Ryan Vanasse had a good night, working his way to the front with just eight laps gone in the forty-lapper, then gave it up for four midrace laps to Craig Weinstein then running the final 16 at the head of the pack. Dave Darling claimed second from Weinstein with two laps remaining and Kenny Spencer nabbed fourth. Freddy Astle, Jr. then took fifth from Rick Martin on the final circuit.
Belsito, who had been working to stay ahead of Tom Scully, Jr. for much of the latter stages of the season fell two positions behind his opponent, but it was not enough to cost him the championship. It had looked precarious, however, when he spun late in the race and was headed for the restart at the rear. However, it was determined that Scully had assisted on Belsito’s spin and they ended up at the back together.
On the getgo, Dave Hutchins leapt away from the box ahead of Kyle Casper as Mike Brightman claimed third. Weinstein climbed to fourth then fell back to fifth as Kevin Folan faded from the outside pole to tenth by lap four. Darling was charging up from ninth and was sixth. By lap eight, Darling held third behind Casper, who was replacing Hutchins in the lead and Vanasse.
Hutch had spun on lap seven and Casper started inside Vanasse as Weinstein and Darling made up the third row. Casper popped out ahead, but Vanasse began to push the outside while Weinstein and Darling debated third place. Weinstein edged forward on the low side as Vanasse went to the front and Weinstein move Casper back to third. Darling then went past Casper into third. Belsito was consistently running fifth place behind them while Ryan Lineham was in pursuit of Belsito.
Alex Mielnicki spun in front of Hutchins and he piled in getting a lot of front end damage and bursting his radiator, spilling water down the front stretch. On the lap eleven restart, Vanasse and Weinstein faced off once again. Again, Vanasse took the lead on Weinstein and Casper followed. Belsito was working his way under Darling for fourth. Darling went high on the track to pass 7, who did his best to hold him off but Darling claimed the spot.
Now Belsito began to move forward, passing Scully, then Casper into fourth behind Darling. Weinstein was working side-by-side with Vanasse and got his nose past on lap 20. They wound around the track wheel-to-wheel four four laps with Weinstein clinging to the lead, but Lineham spun in turn two. They lined up and were off again. Vanasse had the advantage of the low side of the front while Weinstein was to the outside.
Weinstein edged out but Vanasse held on with 52 behind him. Belsito dropped in front of Martin who had Spencer on his tail. Kyle Casper was outside Scully. Vanasse gaine the front and by lap 25 had a two-car lead over Weinstein and Darling. Belsito was now knocking on Darling’s door.
Weinstein closed up to Vanasse’s bumpr by lap 28. But Jake Vanada went around, sending cars scattering and Lineham to the pits. They again went side-by-side out of the box until Vanasse regained the lead and Weinstein settled in with darling on his bumper. In the exchange, Martin and Spencer had gotten past Belsito, but he quickly moved them back to reassume fourth place. Vanasse was two cars up on the field on lap 32. The field was stretched out and they were running single file until Mielnicki spun down the front stretch .
The lap 37 restart saw the field out of turn two with Vanasse ahead and Darling looking under Weinstein. But Belsito spun in turn four and the field piled in. Davis Silvia stopped in turn four with a blown radiator and Belstio was dragging his rear body metal. He headed to the pits and the crowd was silent as the sensed a quantum change in the contest for the championship. But the word from the Race Director then sent Scully to the rear on the assist, to restart alongside Belsito, ending thoughts of him overtaking the leader from that position.
On the restart, Vanasse continued to lead but Darling got underneath and stole second from Weinstein. Martin jumped to fourth, where Belsito had been running but Spencer elevated from seventh to fifth and then passed Martin for fourth. Astle had been moving up and got by Houlihan for sixth then passed Martin into fifth on the last lap.
Martin claimed sixth, followed by Vanada, Houlihan, Kyle Casper, Folan, Mike Mitchell and Joe Kohler. Scully finished thirteenth, two places ahead of Belsito, but not far enough to overtake his lead in the points chase.