Bassett Jr. Shakes off Caraway, Prepares for Tri-County
Ronnie Bassett Jr. prepares to move forward to Tri-County after a tough night of racing at Caraway.
Ronnie Bassett Jr. returned behind the wheel of his Bassett Racing Ford for the first time since June as the UARA-STARS made their first appearance at Caraway Speedway since 2008 for the Racing Electronics 150. Bassett Jr. decided to feature a special paint scheme for the event, a scheme ran by his father at Caraway in 93’. “My dad is the one who makes this possible for Dillon and I, so I thought it’d be neat to run the same decals from one of his old cars,” Ronnie Jr. said.
With hot temperatures outside, the on track action was gearing to heat up as well. The Bassett Racing team had a tight racecar throughout practice and struggled to get the car freed up off the turns. The duo of Lawson and Smith continually adjust the car until all options are exhausted. Combine that with Bassett’s ability to stay up on the wheel despite poor handling, and the trio seems to get the car dialed in when needed, just as they did for qualifying Saturday afternoon.
Ronnie Bassett Jr. posted a solid speed of 17.244 during his run, lining him up fourth for the start. The top five was tight, separated by three-hundredths of a second, with the average age being 16 years young. In typical fashion, Bassett Jr. settled into the fifth position by lap 50. The yellow flag waived on lap 61 as Trey Marcham experienced an engine failure. The field was red flagged briefly and when they started rolling Bassett reported he felt the right rear tire going down.
Just under halfway, he brought his car down pit road to change the flat and restarted 21st. By lap 90 he worked his way up the field into the top ten and steadily began to pick off positions one by one. Battling for third, Ronnie Jr. and Ben Rhodes made contact with 25 to go bringing out a caution and warning to each driver.
On the restart Bassett Jr. displayed great three wide racing with Dillon Basset and Devin Jones allowing him to grab third. With ten laps remaining, he and Rhodes again found themselves battling for position. Unfortunately the two made contact sending Rhodes for a spin, resulting in Bassett receiving a black flag regulating him to a 14th place finish, his worst of the season.
“We had a great car tonight and were able to work our way back up after the flat. Its unfortunate what happened with Rhodes, I didn’t intend to spin him. We were both racing hard and we will move on to the next one,” Bassett commented.
The UARA-STARS next stop is Concord Speedway this weekend; however Bassett Jr. and his crew will forgo this event to take the time to get their primary car back together for Tri-County on August 10th where Ronnie Bassett Jr. claimed his first UARA victory and is the defending race winner.
Ronnie Bassett Jr. will be on-air this Thursday evening with younger brother Dillon for WHKY’s Sports Talk with Jason Savage. Catch the show online Thursday 7-8 PM at www.whky.sports_talk.asp.
Follow @Bulldog_04 and @BassettRacing1 on Twitter.