RPW Exclusive: McCreadie Beats Sheppard In Thriller At Albany-Saratoga

Column By: ROBERT SYMONDS / RPW – MALTA, NY – Watertown’s Tim McCreadie made the trip to Albany Saratoga Speedway pay off Tuesday night beating Matt Sheppard in a thriller at The Great Race Place.

After earning the pole with his qualifying heat win, McCreadie led the opening laps with Ronnie Johnson and Stewart Friesen in close tow. Bobby Varin would slow in turn 3 to bring out the first caution on lap 17. On the ensuing restart, ‘Super’ Matt Sheppard would get a better run under McCreadie to take over the lead on lap 18. It only took Matt Sheppard a quick 18 laps to take the lead from his 13th starting spot.

Sheppard continued to lead the field for nearly 14 more laps until a lap 32 restart gave TMac the opportunity to regain the lead. Able to keep momentum on the top, McCreadie was able to pull alongside and stay with Sheppard, whom found quite a bit of grip down in the bottom lane of the racing surface. A caution on lap 35 would slow the action on the speedway and calm the fans anticipations yet again.

Back to Green, Matt Sheppard had a better restart but the top side once again was on Tim McCreadie’s side. Sheppard pulled up to McCreadie’s door on the back straight for lap 36 which slowed McCreadie’s entry into turn 3 and allowed Sheppard to pull a half straightaway on McCreadie to lead lap 37. Off of turn 4, Matt DeLorenzo slowed to draw the caution, which would bring the two fierce competitors together again for the restart.

Final restart…Sheppard and TMac. McCreadie had the better start with a massive run on the top, he would finally regain the lead on lap 39. Sheppard regains his composer through turns 3 and 4 to take the lead back on lap 40. The two duke it out side by side, classic top and bottom lane battle for the remaining laps. Tim McCreadie would have the final say with the top side momentum to win the Bring It Feature Modified Opener 2018 at Albany Saratoga.

“I don’t think we had anything for him (Sheppard) if it was more than a fifteen lap run,” McCreadie said in Victory Lane on Tuesday Night. “Those yellows at the end kept helping me to keep packing down the top. I just left it all out there.”

Tim McCreadie wins over competitors Matt Sheppard, Stewart Friesen, Kenny Tremont Jr, and Ronnie Johnson.