For those that have been following, Meridian Speedway may look familiar. This is where Salvatore got his first start in the stock car racing world. Some may say Meridian Speedway may be is home track even though he lives clear across the country from Boise, ID. Regardless, Salvatore has demonstrated his dedication to racing by spending several days a month just in travel, just to sit in the driver seat.
The NASCAR K&N Pro Series returned to Meridian Speedway on September 24th 2016. The stands were packed, even with nowhere to sit, you never heard a compliant. The fans were excited, they were pumped. It was either the rumble in the stands or the rumble on the track. There was no escaping the mindset that it was going to be an action packed night.
This race was in line for 208 laps around this small ¼ mile track and Salvatore was back into his white #39 car bringing some new big time sponsors with him. Integrated Tower Services and QRedentials.com. His new sponsors looked so bright and shiny on his freshly painted car. But with a bumper to bumper, nose to nose race, that fresh paint job would only last so long. After a great performance by Nikki Phillippi singing the national anthem the drivers would soon be called upon to start their engines.
At 8:25pm the drivers fired up their 650 plus horsepower machines and after a few pace laps, the race was under way. Salvatore quickly moved up several positions even though his car was not completely dialed in for the race. His team made the impossible happen by bringing his #39 car back to life as it fell victim in his last NAPA Big 5 race right here at Meridian Speedway. The #39 was extremely loose coming out of each turn, Salvatore really demonstrating his car control skills. Midway through the race, during a caution Salvatore brought his car into to pit lane for adjustments. Not once, but twice, resulting in loosing laps, even though a caution was in place. “We just didn’t have enough time to dial the car in. We literally just got the car back two days ago from the chassis shop. The rear clip was replaced. Like anything else, it just takes time to dial everything back in. Time we just didn’t have tonight; Salvatore commented” Even though Salvatore faced obstacles during this action packed race, his driving skills none the less were impressive.
With 20 laps to go, Salvatore was entering turn one as a 6 car pileup was happening midway through the turn. Salvatore and his #39 car were nose to nose with the #55. With no time to react, the crash was unavoidable. Although the crash wasn’t that severe, it damaged the radiator and oil cooler which unfortunately ended the night. This race will be televised on NBC Sports 9/30/2016 @ 12:30pm EST 9:30am PST
Reporting from Idaho, Clifford Wilcox