Opportunity called and Sam Yarbrough answered.
Yarbrough outdueled Justin Milliken on a late restart to win the Performance Plus 50 on Saturday night at Myrtle Beach Speedway.
Milliken led for much of the night and Yarbrough just couldn’t get around his fellow full-time track competitor. But a caution for a David Roberts crash with two laps to go set the stage for what amounted to a green-white-checkered.
On the deciding restart, Milliken spun his tires and Yarbrough took advantage, holding on for his first NASCAR Whelen All-American Series victory of the season.
“I told my guys halfway through the race, that there was no way we were going to beat Justin,” Yarbrough said. “But I guess I saved enough and here we are.”
Yarbrough said the race played directly into his strategy. While Milliken set sail, Yarbrough just maintained a steady pace, expecting the caution to wave in the final 10 laps.
He cut it close, but the Roberts crashed occurred in the last possible minute.
“Everybody rides for a while,” Yarbrough said. “These are long races. 75 laps doesn’t sound like it, but these are long races here. He was hoping it would stay green, hoping for some luck. But when that caution came out, he was done.”
Milliken ran second for much of the night behind Bryant Barnhill. But a caution near the halfway point, put the field back together and allowed Milliken and Yarbrough to get the jump. But Milliken himself might have used up too much trying to get to lead that he just didn’t have enough to fend off Yarbrough into Turn 1 after he spun his tires.
“Oh man, we were getting so loose and I thought we were really good on short runs and had saved enough right rear but we were free in,” Milliken said. “Our Chevrolet was good, so to get a pole and a second, that’s a pretty good night.”
Four-time NASCAR national champion Philip Morris started on the outside pole but just didn’t have race winning speed and finished sixth. Matt Cox, Tommy Lemons Jr. and Ryan Glenski completed the top-5. The complete results can be found below.
1. 20 Sam Yarbrough
2. 02 Justin Milliken
3. 51 Matt Cox
4. 27 Tommy Lemons Jr.
5. 28 Ryan Glenski
6. 01 Phillip Morris
7. 17 Bryant Barnhill
8. 8 Trevor Rizzo
9. 11 Ed Williams
10. 10 Lucas Williams
11. 60 RA Brown
12. 70 Stuart Ricks
13. 12 Blaise Brinkley
14. 63 Chris Throckmorton
15. 24 Craig Stallard
16. 2 Clay Thomas
17. 9 Devin Dodson
18. 15 Bob Saville
19. 18 David Roberts
20. 55 Travis Powell
21. 96 Sam Scarpelli
22. 98 Kevin Parsons
23. 61 Justin Hicks
24. 46 Thad Moffitt
25. 83 Jeremy McDowell
26. 81 Adam Murray DNS
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