Tedeschi/Harbin join eNHPL title-decider through Daytona wildcard
Esports | July 30th, 2020
Two spots remained unclaimed in the eNASCAR Heat Pro League championship finale heading into Wednesday’s wildcard event at the Daytona International Speedway.
Justin Brooks may already be locked in, but he dominated the early portion of this race as he eyed the $4,000 prize for winning..
The first caution flag flew with 27 laps to go. Luis Zaiter was able to move into the lead on the ensuing restart and controlled the race until 14 laps to go.
Slade Gravitt was then able to snatch away the lead with a great run on the outside, bringing Brooks with him.
The leaders dove down pit road for green-flag pit stops with seven laps remaining. A late caution set up a two-lap shootout with Matthew Heale leading Diego Alvarado.
A wreck in the back set up yet another GWC with Brooks able to grab the lead just before the yellow flew.
Brooks was able to fend off Gravitt for the win, but it was Brian Tedeschi in third who secured that final spot in the championship race for Team Penske Esports. He and Jordan McGraw appeared to make contact coming to the line as they battled for that coveted transfer spot.
That’s how my regular season ends: stuffed in the wall. Gutted for @RCR_eSports, @DowSports, everybody who’s a part of this deal. Got robbed of a top five, regardless of whether we had momentum to make the transfer or not. Sucks. pic.twitter.com/VHMtCXLykO
— Jordan McGraw (@JordanTMcGraw) July 30, 2020
The PS4 race was clean and green for the first half with Kyle Arnold comfortably in command. However, his race went sideways during a pit stop sequence with 24 laps to go. He sped on pit road, falling to the rear of the field.
Josh Harbin was now leading the way with Mike Braas pushing. However, a caution set up a 13 to go restart where Nick Jobes was able to slide into the top spot, but only briefly as Harbin and Braas worked back by four laps later.
A massive crash just shy of the white flag turned the race into a two-lap sprint, although another quick crash would re-rack the field. Harbin was able to fend off the field by pulling up the outside line on the final lap and blocking low before Brandyn Gritton could get to his inside, winning the race and securing the Leavine Family Gaming player a place in the title-decider.
WHAT. A. FINISH.@ThAbEaR_95 takes the checkered!
— NASCAR Heat (@NASCARHeat) July 30, 2020
Gritton was second and Cody Giles, who got alongside Harbin through Turns 3 and 4, was forced to settle for third and the thought of what could have been.
The eight-driver field is set for the championship race with all eight teams represented and four drivers from the Xbox One and PS4 leagues ready to do battle in August.
The contenders are:
Justin Brooks – JTG Daugherty Throttlers (Xbox)
Maxwell Castro – Chip Ganassi Gaming (PS4)
Daniel Buttafuoco – Germain Gaming (Xbox)
Brandyn Gritton – Stewart-Haas Esports (PS4)
Slade Gravitt – Wood Brothers Gaming (Xbox)
Josh Parker – Gibbs Gaming (PS4)
Brian Tedeschi – Team Penske Esports (Xbox)
Josh Harbin – Leavine Family Gaming (PS4)