Larson Tunes Up With ARCA Win
By: Dustin Long - @dustinlong on June 7, 2014 | 3:51 P.M. EST
Kyle Larson led 66 of 80 laps in Saturday's ARCA race at Pocono Raceway but needed a late pass to win the race. (Photo: Getty Images)
LONG POND, Pa. - After dominating most of Saturday’s Pocono ARCA 200, Kyle Larson nearly saw his chance to win end on a late restart.
Larson recovered and made his move by Mason Mitchell with three laps to go to score his first career ARCA win.
Larson ran the race to become more familiar with Pocono Racewy. He had never driven on it until a recent test.
Although he wasn’t shifting with the ARCA cars as he will in his Sprint Cup car, he said he learned different lines around the track and how to maneuver around the bumps in what essentially was a 200-mile test for Sunday’s NASCAR Sprint Cup race there.
“I can learn the basics of a track in 30 minutes,’’ said Larson, who led 66 of the event's 80 laps. “I’ve had a ton of track time here now in the last two weeks. It just helps you learn the little bit of things. I think all the extra track time I’ve had has helped me.’’
A late challenge from Mitchell also helped.
Mitchell took the lead with nine laps to go with a bold move into Turn 1.
“I was just going to go into the corner as hard as I could and out-brake him,’’ Mitchell said of Larson. “I knew I was going to have to reach within and just go in really deep and hopefully we could stick.’’
Mitchell said his car wiggled but he held on.
“I knew to get noticed and to make some noise ... I was going to have go in deeper than him and he’s pretty aggressive on the ractrack.’’
Larson stayed close and the handling on Mitchell’s car betrayed him, allowing Larson to make his move for the win.
Mitchell finished second. John Wes Townley placed third after starting at the rear of the field. Brennan Poole qualified for Townley, who was competing in Friday’s Camping World Truck Series race at Texas Motor Speedway. Will Kimmel finished fourth with Justin Allison, grandson of NASCAR driver Donnie Allison, placing fifth.