By BILL FOLEY
Tyler Siri came to Florida with a goal of “top fives.”
However, on Thursday night he did even better as he finished at the top of the top five in the opening Super DIRTcar Series race at the DIRTcar Nationals at the Volusia Speedway Park.
“I came here hoping to run in the top five and I would have been happy with that,” stated Siri. “This win is huge against such hard competition. The best in the country are here. We were fast and the car was just so good.”
The lead wasn’t somewhere you wanted to be in the delayed a day 30-lap race as early pacesetter Justin Haers had flames belching from underneath the car to knock him out and then Stewart Friesen jumped the cushion sustained a rear flat and sheet-metal damage.
Suddenly, Siri, who had been in contention and running well, found himself in the lead with just four laps to go. A that point all he to do was hold off Tim McCreadie, which he did for the surprising win.
Of his win Tyler said, “The track was great tonight and I really felt I could hold off Tim McCreadie. My guys are awesome and we had the right set up for this one.”
Even when he was second, chasing Friesen, Siri was comfortable and explained, “I thought I could catch Stu with a slide job, but it just wasn’t there.”
Siri, the promoter of the Outlaw Speedway in Dundee N.Y., has been at Volusia three times. He explained, “As a rookie I struggled to qualify. In ’16 we came back and ran really good only to have bad luck in the features.”
Outlaw is a tight little track and it definitely doesn’t prepare a driver for the fast half-mile here in the Sunshine State.
However, Siri explained, “It really doesn’t help, but seat time does. The more seat time you get the better you become. That’s what really matters.”
So as the week started it was a Teo winning in the chassis war, but there are three more features to go and it should be interesting.
Looking back on the night Siri, with a huge smile said, “Winning a Gator is the best. It is such an honor to win here.”
Even though he didn’t have the success in the second feature with two main-events to go he sits in sixth place in the overall points race in the hotly contested race for the big Gator that goes to the overall champion at the conclusion of the 50 lapper on Saturday night.