NOT EVEN BRAKES CAN STOP COLE ANDERSON’S WINNING GOVERNOR’S CUP RUN AT NEW SMYRNA
NEW SMYRNA BEACH, FL (Nov. 12, 2018) – Racecars are meant to go fast. Generally, slowing down is thought to be a bad thing, but when racing on a short track like New Smyrna Speedway, brakes are essential to fast lap times and a maneuverable racecar. Cole Anderson did not have the luxury of brakes on Saturday night at the Flordia half-mile as a system failure caused him to lose brakes, but he still managed to take home the prestigious Governor’s Cup win.
Anderson and the ATF & Gunslinger team unloaded with a quick machine for practice and proceeded to pace every session they ran, sometimes multiple tenths of a second ahead of the field. Qualifying yielded a similar result, placing the No. 97 Toyota on top of the scoring pylon once all drivers made an attempt to lay down a fast lap.
Traditionally, New Smyrna Speedway uses an invert in their pro late model events, and Saturday night’s race was no exception. An eight-car invert was drawn, placing Cole on the outside of row four for the 100-lap contest. The setback was a quick exercise in patience for the young driver, but he patiently worked his way forward to the top three and ultimately took the lead before a quarter of the event was completed.
“Oh, man, the thing was was an absolute rocketship,” Anderson exclaimed about his No. 97 car. “It was the best car I’ve ever driven at New Smyrna. We were fastest in every practice, sat on the pole, started eighth after the invert and was leading by lap 16. I was just coasting around taking it easy.”
As Anderson strolled forward, suddenly the car’s handling characteristics changed. The fastest car on the property began to falter and move around on the racetrack much to the shagrin of its driver who frantically tried to diagnose what was happening.
“Then the brakes went out on lap 20 and I had to limp it home the rest of the way,” Cole explained with a tinge of worry still evident. “If I tried to run into the corner hard, I would’ve spun out instantly. Luckily, there weren’t any yellows in the race which saved us. If we would’ve had a yellow it would’ve been game over for us. We think maybe a master cylinder went out because I had no front brakes, only rears.”
Despite the ailing machine, Cole proceeded to lead the rest of the event and capture his first Governors Cup win at New Smyrna. The year-end success created a thick library of wins at the Florida half-mile, book-ended by both the World Series of Asphalt title in February and the Governor’s Cup triumph this past weekend. The magnitude of the accomplishment was not lost on the Minnesota racer.
“Being so close last year, we really wanted to close this one out and I’m glad we did,” Cole said after the race. “It’s a good way to round out our season at New Smyrna considering we won so much there throughout the year. I also think we found something really good this weekend and it will only up our game for the Snowflake 100 at Pensacola in December. I can’t thank Jamie and the ATF & Gunslinger guys enough for giving me such a great car every time we unloaded here this year.”
The Snowflake 100 at Five Flags Speedway will be Cole’s final asphalt race of 2018. The race runs in conjunction with the Snowball Derby as the final prelminary event on Saturday night, December 1. For more information and the latest updates about Cole Anderson visit his website at ColeAndersonRacing.com. He can also be found on social media such as Facebook (@ColeAndersonRacing), Twitter (@Cole_Anderson97) and Instagram (@Cole_Anderson97).
Led by NASCAR Camping World Truck Series champion Mike Skinner and Andrew Franzone, Daytona Beach, Fla.-based ATF & Gunslinger participates in a variety of motorsports ventures, building unique cars, trucks and experiences while in pursuit of speed.