Lofton and Creed Take Toronto Trophies in Stadium Super Trucks' Return to Action
When Robby Gordon announced the restructured schedule for the remainder of the 2013 Stadium Super Trucks, there was a lot of questioning whether they could gain back the momentum they had early in the year. It had been over a month since the last event, and with event cancelations, it was hard to determine if the series would have to start fresh, try to regain what it had at the beginning.
The return venue for the SST's was at the Toronto Grand Prix, running alongside the Indy Car Series. It would be the first time the series would run on an all-asphalt track since the second event of the season, held at the Grand Prix of Long Beach.
Two events would make up the weekend, each being eight laps and they would run the same course as the Indy Cars, but there would be metal ramps so throttle control in certain areas would be crucial.
Saturday's event would mark the official return to racing, Jimmy Vasser was on the pole for the first race, but was unable to race because of back pain. Davey Hamilton would take over the ride and have the task of going into an unfamiliar truck and leading the field to green. Not to mention current points leader, Rob McCachren would start alongside him.
The lead would swap between the two early on, but Townsend Bell, Justin Lofton and Gordon were coming. Hamilton fell out after three laps due to engine failure, but it was becoming clear that Lofton and Bell were the ones to beat.
At the midway restart, it set off a great battle between both of them, swapping positions seemingly at every corner, laying rubber down at each point as they drifted through the turns.
But then Gordon found trouble as he went wide one time too many, catching the outside wall and putting a big gash in his tire. That ultimately ended his afternoon.
Lofton then cruised to his second victory of the season, ironically coming on an all-paved track just like at Long Beach.
Coming into Sunday, what set the field for the second race of the weekend was the fast times from the day prior. The field was inverted, and that meant a driver making his debut in the SST Series had the pole, Indy Car driver Paul Tracy. Hamilton started second, and with some of the top drivers back in the field, it would make for a difficult race to run.
It got harder for Gordon as on the first lap, already starting shotgun on the field, he spun out. But knowing there was a mid-race caution he was not overly worried.
In fact, he would rally and charge back through the field to make it to the runner-up spot. Meanwhile, Tracy himself was having a strong race as he stayed in the top-three for majority of the race. But, while Gordon was closing in for second, Tracy connected with the wall, but decided to keep going. The problem was he didn't know how bad the damage was, and in his attempt to keep going, on the next launch on a ramp the truck destroyed the entire left-front corner of the truck.
But, the driver that shocked everyone was a young man that doesn't have a driver's license yet. On Sunday, it was 15-year-old Sheldon Creed that led from lap three until the end.
After coming so close on many occasions, Creed finally broke through and got his first SST win, with Gordon running second.
The SST Series has a long break until their next race, which will be on Sunday, September 1, at one of the most hallowed grounds for off-road racing. For the first time, the SST's will compete at the Crandon International Speedway in Crandon, Wisconsin.
Tickets are available for this event, so visit StadiumSuperTrucks.com for event information and ticket locations.