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Stewart Friesen Gets 1st Career NASCAR Truck Series Victory In The Eldora Dirt Derby

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Matt Sullivan/Getty Images

ROSSBURG, OHIO (Pittsburgh Racing Now) – Stewart Friesen picked up his first career victory in the NASCAR Gander Outdoors Eldora Dirt Derby at Eldora Speedway.

Friesen, who started fourth, picked up his first career win followed by Sheldon Creed and Grant Enfinger.

“I don’t know what to say,” said Friesen about the first career win.  “It’s sweet.  It’s special. I put way too much pressure on myself every week when things don’t go right or there’s mistakes and we didn’t win races.  I take 100-percent of the responsibility every time and I beat myself up bad every time.  Finally, it’s a lot of weight off my shoulders.”

Chase Briscoe started on the pole position with Matt Crafton on the outside as a pair of Ford F-250’s led the field to the green flag.

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Briscoe won the Stage followed by Todd Gilliland and Brett Moffitt as all three manufacturers: Ford, Toyota and Chevrolet were represented.  Briscoe also won the races second stage in what was beginning to look like a rout.

That all changed in the third and final stage of the race as there were multiple caution flags and accidents that shuffled the running order a couple of times.  Briscoe pitted for tires and fuel before the third stage and couldn’t work his way through the traffic to get to the top 3.

Level Green’s Norm Benning finished 22nd in the No. 6 Chevrolet.  Benning started 27th and was running in 27th place, a lap down at the end of Stage 1.

Benning was able to get back on the lead lap during the races second stage when a 14-truck incident on lap 63 brought out the caution and Benning received the “lucky dog”. Benning finished the Stage 18th.

Benning’s third stage saw him running as high as 17th before bringing out the caution on lap 30 after his truck came to a stop on the track.  He was able to continue after a trip to pit road for service.

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NASCAR

Keselowski Wins At New Hampshire

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Maddie Meyer/Getty Images

LOUDON, NH (Pittsburgh Racing Now) – Team Penske’s Brad Keselowski passed Joe Gibbs Racing’s Denny Hamlin on lap 221 and led the final 81-laps to win the Foxwoods Resort Casino 301 at New Hampshire Motor Speedway on Sunday.

The victory was Keselowski’s third of the year and 33rd of his Cup Series career.  Keselowski’s margin of victory was 1.647-seconds.

“I’m really proud of my Western Star/Alliance Parts Ford Mustang team and the effort that they gave today,” said Keselowski. I think this is my fifth straight year with three wins, but I don’t want to stop there. I want us to keep going and I know this team can do it.”

Hamlin finished second, his 12th Top 10 finish in 2020.

“We were just barely a little slower than he was for most of the day,” said Hamlin. “We could make some really good moves on the restarts and whatnot. Overall I just thought that we were a second-place car. That’s kind of how we ended up.”

Martin Truex Jr brought the No. 19 Sport Clips Toyota home in third place, his 13th top-10 finish in 27 races at New Hampshire Motor Speedway.

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“We had a bit of an issue on pit road with a tire getting away, had to come from the rear,” said Truex. “That was pretty difficult. Sports Clips Camry was decent. I think we were probably a third-place car and we finished third.
Solid day. Just lacked a little bit of speed and drivability.”

The win leaves Keselowski in second place in the points standings, 81-points behind leader Kevin Harvick.

Hamlin’s second place finish helped him gain a spot in the points standings to third, moving Ryan Blaney back to fourth.

There were 22-lead changes among 7-drivers with Keselowski leading the most laps.  The race was slowed by 11-caution flags for 52-laps.

The next NASCAR Cup Series race is August 8 at Michigan International Speedway in Brooklyn, Michigan.

NASCAR New Hampshire Results

NASCAR New Hampshire Results

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IndyCar

The Pittsburgh Racing Now Podcast – Episode 15 – Aaron Reutzel, Matthew Dillner, Chip Ganassi and more!

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PITTSBURGH, PA (Pittsburgh Racing Now) – The latest edition of The Pittsburgh Racing Now Podcast features the 2-time and defending Champion of the Ollie’s Bargain Outlet All Star Circuit of Champions presented by Mobil 1 Aaron Reutzel.  We also talk to Matthew Dillner of Dirty Mo Media about the new show he co-hosts with Dale Earnhardt Jr.  Chip Ganassi takes his own trip down memory lane and we hear from Indianapolis Motor Speedway officials about safety protocols in place at this year’s Indy 500.

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Local Racing

Dirty Mo Media’s ‘Lost Speedways’ About More Than Just Racing

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Dirty Mo Media/Peacock

MOORESVILLE, NC (Pittsburgh Racing Now) – Dale Earnhardt Jr and Dirty Mo Media’s new show “Lost Speedways” is taking a trip down memory lane and visiting some of the race tracks that formed the foundation for what we see at our local tracks and on television every weekend.

Earnhardt Jr and co-host Matthew Dillner are preserving the history of one of the America’s great sports, auto racing, but also the stories hidden behind those fences, walls and guardrails.

“The whole point of this show is to document history before it’s gone,” Dillner told The Pittsburgh Racing Now Podcast. “To tell the stories about these racetracks that are shuddered and covered in weeds and being recaptured by nature.”

How the show came to fruition is a story in itself.  Earnhardt Jr and Dillner discovered they had something in common beside the sport of auto racing.

“We both realized we had the same hobby,” said Dillner, who is an executive producer of ‘Lost Speedways’ along with Earnhardt Jr and Mike Davis. “We had the same passion and nerdy obsession with mapping lost speedways. With him it was mapping lost speedways and with me it was mapping and exploring these lost speedways.”

Exploring these lost speedways is exactly what Earnhardt, Dillner and the Dirty Mo Media crew do.  Literally climbing through weeds and brush to uncover the stories of days gone by.

“They’re covered in weeds, but they have these mysterious stories and you’re bringing people back to that location and the people that were there and talking to them and it’s very romantic in a weird kind of a tribute,” said Dillner.

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The allure of the show is that it appeals to not only race fans but fans of history and Americana.

“It’s a lot about American culture and places that meant something to you, whether it’s a ballpark you grew up at or some memory from your childhood, all of that comes racing back when you’re exploring these places,” said Dillner. “For any history buff part of our show is about uncovering that history, the other part is kind of like ‘American Pickers’. We’re literally exploring, with boots on the ground, these locations and unearthing history. It’s definitely a magical combination.”

The magical combination responsible for ‘Lost Speedways’ put together the eight episodes with a small crew who had to overcome a huge obstacle.

“We’ve got a group of six or seven super-talented guys that fought through a Pandemic to meet our deadline for this show,” said Dillner. “A deadline that some studio shows didn’t make and we did it from our houses on laptops, overnights, working. Just really talented people with a passion to tell these stories and it’s something that I’m super, super proud of.”

Each episode takes the viewer to a different track and back in time with those who helped create the story being immortalized forever.

“They’ve got these great memories and incredible stories that haven’t been told and some of them think they’ve been forgotten, these places have been forgotten, these people have been forgotten,” said Dillner. “We’re bringing that to life in a really colorful way.”

All eight episodes of ‘Lost Speedways’ are available on Peacock TV, NBC’s new streaming service.

“I’m so, so happy that Dale convinced NBC to do this show on the Peacock and the fact that they said, ‘yes’ is incredible and we worked our butts off to make it happen and now we’re sitting back and enjoying the reaction,” said Dillner. “History matters to everybody, whether it’s your family history or something you grew up with, like you’re a big Pittsburgh Pirates fan, things matter from the past.”

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