Race Weekend Central

Daytona to Dirt: Justin Haley Leads Stampede of NASCAR Winners at Volusia

Justin Allgaier

The Xfinity Series regular started and finished third in the fourth modified feature Tuesday night (Feb. 7) at Volusia Speedway Park. Allgaier finished that up on Wednesday night with a second-place finish that was as strong as any seen during Speedweeks, besting Drake Troutman to secure the runner-up spot.

Allgaier won the first Last Chance Showdown Friday night to qualify for the $5,000-to-win modified “Big Gator” feature. Allgaier would turn heads in that feature, going from 19th to a fifth-place finish.

Steve Arpin

The former ARCA Racing Series regular had an up-and-down modified campaign at Volusia, scoring a DNF in Tuesday’s fifth feature but following that up with a fourth-place finish in his Wednesday event. Arpin parked his machine early in his Thursday feature that was rescheduled for Friday after suffering a flat tire in the lap 1 incident that red-flagged the race.

Arpin scratched from his scheduled Last Chance Qualifier later on Friday night.

Alex Bowman

The Cup Series regular endured a rough week of sprint car competition that saw him fail to qualify for all four features run during the week. Bowman’s week started hot when he took quick time in All-Star Circuit of Champions qualifying Tuesday, but it was not to be, as Bowman dropped three spots in his heat race, then dropped more in the B-main and missed the show.

Bowman failed to qualify for the ASCoC feature Wednesday night as a backmarker in both his heat race and B-main, then Thursday came up one spot short of a transfer in both his heat race and Last Chance Showdown in World of Outlaws competition. Friday was yet another example of the night being over before it started, with Bowman jumping the cushion on the opening lap of his heat race.

Fortunately, Bowman’s tide turned with the move to East Bay Raceway Park Monday night, as Bowman took fast time in qualifying, won the Dash and finished sixth in the feature event.

Matt Crafton

The Truck Series regular finished second in his modified feature at Volusia on Tuesday, though he never was able to seriously challenge Troutman for that race win. Crafton continued racking up top 10s, finishing sixth in his Wednesday feature and eighth in his rain-delayed Thursday event.

Crafton transferred into Friday’s Big Gator via his heat race and finished ninth.

Stewart Friesen

The Truck Series regular opened the center-drive modified season with a bang, winning the season opener for the Short Track Super Series in dominant fashion at All-Tech Raceway Wednesday despite having a visibly smoking engine for the final nine laps of the race.

Thursday was the exact opposite however. Friesen and the No. 44 proved unable to make up any ground in their heat race after a bad pill draw, eventually making the feature but finishing off the lead lap. 

Friesen is expected to compete in the Super DIRTcar Series events at Volusia Speedway Park this coming week that do not conflict with his Truck Series duties.

Justin Haley

The Cup Series regular took up residency at Volusia Speedway Park this week after a sleepless night turned into a headline performance in the UMP modified class last Monday.

See also
Daytona to Dirt: Justin Haley Flies 3,000 Miles to Win $600 Mod Race at Volusia

Well rested, Haley led all 20 laps of Tuesday’s modified feature to score his second trophy of the week without every being seriously challenged for the lead. And did it again Wednesday.

Haley’s undefeated streak ended when he pulled his car off early in his rescheduled feature race Friday, but he followed that up by winning his heat race as part of Friday’s modified program. Haley finished third in the Big Gator feature later that night, tops among the NASCAR regulars in the field.

Kasey Kahne

The former Cup Series managed to qualify for both ASCoC features at Volusia during the week, finishing no better than 18th but running vital interference as a lapped car that helped teammate Brad Sweet secure the Tuesday night victory.

Kahne, who is slated to contest the full 2023 World of Outlaws schedule, managed to qualify for both series features over the weekend at Volusia without using a provisional, finishing 11th and 17th. Kahne currently sits 12th in the series standings.

Travis Pastrana

The 2023 Daytona 500 entrant turned heads on Tuesday night with a 12th to sixth showing in his modified feature, but that performance was quickly forgotten after Pastrana scored his first career victory in what is likely the biggest upset of Speedweeks in any discipline.

See also
This Day in Dirt: Travis Pastrana Shocks at Volusia, Hudson O'Neal Breaks Through

Pastrana made forward progress in the second Last Chance Showdown for the modifieds Friday night but failed to qualify for the Big Gator feature.

Ken Schrader

The former Cup Series regular saw his strong 2023 season continue on Tuesday with an uneventful fourth-place finish in his modified feature at Volusia. Schrader appeared in line for another top five on Wednesday, as he was running third before a lap 7 restart in that event saw Schrader take evasive action over the cushion, a move that dropped him to the back of the top 10 for the duration.

Despite having a third-place starting spot in the second Last Chance Showdown on Friday night, Schrader and team opted to scratch before the Big Gator feature.

They were able to get the races in tonight at Volusia. We started 6th in heat race and finished 5th which didn't…

Posted by Ken Schrader Racing Inc. on Friday, February 10, 2023

David Stremme

The former Cup Series regular had nothing for race winner Ethan Dotson on Tuesday night at Volusia, but finished where he started in second place. Stremme failed to start his scheduled feature Wednesday, with DirtVision’s broadcast reporting the car was not running correctly in the staging area.

Stremme was involved in a mid-race incident with Kyle Hammer during the Big Gator feature on Friday night but managed a 12th-place finish.

About the author

Richmond, Virginia native. Wake Forest University class of 2008. Affiliated with Frontstretch since 2008, as of today the site's first dirt racing commentator. Emphasis on commentary. Big race fan, bigger First Amendment advocate.

Sign up for the Frontstretch Newsletter

A daily email update (Monday through Friday) providing racing news, commentary, features, and information from Frontstretch.com
We hate spam. Your email address will not be sold or shared with anyone else.

Share via