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Hirschman, Emerling Clash on World Series Thursday Night

Matt Hirschman continued his undefeated run at the World Series of Asphalt Stock Car Racing.


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Matt Hirschman added another win to his collection at the World Series of Asphalt Stock Car Racing Thursday night at New Smyrna Speedwya, but it did not come without a tense moment.

For the fourth night in a row, Hirschman held off Patrick Emerling for the win. However, the two drivers made contact on a late restart, extending tensions that have simmered over the course of the week and surfaced on Wednesday.

During Wednesday’s race, the two drivers made contact on a restart, which appeared to knock Hirschman out of the lead. However, an unrelated spin brought the caution back out, giving Hirschman a chance to retain the lead and the win.

A similar circumstance played out Thursday night, with the first restart waved off by race officials and the duo once again making contact on the second attempt, putting Emerling in the wall on the frontstrech.

“I obviously couldn’t trust him after last night to take the top like you normally would,” said Hirschman on the FloRacing broadcast. “I took the bottom and he was into my side the whole way down the straightaway, so I couldn’t even turn my car to the left until I got to the corner.

“I don’t want to race that way, but we as a team don’t even know what he’s talking about last night, that he owed me that and more. He wasn’t even turning his wheel left in the middle of the corner. I ended up in Pat’s Clam Stand last night, so it wasn’t happening tonight.”

As for Emerling, he believed he was squeezed into the wall by Hirschman on the decisive restart.

“We were just racing hard. He turned right on me at the end of the straightaway. We’re both doing what we can to win races here. We’ve been having an awesome race car, and every night we make adjustments and make the car a little bit better.”

One night ago, Emerling mentioned he still owed Hirschman for past transgressions. The New York driver elaborated on Thursday after Hirschman’s post-race comments.

“I would say Spencer Speedway. He knows that. I don’t know if his memory is that short. I don’t know if he has memory problems. There’s a few little things there. You have a car two-tenths faster than me and drive into you on the straightaway.

“His restart tactics probably wrecking three or four cars on one of those last restarts. Stuff like that, the competitors get annoyed. His car is fast enough this week that he doesn’t have to do that. Stuff like that irritates people.”

Hirschman’s fourth win in as many World Series races makes him the first to win four straight races to start a World Series since Richie Evans in 1981. Dating back to last year’s World Series, Hirschman has now won seven consecutive Tour-type Modified World Series races, breaking a record held by Evans and Reggie Ruggiero (1989-90).

Despite Hirschman’s historic start to the World Series, the championship is still very much up for grabs during the Richie Evans Memorial 100 on Friday. With four second-place finishes, Emerling sits just eight points behind Hirschman with a chance to claim the championship.

FEBRUARY 16, 2023

  1. Matt Hirschman
  2. Patrick Emerling
  3. Teddy Hodgdon
  4. Jimmy Blewett
  5. Eric Goodale
  6. Anthony Nocella
  7. Joey Coulter
  8. Tyler Rypkema
  9. Spencer Davis
  10. Dillon Steuer
  11. Justin Brown
  12. Eddie McCarthy
  13. Andrew Krause
  14. Brett Meservey
  15. J.R. Bertuccio
  16. Brian Robie
  17. Amy Catalano
  18. Tom Martino, Jr.
  19. Michael Rutkoski
  20. Norman Newman
  21. Craig Lutz
  22. Chris Hatton
  23. Ronnie Williams
  24. Anthony Bello
  25. Burt Myers
  26. Caleb Heady
  27. Tommy Catalano
  28. Nicholas Halkowicz
  29. Rich Parker


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