Matt Brabham rebounds, closes Austin weekend with victory

by Justin Nguyen

The second and final race of the SPEED Energy Stadium Super Trucks‘ weekend at Circuit of the Americas took place Sunday morning. After a disappointing run on Saturday, Matt Brabham bounced back to wrap up the weekend with the win.

The field was inverted from Saturday’s finishing order, which placed Gavin Harlien, who experienced mechanical trouble during the day’s race, at the front ahead of Bill Hynes. Brabham started fifth; the reigning champion was forced to settle for sixth in Saturday’s race after spinning out late in the event to spoil a strong day. Furthermore, he had a bout with an illness overnight, but was medically cleared to race on Sunday. Saturday’s top drivers like podium finishers Ryan Beat, winner Blade Hildebrand, and Robby Gordon were at the back.

Harlien led Hynes early as the field organised into single file. As the first lap closed, third-placed Travis Pecoy onward began to group together, which enabled Brabham to drive to take the position.

Credit: John Arndt

On lap three, Hynes started to fall when Brabham passed him for second, followed by Jeff Hoffman for third later in the lap. The competition caution came out the following lap, with Harlien, Brabham, and Hoffman comprising the top three.

A quick scramble at the restart promoted Hildebrand to third, who attempted a move for second on Brabham later on lap five but could not complete it. When lap six began, the field separated into two four-truck packs.

With two laps to go, Brabham made his move on Harlien for the lead, ultimately succeeding. Harlien attempted to take the position back, clearing Brabham before he retook the spot entering Turn 19. The grid eventually bunched back up; with the others fighting, Brabham was able to establish a safe margin as Hoffman passed Harlien for second.

With Hoffman unable to catch up, Brabham drove off to his fifteenth career SST win.

SST Circuit of the Americas Race #2 results

1583Matt Brabham8Leader
2447Jeff Hoffman8+ 0.764
3155Gavin Harlien8+ 1.051
4768Blade Hildebrand8+ 2.111
587Robby Gordon8+ 3.125
6651Ryan Beat8+ 3.496
7257Bill Hynes8+ 6.951
8360Travis Pecoy8+ 7.565

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