The first official race, the Winter Warmup at Watermelon Capital Speedway, of Season Two started off uneventful for #57 Darryl Doty. Driving the Marlboro/Jim Beam Thunderbird, Doty managed to qualify 14th among his Season Two peers. Doty had qualified well in the pre-season, earning a Pole on his first race. The 14th place qualify was a letdown for Doty.
“I figured I’d be able to get a good starting position heading into the day. Practice went well, but the qualifying wasn’t so hot. I think I was overthinking things.”
The race itself was a solid performance for Doty, moving up and down while fending off those behind him as he did. His Thunderbird performed nicely, but he never caught the break he needed to move up.
“The car handled nicely and I managed to do some moving here and there. I never felt like there was an opening. The other drivers were fast. I think one thing I’ve realized is how much good competition there is in the SCOR.”
Doty finished 16th, only two below where he started. It’s a solid start, one that places Doty in the middle of the pack. For someone who was ranked #3 in the preseason predictions, however, the final finish wasn’t enough. Doty wants more.
“16th is not good, not good at all. I plan on winning the championship and winning races and 16th won’t cut it. I’m gonna practice and perform much better.”
The Season 2 squad heads to the Kern County Raceway next, where Doty and his crew plan to make a statement. Doty’s crew chief, Myles Hanes, is adamant that Doty press his case in the next race.
“I think we played it a little too safe at Watermelon, but we are going to go all-out in the next one and try to make a statement. We’ve got the car, Darryl is a solid and consistent driver, and I think we’ve got everything we need to win it.”