Richards Grabs Convincing Victory in Pittsburgher 100
SHINNSTON, W.Va. (Oct. 11, 2016) - Josh Richards collected a convincing victory Saturday night at Pittsburgh Pennsylvania’s Motor Speedway leading the majority of the prestigious Pittsburgher 100.
With Friday’s portion of the scheduled two-day event postponed due to inclement weather, Saturday became a one-day show. Returning to what Richards considers his “home” track, the Pittsburgher 100 is a sentimental race for the 28-year-old who grew up just an hour-and-a-half from the Pennsylvania facility. As a youngster Richards often went to the racetrack with his father Mark’s house-car team and since, the big half-mile track has held a special place in his heart.
Eager to get things underway at one of his favorite tracks, Richards didn’t waste any time showing he was fast. The West Virginia native began Saturday by posting the quickest circuit in his hot lap group. He then went on to click off the second fastest qualifying lap overall. His time-trial effort lined him up on the pole for Heat Race 2 and he easily led all 10 laps, winning his heat by nearly six seconds. His heat race victory guaranteed Richards the third starting spot in the 100-lap Feature.
Starting on the inside of Row 2, Richards quickly took over the second position on Lap 2 of the esteemed race. Knowing he had a long way to go and not wanting to overuse his equipment, Richards bided his time keeping frontrunner Michael Norris in his sights. Slowly reeling the leader in, the superstar driver made his move on Lap 24 and took over the point position on Lap 25. Now in command of the race, Richards withstood five caution periods before Lap 39 retaining his position for each of the ensuing restarts. Approaching the halfway point of the race, a 12 lap, green-flag run made lapped traffic come into play. Navigating his way through the lapped cars, Richards had lapped up to the 11th-place car of Jonathan Davenport with 30 circuits remaining in the 100-lap finale. With a comfortable lead over the second-place car of Scott Bloomquist, Richards continued to slice-and-dice his way through traffic for the remainder of the race to capture his second Pittsburgher 100 victory in dominant fashion. The win marks his 26th super dirt late model victory of the season.
Richards is scheduled to return to action this weekend at Portsmouth (Ohio) Raceway Park for the 36th Annual Dirt Track World Championship Oct. 14-15.
Saturday Race Results
Qualifying – 2nd Heat Race - 1st Feature Start -3rd Feature Finish – 1st
JOSH RICHARDS QUOTES: “I love this place, it’s by far my favorite track. I’ve always enjoyed coming here. Even before I raced, I remember coming up here and watching Steve Baker (Rocket Chassis co-owner) race and the Rocket Chassis house car race.
“It’s so unique, there’s not one track that’s even anywhere close to how you drive at this place. It’s just so momentum-based and the groove moves around so much. They do a great job preparing the track so it’s a lot of fun. I think racing here is more sentimental than anything, but it’s also really fun.
“Michael Norris was really fast early and I just tried to pace myself behind him and move around to see what we had. I was just running the top, trying to keep momentum up. Once I passed him, I knew I would have Scott (Bloomquist) to deal with. Thankfully I was able to keep him at bay and go on to win my second Pittsburgher 100. This win is really special to me, I’m glad I was able to end up in Victory Lane in front of such a great crowd that supports me as if I was a local driver.”