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Sam Mayer Wins ARCA Menards West Series at Sonoma in the SPS 23

Sam Mayer showed why he's one of racing's rising stars with a thrilling victory at the ARCA Menards West Series race in Sonoma. Starting on the pole in the No. 23 SPS/GMS Fabrication/Spencer Clark Driven Chevrolet, Mayer clocked an impressive lap time of 1:17 seconds at 92.873 mph. But the race was far from easy for the 21-year-old Wisconsin native.

Early on, Mayer had a heart-stopping moment in Turn 4A, slipping up and allowing William Sawalich of Joe Gibbs Racing to snatch the lead. Just as the drama began to unfold, the first caution flag flew at Lap 6 due to debris on the track, bunching up the field for a restart.

After the restart, Sawalich led for the next 20 laps until another caution at Lap 23 when Nick Joanides veered off course in Turn 10, hitting the tire barriers. This gave the race leaders, including Mayer, Sawalich, and Noah Gragson, a chance to hit pit road for adjustments.

The action resumed, and soon another caution came when Brent Crews' No. 15 Venturini Motorsports Toyota lost a tire. Amid all these interruptions, a pivotal moment arrived at Lap 34. Gragson, who was leading, slid up the track in Turn 7, giving Mayer the opportunity to retake the lead.

Despite two more cautions late in the race, including a tense one at Lap 63 that nearly saw Mayer taking the white flag, he stayed composed. The final restart was an overtime showdown, and Mayer had to fend off fierce challengers like last year's ARCA West champion Sean Hingorani, Sawalich, and Tyler Reif.

Mayer's skill and determination shone through as he crossed the finish line, securing his second career ARCA West Series victory by a margin of 0.930 seconds. This win marked his first since the Bullring at Las Vegas Motor Speedway.

Leading three times for a total of 37 laps, Mayer proved he's a force to be reckoned with. Reif, Hingorani, Sawalich, and Jack Wood rounded out the top five finishers. Mayer's victory at Sonoma is a testament to his resilience and racing talent, solidifying his status as a driver to watch in the coming seasons.


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