Kyle Jared broke through for his first career victory in the Chevy Performance Street Stock League two weeks ago in a brutal, smash-em-up showdown at Bristol Motor Speedway. Last Wednesday night, he avoided the wreckage in another rough-and-tumble Feature at Knoxville, capitalizing on a wreck with the leaders late in the race and holding off a challenge from competitors behind to win his second Feature of DIRTcar eSports Season 4.
Two drivers disqualified in rough-and-tumble League debut at famed half-mile
It indeed was Bristol, baby.
After 20 long, grueling laps around the high banks of Bristol Motor Speedway, Kyle Jared, of Cedar Rapids, IA, managed to dethrone the top-two in Chevy Performance Street Stock League points in the final laps to score his first career win with DIRTcar eSports.
Jared became the third different winner in three weeks with the League, however, this one may have been the most exciting run to the checkers yet.
Fast qualifier and polesitter Charles Barnes, the lone Team No Love entrant from Benton, AR, led the opening laps with all 23 of his opponents behind him, beating and banging on each other for position as the laps clicked off and the caution flags flew.
Multiple wrecks toward the middle-rear of the pack sent several cars to pit lane during the race, including an incident under yellow that sent at least seven drivers either into the wall or into an innocent bystander. Bobby Rafferty, the League’s most recent winner at Limaland, was hit with a slew of incident points that disqualified him from the race in a later incident.
Defending League champion Tyler Jackson broke his way into the podium on Lap 6 and took the lead from Barnes after a restart three laps later. His lead wouldn’t last, though, as he and Jared began swapping slide-jobs for the lead on Lap 15. Jared barely beat Jackson to the line after a crossover move coming out of Turn 4, giving him control of the race from there on out.
But the race wasn’t over there. From the depths of the second Last Chance Showdown, Aussie competitor Sean Stevens climbed all the way from 14th on the starting grid and was breathing down the leaders’ necks inside of five-to-go. With him went Bailey Hipp, the runner-up at Limaland from Tryon, NC, making it a four-car battle for the lead.
When a final caution flag with three laps remaining restacked the field, the tempers reached a boiling point. Hipp got into Turn 1 too hard and got into the rear of Stevens, sending him around into the outside wall, doing a great bit of damage to his E1 SimRacing #26. Stevens immediately retaliated, running into the back of Hipp under caution, disqualifying him from the event.
The field took the green for the final time, and Jackson made a beeline for the lead. He tried the low groove in Turn 1, but Jared moved down to block, giving him the space he needed to bring the field back around to the checkers. Barnes assumed the top lane and drove around Jackson in Turns 3-4, beating him to the line by just under a second.
The Street Stocks take to Indiana’s Baddest Bullring for a 25-lap Feature next Wednesday night, Dec. 15, at 6:40pm, marking the halfway point of the Chevy Performance Street Stock League in DIRTcar eSports Season 4. Catch all the action live on DIRTVision pres. by Drydene.