Kyle Bronson won Thursday's Sunshine Nationals opener at Volusia.
What won the race: Polesitter Kyle Bronson of Brandon, Fla., led all 25 laps to win Thursday's Sunshine Nationals opener at Volusia Speedway Park, topping Randy Weaver by 0.830 seconds. Following a late caution, Bronson survived a two-lap shootout for a $1,500 victory in the event co-sanctioned by the Newsome Raceway Parts Crate Racin’ USA Winter Shootout and DIRTcar.
Quotable: “The car was pretty good. Me and Mark got together there early, but we was just racing hard,” said Bronson. “That clean air was pretty big right there I felt like out front. It took me a couple two or three laps to get going, but I felt like when we got going four or five laps in when had a car (that was) the class of the field. The inverts are tough and we hit it just right tonight.”
Key notes: Twenty-one of the 26 starters finished the race, with 16 completing all 25 laps. … Mark Whitener of Middleburg, Fla., spun while challenging Bronson for the lead on lap nine. Whitener looped his car and kept going, but was charged with the yellow and sent to the rear. He rebounded to finish eighth. … The race was slowed by four cautions: Nevin Gainey had a flat on lap six; Jody Knowles slowed on lap seven; Whitener on lap nine; and for Pierce McCarter, who spun and tagged the front stretch wall on lap 23. … Cody Overton of Evans, Ga., won Thursday's 602 Crate feature. ... David Showers Jr. won the Limited Late Models feature. … Action continues Friday with a $2,000-to-win main event and Saturday with a $10,000-to-win finale.
On the move: David Whitener of Middleburg, Fla., started 20th and finished seventh.
Winner's sponsors: Bronson’s Rocket Chassis is sponsored by Brandon Ford, Brandon Collision, All Florida Real Estate Group, Racecar Engineering and Valvoline.
Points chase: After one Newsome CUSA Winter Series event, Jimmy Elliott of Cleveland, Tenn., led Ronnie Johnson, Pierce McCarter, Chase Walls and Cory Hedgecock.
Current weather: Clear, 68°F
Car count: 41
Fast qualifier: Randy Weaver
Time: 16.997 seconds
Polesitter: Kyle Bronson
Heat race winners: Randy Weaver, Clay Harris, Corey Almond, Kyle Bronson
Consolation race winners: Jimmy Waldrop, Devin Dixon
Provisional starters: Sam Halstead, Cruz Skinner
Next series race: January 17, Volusia Speedway Park (Barberville, FL) $2,000