For the second time in five events, John Gorlinsky manned his neon yellow #21 Chevrolet to the winner’s circle in eNASCAR iRacing Pro Series action from Charlotte Motor Speedway on Tuesday night. As the latter stages of the race saw caution after caution, Gorlinsky was able to capitalize on a late restart to take the lead from Cody Byus on Lap 139 and hold it over Nathan Lyon through a green-white-checkered finish.
“Nathan was bad fast all night,” said Gorlinsky. “I had maybe a fifth place car with track position. On the restart, I knew a few people were on two tires or stayed out. I was settling for second going into Turn 3, but Nathan sent it and I went to the white line and it just hooked up.”
Lyon was the dominant driver for most of the night, leading 94 of the 152 laps completed thanks to the overtime extension. What had initially been a fairly clean race, with the first caution not coming out until Corey Carpenter’s spin on Lap 49, turned into a battlefield in the closing stages as drivers looked to head into the two-week break on a high note. Resulting cautions, often coming one right after the other, ballooned the final count to nine, with 36 laps spent under yellow flag conditions.
The final caution of the night ended the hopes of both Byus and fellow front-runner Jeremy Allen, but they were far from the only drivers with a disappointing end to their nights. Adam Gilliland suffered a spectacular flip, while Ray Alfalla was rear-ended heavily by Nickolas Shelton while trying to avoid a spinning Ethan Lane. Lane, Chris Overland, and Timmy Hill were among the drivers to pack it in after a spectacular Lap 119 wreck coming out of Turn 4.
For those whose cars survived the night, though, the points haul was significant. With the victory, Gorlinsky pulled to within nine points of championship leader Graham Bowlin, who had his own struggles on the night and finished 17th. Lyon, Bob Bryant, and Alfalla each managed to hold top-five spots in points, while third place finisher Caine Cook shot up to within three points of the 20th place cutoff line to earn a World Championship license for next year.
Only two races remain in the 2019 eNASCAR iRacing Pro Series season, but drivers will have multiple weeks to think about them. The series returns after the Thanksgiving holiday and December build for a pair of races at Darlington Raceway on December 11 and Homestead-Miami Speedway on December 18. For more information on iRacing and for special offers, visit www.iracing.com.
Image via Justin Melillo