Shawn Balluzzo’s Win Streak Comes to an End in Modified Night Cap at the Hands of Brandon Gdovic; Bounty Still in Tact After Balluzzo and Gdovic Split Twins

Hampton, VA– All good things eventually come to an end. For Shawn Balluzzo that would be his undefeated 2019 season. However, the $1,000 bounty is still up for grabs after Balluzzo picked up win number fifteen in the opening 40-lap feature.

Balluzzo admitted in victory lane following his flag-to-flag win in the first race that was the hardest he had to drive holding off Gdovic for 40-laps. What he didn’t know was race number two was going to be even more of a challenge. After electing to go to the rear in victory lane Balluzzo was already facing an up hill battle while Brandon Gdovic had to pass just three cars to assume the lead doing so in just eight laps.

Once out front and in clean air Gdovic set a pace that was unmatched by no one as we watched Balluzzo tear through the field – breaking into the top five by just lap ten. That was about the time Balluzzo’s luck ran out while taking a peak under Jamie Sample for second. The two must have touched which cut down Balluzzo’s right-front tire and sent him lackadaisical into the turn two outside wall drawing the first caution of the second feature. He was able to get to pit road and a new tire put on but starting once more in the rear of the field proved to be an issue. Just a handful of laps later several cars pile up in turn four forcing Balluzzo to get on the binders hard, locking up the tires and getting hit by a couple other cars trying to avoid. He was deemed part of the caution and not eligible for the cone.

Meanwhile, Gdovic was money on each of the following restarts really using the power of a brand new car to his advantage. The only real challenge for Gdovic came on the final restart – which was also the final nail in the coffin for Balluzzo – when the 48 was able to take the cone and start on the outside. After a flat tire, contact with the wall, flat spots, and contact with others, there was nothing left in the tank. Gdovic cleared the field into one and Sample cleared Balluzzo going into three. Gdovic would drive away creating more than a five-second gap over the rest of the field. Balluzzo was able to get around Sample in the closing laps to secure second. Danny Harrell and Eric McPherson rounded out the top five.

“I wish Shawn could have been able to get up there so we could have battled a little more,” Gdovic commented in victory lane. “Not really sure how the bounty deal works but if they give it to us then great. It was really fun to come back home and race. Glad my dad let me help get a little race trim here and get things figured out. The PPM boys built an awesome car. I just have to thank them, my mom and dad, ComServe Wireless and WindStax for all the support throughout the years.”

Gdovic has been absent from Langley Speedway for a few years now dipping his toes in both the K&N Series along with a few races in the NASCAR Xfinity series before his most recent success in the Lamborghini Trofeo series.

“You have to compare this win in a different way,” Gdovic said. “This my Hometrack so it’s special on a different level to come back home after a few years and see familiar faces. Short-track racing on a Saturday night is some of the best racing is at every night.”

Balluzzo earned the right to lead the field to the green to kick of Pete’s Towing night after laying down a 16.356 (86.941 MPH) second lap. Gdovic, who was fastest all day in practice lined up to his right side. Jamie Sample, Danny Harrell, and Rick Gdovic made up the starting five. From the drop of the green flag, it was the Balluzzo and Gdovic show. Balluzzo was able to keep Gdovic at bay even after several solid shots to the rear bumper. Danny Harrell, rookie Grant Blasingame, and Eric McPherson rounded out the top five. Todd Whitesell, Rick Gdovic, and Peyton Ferree completed the top eight finishers to set the invert.

“It was fun I have to say that,” Balluzzo commented about the final ten laps of the first forty-lap feature. “Brandon did a great job. All of these guys are doing a great job they have got their game going on. I am having a harder and harder time every week staying ahead of them.”

Brandon and I have been bantering back and forth,” Balluzzo commented about the social media post coming into the weekend in regards to the bounty out for him. “It’s just all in good fun, I hope he realizes that. It was great out there tonight and I know the fans have got to be loving all this with all that’s been going on and its been getting more interesting.”

 

Larry King Law Modified Race 1 UNOFFICIAL Results;

  1. #48 Shawn Balluzzo; 40
  2. #64 Brandon Gdovic; 40
  3. #95 Danny Harrell; 40
  4. #7 Grant Blasingame; 40
  5. #16 Eric McPherson; 40
  6. #49 Todd Whitesell; 39
  7. #47 Rick Gdovic; 39
  8. #23 Peyton Ferree; 39
  9. #19 Bubba Johnston; 26
  10. #28 Jamie Sample; 25
  11. #98 Matt Morgan; 9
  12. #3 Brad Adams; 9
  13. #18 DJ Valente; 9

 

Larry King Law Modified Race 2 UNOFFICIAL Results;

  1. #64 Brandon Gdovic; 40
  2. #48 Shawn Balluzzo; 40
  3. #28 Jamie Sample; 40
  4. #95 Danny Harrell; 40
  5. #16 Eric McPherson; 40
  6. #3 Brad Adams; 40
  7. #47 Rick Gdovic; 40
  8. #7 Grant Blasingame; 39
  9. #23 Peyton Ferree; 39
  10. #49 Todd Whitesell; 39
  11. #98 Matt Morgan; 21

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