GRAND FORKS, ND (September 7, 2016) – After a promising run Friday night at River Cities Speedway took a turn for the worse, Austin Pierce and the Opp Construction crew charged back to pick up wins Saturday night at Official Greenbush Race Park and Sunday night at Buffalo River Race Park.
“We couldn’t have asked for anything better. We were pretty disappointed after how things ended in Grand Forks,” said Austin. “As a team we just said that all we could do is go out and win one of the [Blazin’ Challenge qualifying] races this weekend and the very next night we won so we were pretty happy about that.”
Friday night at River Cities Speedway, Austin was in second battling with Thomas Kennedy for the win when he slid off the banking in turn three. Austin was charged for the caution and ended up with a disappointing 20th place finish.
However, that run was nullified after Austin put the Lithia Ford Lincoln of Grand Forks / All Pro Electric LLC car in victory lane at Greenbush, qualifying himself for the $8,200-to-win Blazin’ Back Row Challenge on September 9th at River Cities.
“It’s a good feeling to be locked in. It’ll be tough with the caliber of drivers that will be competing in it,” continued Austin. “We’ve came from the back of the pack to the top three a during a few other features this year so we know we are capable of doing it.”
On Sunday night, Austin started on the pole for the 25-lap feature after picking up the win in heat race #1. After getting by outside pole sitter Shane Roemeling on lap five, Austin led the remainder of the event, but had a hard charging Dusty Zomer right behind him.
“Restarts were the key. At Buffalo River the leader could restart anywhere between turns three and four whereas in Greenbush we had to fire at the cone. Being able to take off in a different spot each time played into my advantage. Later in the race the rubber started coming in so I knew that if I could restart in the rubber I’d be able to pull away from [Zomer].”
Pierce claimed his fifth win of the season by nearly a second and a half over Zomer. The win was also Pierce’s second of his career at BRRP and 15th NOSA win overall.
Austin currently sits tied for second in the NOSA standings, 17 points behind leader Wade Nygaard with three races remaining.
Top 5’s: 18
Top 10’s: 21
Heat Wins: 11
Sept. 8: River Cities Speedway
Sept. 9: River Cities Speedway – John Seitz Memorial/Blazin’ Back Row Challenge
Recap & BRRP photo by Mike Spieker
Spieker Promotions | Speedway Shots
Greenbush photo courtesy of Steven Young | Northern Late Model Racing Association