Two-time defending Bandit Big Rig Series champion Ricky “Rude” Proffitt claimed his first win of 2019 this past weekend at Salem Speedway in Salem, Indiana.
Proffitt started the race in 7th and used a timely caution flag halfway through the race to take the lead on a restart and never look back. Proffitt beat out Mike Morgan and Allen Boles for the victory.
“Me and Mike [Morgan] have raced together for many years,” Proffitt said after the race. “He races me semi-clean, and I race him semi-clean, but we’re buddies.”
The race started with a bang as drivers couldn’t complete a lap before the first caution flag of the night flew. Darren Proffitt and Craig Kruckeberg collided, causing Darren Proffitt’s truck to slide backwards up the track in the path of Scott Treadway, who had nowhere to go and collided head-on with Proffitt. Both drivers were able to climb out of their trucks uninjured, but their trucks were done for the night.
On the next restart, Allen Boles, who started on the pole, jumped out ahead of the pack and led the first lap before another crash occurred – this one involving Kruckeberg, Brian Cash and Austin Hoppe. Hoppe and Cash collided, causing Cash to hit the outside wall. Kruckeberg locked up his brakes to avoid the crash, causing his rear end to slide around, which collided with Cash’s front end.
Morgan made his move on the next restart, passing Boles and leading until the next caution, which came out with 14 laps to go. Mark Noble’s truck sustained damage and caused debris to hit the track, which prompted the yellow flag.
Morgan restarted the race in the lead with Ricky Proffitt in second, but when the green flag dropped, Proffitt made his move and took the lead for good.
Rounding out the top five finishers were Morgan, Boles, Brian Bayer and Kruckeberg. Bandit Series rookie Bendegúz Molnár finished third in the race but was disqualified for failing the post-race inspection. Molnár was leading the overall points standings going into the race, but without earning any points at the Salem race, he now sits in 11th overall. Ricky “Rude” Proffitt is the new points leader with seven races remaining on the schedule.
The Bandit Big Rig Series will take the Independence Day weekend off before returning to action on Saturday, July 13, at Lake Erie Speedway in North East, Pennsylvania.