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William Sawalich Claims Wild CRA Jegs Win at Winchester

The race was won and lost on a three-wide pass with five laps to go.


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It was William Sawalich who emerged with the lead in a tremendous battle between three young guns in the JEGS CRA feature on Friday night at Winchester Speedway in Indiana.

The race was decided with five laps to go when Giovanni Ruggiero drove under a dominant Chase Burda, but slipped and sent them both up the track, allowing Sawalich to take the Donnie Wilson Motorsports No. 24 under both and to the lead.

He would never look back as Burda and Ruggiero continued to battle to complete the podium. Meanwhile, Dakota Stroup overcame a flat tire with 23 laps to go to win the JEGS CRA championship – the premier Pro Late Model crown in the central Midwestern region.

As for Sawalich, he was just hoping for a chance and it came with five to go.

"I was trying to pounce on any opportunity I could get," Sawalich said. "I knew I had a really fast car and I can't thank Donnie Wilson Motorsports and hopefully we can go for another one on Sunday. We worked all day on the balance and got it better there at the end.

"We were struggling on exit, but rolled really good, and were able to close out."

As for Burda and Ruggiero, both chalked it up to hard racing, even if Burda was disappointed in a second straight finish on Winchester 400 weekend.

"Just racing hard and I think he just got in too hard and shot up and put me in the fence," Burda said. "It happened and I can’t do anything about it. Just sucks. But at the same time, I didn't think we'd have the car to beat in practice so to finish second and lead the most laps, I am proud and happy about that."

Burda led 85 of the 100 laps.

Ruggiero took responsibility for the incident and lamented the chance both teams had for winning.

"Really good race we had, Really good car," Ruggerio said. "A lot of cautions tonight but we kept pushing at the end. We tried to make the pass on (Burda) with five to go and just hard racing. I got free under him and took us both out of contention. A really unfortunate ending to a good race."

To his point, this was a race that featured three red flags and a lot of attrition.

A crash on Lap 25 saw Jimmy Tucker roll in late to a spin involving Scotty Tomasik and Michael Simko, who were checking up behind Jordan Miller's spin. Stephen Nasse was amongst those wiped out on a Lap 35 crash that also involved Albert Francis, Brandon Varney and Nick Egan.

Ryan Luza crashed racing Kevin Cremonsesi for third with 27 laps to go to make up the third red flag.

Winchester Speedway
October 14 2022

  1. William Sawalich
  2. Chase Burda
  3. Giovanni Ruggiero
  4. Jeff Fultz
  5. Wes Griffith
  6. Dylan Stovall
  7. Jonathan Martin
  8. Jordan Miller
  9. Ryan Fleming
  10. Nicholas Naugle
  11. Dakota Stroup
  12. Nick Egan
  13. Jordan Riddick
  14. Michael Hinde
  15. Kevin Cremonesi
  16. Ryan Luza
  17. Scotty Tomasik
  18. Dan Leeck
  19. Albert Francis
  20. Stephen Nasse
  21. Evan Varney
  22. Brandon Varney
  23. Michael Simko
  24. Jimmy Tucker
  25. Billy VanMeter
  26. Ethan Stadniczuk