Tim Russell is back to his old tricks. That’s a good thing when it means making a trip to victory lane, which is exactly what he did this weekend at New Smyrna Speedway (FL). Russell captured the Billie Harvey Memorial 100 Saturday night in dominating fashion; he led every lap of competition at the high-banked, half-mile racetrack. It is Russell’s fifth straight victory.
After posting the fifth-fastest qualifying time, Russell redrew the second starting position and rolled off from the outside pole.
“We had a good car,” said Russell. “And the race went pretty good for us. We qualified fifth; the pole was a .41 and we ran a .48, so I mean, we were right there as fast as the fastest cars. Then the redraw put us on the outside pole and we took the lead on lap one and drove off from there.”
After putting a great distance between him and the rest of the field, a caution flew at the halfway mark that drastically changed the changed the course of Russell’s night.
“The car was a little bit loose in the start of the race,” explained Russell. “We went green until about lap 50 when there was a caution because someone was dumping rear end oil on the track. That only made us looser so that didn’t really help us any.”
Russell fought the adverse handling conditions and held his lead in front of the field. The Lake Mary, Florida driver held off challenges of multi-time track champ David Rogers and short track legend Dick Anderson to grab his sixth win of the season and make his fourth trip of 2011 to victory lane at New Smyrna Speedway.
“We got up to a comfortable lead in the first fifty laps, almost a straightaway,” said Russell. “But after the caution when we really had to start fighting the handling, I wasn’t able to pull away from them like I had before. For the rest of the race, (David) Rogers could stay within a couple car lengths of me. With the car being as loose as it was and the track so being slick, I just had to make sure I was as careful as possible without giving anything up.”
With so much success already in his rearview mirror this season, Tim Russell and his #36 team have decided to add a few more races to their schedule. They have added seven more races at Auburndale Speedway in Winter Haven, Florida.
The first of those races will be this weekend, Saturday, April 23rd as he looks to stretch his win current win streak to five checkered flags in a row.