Make it five wins in a row for Matt Hirschman.
Following a clean sweep of all the races that were run in the World Series of Asphalt at New Smyrna, Hirschman and Peedee Motorsports carried that momentum into the SMART Modified Tour opener at Florence Motor Speedway.
That’s two in a row in the Low Country 99.
Hirschman was uncharacteristically fine but not great throughout the race, and really won only because of a caution with seven laps to go, that brought the entire field down pit road for the right rear tire they had been saving.
Hirschman won the race off pit road from fourth and found a way.
“It was real difficult until that caution came out with seven to go,” Hirschman said. “That was rather timely. It worked out real well for us. That’s the racing game. I didn’t think it would take that long to get us to a caution. Not that I had anything for the top two because they had us covered. I was maybe a third or fourth place car.
“That Loftin (Carson) kid has a future. Good driver. I got him, he got me back. The guys killed it on pit road and they got me the win. We weren’t the car to beat today but sometimes you figure out a way.”
Hirschman won this race last year but did not have the same feel from a year ago in his second ever trip to the South Carolina bullring from practice forward.
It just seemed like the track was different but I’ve only run here once, so I don’t have the experience others do,” Hirschman said. “I didn’t have a lot to go by. My confidence dropped after practice maybe a little over-confident. I like racing with the SMART Modified Tour.
“We won’t run with them all the time but the miles we put on to come down here is easier when you’re winning.”
Caleb Heady, the defending series champion was the leader at the time of the caution and felt like the race was won had it stayed green.
“We’re a lot of disappointed,” Heady said. “Easily had the fastest car. I did not want to see that caution at all. We would have leisurely drove away with it. The car was good and I can’t thank Tommy Baldwin enough for it.”
What happened on pit road?
“We got chopped off with a car entering pit road, but the crew was perfect and I was pretty good getting on and off but that’s how it goes sometimes,” he said.
When will Hirschman return to SMART competition if he’s not going to be full-time?
“It could be weeks or it could be next week,” Hirschman said. “We take it one at a time. This is where it’s at in March, just like New Smyrna is where it’s at in February. In April, things start to open up in the Northeast.
“We’ll pick and choose, but we’ll pick and choose a few more SMART races because we really enjoy it.”
SMART Modified Tour Low Country 99
Florence Motor Speedway
March 5 2023
- Matt Hirschman
- Caleb Heady
- Burt Myers
- Brandon Ward
- Jonathan Brown
- Ryan Newman
- Gary Putnam
- Jason Myers
- Bobby Labonte
- Gary Young
- Carson Loftin
- Zach Brewer
- Tim Brown
- Joey Coulter
- Bobby Measmer Jr.
- Brian Lofton
- Dennis Holdren
- Jeremy Gerstner
- Michael Ritch
- Jason Tutterow
- Dwight Sauls
- Brian Weber
- Riley Neal
- Jimmy Wallace