Sam Mayer wins at Lebanon I-44 Speedway in the ARCA Menards Series Zinsser SmartCoat 200 for another victory on Saturday night.
Proving the adage ‘first you have to lose one to win one’ Sam Mayer brings home another victory for GMS Racing Saturday night.
A week after watching a possible NASCAR Gander Outdoor & RV Truck Series win evaporate when he was beaten on a late-race restart, the 17-year-old from Franklin, Wisconsin, shows how quick a study he is at Lebanon I-44 Speedway. Perfect timing on lap 155 allowed Mayer to take the top spot away from Hailie Deegan as he rocketed to win the Zinsser SmartCoat 200.
That restart, coming out of the race’s second break, turned out to be the final one of the night and Mayer’s No. 21 Pat Connaughton With Us Foundation Chevrolet crossed the finish 2.977 seconds ahead of second-place Bret Holmes.
The win was Mayer’s third of the season while he hasn’t finished worse than fourth in his past nine series starts. More importantly, it allowed him to take over the Sioux Chief Showdown championship standings after eight of ten races. Mayer leads Ty Gibbs and Chandler Smith each by five points.
Mayer’s relatively easy final laps capped a drama-filled night.
The Best of the Rest
Holmes won his first career General Tire Pole Award earlier in the day and led the first 69 laps before getting turned by Deegan for the lead.
Holmes was still able to manage his third runner-up finish of the season and is now within one point of ARCA Menards Series championship leader Michael Self. Self was involved in two separate racing incidents and limped home with a sixth-place, one lap down.
Deegan led a race-high 85 laps in pursuit of her first series win. After relinquishing the lead, she got turned around battling Gibbs on the final lap for third and ended up fifth, as 15-year-old Taylor Gray scrapped by them both on the white-flag lap to steal third.
And Chandler Smith, who began the evening as the Sioux Chief Showdown points leader, was involved in three cautions and came home eighth.
Kris Wright, making his second start for Chad Bryant Racing, finished seventh, while Drew Dollar and Mike Basham rouned out the top-ten.
The ARCA Menards Series heads back to Ohio’s Toledo Speedway on Saturday, Sept. 12. Mayer swept two races over three days a month ago. The race will also be part of the ARCA Menards Series East calendar. The next Sioux Chief Showdown race will be the Bush’s Beans 200 at Bristol Motor Speedway on Sept. 17.