Austin Self notches third TSRS Late Model victory in a thriller
August 25, 2010 by debwill
Fourteen year-old Austin Self continues to impress the Texas stock car racing community as he notched his third Texas Super Racing Series Late Model race of the season and his second-in-a-row at the D-shaped, 3/8-mile speedplant in Kyle, Texas, on Saturday, August 15, 2010.
Self, who started his #07 TSRS Late Model in the seventh spot due to the inversion, quickly moved into second, but fast-qualifier and TSRS points leader Bobby Teer, Jr, slipped under the youngster a lap or two later and to claim the spot and set sail for the leader, JT Schild.
And it wasn’t long before Teer worked his way past Schild to grab the lead and took off, opening a several car-length lead over Schild and Self, who seemed content to stay behind Schild for the time being.
Teer’s lead evaporated on lap 21, however, after a caution flag and subsequent red flag on 27 for liquid on the racing surface.
On the restart Self got under Schild to grab second, but cagey veteran and multi-race winner Robert Barker was quickly moving up through the field after a pit stop during the previous caution.
A lap-33 spin by Kristin Bumbera, who broke a suspension part while running in third place, brought out the second yellow, which then put Barker on Self’s rear bumper and Self on Teer’s rear bumper for the restart.
As the green waved, Self nosed under Teer which moved the leader over just enough to allow Self to get under and pass for the lead. Barker followed Self through the opening which dropped Teer to third. For the next few laps the trio raced nose-to-tail with the large crowd in attendance on their collective feet.
After some paint exchanges up front, Teer got into Barker a bit too hard and Barker spun to bring out the yellow on lap 43. After some discussion, the track ordered Teer to the rear of the pack for the restart with Barker retaining his second place spot behind Self.
On the restart, Barker gave Self a tap, but the youngster held on and retained the lead. But Teer was on a tear and a couple of laps later was filling Barker’s mirror to make it a three car shootout up front with five to go. Barker again tried the bump and run, but this time it backfired and it was Barker who spun to bring out the yellow with five to go.
Would Teer return the favor that Self had used to grab the lead earlier in the race? The large crowd on hand thought so and was on its collective feet as the green waved. And sure enough, the lead pair made a bit of contact and Teer squeezed by to re-take the lead. But as fate would have it, Mike Reininger spun in turn 3-4 to bring out the final yellow of the race before the lap was completed, nullifying the pass for the lead.
So once again the fans were on their feet waiting for the sparks to fly as the green waved with five to go, but this time Self in the FEP Chevrolet was ready and hammered down with Teer having to settle for a last-lap try on the outside which came up a half-car-length short at the finish line. Taylor Brandes, JT Schild and Jeff O’Neil rounded out the top five.
“I have to credit my team and FEP for this one,” Self said. “Heath and JR gave me an awesome car that was there at the finish. We were a little loose earlier in the day, but the car came to me as the track cooled. That was really an exciting race and I’m glad the fans enjoyed it as much as I did.”
Official Results Texas Super Racing Series Late Model event, August 14, 2010
1.07 Austin Self, Austin, TX, 50 laps, QT 15.668
2. 2 Bobby Teer, Jr., Comfort, TX, 50 laps, QT 15.503
3. 92 Taylor Brandes, Garden Ridge, TX, 50 laps, QT 15.624
4. 25 JT Schild, Leander, TX, 50 laps, QT 15.844
5. 28 Jeff O’Neill, Round Rock, TX, 50 laps, QT 16.168
6. 3 Mike Reininger, San Antonio, TX, 50 laps, QT 15.872
7. 17 Robert Barker, Boerne, TX, 45 laps, QT 15.810
8. 04 Cory Roper, Baytown, TX, 36 laps, QT 15.892
9. 06 Kristin Bumbera, Cypress, TX, 35 laps, QT 16.072
10. 5 Heather Ables, Whitney, TX, 31 laps, QT 16.490
11. 9 Jason Campbell, Cibolo, TX, 3 laps, QT 18.891
QT = Qualifying Time
by Nick Holt, Lone Star Speedzone
Photo by Tory Christopher