Photo- Devin M Photography
PETERSEN MEDIA: Getting four races in over the last week, Austin McCarl had a wild stretch to close his 2021 season out with Country Builders Racing.
“In Merced, we had a fast car, I just couldn’t get qualified well either night and it resulted in a couple of 11th place finishes, including one fun run through the field,” Austin McCarl said. “Arizona, we had some horrible luck, but I really feel like we had a car that was capable of picking up a win.”
Getting the busy week underway on Tuesday night in Merced, CA, the Altoona, IA pilot would time the Country Builders Construction/Ochoco West Lumber/Brown and Miller backed No. 88 machine in sixth fastest in his group.
Starting and finishing sixth in his heat race, McCarl would make a stop in the “B” one for one final shot to sneak into the 35-lap feature event. Lining up on the pole of the semi, McCarl would continue to log laps and feel out the short confines of Merced Speedway as he was able to wire the field and pick up the win.
Transferring into the feature, McCarl would take the green flag from the 21st starting position as he would have his work cut out for him on the ¼ mile bullring.
Continuing to feel out the surface, McCarl would make some swift moves in the 35-lap affair as he clawed his way forward. Passing a ton of cars in the feature event, McCarl would salvage his night with a hard charge up to 11th at the finish line.
Back in action on Wednesday night at Merced Speedway, McCarl would open his night up by timing in 13th overall in qualifying time trials and lining up fifth in his heat race.
By way of a fifth-place finish in the heat, McCarl would line up in the 12th position for the 30-lap feature event. Spending much of the race battling with the likes of Justyn Cox and Mitchel Moles, McCarl would close his trip to Merced out with a second 11th place finish as the team would then make the trip to Arizona.
Following the Thanksgiving holiday, McCarl and company checked in at Arizona Speedway for the track’s final ever weekend of racing.
Earning quick time honors in his qualifying group, ‘The Big Unit’ would line up fourth in his heat race. Heat race action would see McCarl make a self-admitted mistake that resulted him in getting into the fence and ending his heat race prematurely.
Running the ‘B’, AMAC would put on a show as he sliced and diced his way forward from 13th. Working into the Top-5, and into a transfer position, McCarl’s fourth place finish lined him up 20th in the feature event.
On a racy Arizona Speedway surface, McCarl was able to put on a show from the tail end of the field. Working his way forward, McCarl would charge towards the Top-10.
Laying down some strong laps, McCarl would gain 12 positions as he closed the night out with an eighth-place finish.
Back in action on Saturday night for the team’s final race of the season, McCarl would again have a strong qualifying effort as he earned quick time honors in his group which placed him in the second row of his heat race.
Heat race action would ultimately bring the end of the team’s season. Contact in the early laps would result in McCarl taking a wild ride that brought an end to his night and ultimately brought the end to the season.
“Overall, it was a really good experience out here,” McCarl said. “We learned a lot as a team, and I learned a ton racing at so many different tracks and I am looking forward to building this winter. Big thanks to the Offill family and Country Builders for the opportunity they gave me.”
Austin McCarl and Country Builders Racing would like to thank Country Builders, Ochoco West Lumber, Brown and Miller Racing Solutions, MAAS Brothers Powder Coating, Offill Family Farms, , HRP, FK Shocks, A.R.T. Enterprise, Engler Machine, Aurora Rod Ends, Schoenfeld, Wilwood, Kistler Engines, K1 Safety Gear, Bell Helmets, Maxim Chassis, B. Scadden Design, and Octane Ink for their continued support.
BY THE NUMBERS: Races:19, Wins: 0, Top 5’s: 3, Top 10’s: 7
ON TAP: Country Builders Racing’s 2021 season has come to an end.
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