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NASCAR Euro recap: "The Big One" erupts in Valencia

Sunday’s EuroNASCAR Pro Race 2 – the last of the weekend – featured a 10-car accident that knocked out five competitors and shortened the race to 17 laps before Dutchman Liam Hezemans claimed the victory.

Among those collected in the early-race wreck was part-time Xfinity Series competitor Ryan Vargas. He was able to continue and finished 12th.

“I thought I was at Talladega for a minute,” Vargas said. “The whole field was flying apart. It looked like ‘The Big One’ and it really was one.

“I was in the middle of it, had a good start and was in the pack and once they started flying apart, I was just ricocheting off from everybody. At the end of the day, we look like a Modified car.”

Gil Linster wins Sunday's EuroNASCAR2 Race 2 for Hendriks Motorsports (Photo by: NASCAR Euro Series)

The 20-year-old Hezemans also secured the win in the Junior Trophy classification for drivers aged 25 and under.

Earlier Sunday, Hezemans’ Hendriks Motorsports teammate, Gil Linster, drove the same No. 50 Toyota to victory in the EuroNASCAR 2 race after starting on the pole.

“The car was awesome, as we already saw in Gil Linster’s race,” Hezemans said. “We made some adjustments, and it turned out to work pretty well. It’s unfortunate for the (wreck) at the start, I think it’s just a driver mistake, but I’m happy to be in the Victory Lane.”

In Saturday’s races, Italian Vittorio Ghirelli won EuroNASCAR Pro Race 1 in dramatic fashion when Tobias Dauenhauer suffered a mechanical failure late in the event. It was PK Carsport’s first win since 2022.

Martin Doubek claimed the win in the opening race of the EuroNASCAR 2 division but in somewhat controversial fashion. He took the lead after making contact with Linster, his Hendriks teammate and pole-sitter, while both exited Turn 1 on the opening lap.

The incident took Linster out of contention. Doubek went on to lead all 15 laps and held off Patrick Schober to earn his first win since the 2021 season.

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