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Matt Brabham earns 2 wins in Stadium SUPER Truck Series fill-in role

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One week after he came up short of winning the 100th running of the Indianapolis 500 (finished 22nd) or being top rookie, Matt Brabham found his way to victory lane this past weekend.

Twice, in fact – and coming in a fill-in role, no less – replacing Stadium SUPER Truck Series founder Robby Gordon, who is preparing for the Baja 1000.

Brabham won the first and third scheduled races in the Stadium SUPER Truck Series events at Belle Isle, part of the Verizon IndyCar Series weekend in Detroit.

The second race was red flagged and not completed after Australian driver Matt Mingay was seriously injured on a Lap 3 incident.

Brabham then dedicated his win in the third race to Mingay.

“It was great to get the win today and really make it two from two, but our thoughts are with Matt (Mingay) and his wife Sheena,” Brabham said after his second trip to victory lane in Detroit.

“It was a crazy weekend and all our thoughts and prayers are with Matt and his family. We were racing for him today.

“We were so happy to see him taken off the critical list, but obviously he has a tough road ahead of him for a while and we all just hope his recovery is quick and as successful as possible.”

In the first SST race, the 22-year-old Brabham beat back challenges from Arie Luyendyk Jr. and Aaron Bambach. Brabham even wore the same PIRTEK Team Murray firesuit he wore in the Indy 500.

In the third race, Brabham started from the back of the field, methodically worked his way back up through the pack, was in the lead by mid-race and then held off late charges from EJ Viso and fellow Australian Paul Morris.

Brabham, who previously competed in the SSTS race as part of the Toyota Long Beach Grand Prix in April, is still seeking a full-time IndyCar ride for 2017. He also hopes to continue competing in the Stadium Super Truck Series in the meantime. That includes the next SSTS race, the Castrol Edge Townsville 400, from July 8-10, in Australia.

“It is no secret that I would love to be behind the wheel of an IndyCar this weekend, but I am grateful just to be racing,” Brabham said. “It was terrific when Robby offered me the seat. I could not be happier to bring the Arctic Cat truck home in first place.

“I really enjoy my Stadium Super Truck racing and to get my first ever win (on Friday) was a bonus. It has been a whirlwind month with the 500 and coming here, but I have enjoyed every minute of it.

“Being a part of the Verizon IndyCar Series for the month of May was an enormous buzz and has just made me more hungry than ever to be in a full-time ride.

“I am ready to go and all I can do is keep doing the best I can in whatever I am racing.”

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Adam Cianciarulo serves notice with Monster Energy Cup win

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In his debut on a 450 Kawasaki, Adam Cianciarulo held off teammate Eli Tomac in a hotly contested final Main to win the Monster Energy Cup at Sam Boyd Stadium: One race; one win.

“My first thought was, ‘what I life I get to live,’ ” Cianciarulo told NBCSN after the race. “That whole race I knew (Eli) was behind me. We had a gap and I knew it was going to come down to the Joker Lane.”

For Cianciarulo, it was all about managing pressure. He earned the holeshot in the first and final Mains. In the first race, he lost his bike and the lead under the bridge. In the final Main, he withstood a fierce charge for 10 laps from one of the best riders ever in Supercross.

Tomac stalked Cianciarulo for eight laps. At one point, he made the pass, but Cianciarulo expertly executed a crossover move and retook the point in the same corner. Tomac knew he was going to have to change things up if he wanted to make a pass for the lead and the overall win.

“Going into the Joker, I couldn’t really ever make the pass stick, so I thought let me get in this thing a lap early and see if I can make the speed up on the track,” Tomac said after the race.

He had a reason to believe it would turn out in his favor because he used the tactic in the second Main and made up four spots on the track – advancing from seventh to fourth.

“Just the opportunity to race with Eli,” Cianciarulo continued from Victory Lane. “You know, he’s accomplished so much and just to be out there on the track with him. I’m just stoked to be out there with him.”

Cianciarulo would have been forgiven if he thought Las Vegas owed him something. Entering the Supercross season finale this year, he only needed a clean finish to win the 250 West championship. He crashed and handed the win over to Dylan Ferrandis, but instead of allowing that to frustrate him, Cianciarulo used it as motivation.

“(Winning this race) is a little bit of redemption, but to be honest with you I look at (the accident in) Vegas now after winning the outdoor motocross championship as something that helped me get there,” Cianciarulo said. “It’s helped me grow.”

With his overall win, Cianciarulo pocketed a $100,000 check. The payday could have been $1 million if any rider had been able to win all three Mains. Instead, three Mains featured three different riders. Tomac won the first Main, Malcolm Stewart the second, and Cianciarulo the third.

Tomac stormed to the lead in the first Main and was slicing through the field in Main 2 before he flipped his bike on a bad landing. He fell from challenging for the lead to 10th. Ten laps does not allow a lot of time to make up for a mistake, but Tomac was able to make up significant time by taking the Joker Lane one lap before Cianciarulo and Stewart.

Malcolm Stewart finished third in his return to Supercross racing.

Stewart would win the second Main, completing a comeback nine months in the making. Early in the Supercross season, he crashed hard in Phoenix and broke his femur.

“I’ve been waiting nine months for all this; I’m just having fun out there.” Stewart said at the end of Main 2. “We’ve got another race to go and hopefully we’re on the top step, but if not, we’re already making dreams come true. I’ve already marked things off my checklist. It was just to win a Main Event.”

Entering the final Main Cianciarulo, Tomac, and Stewart were in a dead heat in regard to points. Cianciarulo finished second in the first two Mains, Tomac had a 1-3 with Stewart at a 3-1. The battle would be a “winner takes all” scenario.

How they finished in the final Main determined the overall result with Stewart finishing third in the race and overall standings.

Vince Friese had the ride of his life. With a 4-5-5, he finished fourth.

Friese was also trying to erase an injury-plagued season.

“I had a good (2019) season going,” Friese said. “I don’t think I got to show everything I had. It was frustrating getting hurt just a few races in and five months off the motorcycle is not fun, so I was hungry tonight.”

The World Champion Tim Gajser scored a 7-4-4 and rounded out the top five.

Dean Wilson crashed hard in the last lap of practice. He was transported to the hospital with a leg injury.

Evan Ferry won the Supermini division on the strength of winning both Mains. Gavin Towers and Myles Gilmore rounded out the top three.

In 250 Futures, Jett Lawrence won both Mains and the overall. Jalek Swoll and Brock Papi rounded out the top three.

Main 1 Results
Main 2 Results
Main 3 Results
Overall Results

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