Cole and Chase Cabre once again demonstrated the strength of family in the Monday Night Racing Summer Series as the duo finished first and second in the Highland Homes Roofing 200 from the virtual Daytona International Speedway, proving too strong for anyone else to challenge.
The pairing spent the first half of the race lurking and surviving before emerging as a combined force with twenty laps left to run. A coordinated restart between the Cabres allowed them to clear Michael Fischer and take command of the high groove. Their stranglehold on the top side of the track, where the surface was smoothest, proved to be a decisive factor in the final laps of the race.
Matt Stallknecht, who won the Speedway Series championship portion of the MNR Summer Series, attempted to break the Cabre train by diving to the bottom line in the final three laps but those on the inside could not gather enough cars to find the momentum to challenge those on the high side.
The only reason there was a bottom line, to begin with, was through the valiant efforts of Corey Deuser. With three laps left to run, Deuser, who was running just outside the top ten, dropped down to the bottom lane and spearheaded the charge to the front. With help from Gary Sexton and James Bickford the trio made real progress — with Deuser briefly leading the Cabres on the penultimate lap.
Coming to take the white flag, however, their momentum stalled and allowed Stallknecht, with help from Sexton who had earlier joined him on the top side, to drop down to challenge the Cabres.
The Stallknecht-led bottom line looked like they could contend for the race win through turns one and two but hard pushing down the backstretch unsettled the line’s momentum. This provided Leighton Sibille the opportunity to become the next contestant to try the bottom line but he was joining a party that was already over.
This left Cole and Chase as the two drivers left with a shot of a win coming out of turn four. Cole attempted to block his brother, driving down to the middle of the track but leaving enough room for Chase to take the inside, which he did. Chase, now with a clean track ahead and momentum from drafting his brother, crossed the line 0.074 seconds clear of Cole.
Fisher was third, Alex Monteferrante was fourth and Sexton was fifth. Crucially, Stallknecht kept his #41 Ford moving forward despite spending most of turns three and four bouncing off other cars and turning to the right more than he did left. With Chase winning and Stallknecht finishing sixth, the championship margin of victory was just six points.
Corey Heim, who was in the mix for the title entering this race, suffered from internet connectivity problems due to the major storms that plagued the Carolinas and other portions of the east coast on Monday night. Podium eSports, for example, was forced to go without regular broadcast producer Ryan Bauer.
There is one more title to give out, however, that being the Gen4 portion of the Monday Night Racing Summer Series. James Bickford currently leads that battle. He has a 13-point lead over Chase Cabre. That championship will be decided next week at Homestead-Miami Speedway.
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