Brett Moffitt made sure the home fans went home happy.
The 18-year-old from nearby Grimes, Iowa, dominated the Pork ‘Be Inspired’ 175 presented by Tompkins Industries NASCAR K&N Pro Series combination event at Iowa Speedway Saturday night before an announced crowd of 17,281.
Representing the NASCAR K&N Pro Series East, Moffitt led a race-high 138 laps and coasted to the win by nearly four seconds over former teammate and defending race winner Max Gresham.
"We unloaded and we were fast right off the truck and we only got better from there," said Moffitt. "It hasn't sunk in yet that I won here. It's amazing to have it be in front of my hometown crowd. I've been close so many times, but they got taken away, so this is amazing."
The win comes a year after Moffitt led 54 laps at Iowa but wrecked after contact while leading in the race's closing laps. It was the second win of the season and sixth of his career for the Michael Waltrip Racing development driver.
Eddie MacDonald rounded out the top three. Greg Pursley was fourth overall and was credited with a NASCAR K&N Pro Series West win as the highest series finisher. It was Pursley's third win of the season and fifth in the last seven series races dating back to last year.
"I'm happy to come home second," said Gresham. "It was a good points night."
"We've been struggling for the first few races, so it was great to have a solid top finish," MacDonald said. "Hopefully the momentum will go for the rest of the season."
David Mayhew finished fifth. Ryan Gifford was sixth, followed by Brett Thompson, Coleman Pressley, Darrell Wallace Jr. and Dylan Kwasniewski.
The race at Iowa was the fifth annual meeting between the NASCAR K&N Pro Series East and West at the .875-mile track 30 miles east of Des Moines, Iowa. The race has become a showcase for the rising young talent in NASCAR. Joey Logano won the first race in 2007 as a 16-year-old and Gresham was 17 when he won last year.
"This is definitely the biggest win of my career," Moffitt said. "Being able to race here is an honor. And to be able to win her and be the only Iowan to win here only makes it better."
Gresham, who started 23rd, and Pursley, who rolled off the grid 34th, took home the Coca-Cola Move of the Race Awards for the East and West, respectively. Gifford and Kwasniewski improved enough from their previous East and West races to capture the Featherlite Most Improved Driver Awards.
Kwasniewski and Chase Elliott, who was 11th, won the Sunoco Rookie of the Race Award for the West and East, respectively. Both drivers are 15.
Earlier Saturday, 19-year-old Matt DiBenedetto won the pole award and led 24 of the first 25. He had just retaken the lead from Moffitt on Lap 85 when he cut a tire to bring out the caution. He wound up 20th overall, his first finish outside the top 10 this year.
In addition to Moffitt and DiBenedetto, Benny Gordon and Chad Boat also led laps during what was the fourth races of the season for both the East and West.
With the win, Moffitt edged ahead of Wallace in the East season standings by one point - 646-645 - while Pursley’s first-place West finish extended his lead to 114 tallies on Moses Smith, who struggled to a 36th-place finish Saturday.
The Pork ‘Be Inspired’ 175 will air on SPEED on June 2 at 6 p.m. ET.
The NASCAR K&N Pro Series East will race next at Bowman Gray Stadium in Winston-Salem, N.C., on June 4, while the NASCAR K&N Pro Series West heads to the Bullring at Las Vegas Motor Speedway on Saturday, June 11.
NASCAR K&N PRO SERIES-PORK 'BE INSPIRED' 175 Results
At Iowa Speedway
Lap length: 0.875 miles
(Start position in parentheses)
1. (2) Brett Moffitt, Grimes, Iowa, Toyota, 175 laps, 84.186 mph.
2. (23) Max Gresham, Griffin, Ga., Toyota, 175.
3. (10) Eddie MacDonald, Rowley, Mass., Chevrolet, 175.
4. (34) Greg Pursley, Newhall, Calif., Ford, 175.
5. (7) David Mayhew, Atascadero, Calif., Chevrolet, 175.
6. (6) Ryan Gifford, Winchester, Tenn., Toyota, 175.
