Chase Purdy turned in a season-best effort at World Wide Technology Raceway (WWTR) on Saturday afternoon which resulted in a 10th-place result, his best finish of the 2022 season. The driver of the No. 61 AISIN Toyota Tundra TRD Pro earned the ninth-most points of all drivers in the field and gained three positions in the championship standings. Last season, Purdy earned his career-best finish at WWTR and followed that up with his third top-15 finish in the last three races.
Purdy delivered his best qualifying effort of the year on Friday afternoon by posting the 13th-fastest lap and took the green flag from the inside of row seven on Saturday. While the event’s first stage ran without incident, Purdy fought a tight condition on both ends of the 1.25-mile egg-shaped oval and was scored 16th on lap 35. Crew chief Matt Lucas and the AISIN team made track bar and air pressure adjustments to compliment four fresh tires and fuel under the stage caution.
Purdy restarted 19th on lap 44 and quickly advanced forward by taking advantage of multiple restarts. Purdy cracked the top 10 when a caution flew on lap 54 and advanced to seventh on a lap 60 restart. His cunning maneuvers netted him the third position for a restart on lap 69 which set up a two-lap dash to complete Stage 2. Purdy held serve inside the top-five to earn seven points in fourth position on lap 70, his best stage result through 11 races this season.
Lucas and the AISIN team gave Purdy four fresh tires and a right rear wedge adjustment to aid his rotation in the center of both corners and restarted 22nd on lap 78 after the majority of lead lap trucks stayed out. Purdy ran 20th by the time a caution flew at lap 94, which allowed him to make his final pit stop of the afternoon. Quick pit work by the AISIN squad netted him the 13th position for a restart at lap 100. The Meridian, Miss. driver then went to work by cracking the top-10 on lap 114 and moved to seventh by lap 130. Purdy hung inside the top-10 until lap 154 when he surrendered that position but caught a caution with two laps remaining on lap 159. He lined up 11th for the overtime restart and was scored 10th when a caution waved on the final lap, which secured his best finish of the year and his first top-10 since Talladega Superspeedway last season.
Chase Purdy Quote:
“I thought we had a really fast AISIN Toyota Tundra TRD Pro. We ran inside the top-10 for a good portion of the day, actually the majority of the day I felt like. We collected some stage points in Stage 2, and we had to go to the back after playing some strategy in Stage 2. We just had to claw our way back to the front. Track position was so crucial and important here. We had a really good day. We got back inside the top-10, around that sixth to ninth area for a while. We had a crazy restart at the end of a green-white-checkered and finished 10th. The point is a lot of people knew we were there today.”