The 2021 season has not started the way Layne Riggs would have hoped.
After narrowly missing out on his first CARS Late Model Stock Car Tour title last year, Riggs has failed to finish two races in his first three starts.
Riggs got to work on repairing some of the damage Friday evening by enjoying a dominant victory in the Race at Ace 125 at Ace Speedway.
“We had a really good long run car tonight,” Riggs said. “It took about four or five laps for us to really get going but I had to really fight for it on those restarts. [Bobby] McCarty was a little bit better on those initial jumps but we had a great race tonight so hats off to him.”
Riggs is no stranger to success at Ace, as he took home a checkered flag in the 2019 Rodney Cook Classic after the leaders in McCarty, Dustin Rumley and Ryan Millington had issues in the closing laps.
Riggs would once again have to deal with McCarty to obtain a victory on Friday, who was looking to avenge a disappointing outcome to the 2020 Race at Ace 125 that saw him get turned by Josh Berry after leading 120 laps.
McCarty got the pole for the 125-lap feature but quickly surrendered the lead to Riggs, who used the bottom of the track to set a commanding pace throughout the night.
The final restart of the night was McCarty’s best chance to overtake Riggs for the lead. Although McCarty led briefly, Riggs withstood the challenge and drove away for the win.
McCarty was disappointed that he could not defeat Riggs and get his second CARS LMSC Tour win at Ace. He added that Friday’s loss only serves as more motivation for him and Nelson Motorsports to keep working on their cars.
“Layne and I put on a really clean race,” McCarty said. “We raced each other hard but he had us beat. We just have to get better and I think we are really close. We’ve made great improvements on the car but we’re just missing a little bit.”
Riggs has watched McCarty put together many dominant wins himself at Ace in the past but credited his crew for stepping up to the challenge and giving him what he believed was one of the best cars he has ever driven.
“I know Bobby is considered the king of Ace Speedway,” Riggs said. “He always wins races here but I felt like we pulled a Bobby McCarty tonight here at Ace. I’m really proud of everybody on the team and I hope we can get some more like this.”
Even though Riggs still faces a steep deficit to McCarty in the CARS LMSC Tour, he now has confidence on his side and is looking forward to competing for another win at Caraway Speedway in two weeks.
1. Layne Riggs
2. Bobby McCarty
3. Justin Johnson
4. Jared Fryar
5. Jonathan Shafer
6. Sam Butler
7. Kaden Honeycutt
8. Brandon Pierce
9. Joe Valento
10. Jonathan Findley
11. Sam Yarbrough
12. Dylan Ward
13. Daniel Silvestri
14. Deac McCaskill
15. Trevor Ward
16. Mason Diaz
17. Conner Jones
18. William Cox III
19. Mini Tyrrell