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WHELEN EURO ELITE 1: It’s Day’s Day

The Israeli Dominates, Resists Dramatic Green-White-Checkered Finish
Gian Luca Guiglia, NWES
October 3, 2015 - 10:09am

Alon Day (#54 CAAL Racing Chevrolet SS) won a dramatic ELITE 1 Final 1 after dominating most of the race and resisting all the attacks in a frantic Green-White-Checkered finish at Circuit Zolder in the NASCAR Whelen Euro Series Finals. It was his second career NASCAR win.

“Winning is always nice! It wasn’t easy this time because Eddie was really quick and for the first part of race he put a lot of pressure on me. Every lap was as a qualifying lap. Then we built a good gap and I could slow down to manage the tires thinking about tomorrow. The restart wasn’t easy because Eddie was close again, but we managed to survive Turn 1 and open a gap again until the end of the race. I’m not thinking about the championship, I just want to think about tomorrow’s race.”

After starting from the pole and building a consistent lead over teammate Eddie Cheever III  (#51 CAAL Racing Chevrolet SS) and the rest of the field in the first 13 laps of the race, the Israeli saw his advantage evaporate when Frederic Gabillon (#3 Tepac RDV Compétition Ford Mustang) went spinning into the barriers from the third position, saying goodbye to his title ambitions and bringing the race into overtime with green-white-checkered finish procedure.

Day had a perfect restart, but in the last lap an accident – without any consequences for the drivers  – between Tim Verbergt (#20 Racing Club Partners Toyota Camry) and Mathias Lauda (#66 DF1 Racing Chevrolet SS) caused a red flag that ended the race. The classification was brought back to the previous lap as per rulebook, sending Day, Cheever and Anthony Kumpen (#24 PK Carsport Chevrolet SS) on the podium. Tim Verbegt (#20 Racing Club Partners Toyota Camry) made a strong debut and finished fourth, ahead of Romain Iannetta (#7 TFT Chevrolet SS). 

Mathias Lauda (#66 DF1 Racing Chevrolet SS) finished sixth ahead Ander Vilarino (#2 TFT-Banco Santander Chevrolet SS), who will enter the the ELITE 1 Final 2 as the points leader. The Austrian was later excluded from the race classification for causing the heavy crash in the last lap. 

Philipp Lietz (#67 GDL Racing Ford Mustang) won the Challenger Trophy by beating to the line Dominic Tiroch (#99 GDL Racing Ford Mustang), Wilfried Boucenna (#37 Knauf Racing Team Ford Mustang) and Florian Renauer (#5 Dexwet Renauer Team Ford Mustang), who rounded out the top-10.

Results are provisional and pending review of accidents the happened during the race from Race Control.

Points runner-up Nicolò Rocca (#56 CAAL Racing Chevrolet SS) also saw his hopes go up in smoke early, when he ended up spinning. He then rejoined the field to post a fast lap and finished 19th.

Day also posted the fastest lap of the race and will start from the pole tomorrow for the last race of the season, followed by Cheever. 

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