BY ADAM FENWICK | WWW.ARCARACING.COM
PORTLAND, Ore. – The start of Saturday’s Portland 112 at Portland International Raceway did not go as planned for Jake Drew.
But nearly everything else did.
Despite missing the first turn and running off into the grass at the start of the fourth race of the ARCA Menards Series West season, Drew raced back to the front of the field to earn his first series victory on a soggy day at the 1.967-mile road course.
Drew started alongside polesitter Daniel Dye for the start of the Portland 112, but both drivers overshot the first turn in the wet conditions and ended up in the grass. They were both able to continue as Connor Mosack assumed the lead.
A caution flag on Lap 9 for Andrew Tuttle stalled in the frontstretch chicane allowed Drew and Dye to catch up to the pack. However, Mosack and several other competitors opted to pit for adjustments and for a little help with visibility as their front windows had fogged over due to the adverse weather conditions.
Drew and the Sunrise Ford Racing team chose not to pit, which moved Drew to the front of the field for the restart.
Once in the lead, Drew dominated the rest of the race and never gave up the top spot despite occasional pressure from Mosack. The race was ultimately cut 15 laps short due to increasingly treacherous conditions caused by rain.
The victory is Drew’s first in ARCA Menards Series West competition and comes in his 13th start. The triumph also serves as a bit of redemption for Drew, who was penalized for cutting the frontstretch chicane last year at Portland while leading during the final restart.
Mosack survived the adverse weather conditions to finish second, with Todd Souza earning his best finish of the season in third. Dye followed in fourth ahead of Takuma Koga in fifth.
Tanner Reif, Bridget Burgess, P.J. Pedroncelli, Austin Herzog and Joey Iest completed the top 10.
A replay of the Portland 112 from Portland International Raceway will broadcast on USA Network on June 16 at 2 p.m. ET.
The ARCA Menards Series West will return to action Saturday, June 11, with the running of the General Tire 200 at Sonoma Raceway. The event will be streamed live by FloRacing.