Michael Self looked like he was going to run away with the ARCA Menards Series championship. When Christian Eckes missed the first Salem race of the year back in April as he was hospitalized with food poisoning, Self earned max points in his second straight victory of the season.
Eckes, went from the points leader to scoring no points. Then, Self finished fifth in the next race a few weeks later in Talladega while Eckes was 26th.
But, over the last 13 races, Eckes has made a run. The points battle is down to these two as 70 points separate them with just three races remaining. It all starts on Saturday night in Salem, then picks back up next month at Lucas Oil Raceway on the west side of Indianapolis. It will all wrap up a month from now at the Kansas Speedway.
Between them, Eckes has outplaced Self 7-6 over the last 13 races. Eckes, has won three times with Self twice. Eckes has three runner-ups with Self’s one. Both have two third place finishes as well.
Eckes enters this weekend on the heels of four straight top two finishes. Self, has six straight top four’s and eight in his last nine tries in his No. 25 Toyota.
Combined, Venturini has won five straight races on the season by three different drivers and seven of the last nine overall. With how this is going, I’d expect Self and Eckes to win out.