Friday, January 3, 2014

2013 NASCAR K&N Pro Series West Driver Review

Derek Thorn wins the K&N Pro Series West Championship
Derek Thorn wins the K&N Pro Series West Championship


Top Driver

Derek Thorn: In winning the series championship, Thorn relied on a consistent performance throughout the season. He registered three wins, three poles, 12 top-fives and 14 top-10s. In addition to his victories, he finished as the runner-up in four races. He was out front in nine of the 15 events, leading 627 laps for the year. Thorn scored his first career road course win with a victory at Sonoma (Calif.) Raceway. He also had wins on two short tracks – Stockton (Calif.) 99 Speedway and Colorado National Speedway in Dacono.

Greg Pursley (Honorable Mention): For the third consecutive year, Pursley had the most wins during the season – with five. In his fifth season of driving the No. 26 Gene Price Motorsports/Star Nursery/Real Water Ford, Pursley opened the 2013 campaign with a win at Phoenix and then came on strong late in the season, with four wins in seven events. With 18 wins, Pursley ranks eighth on the list of career series victories.

Comeback Driver of the Year

Daryl Harr: In his 13th year of competing in the series, Daryl Harr had one of his best seasons. He finished seventh in the championship standings, matching his career-best ranking of 2004 – which was his first full season in the series. He also had a career-best finish, with a second-place finish at Lebanon (Mo.) I-44 Speedway.

Carl Harr (Honorable Mention): Like his son, Daryl, Carl Harr experienced similar career marks in 2013. He finished eighth in the championship standings, which matched his career-best ranking of 2004. He also had a career-best finish, fifth at Evergreen Speedway in Monroe, Wash. And for the first time, he was the lap leader – at NAPA Speedway near Albuquerque, N.M.

Top Team

Gene Price Motorsports: Gene Price Motorsports drivers had another big year in 2013, scoring six wins collectively. They also dominated series qualifying for a second straight season. They accounted for eight of the 14 pole awards. On six occasions, Hayley won the 21 Means 21 Pole Award by Coors Brewing Co. Pursley, meanwhile, won the Coors Light Pole Award in two events.

Sunrise Ford Racing (Honorable Mention): The two-car effort of the Sunrise Ford Racing team of Bob Bruncati took home two big prizes in 2013 – with Thorn winning the series championship and Dylan Lupton winning the Sunoco Rookie of the Year Award. In the overall championship standings, they finished first and fifth, respectively.

Top Breakthrough Performance

Cameron Hayley: Hayley had 15 top-10 finishes in 15 starts in 2013. He was the only driver in the series to finish in the top 10 in every one of the 15 races, including his overall finish in the two combination races with the K&N East at Iowa Speedway. After five runner-up finishes, the 17-year-old finally scored his first win – driving the No. 24 Cabinets by Hayley Ford for Gene Price Motorsports to victory at All American Speedway in Roseville, Calif. Hayley, a member of the NASCAR Next program, kicked off his year by winning the UNOH Battle At The Beach at Daytona International Speedway in February.

Dylan Lupton (Honorable Mention): After three series starts in 2011 that resulted in lackluster finishes, Lupton returned to the series in 2013 to score his first win and capture the Sunoco Rookie of the Year title. In addition to a victory at Evergreen Speedway in Monroe, Wash., he registered four top-five and 12 top-10 finishes driving the No. 9 Vadio/Lupton Excavating/Sunrise Ford Ford.

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