Mark Dilley took advantage of a skirmish between the leaders to claim a wild win in the Wild Wing 300 presented by Independent Electric Saturday night at Barrie Speedway.
Dilley, racing in his hometown, was running third on the green-white-checkered finish when Kerry Micks tapped race leader J.R. Fitzpatrick in Turn 1. Fitzpatrick spun and Dilley got past Micks to claim his third career victory.
“When we were coming to that green-white-checkered I thought something might happen, so I decided to stay as close as I could. That way, if it did happen, then I might be able to get by,” said Dilley. “It happened and we got a little lucky. I’ll take it.”
By virtue of racing close to home, Dilley had plenty of friends and family with which to celebrate.
“Winning in my hometown is pretty special,” said the driver of the No. 9 Rheem/PartSource/Exide Dodge. “It’s been a while since we’ve been in this position. It’s a good night.”
Jason Hathaway, who crossed the finish line in second place after starting 11th on the grid behind the wheel of his No. 3 Snap-on Tools/Vortex Brake Pads/Rockstar Dodge, has shaken off the effects of a wrist injury suffered in June and scored his best finish of the season.
“After starting 11th, we had to work our way through the field and we did,” said Hathaway. “Feathers got ruffled along the way, but everybody will work it out before we race again. It felt good to lead some laps and have a good race.”
Micks was able to keep his No. 02 Dickies/Beyond Digital Imaging Ford collected after the contact with Fitzpatrick and finish third. It was his fifth top-five finish in his last six starts.
“We had a fast car tonight. I think everyone could see that,” said Micks. “I think we should have won this race tonight, but for a lot of different reasons, it didn’t work out.”
Don Thomson Jr. and Jeff Lapcevich finished fourth and fifth, respectively, on the cozy .333-mile oval.
Brad Graham finished sixth. D.J. Kennington, whose late spin extended the race to 310 laps, rallied to finish seventh. Joey McColm, Fitzpatrick and rookie Chris Raabe in his series debut rounded out the top 10.
Points leader and polesitter Scott Steckly led a race-high 147 laps before a wheel issue on Lap 172 relegated him to a 15th-place finish. Steckly leads defending series champion Kennington by 69 points with two races remaining.
Dilley's previous career wins came at Riverside International Speedway in 2007 and Cayuga Motor Speedway in 2008. The win snapped a 37-race winless streak for Dilley, which was tied for the fifth-longest streak of that type coming into the event.
The race was slowed due to caution 12 times, which equaled the season high established on July 23 at Motoplex Speedway in Vernon, B.C., but shy of the track record of 16 cautions set on July 1, 2007.
The Wild Wing 300 presented by Independent Electric will air on TSN on Saturday, Sept. 17 at 12:30 p.m. ET.
The NASCAR Canadian Tire Series will be back on track Saturday, Sept. 17 for the Komatsu 300 presented by Wilson Equipment at Riverside International Speedway in Antigonish, N.S.