Aaron Reutzel Goes Two-For-Two In The Buckeye State

Despite a late arriving shower’s attempt to ruin the evening by creating a near-three hour rain delay just after heat race competition was complete, Fremont Speedway and Ollie’s Bargain Outlet All Star Circuit of Champions presented by Mobil 1 officials persevered and proved Mother Nature wrong, giving Fremont, Ohio, fans their first taste of All Star competition in nearly three and a half years.

The delay was well worth the wait for the enthusiastic fans, as Clute, Texas’ Aaron Reutzel hard charged ten positions to claim a second All Star victory in as many contested events. In fact, Reutzel’s impressive charge to the top of the podium did not require all 40 main event circuits, as the defending All Star champion took the lead for the first time on lap 12, utilizing a restart on lap 11 to drive around Aliquippa, Pennsylvania’s Tim Shaffer for the runner-up spot, soon followed by a second slingshot move in turns one and two to drive around race leader, Paul McMahan, the following circuit.

Impressive enough, the $5,000 victory bumped Reutzel’s career win total with Tony Stewart’s All Star Circuit of Champions to 11, each of those occurring at a different race track.

Nashville’s Paul McMahan held on to maintain second at the final checkers, followed by Rookie of the Year contender, Skylar Gee, a fast closing Christopher Bell from 12th, and local standout, Craig Mintz.

“This isn’t Ohio racing. This is a night when a guy can drive really hard & make a difference,” Aaron Reutzel expressed in victory lane, driver of the Baughman-Reutzel Motorsports/Fisher Body Shop/Folkens Brothers Trucking/Precision Catalyst/Hollywood Coating/Dissolvalloy/No. 87 sprint car. “A big thanks going out to the track and fans for sticking this one out and making this happen for us. We just want to race! Oh, and for the guy booing me, stop down when we’re done here and I’ll sign you an autograph.”

Despite starting 11th on the grid, Reutzel wasted little time powering his way toward the front of the field. By lap five, with the added help of a caution, Reutzel was able to advance his way to fifth, eventually battling his way around Brock Zearfoss for the fourth position with only nine laps recorded. A slowing Tyler Esh, who was racing just ahead of Reutzel, soon pulled to a stop on the speedway, not only allowing Reutzel the opportunity to restart in the third position, but it also gave the Texan a clear takeover attempt on the ensuing restart.

When green flags flew again, Reutzel pounced, this time utilizing an impressive slingshot move through turns one and two to drive around Tim Shaffer for the runner-up position. It was just one circuit later when Reutzel repeated his power move through the first and second corners, skimming the narrow cushion to blast by Paul McMahan to officially lead lap 12.

From that point forward, it was all Aaron Reutzel at the front of the field, and although the Texan was forced to deal with periods of heavy traffic during the later stages of the 40-lap program, as well as two more stoppages in the form of cautions – one of which a red flag incident involving Brock Zearfoss, Tim Shaffer and Buddy Kofoid – the former ASCS national champion and defending All Star champion was untouchable.

“He’s a champion for a reason,” Paul McMahan said, who led the first 11 circuits at Fremont Speedway aboard the Tom Buch-owned No. 13. “They have a solid team, so hats off to those guys for what they are able to do. [Aaron Reutzel] just about sucked my tear-offs off when he blew by me coming out of [turn two]. He showed me the top, so I was able to move up there and hang with him. I can’t thank my group of misfits enough. They work hard and I appreciate what they do.”

“This team is just unbelievable,” Reutzel continued. “We put this deal together last year and it’s all the same group of guys. It’s just…unbelievable.”

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