Brenden Queen victorious in wild CARS Tour finish
Virginia driver holds off late race challenge from Ronnie Bassett for second win at Jacksonville track
JACKSONVILLE, NC – Brenden Queen picked up his second win at New River All-American Speedway in dramatic fashion on Saturday night, outlasting Ronnie Bassett, Jr. in a CARS Tour shootout.
Queen, who won the Battle of the Stars in March, drove past Conner Jones for the lead on a restart with eight laps to go. However, veteran racer Ronnie Bassett, Jr. mounted a charge in the final laps, initiating contact with the driver who goes by the nickname “Butterbean.”
Coming out of turn four, both cars got out of shape, but Queen was able to hold on to score the win, while Bassett was relegated to a third place finish.
“I knew it was coming,” Queen said. “[Bassett] was just a little bit better than us at the end. It felt like I went a little hard early, but I knew track position was going to be so big tonight. We’ve had so many of these races slip away and I wasn’t going to let them take it away from me that time. We’ve been hungry and I wanted it bad.”
While Bassett’s ‘hail mary’ attempt came up short, he was satisfied with the result in Jacksonville as he, and Mike Darne Racingb, continue to make strides in the CARS Tour.
“I knew I had to get a good restart,” Jones said. “My spotter was telling me all of Butterbean’s times compared to mine and I knew he was going to be pretty good. Obviously, we didn’t need the caution and it screwed our race up, but Mike Darne brought us a really good car. We just burned it up towards the end.”
Along with being Queen’s second win at New River, it is also his second win of the season in the CARS Tour, the third series win of his career, and his first win since North Wilkesboro in May.
“This is big,” Queen stated. “There’s so many nights where we led a lot of laps. Nobody is going to outwork Lee Pulliam. He asks me every week what I need to win and then he goes to work on it. This whole organization is amazing, and I’ve got to thank all the guys that helped me tonight, but there’s too many to name.”
Conner Jones ultimately finished second.
“I knew I had to get a good restart,” Jones said. “My spotter was telling me all of Butterbean’s times compared to mine and I knew he was going to be pretty good. Obviously we didn’t need the caution and it screwed our race up, but Mike Darne brought us a really good car. We just burned it up towards the end.”
Bomber and Champ Kart playoff fields finalized at New River
Four drivers clinched their spots in the Race for the Championship on Saturday night, setting up a two-day showdown on September 16-17 at New River All-American Speedway.
All Andrew Jackson had to do was start the race to clinch his spot in the Bomber division playoffs – but winning is more Jackson’s style. The Jacksonville driver took the lead from Eddie Humphrey on the race’s 17th lap and never looked back as he picked up his second win of the year.
“It feels great to win here,” Jackson said. “Tonight was nice to come out and win and be able to celebrate. Eddie’s a great guy to race with. He was right there. Any second, he could have been there. [Richard Smith] was right there. There was a lot of good racing. I’m just happy to be able and come out here and get a win. Yeah, it’s nice to be in [the playoffs] but it’s always nice to have a win. Championships are nice, wins are better.”
Jacksonville’s Robert Drum clinched the final playoff spot in the Bomber division.
Much like Jackson, all Daniel Baker had to do was start the race to make the playoffs. Once he did, it left only one spot open with Ashley Keaton on the bubble and forcing six other drivers in a must-win scenario. Ultimately, it was Josh Eubanks scoring his sixth win of the season, resulting in Keaton taking the final spot.
Aiden McConnaughey dominated in Legends competition, while the Bandolero victory went to Delaney Gray.
New River All-American Speedway is Jacksonville’s Action Attraction featuring racing and other events. For more information about New River All-American Speedway, check out the speedway’s website, like/follow “New River Speedway” on Facebook, follow @newriverswy on Twitter, or follow the track on Instagram.
Media Results for 9/9/2023 at New River All-American Speedway – Jacksonville, NC
Solid Rock Carriers CARS Tour | 125 laps
- 03-Brenden Queen; 2. 44-Conner Jones; 3. 04-Ronnie Bassett, Jr.; 4. 24-Mason Diaz; 5. 8-Carson Kvapil; 6. 10-Kaden Honeycutt; 7. 16-Chad McCumbee; 8. 08-Deac McCaskill; 9. 15-Ryan Millington; 10. 95-Jacob Heafner; 11. 2-Brandon Pierce; 12. 6-Bobby McCarty; 13. 81-Mini Tyrrell; 14. 8B-Chase Burrow; 15. 1-Andrew Grady; 16. 22-Landon Huffman; 17. 4-Dylon Wilson; 18. 15C-Logan Clark; 19. 67-Cameron Bolin; 20. 19b-Chris Burns
Bombers | 25 Laps | 00:08:53.097
- 3-Andrew Jackson; 2. 14-Eddie Humphrey; 3. 77-Richard Smith; 4. 5-Haley Brown; 5. 88-Dale Drum; 6. 01-Dannon Esco; 7. 79-Dominic Baez; 8. 34-Michael Withrow; 9. 29-Shawn Padgett; 10. 17-Brian Gooden; 11. 01H-Robert Hall; 12. 03-Cornell Williams; 13. (DQ) 83-Robert Drum
Legends | 30 Laps | 00:09:16.115
- 71-Aiden McConnaughey; 2. 91-Tyler Gonzalez; 3. 2B-Aaron Linsky; 4. 7-Levi Canup; 5. 51-Scotty Benford; 6. 83-Caleb Day; 7. 75-Chase Singletary; 8. 9-Brody Rhodes; 9. 14-Mike Ridenour; 10. 99-Carsyn Gillikin; 11. 15-Bryan Shabram; 12. 51X-Chris Conner
Bandoleros | 10 Laps | 00:03:30.204
- 84-Delaney Gray; 2. 3-Landon Burbage
Champ Kart | 20 Laps | 00:06:53.188
- 28-Josh Eubanks; 2. 06-Brent Townsend; 3. 28L-Corey Lucas; 4. 1-Daniel Baker; 5. 01T-Jacob Tingen; 6. 2-Aaron Layden; 7. 27-Josh Pearson; 8. 10-Ashley Keaton; 9. 20-Herbert Keaton; 10. 13-Miles Rochelle; 11. (DNS) 7X-Tripp Dail