7. (26) Brett Thompson, Jerome, Idaho, Chevrolet, 175.
8. (9) Coleman Pressley, Asheville, N.C., Toyota, 175.
9. (14) Darrell Wallace, Jr., Mobile, Ala., Toyota, 175.
10. (13) Dylan Kwasniewski, Las Vegas, Nev., Ford, 175.
11. (19) Chase Elliott, Dawsonville, Ga., Chevrolet, 175.
12. (12) Cody Hodgson, Escalon, Calif., Dodge, 175.
13. (11) Jason Bowles, Ontario, Calif., Toyota, 175.
14. (22) Eric Holmes, Escalon, Calif., Toyota, 175.
15. (28) Luis Martinez, Jr., Long Beach, Calif., Ford, 175.
16. (15) Brandon Gdovic, Yorktown, Va., Dodge, 175.
17. (3) Ryan Blaney, High Point, N.C., Toyota, 174.
18. (37) Chad Boat, Phoenix, Ariz., Chevrolet, 174.
19. (18) Brandon Haley, Lavonia, Ga., Ford, 174.
20. (1) Matt DiBenedetto, Grass Valley, Calif., Toyota, 173.
21. (36) D.J. Shaw, Conway, N.H., Chevrolet, 173.
22. (21) Ben Kennedy, Daytona Beach, Fla., Chevrolet, 173.
23. (33) Andrew Smith, Pooler, Ga., Chevrolet, 173.
24. (38) Michael Self, Park City, Utah, Chevrolet, 173.
25. (31) Daniel Suarez, Monterrey, Mexico, Dodge, 173.
26. (8) Benny Gordon, DuBois, Pa., Chevrolet, 172.
27. (17) Alex Bowman, Tucson, Ariz., Toyota, 172.
28. (5) Corey LaJoie, Concord, N.C., Dodge, 172.
29. (16) Sergio Pena, Winchester, Va., Toyota, 172.
30. (20) Rod Johnson, Jr., Canyon Country, Calif., Ford, 172.
31. (32) Taylor Cuzick, Tolleson, Ariz., Chevrolet, 171.
32. (4) Brennan Newberry, Bakersfield, Calif., Chevrolet, 171.
33. (25) Travis Pastrana, Annapolis, Md., Toyota, 171.
34. (30) Julian Albarracin, Bogata, Columbia, Chevrolet, 170.
35. (39) Daryl Harr, Edmonton AB, Chevrolet, 170.
36. (35) Moses Smith, Tempe, Ariz., Toyota, 165.
37. (27) Jonathon Gomez, Twin Falls, Idaho, Chevrolet, 145, accident.
38. (29) Drew Brannon, Miami, Fla., Chevrolet, 109.
39. (40) Rick Gdovic, Pittsburgh, Pa., Dodge, 37, accident.
40. (24) Michael Cherry, Valrico, Fla., Toyota, 34, accident.
Time of Race: 1 hour 49 minutes 8 seconds
Margin of Victory: 3.753 seconds
Fastest Qualifier: M.DiBenedetto (132.370 mph, 23.797 seconds)
Caution Flags: 7 for 43 laps.
Lead Changes: 8 among 4 drivers.
Lap Leaders: M. DiBenedetto 1-18; B. Moffitt 19; M. DiBenedetto 20-22; B. Moffitt 23-84; M. DiBenedetto 85-87; B. Moffitt 88-92; C. Boat 93-96; B. Gordon 97-105; B. Moffitt 106-175.
Top 10 East Driver Points: Brett Moffitt 646, Darrell Wallace, Jr. 645, Coleman Pressley 615, Max Gresham 605, Matt DiBenedetto 588, Sergio Peña 569, Alex Bowman * 568, Eddie MacDonald 513, Andrew Smith * 512, Brandon Haley * 510
Top 10 West Driver Points: Greg Pursley 730, Moses Smith 616, David Mayhew 607, Luis Martinez, Jr. 569, Eric Holmes 560, Jonathon Gomez 559, Brett Thompson 559, Michael Self 523, Daryl Harr 481, Ryan Philpott * 426