Ty Dillon Gets Action Started Early at Talladega with 3 Amigos 250 Victory
The eggs were scrambled and the racing was hard-boiled Saturday morning at Talladega Superspeedway, as the ARCA Racing Series presented by Menards kicked off a full day of track action with an 8 a.m. start.
Breakfast at Talladega turned out to be a satisfying meal for pole-sitter Ty Dillon, who passed Frank Kimmel coming through the trioval on the final lap to win the 3 Amigos 250 by half a car length.
Dillon stayed tucked in behind Kimmel at the bottom of the track throughout most of the final lap. But at the last possible moment he shot to the high side in front of Bobby Gerhart and used an old-fashioned slingshot move to slip past Kimmel.
“That looked like a classic Dale Earnhardt move on the last lap at the right time,” said Dillon’s grandfather, Richard Childress, who was Earnhardt’s longtime car owner. “You can have a good car, but you have to know what to do with it, and he does. He puts a lot of work and effort into it.”
Dillon, who now has three victories in only five career ARCA starts, said winning at Talladega Superspeedway is special for him.
“This is awesome,” the 19-year-old Dillon said. “I always went to Talladega as a kid. I’ve always loved to see how they race, the big packs and the wild finishes. To have my own wild finish and to win at Talladega is really cool.”
Kimmel finished second, followed by Gerhart in third, Brett Hudson fourth and Chris Buescher fifth. Alabama native Grant Enfinger was in the lead only eight laps from the finish but got shuffled out of the draft and slipped back to 13th.
The second-place finish was frustrating for Kimmel, who led 32 of the 94 laps in the race, including the final seven leading to the white-flag lap.
“I’ll re-live this one many times,” Kimmel said, shaking his head. “You know if you let them have the bottom (of the track) they’re going to beat you to the line here, so I was kind of extra-protective of that coming off four.
“Ty did a great job. He had a good run. I just got beat, unfortunately. It’s very disappointing.”
Dillon said he wasn’t certain he could pass Kimmel on the outside without any drafting help. So he was ready to settle for a second-place finish until he noticed Gerhart making a hard charge on the outside as the pack roared through the trioval.
“I didn’t think the outside was going to have a good enough run to make a pass,” Dillon said. “I was really waiting to come across the finish line in second and be happy with that. But once we got about halfway down the frontstretch I saw (Gerhart) coming so hard, and I knew that was going to be our last chance.
“I thought we were done. I thought the race was going to be over. But that frontstretch got longer and I knew I had to go hard or finish second. It just worked out perfect.”
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