In a nail-biter of a Pro Late Model race Wednesday night, plagued with cautions and wrecks and spins, Michael Lira, the local sixteen-year-old driver from Spruce Creek High School in Port Orange, FL, took home his first top-10 finish of this year’s World Series. And, he did it in a back-up car.
“What back-up car?” Lira joked after the race. “I’m really impressed with the way my team has managed to make this back-up car so good in such a short amount of time. It wasn’t where we wanted it to be when we first realized that we would have to go to it, but it felt great on the track tonight. I made some quality passes and managed to keep it out of trouble, so overall it was a fun night.”
Lira and his team were forced to go with a back-up car after their No. 57 Gary Yeomans Ford Mustang was caught up in a wreck on the very first lap of the World Series’ opening Pro Late Model race, and the opening laps of last night’s race, Night #5 of the World Series, had everyone in the Michael Lira Racing camp holding their breath.
“Yeah, it was crazy out there tonight,” Lira said with a grin. “It took us four tries just to get the race started! I’m just glad that we managed to miss all of the trouble, because we’re already racing the back-up. There’s no back-up back-up.”
Lira will be in action again Thursday night, for the big 100-lap Pro Late Model feature.
“I think we’re good on the long runs, so I can’t wait for the 100-lap race,” Lira said. “Hopefully we can bring home a win for the hometown fans.”