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NOTHING CORNY ABOUT OTIS’ CHAMPIONSHIP RUN

The cornfields of Newton Iowa welcome the Lionheart Retro Series back to the heartland of America, as the L79’s take to Iowa Speedway for the Buttkicker 150.

Last time out at Michigan, it was Ryan Otis rising to the challenge and putting two hands firmly on the championship trophy. Otis beat David Clymer to the line by just 0.002 seconds for his second win of the season and a 120-point lead in the championship with just 6 races remaining. Clymer used his 2nd place finish to overtake Dustin Wardlow and Paul Jenkins for 2nd in the championship. The “Candyman” started from Pole and lead a race high 33 laps, however Wardlow faded to an 8th place finish after a speeding penalty on his first pit stop saw Wardlow playing catch-up the rest of the race. Chad Dalton rounded out the podium, while Finian Dchunha and Adam Young both got their first top 5’s of the season. Clymer extended his lead in the rookie championship over Paul Jenkins to 18 with the 2nd place effort.

Iowa Speedway is something of a home track for the Lionheart Series. Every year, league members gather at the real-world IndyCar race to spend a weekend drinking beer, chatting with friends, and watching the IndyCars take on this special short track. One of America’s newest race tracks, Iowa Speedway is located in Newton, IA and has been in operation since 2006. The 7/8-mile oval was designed and built under the auspices of NASCAR champion Rusty Wallace at a cost of approximately $70 million. But in recent years it has become a bastion for open wheel action in the Midwest, and one of Lionheart’s favorite tracks.

With just 6 races to go, time is running out for those looking to challenge Ryan Otis for the championship. Going into Michigan, smart money would have said that if anyone was going to catch Otis it would have been Wardlow. Instead, David Clymer has continued his white-hot form to vault his name into the spot closest to Otis. The question is were the last 2 races a flash in the pan for Clymer, or can the rookie keep it going? More to the point, will it matter if Otis keeps up his own hot form?

What about Wardlow? It was a very small mistake at Michigan that kept the Candyman out of contention for the wind. Will Wardlow be able to re-group quickly and forget his mistake from last week, or will it be something he dwells on that will affect his race this week? Wardlow has traditionally been quick at Iowa. A clean race could easily see him in victory lane.

And what about the rest of the top 5 from last week; Dalton, Dchunha and Young? Any of these drivers could easily be the next driver to take their maiden retro series win this season. All it will take is the right amount of patience and the right amount of luck at this tricky track.

Tune into the iRacing eSports Network presented by GSRC the Thursday, Septeber 26th, 2019 for all the Simulated action from the Buttkicker 150 from Iowa.

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