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William Sawalich Runs Near Perfect Race to Win Sprecher 150

William Sawalich showcased his stock car prowess at The Milwaukee Mile. (Photo: Mike Moore | The Podium Finish)

WEST ALLIS, Wis. – Four drivers attempted the Milwaukee double this past weekend. William Sawalich, Sean Hignorani, Conner Jones and Grant Enfinger each pulled double duty for the ARCA Menards and ARCA Menards Series East Sprecher 150 crossover race and the NASCAR Craftsman Trucks Clean Harbors 175.

From the start of the weekend, the 16-year-old from Eden Prairie, Minnesota had a fast car, setting the track qualifying record of 29.069 seconds, beating the previous track record of 29.354 seconds set by Ty Gibbs in 2021.

Sawalich entered the race as the ARCA Menards Series East points leader with a nine-point lead over Luke Fenhouse, and ninth in points in the ARCA Menards Series standings.

The day belonged to Sawalich, with the only competition coming from Jesse Love who battled Sawalich on each restart. Love was better as the green flag fell, but that alone was not enough to overcome the speed Sawalich had in the Joe Gibbs Toyota.

Mainly, Sawalich executed a perfect crossover move on the restarts in the first half of the race which only had two cautions. The first caution was on Lap 23 for debris in Turn 2 while the second was the halfway point of the race which allowed for the controlled pit stops.

From there, Sawalich maintained the lead until the caution flag once again flew on Lap 121 as Dale Shear stopped on the backstretch, setting up another restart battle between Love and Sawalich.

Sawalich and Love put on a battle in the late going of the Sprecher 150 at The Milwaukee Mile. (Photo: Mike Moore | The Podium Finish)

Initially, Love kept Sawalich in the mirror for a few laps. With 23 laps to go, Sawalich took the lead as Love’s car pushed a little higher on the track, allowing Sawalich plenty of room to make the pass with ease.

As Sawalich and Love battled for the top two spots, Wisconsin favorite, Luke Fenhaus, made his way to the fourth spot in an attempt to take both the race lead and the ARCA Menards Series East points lead from Sawalich.

The fourth and final caution of the race occurred as Ron Vandermeir Jr. appeared to have a tire go down resulting in contact with the backstretch wall.

The field lined up for the final restart of the race. Once again, Love took the inside line with Sawalich to his right. Love held the lead until six laps to go as Sawalich moved under Love, bumping the No. 20 just enough to regain the lead for the final time, earning a dominant win in the Sprecher 150.

When asked how hard he expected the last restart of the day to be, Sawalich said, “I didn’t expect it to be that hard. I thought I would get him in maybe two laps. It was a matter of time of when I wanted to make the pass and when to do it smartly.

“I did not want to do it too early and then mess up the corner and then he gets back to me. So I just wanted to bide my time and be patient.”

Joe Gibbs Racing’s Sawalich earned his paycheck on Sunday afternoon. (Photo: Mike Moore | The Podium Finish)

Sawalich earned his third win of the year in the ARCA Menards Series East division, increasing his points lead over Fenhaus by 20 points. Fenhaus lost a few positions and, more importantly, points in the closing laps because of an incident with Conner Jones, causing Fenhaus to fall from a race-high position of fouth to a finishing spot of sixth.

Meanwhile, the eventual NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series winner, Grant Enfinger, finished fifth.

The next ARCA Race is at DuQuoin State Fairgrounds on Sept. 3 with the next ARCA Menards Series East race and season finale at Bristol Motor Speedway on Sept. 14.

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