings (after Round 3 of 6):
1. Tony Stewart (129 points)
2. Helio Castroneves (96 points, -33)
3. Ernie Francis Jr. (90 points, -39)
4. Marco Andretti (80 points, -49)
5. Bobby Labonte (75 points, -54)
6. Paul Tracy (64 points, -65)
7. Michael Waltrip (57 points, -72)
8. Bill Elliott (46 points, -83)
9. Tony Kanaan (45 points, -84)
10. Willy T. Ribbs (38 points, -91)
Note: Points are awarded in both heats and the feature.
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