That was the plan for Ryan Preece on the way to an evening sweep Wednesday at Thompson Speedway.
After watching Keith Rocco and Rowan Pennink in a feisty battle for the lead lap after lap, Preece went to the front on lap 21 and led the rest of the way to win the second 25-lap NASCAR Whelen All-American Series SK Modified feature Wednesday at Thompson Speedway.
“It was definitely intense,” Preece said. “I want to focus on how good this race car was. … We didn’t have tires to put on for this race and right there at the beginning we were kind of saving it. I expected Keith to go out and have a really good car and drive away. This car was just phenomenal once lap 10 took off. It was just consistent, had big forward drive. So I want to thank [crew chief] Mike Paquette.”
Rocco, of Wallingford, was second and Pennink, of Huntingdon Valley, Pa. third.
Preece also won the first 25-lap event of the night.
Pennink went to the lead at the start with Rocco going by Woody Pitkat for second on lap seven.
On lap eight Rocco got under Pennink for the lead in turn three, but Pennink was able to cross him over in turn four and regain the top spot.
The pair pulled the same swapping on lap nine and then again on lap 11. All the while Preece paced behind in waiting.
On lap 13 Rocco made a move under Pennink in turn three, and Pennink wasn’t able to fight back off of turn four to grab the lead again. On the next lap Preece got by Pennink for second place and then went to setting up Rocco for the lap 21 winning pass.
“Sitting back there and I was watching [Rocco cross over] with [Pennink],’ Preece said. “I was kind of sitting there. I was kind of just watching where [Rocco] was doing it and how he was doing it. And I wasn’t going to screw [Pennink] up.
“Once the opportunity arose and I followed Keith through, it was just pretty much play the cat and mouse game. Just push him down the straightaways and kind of set up that inside-outside move. When the time came I got a really big run out of [turn] two and we made it happen.”