Stadium SUPER Trucks

Robby Gordon tops Long Beach SST qualifying for second straight year

2 Mins read
Credit: Stadium Super Trucks

When the Stadium Super Trucks last visited the Acura Grand Prix of Long Beach in September, Robby Gordon snapped Matt Brabham‘s Fastest Qualifier streak. Fast forward to April and the trucks’ return trip to Long Beach, and Gordon once again led the way in qualifying.

Gordon topped the twenty-minute practice/qualifying session on Friday with a best time of 1:46.666. He will seek to strengthen his grip on the California street circuit as the holder of the most SST Long Beach wins with four, which included winning Race #2 in 2021.

Brabham, who returns to the trucks after participating in Indy Lights testing at Indianapolis, finished nearly two seconds back. He is a three-time winner at Long Beach. 2018 Race #1 winner Gavin Harlien was third ahead of his first start since 2019; Harlien took a two-year hiatus to focus on academics. Jerett Brooks, 2021 Race #1 victor, was fourth.

Following sophomore Robert Stout was Davey Hamilton Jr., who last raced the trucks in 2018 and intends to race the full schedule. Hamilton live-streamed his qualifying run on Facebook.

A pair of SST débutants qualified eighth and ninth, respectively, as Ryan Arciero was ahead of Cleetus McFarland. Rounding out the top ten was Shaun Richardson of the now shuttered Boost Mobile Super Trucks, who is running his first American SST weekend since 2017.

“Out here in Long Beach straight FLYIN!!! Didn’t wreck in practice so that’s great! #FunHaverFlightSquadron is off to a great start,” posted McFarland on Instagram.

While a second-place qualifying effort is nothing to scoff at, it was not an incident-free day for Brabham as he spun and nearly tapped the wall, but was able to reverse and rejoin without damage or further issue. The final hairpin claimed Zoey Edenholm and Bill Hynes as victims of spins, with Edenholm doing so twice, and the two qualified outside the top ten which will place them on the front row for Saturday’s race.

Lap times were slower than in 2021 (Gordon’s pole-winning time that year was over two seconds quicker than Friday’s), which could be attributed to the weekend’s hotter weather and consequently a slicker track.

The first of two races will take place on Saturday at 4:30 PM Pacific Time. Race #2 is scheduled for 3:30 PM after the NTT IndyCar Series event.

Qualifying results

PositionNumberDriverBest TimeMargin
17Robby Gordon1:46.6661Leader
283Matt Brabham1:48.6441+ 1.9780
355Gavin Harlien1:48.7225+ 2.0564
427Jerett Brooks1:49.2036+ 2.5375
528Robert Stout1:49.4359+ 2.7698
614Davey Hamilton Jr.1:50.0497+ 3.3836
777Max Gordon1:50.4369+ 3.7708
832Ryan Arciero1:50.6864+ 4.0203
91776Cleetus McFarland1:52.1133+ 5.4472
1012Shaun Richardson1:52.2972+ 5.6311
1121Zoey Edenholm1:53.2484+ 6.5823
1257Bill Hynes1:55.4514+ 8.7853
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About author
Justin is a History major at San Jose State University and lifelong racing fan who has worked for The Checkered Flag since 2018. His coverage mainly focuses on NASCAR, the Stadium Super Trucks, and off-road series like Extreme E and SCORE International. He also dabbles in other disciplines such as IndyCar, rallycross, and sports cars.
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