PUTNAMVILLE, Ind. – All it took to finally bring Kyle Larson’s incredible eight-race winning streak to an end was one of his teammates-for-the-week stepping up to the plate and hitting a home run.
Chris Windom kept Tucker/Boat Motorsports’ run of perfection during Indiana Midget Week going with a flawless drive to victory Friday night at Lincoln Park Speedway, leading 20 of 30 laps at the five-sixteenths-mile oval and stopping Larson’s run of success dead in its tracks.
Though Windom gave up the lead from laps three to 12, after rookie Buddy Kofoid used a high-low switch to snag the point, the Canton, Ill., native persisted and eventually returned to the front.
With a slider in turn four, Windom re-passed Kofoid for the lead on lap 13 and led the rest of the way, taking the checkered flag 1.825 seconds ahead of Larson in the end.
The final 24 laps of the main ran uninterrupted, with Windom able to extend his lead virtually at will thanks to a torrid four-car scrap for second between Larson, Kofoid, Ricky Stenhouse Jr. and Tanner Thorson.
Windom noted that Larson has helped up the game of everyone within the Tucker/Boat stable, and that it took all the team has learned from Larson’s input over the past three days to ultimately beat him.
“I think racing against Kyle makes you work that much harder, because you know he’s going to put in the effort and can find speed at any part of the race track and get the most out of it. That’s why he wins so many races,” said Windom. “To beat him, you’ve got to capitalize and literally get max speed out of every part of the track you can, or he’s going to beat you. That’s the biggest thing we’ve learned having him along for the ride this week, and I think we did all that here tonight and it showed.”
Only two cautions slowed the pace in Friday night’s main event. The first waved with one lap scored, after Daison Pursley spun in turns one and two, and the second and final yellow occurred on lap six after Tyler Courtney looped his car entering turn one and was hit by Larson before coming to a stop.
Larson, meanwhile, was able to keep his car under power and continue – retaining fourth as a result.
Courtney’s spin set up a lap-seven restart during which Larson went after Stenhouse for third place, but stumbled over the cushion in turn four a lap later and opened the door for Thorson to pounce.
At the halfway point of the main, after Windom’s move for the lead on Kofoid succeeded, the battle for second heated up dramatically as both Thorson and Larson came after the California rookie with fervor.
Both of them eventually dispatched Kofoid, then went to work trying to clear one another for second. As they threw haymakers, corner after corner and lap after lap, Windom eked out a larger and larger lead.
Finally, the runner-up battle came to a close coming off turn four on the final lap, after Thorson’s engine expired while he was heading for a certain second-place finish. He was forced to limp to the finish line.
That allowed Larson to scream by for the runner-up honors, with Kofoid taking the show position.
Ricky Stenhouse Jr. and Tanner Carrick crossed fourth and fifth, respectively, with Cannon McIntosh, Thorson, Clinton Boyles, Justin Grant and hard-charger Thomas Meseraull closing the top 10.
With his second-place finish, Larson now leads Thorson by 28 points in the updated Indiana Midget Week standings, with Windom rising into a tie for third with Kofoid – 50 markers in arrears.
Indiana Midget Week continues Saturday night with a visit to the three-eighths-mile Lawrenceburg Speedway, where Windom is the defending winner, ironically enough.
To view complete race results, advance to the next page.