Closer and Closer: David Gravel Earns Two More Runner-up Finishes with the All Stars

July 23rd, 2012

By DDR Motorsports PR 
Watertown, Conn.—July 22, 2012 — It’s often said that Top-10 finishes lead to Top-Fives, which in turn lead to Top-Threes and then wins follow from there. If that holds true, David Gravel should be in Victory Lane pretty soon. The 20-year-old earned two more runner-up finishes this past week, in a stretch that saw him finish among the Top-Six in five feature events.
Gravel opened the week with the World of Outlaws in the Don Martin Memorial Silver Cup Twins 30’s at Lernerville Speedway in Sarver, Pa., on Tuesday, July 17. The native of Watertown, Conn., lined up 12th in the first 30-lap main event and worked his way into the Top-10 within the first couple laps of the race. He found himself in the Top-Five by the 12th circuit, enduring six cautions in the first 12 laps. By the halfway point of the first Twin 30, the East Coast racer was running third.
Gravel lined up third on a double file restart on lap-18, following a fuel stop and fell back two spots to fifth. He would battle several drivers for the fourth position over the final 12 laps, nearly taking that spot on several occasions. When the checkered flag flew, the 20-year-old finished fifth, which was his seventh Top-Five performance of the season with the World of Outlaws. The finale of the Don Martin Memorial Silver Cup Twin 30’s was lined up by an inversion of the lead lap cars from the opener, with Gravel taking the green flag in 16th. He would finish 19th in that contest.
“It was a strong field of cars at Lernerville, so I was pretty happy finishing fifth,” said Gravel. “We came from outside the dash as well, which was pretty good. When you can finish in the Top-Five with those guys, it’s a good night for sure and always helps boost the confidence.”
Gravel returned to action with the UNOH All Star Circuit of Champions on Wednesday, July 18, at Brewerton Speedway in New York, finishing second. The event marked the first-ever 410-sprint car race at the high-banked one-third-mile. He opened the night as the fastest qualifier for the fifth time in 2012 with the All Stars. Gravel lined up sixth in the first heat race and finished fifth to earn a spot in the dash, where he ran second. In the 30-lap main event, he made a late race charge, nearly snagging the win on the last lap from three-time and defending All Stars champion Tim Shaffer.
“If lapped traffic hadn’t been there on the last lap, I probably would have won,” explained the young driver. “A lapped car blocked my lane, but that’s just part of racing and something you have to deal with. We were fast again and showed we are capable of running up front every night.”
On Wednesday, July 19, Gravel and the rest of the All Stars took to the track at Fonda Speedway, also in New York, where he would again finish second to Shaffer. He opened the night as the fifth-fastest driver in time trials, finishing sixth in the second eight-lap heat race to earn a spot in the dash, where he came home sixth. Starting the 30-lap main event from the outside of the third row, Gravel worked his way up to second just past the halfway point of the main event, setting his sights on leader Shaffer, who would earn his second straight win. The runner-up finish was his third of the season with the All Stars.
“It was a little different at Fonda, as I started fifth and worked my way up to second with about seven (laps) to-go,” shared Gravel. “There were a few lapped cars between us, so I never got too close to Tim (Shaffer). I was just trying to race as hard as I could and see where it took me. We’ll just keep at it and racing hard and wins will come.”
The week concluded on Saturday, July 21, with the first round of the annual “Thunder Through the Plains” for the All Stars, which this year began at Wilmot Raceway in Wisconsin with a race that was co-sanctioned with Bumper to Bumper IRA Outlaw Sprint Series. Gravel was making his first start at the flat one-third-mile bullring, and his third appearance in the Badger State this season. He began the night by earning his sixth fast qualifier award of the season with the All Stars. Starting sixth in the first heat race, Gravel powered his way to third to earn a spot in the dash, where he both started and finished second. In the main event he would finish sixth.
“The night started off really good for us, and we were good in the dash,” he said. “We didn’t change much for the feature, so I’m not sure if something broke on the car or what. We’ll have to really check the car out. It was a good night up until that. A ‘bad night’ finishing sixth is still pretty good.”
Gravel, who moved up two spots to third in points with the All Stars following his three finishes of sixth or better last week, returns to action on Tuesday, July 24, at Hibbing Raceway in Minnesota as the “Thunder Through the Plains” continues. Five races in six nights await the series this week.
Lernerville Speedway, Brewerton Speedway, Fonda Speedway & Wilmot Raceway Results

Date Time
Heat Finish Dash Start Dash Finish Feature Start Feature Finish
July 17 6th 3rd 4th N/A N/A 12th 5th
July 18 1st 6th 5th 4th 2nd 2nd 2nd
July 19 5th 5th 6th 5th 6th 6th 2nd
July 21 1st 6th 3rd 2nd 2nd 2nd 6th

David Gravel and DDR Motorsports would like to thank: J&J Chassis, JRC Transportation, Kistler Engines, Musco Fuels and P&M Transportation for their continued support.
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