Kinser Racing Sim Team’s Braden Eyler became the second driver in as many weeks to score his first iRacing World of Outlaws NOS Energy Sprint Car World Championship win by taking the checkered flag at Knoxville Raceway on Monday night. Eyler powered around polesitter James Edens on the high line to take the lead with 10 laps to go before staving off a challenge from defending series champion Alex Bergeron that was abruptly cut short just a few laps later. Cameron Merriman scored his second podium of the year in second, while Edens held on for third.

“I don’t really know what to say,” Eyler admitted after his breakthrough victory, which allowed him to climb to sixth in series standings. “I was kind of getting worried, because we were out of fuel crossing the line, and that was a factor. I wasn’t expecting to run the top the whole race—I was going to if I could, but I really didn’t think it was going to be there. We were just flying up there, and then I headed to the bottom and held my own against Cameron and Edens to save some fuel. That was insane!”

One of the most iconic dirt ovals in the world, Knoxville looked like it might go to Edens for the second year in a row, as the Swindell SpeedLab driver earned the top qualifying spot and won the first heat. David Heileman, Rusty Kruger, and Dylan Houser took the other three heat wins, while Justin Thomas and Logan Clampitt scored the LCQ wins to set the 20 car grid.

But unlike last year, Edens couldn’t hang on to the finish, as Eyler came with a full head of steam and rode the cushion to the top spot. From there, fuel strategy became paramount, as Bergeron charged through the field to set up what could’ve been the finish of the year. But technical problems for the Quebec native ended the battle with the checkered flag just a few laps away. The resulting drop from second to 18th, a roughly 40-point difference, meant that four drivers remain within 13 points of Bergeron for the championship lead.

Full results from iRacing World of Outlaws NOS Energy Sprint Car World Championship action at Knoxville Raceway were as follows:

Fin.

St.

No.

Driver

Laps

Led

Interval

Best

Pts.

1 5 5 Braden Eyler 35 10 0 17.367 77
2 6 17 Cameron Merriman 35 0 -1.128 17.577 74
3 1 52 James Edens 35 25 -1.668 17.417 72
4 2 49 David Heileman 35 0 -1.966 17.384 69
5 4 2 Dylan R. Houser 35 0 -2.653 17.452 66
6 8 00 Kendal Tucker 35 0 -3.086 17.587 62
7 7 39 Chase Cabre 35 0 -5.117 17.597 59
8 3 55 Rusty L Kruger 35 0 -5.892 17.505 57
9 19 9 Joel Berkley 35 0 -7.356 17.501 46
10 10 74 Adam Elby 35 0 -8.385 17.563 49
11 11 211 Alex Smolders 35 0 -9.372 17.839 47
12 17 23 Justin Thomas 35 0 -9.584 17.705 43
13 16 79 Billy Rowlee 35 0 -9.908 17.76 42
14 14 71 Cole V Cabre 35 0 -10.212 17.717 40
15 15 15 Zack Novak 35 0 -11.147 17.748 38
16 12 54 John Battista 35 0 -12.949 17.756 37
17 18 99 Logan Clampitt 34 0 -1 L 17.484 31
18 9 12 Alex A Bergeron 31 0 -4 L 17.449 33
19 20 35 Nick Cooper 31 0 -4 L 17.716 29
20 13 3 Lewis Hewett 14 0 -21 L 17.728 28

 

iRacing World of Outlaws NOS Energy Sprint Car World Championship standings through four rounds are as follows:

  1. Alex Bergeron, 237
  2. Kendal Tucker, 228
  3. David Heileman, 225
  4. James Edens, 224
  5. Cameron Merriman, 213
  6. Braden Eyler, 212
  7. Adam Elby, 199
  8. Cole Cabre, 194
  9. Blake Cannon, 192
  10. Alex Smolders, 187

The 2020 iRacing World of Outlaws NOS Energy Sprint Car World Championship season continues next Monday, hitting its halfway point with a return to Limaland Motorsports Park. In the meantime, professional drivers will return to action tonight with the World of Outlaws iRacing Invitational at Lernerville Speedway, airing on DIRTVision at 7PM ET. For more information on iRacing and for special offers, visit www.iracing.com.

Images via Kinser Racing Sim Team (1); Swindell SpeedLab (2)

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