On the finish of the second Warmth at South Boston Speedway, the infamous wrath of Tony Stewart ended up being drawn out by a sure younger and keen SRX driver. The end result was a lesson that everybody within the area ought to have recognized: Nobody desires that Smoke from Tony.
After entering into it with Ernie Francis Jr. in Warmth 2, Stewart was spurred into motion in the primary occasion, swapping the lead with Marco Andretti earlier than taking management and holding off Greg Biffle to win the second race of the SRX season at South Boston Speedway. Stewart’s victory marked his third win in SRX, probably the most of any driver within the sequence’ younger historical past.
Stewart prevailed in a spirited, bodily race that featured some bent fenders and fairly a number of emotions — together with Stewart’s — that had been knocked off form
SRX at South Boston outcomes
- #14 – Tony Stewart
- #69 – Greg Biffle
- #18 – Bobby Labonte
- #39 – Ryan Newman
- #06 – Helio Castroneves
- #6 – Tony Kanaan
- #5 – Ernie Francis Jr.
- #98 – Marco Andretti
- #1 – Ryan Hunter-Reay
- #26 – Peyton Sellers
- #15 – Michael Waltrip (DNF)
- #3 – Paul Tracy (DNF)
Whereas slowing all the way down to keep away from a spinning Paul Tracy in Warmth 2, Francis bumped into Stewart as he turned down the observe whereas driving into the smoke in entrance of him. Francis’ transfer incensed Stewart, and the 2 had a heated dialog in the course of the intermission between the Heats and essential occasion. After the scuffle, Stewart delivered an ultimatum to the remainder of the sector.
“They’ve pissed off Uncle Tony proper now. In order that they’re about able to get a dose of it that they do not need,” Stewart mentioned. “Belief me, I do know each soiled trick and received it in my bag. I imply, if you’re following any person and a man is on the skin, and as quickly as he will get clear he simply turns down throughout — that is the dumbest s–t you are able to do, I swear to God.
“It is like, I am simply executed taking part in good with all people. Anyone that touches me, I am touching again occasions 5. I am simply executed jacking with a few of these clowns.”
Stewart wound up beginning second in the primary occasion, and he would spend a lot of the 100-lap characteristic swapping the lead with Andretti earlier than Andretti spun out of competition after an ill-advised crossover transfer on Biffle went unsuitable. After a flurry of cautions within the second half of the occasion, Stewart was capable of construct a small hole on Biffle and declare the checkered flag.
The optics urged that the run-in between Stewart and Francis lit a hearth beneath the defending SRX champion. Nevertheless, Stewart said post-race that his main motivation got here from the response of South Boston’s followers every time he took the lead.
“It is not like I would like a lot motivation, however if you’ve received the followers of South Boston cheering like that each time you get the lead, by God you are not gonna allow them to down,” he mentioned.
Stewart was hardly the one driver whose mood was examined. The incident between Stewart and Francis occurred simply after Tracy was spun out of the race lead by longtime rival Helio Castroneves. Whereas Tracy made his discontent recognized (“I do not know if he ran out of brakes or ran out of brains,” he mentioned), Tracy was taken out in a crash throughout the primary occasion earlier than he was capable of precise any payback.
Michael Waltrip, in the meantime, made completely certain to get his. After being spun into the skin wall by Ryan Hunter-Reay, Waltrip retaliated in opposition to Hunter-Reay beneath the following warning, taking exception to the best way the previous IndyCar champion had raced him.
“I received dumped,” Waltrip mentioned. “Simply midway down the again he received into me and by no means let me go … He is gonna hear from Uncle Mike. We’re not having a beer collectively, A. However B, that is simply not proper. That is not the way you race.
“And I did not need to tear up his automobile, I simply wished to ship a message. So hopefully message obtained. However I am gonna wait round and have a chat with him.”
After SRX’s IndyCar contingent managed the season opener, the highest 4 at South Boston all hailed from the ranks of NASCAR drivers in SRX. Bobby Labonte and Ryan Newman completed third and fourth, with Castroneves the primary of the IndyCar drivers in fifth. Native All-Star Peyton Sellers had a disappointing evening, ending tenth in his personal territory.
The Tenting World SRX Collection continues subsequent Saturday evening with the third race of the season at Stafford Motor Speedway in Stafford Springs, Conn. The race marks SRX’s first return to any racetrack, as SRX hosted the sequence’ inaugural race there final yr. Protection will likely be on CBS with streaming stay on Paramount+.