Story By: SHAWN MILLER / TRAVIS RILAT RACING – GIBSONTON, FL – Travis Rilat kicked off his 2018 campaign with BDS Motorsports by posting a trio of top-10 finishes last weekend during the Ronald Laney Memorial King of the 360s.
The results gives the duo seven top-10 finishes in eight sprint car races together.
“We’ve been in the top 10 almost every night together,” Rilat said. “We just need to push it a little harder. We’re fairly consistent now. We have to file away the edges and keep pushing.”
The action at East Bay Raceway Park began on Thursday with Rilat winning a heat race after starting on the outside of the front row. That locked him into the third starting position for the 25-lap main event.
Rilat battled between third and fifth for the first several laps before he spun in turn two trying to avoid a crash. While Rilat kept his car going, the caution came out so he was forced to restart the race last. He rallied from the back of the pack to record a ninth-place finish.
The following night opened with Rilat finishing where he started – second – in a heat race. That was good enough to lock into the 11th starting position in the main event. Rilat picked up a trio of positions to end eighth.
Once preliminary points were tabulated Rilat ranked eighth overall, which was two positions – and only a couple of points – shy of locking into Saturday’s 40-lap A Main. It forced Rilat to run a heat race, which he won to line up on the outside of the fourth row for the main event.
Rilat competed inside the top 10 throughout the race before he settled for a seventh-place result, which marked his third straight night of improving his feature finish.
“All weekend we needed to find the right balance for me and the car,” he said. “The more we work together the closer we’ll get. I think we learned a lot from the weekend. We had some decent finishes, but it wasn’t what we wanted. That gives us something to work on for the next race.”
Rilat and BDS Motorsports will be off for the next few weeks before the Lucas Oil ASCS National Tour presented by SawBlade.com season-opening event on March 16-17 at Devil’s Bowl Speedway in Mesquite, Texas, for the 45th annual Spring Nationals.