Sean Hingorani started the ARCA Menards Series West race at Kern County Raceway Park in second place. Yet on the race start, he beat polesitter Landen Lewis to the start/finish line, incurring a pass-through penalty. It didn’t faze Hingorani as he unlapped himself the old-fashioned way, then went on to win the NAPA Auto Parts BlueDEF 150 on Saturday night (April 22).
Hingorani has now won back-to-back West Series races. It’s his second win of both the season and his career.
“We went a lap down early on,” Hingorani told FloRacing in victory lane. “I knew it was going to be tough to get back through the field, but we did it. They gave me a rocket ship today. Venturini Motorsports, my crew chief Monon [Rahman], everyone is here; I can’t thank them enough. This thing is so fast. I’m just trying to do the best I can to get the best finish possible. I mean I got the right guys behind me to do it.”
His team Venturini Motorsports swept the day in ARCA competition as Jesse Love won the ARCA Menards Series race at Talladega Superspeedway on Saturday afternoon.
After posting the fastest lap in practice, followed by winning the pole, Lewis finished second. He has now finished runner-up in all three West races in 2023.
“We had a really good racecar,” Lewis said post-race. “Bruce Cook, Richie [Mason, his crew chief], all the guys prepared me a really good racecar. We just come up a little bit short. Not many words to say. It just sucks to lead that many laps and can’t seal the deal. Our third second [place] in a row but we’re going to stay positive on the team. We’re going to keep banging them out. If we can keep getting seconds for the rest of the year, obviously the car’s in one piece so I think we keep trying to bang them out and get a little bit better as we can.
“It just makes us want to go win harder. Just want to push as a team to make one spot better. Fastest in practice, fastest in qualifying, led the most laps so I mean all positives out of today. Come up a little short on the win but nothing to hang our head about.”
Lewis won the 2022 race at Kern County and he unofficially became the series points leader.
Trevor Huddleston attempted to grab the lead on a late-race restart, but he wound up third.
“That last restart, you know everything was going to break loose,” he said. “And I felt like at that point anybody could’ve won the race. Obviously, Sean and Landen had really great cars, but at a track like this, I feel like you can make hay on those restarts and I gave it my best shot. For a moment, I saw my glory but Sean got a great run off of turn 2 and I just couldn’t hang with him.
“By that point, it was just me and Landen. We finished third, the car’s in one piece, we’re improving. I think we finished fourth last race so hopefully in the next two races, we’ll get a win here.”
Hingorani returned to the lead lap shortly before the scheduled competition caution at lap 75. The yellow flag flew at lap 71 after Kyle Keller‘s No. 70 blew a tire, bringing out the first caution.
Hingorani quickly drove his back toward the front before ultimately taking the lead with less than 40 laps to go in the 150-lap race.
He then had to fend off the field on two restarts after David Smith brought out two more yellows, first for spinning his No. 05, then subsequently wrecking it. The Canadian wound up with a 13th-place DNF.
Hingorani will be back behind the wheel of his ARCA racecar as he is also competing full time in the ARCA Menards Series East. The West series will next head to Portland International Raceway. That event will take place on Friday, June 2 at 8:30 p.m. ET, with coverage provided by FloRacing.
About the author
Mark Kristl joined Frontstretch at the beginning of the 2019 NASCAR season. He is the site's ARCA Menards Series editor. Kristl is also an Eagle Scout and a proud University of Dayton alum.
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