Greg Pursley won the NASCAR K&N Pro Series West season opener at Phoenix International Raceway in record-breaking fashion. He led 56 laps in the Talking Stick Resort 60 and gave Gene Price Motorsports a 1-2 finish in the race.
Greg Pursley Wins NASCAR K&N Pro Series West at Phoenix International Raceway
K&N Pro Series' Pursley set the track record with a qualifying lap at 133.949 mph and won the Coors Light Pole Award.
Pursley set the track record with a qualifying lap at 133.949 mph and won the pole. He led the first 49 laps of the race before teammate, 16-year-old Cameron Hayley, passed him on lap 50. Hayley's turn as the race leader was short-lived. He was out front for only six laps before Pursley regained the lead.
"There was no saving anything at the end," Pursley said. "We had a great car, just really proud of everybody at Gene Price Motorsports."
It set up a 10-lap dash to the finish. Pursley took back the lead on lap 56 and held on for the last four laps of the race.
"It's pretty cool," Pursley said. "He's definitely a 16-year-old kid out of the race car. He likes to play around and everything. He's actually going to be a really good driver. He's got a good head on his shoulders. He's got good equipment as you can see. Gotta keep on top of him and keep his head on right. He's going to be really good. I can't wait to race him every race."
Race Action at NASCAR K&N Pro Series at Phoenix International Raceway
Pursley, the 2011 K&N Pro Series champion, has won three NASCAR races at Phoenix International Raceway. He is tied with Richard Petty for second place in all-time K&N Pro Series West wins at Phoenix. Ken Schrader holds the K&N Pro Series West record with four career wins at Phoenix.
"I'm really looking forward to the season," Pursley said. "We actually built a couple new cars. We have a short track car also. I'm looking forward to going to Stockton with the car that we ran Daytona with. We absolutely dominated Daytona until we got taken out. That car is really good. Cameron's car is the same. I think there's really good things to come here."
Hayley crossed the finish line in second place. He won the K&N Pro Series UNOH Battle of the Beach race at Daytona International Raceway in his debut with Gene Price Motorsports. The Battle of the Beach race was a non-points, all-star for drivers from the K&N Pro Series East and West.
"Both of our cars, my car and Cameron Hayley's car, were brand new cars to come to this race," Pursley said. "It's looking good for us. It's off to a good start. I can't complain."
Hayley started second in the race at Phoenix and had to hold off a charging Michael Self while trying to pass Pursley in the closing laps.
"It was tons of fun," Hayley said. "Racing Greg there at the end, he's a great driver, I love to race hard with him like that. We race each other clean and hard. Definitely learned a lot through this race and we'll take it into the next race here in Stockton."
Self came in third place, followed by Derek Thorn in fourth and Sergio Pena in fifth.
"When the opportunity presents itself, you've got to take it," said Self, who won the K&N Pro Series West race at Phoenix in November. "We had an opening, so we did everything we could there. I think maybe a couple more green flag laps and we might have been able to make something of it. We just didn't have the short-run car that we needed."
The next race on the K&N Pro Series West schedule is at Stockton 99 Speedway on May 4.
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