Starting mid-pack proved to be no problem for Nick Goetz, as he made his way to the front to score the late model feature victory on Saturday night at Sunset Speedway.
Following the first feature, it’d be Paul Maltese starting on pole, followed by Jason Parker, Billy Zardo, Mike Wilkinson, Taylor Holdaway, Dwayne Baker, Gord Shepherd, Rick Spencer-Walt, Travis Hallyburton, Ron Quesnelle, Nick Goetz, Danny Benedict, Jordan Latimer, Thayne Hallyburton, Connor James, Nic Montanari, and Kendra Adams.
Off the drop of the green flag, Jason Parker grabbed the early advantage ahead of Maltese, Wilkinson and Zardo. However, the caution would fly for Baker going around in turn two. The first restart would not go smoothly, with Shepherd spinning Zardo.
The second restart went cleanly, with Parker holding serve at the front as Spencer-Walt passed Maltese for second. Quesnelle would then move into third on Lap 3, with Benedict up to fourth by the next lap. Maltese ran fifth as Goetz and Wilkinson battled for sixth ahead of Travis Hallyburton, Latimer, and Thayne Hallyburton.
Benedict would then get alongside Quesnelle for third at Lap 6 ahead of Maltese, as Goetz cleared Wilkinson for sixth. Benedict got the spot on Lap 8, with Quesnelle now fourth ahead of Maltese and Goetz. There’d be battles around the track, as Benedict got alongside Spencer-Walt for second at Lap 10, completing the pass two laps later.
Unfortunately, not all the battles went smoothly, with contact between Wilkinson and Travis Hallyburton in their battle for seventh for third caution at Lap 12. With 24 laps to go, Parker led Benedict, Spencer-Walt, Quesnelle, Goetz, Maltese, Latimer, Adams, Thayne Hallyburton, Baker, Shepherd, and James.
Parker got a good restart to keep the lead ahead of Benedict, as Spencer-Walt and Quesnelle battled for third, with Goetz and Maltese side-by-side for fifth ahead of Latimer. Quesnelle would get the third spot on Lap 15, with Goetz taking fourth on Lap 17. Spencer-Walt now ran fifth ahead of Maltese and Latimer, as Shepherd and Adams battled for eighth.
At the front of the field, Benedict was able to track down Parker for the lead, getting alongside him for the top spot on Lap 19. He was then able to put the No. 54 Late Model out front a lap later ahead of Parker and Quesnelle.
Goetz would get alongside Quesnelle for third at Lap 22, but the caution came out for Zardo and Travis Hallyburton having a problem. With 14 laps to go, Benedict led Parker, Quesnelle, Goetz, Spencer-Walt, Maltese, Latimer, Shepherd, Baker, Adams, Thayne Hallyburton, James, Wilkinson, Montanari, Travis Hallyburton, and Zardo.
Benedict got a good restart to keep the lead, with Parker and Goetz side-by-side for second ahead of Quesnelle, Maltese and Spencer-Walt. Goetz was able to get the spot on Lap 25, taking over second ahead of Parker, Quesnelle, Maltese and Spencer-Walt.
Shepherd then got alongside Spencer-Walt for sixth at Lap 27, with contact taking place a lap later resulting in Spencer-Walt going around in turn two. Following some controversy under yellow, Spencer-Walt was given the black flag, sending him to the pits. With seven laps to go, Benedict led Goetz, Parker, Quesnelle, Maltese, Latimer, Baker, Adams, James, Wilkinson, Travis Hallyburton, Zardo, Shepherd, Thayne Hallyburton, and Montanari.
The first attempt at a restart resulted in the sixth yellow flag as Adams, Baker, and Travis Hallyburton got tangled up together in turn two. The second attempt went smoothly, with Benedict and Goetz side-by-side for the lead.
Nick Goetz took the top spot with three laps to go, leading the rest of the way en route to scoring the victory ahead of Danny Benedict, Ron Quesnelle, Jason Parker, and Jordan Latimer.
“It feels really good,” Goetz said. “It’s been a long off-season, but we put together one helluva piece this year. That 54 car (Benedict) is pretty fast, but I definitely playing with him and giving it all we had.”
Connor James finished sixth, followed by Billy Zardo, Gord Shepherd, Mike Wilkinson, and Dwayne Baker. Paul Maltese finished 11th, followed by Thayne Hallyburton and Nic Montanari.