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Power Rankings: Charlotte PEAK Series race

Power Rankings: There’s a new top dog in the PEAK Series

With a six-figure purse on the line this season, the eNASCAR PEAK Antifreeze iRacing Series continues its 2019 season at the virtual Charlotte Motor Speedway for the eighth race of the season Tuesday, May 21 (9 p.m. ET, eNASCAR.com). Nickolas Shelton is the defending race winner.

 

Ray Alfalla (No. 21, Wood Brothers Racing)

Rank: 12 (–)

The Wood Brothers are going to need some classic Ray Alfalla magic — stat — to mount a run to the playoffs. The good news: the four-time series champ isn’t too shabby at Charlotte, winning in 2017 and scoring five top-five finishes.

 

Jake Nichols (No. 20, Joe Gibbs Racing)

Rank: 11 (–)

Jake Nichols still finds himself in the playoff picture despite not scoring a top-10 finish yet this year. So, yes, it’s a cruel joke we’re keeping him ranked 11th.

 

Bobby Zalenski (No. 18, Joe Gibbs Racing)

Rank: 10 (-3)

It would be interesting to see Bobby Zalenski’s stats if luck were on his side in 2019. The Joe Gibbs Racing driver finished fourth at Charlotte last year, and if he can stay out of trouble, we see no reason he can’t repeat such an effort.

 

Michael Conti (No. 8, JR Motorsports)

Rank: 9 (-3)

After a solid start to the year, Michael Conti missed a top-10 finish for the third week in a row. In seven starts at Charlotte, Conti has never led a lap and hasn’t scored a top 10 since his third-place effort in 2014 — though that doesn’t mean he can’t rebound with a new package and track update this year.

 

Nick Ottinger (No. 47, JTG Daugherty Racing)

Rank: 8 (–)

JTG Daugherty Racing’s Nick Ottinger won his first Charlotte start in 2012, but hasn’t had great luck since — though, visiting in 2019, he’s got momentum on his side with three consecutive top 10s, including his win at Talladega.

 

Matt Bussa (No. 5, Williams Esports)

Rank: 7 (-3)

Matt Bussa will need to work some magic to make up a 19-point playoff deficit, and Charlotte — where he finished third last year — might be just the place.

 

Jimmy Mullis (No. 46, Richmond Raceway Esports)

Rank: 6 (-3)

It’s been something of a drought for Jimmy Mullis after a decent start to 2019. More bad news for Mullis: the series heads to Charlotte, where he’s finished a miserable 39th and 27th in his two starts.

 

Garrett Lowe (No. 28, Team Renegades)

Rank: 5 (+5)

It’s time to pay attention to rookie Garrett Lowe as a serious contender. Scoring three top-five finishes in the last four races is no fluke.

 

Blake Reynolds (No. 30, Team Dillon Esports)

Rank: 4 (+5)

Blake Reynolds has put together a handful of solid races and vaulted to fourth in points. He’s not too shabby at Charlotte, either, finishing sixth in his first start at the track in 2017.

 

Ryan Luza (No. 53, FlipSid3 Tactics)

Rank: 3 (-1)

The streak will end at 20. Ryan Luza hoped to score his 21st-consecutive top-10 finish at Kansas, but luck wasn’t on his side and he ended up 36th — his worst finish in nearly two years. Still, he can afford it: the FlipSid3 Tactics No. 53 still holds a massive 40-point lead over the field.

 

Keegan Leahy (No. 62, G2 Esports)

Rank: 2 (-1)

After opening the season with five top-five finishes in a row, the fastest Canadian in the PEAK iRacing Series came home outside the top 25 in back-to-back races. Despite starting his lone Charlotte race on the outside pole last year, he finished 30th. He’ll need a pinch of luck to get both stats back into shape Tuesday.

 

Zack Novak (No. 6, Roush Fenway Racing)

Rank: 1 (+4)

With his victory at Kansas, Zack Novak joins Ryan Luza as the only winner of multiple races this season. Another 1.5-mile track could mean another notch in the Wins column for Car No. 6.

 

Tune in to Race 8 of the eNASCAR PEAK Antifreeze iRacing Series Tuesday, May 21 at 9 p.m. ET on eNASCAR.com.