For the second time in his career, Austin Holcombe is a World Short Track Champion.
The Elm City, NC-racer had climbed out of his open-engine DIRTcar UMP Modified – following a third-place run in the Feature – only minutes before buckling into his Chevrolet Performance Crate-engine Pro Modified in preparation to take to The Dirt Track at Charlotte once more from fifth on the starting grid.
After an incident on the initial start, Holcombe moved up to third for the ensuing restart and made the most of it, zooming past Austin Self and Garrett Killman on the bottom to take the lead on the opening lap.
From there, Holcombe reigned supreme. Multiple restarts gave his opponents their shot at the lead, but none were able to get close enough for a serious challenge.
In the end, Holcombe led all 25 laps on his way to a second career victory in the Hoosier Racing Tire Mid-East Pro/Crate Modified division – his first since 2021.
“To even have it up here once; To win at Charlotte – it doesn’t matter if you’re in a four-cylinder or a Late Model, it’s just nice to win here,” Holcombe said.
Add-in the 23rd-to-third charge he made in the UMP Modified Feature earlier that night, and Holcombe was one happy camper in Victory Lane.
“I’m proud to be up here twice on the podium,” Holcombe said. “Two classes, two podiums, what more can you ask for?”
Thirteenth-starting Booman Galloway, of Gainesville, GA, crossed the stripe in second, while 14th-starting Ryan Ayers, of Concord, NC, advanced through the field to finish third. Out of a Last Chance race and from 20th on the Feature starting grid, Robert Poole climbed up to fourth by the checkered, while Ethan Wilson came home fifth after starting 11th.
ABBREVIATED RESULTS (view full results)
Feature (25 Laps): 1. 8-Austin Holcombe; 2. 42G-Booman Galloway; 3. 6-Ryan Ayers; 4. 25-Robert Poole; 5. 18E-Ethan Wilson; 6. 23Z-Austin Self; 7. 44P-Jeff Parsons; 8. 04-Cole Wagoner; 9. 15-Morgan Widener; 10. 50B-Justin Blevins; 11. 7D-JR Davis; 12. 21A-Adam Favors; 13. 1-Grayson Keaton; 14. 00-JP Blalock; 15. 58-Bo Pyrtle; 16. 312-Greg Brown; 17. 39-Russell Baker; 18. 45-Cambridge Gann; 19. 32-Garrett Killman; 20. 73-Chris Nickerson; 21. 29-Brandon Bentley; 22. 23-Buck Stevens; 23. 92-Tyler Love; 24. B155-Andrew Albertson; 25. (DNS) 17-Case Daniels; 26. (DQ) 42-Kevin Pangrazio