Depending on how one looks at it, recent York County Racing Club Hall of Famer Mark Smith either had a very good week or a very unlucky week at the East Bay 360 Sprint Car Nationals near Tampa, Florida.
During Thursday’s opening night of the series, Smith led until the final lap, when Cory Eliason passed him for the win. Smith had to settle for second, followed by Terry McCarl, Tony Stewart and Danny Martin. Brodbecks' Todd Gracey finished 13th.
Friday, Smith led every lap, leaving only six cars on the same lap at the end of the nonstop feature. Tony Stewart finished second, followed by Travis Rilat, Eliason and Tim Shaffer. Davie Franek was seventh, Gracey was 11th and Lucas Wolfe was 24th.
In Saturday’s main event, Smith led until a caution with just two laps remaining. On the restart, McCarl was able to slip by for the win, with Smith again finishing second. Sam Hafertepe Jr., Eliason and Matt Kurtz completed the top five. Gracey was seventh and Wolfe was 20th.
USAC action at Bubba's: During the same time frame, the United States Auto Club wingless sprints raced at the Bubba’s Raceway Park near Ocala.
Chris Windom won Thursday’s main event, followed by Kevin Thomas Jr., Justin Grant, Chase Stockon and Robert Ballou. Local racer Tim Buckwalter was 11th.
Friday, it was Grant who scored the win over C.J. Leary, with Tyler Courtney, Chad Boespflug and Thomas in the top five. Buckwalter was seventh.
In Saturday’s race, Leary picked up the win over Thomas, Courtney, Stockon and Windom. Buckwalter, who set fast time, ended the night in 10th.
Reach Bryan Householder at email@example.com.