Mike Darne and Rusty Daniels Score First Wins of 2015 at Southern National

Mike Darne (14) leads Rusty Daniels (16) in the first of two Late Model races at Southern National Motorsports Park on Saturday night, August 1st.  Both drivers scored victories. (Photo credit: Alicia Hackett/Frameworks Photography)

Mike Darne (14) leads Rusty Daniels (16) in the first of two Late Model races at Southern National Motorsports Park on Saturday night, August 1st. Both drivers scored victories. (Photo credit: Alicia Hackett/Frameworks Photography)

LUCAMA, NC – Mike Darne and Rusty Daniels both scored their first Southern National Motorsports Park victories of the season on Saturday night.

Darne scored his first Late Model win since August 31, 2014 with his victory in the first of two 35 lap Late Model races.  Darne dedicated the win to longtime crew member Tommy Hartman who passed away on May 4, 2015.  Darne, who led wire-to-wire to score the victory, was emotional in victory lane after scoring his third career Southern National Late Model victory.

“Tommy was such a great supporter of mine and such a good friend,” Darne said.  “We lost him at the beginning of the year.  We’ve had a real tough year this year with being in the wrong place at the wrong time.  I wanted to come up here and run this and god a win for Tommy at the racetrack he loved the most.  It’s great.  All in all, the car was just great.  This one was for Tommy Hartman for sure.”

Darne’s toughest competition during the evening was Rusty Daniels.  Daniels finished second in the first race while Tyler Matthews, fresh off a win at East Carolina Motor Speedway a couple weeks ago, finished third.  Kate Dallenbach, who started second, recovered from an early race incident to finish fourth while Andrew Grady rounded out the top-five.

Daniels would go on to score the win in the second race after starting in the seventh position but raced his way to the lead on lap 12 and drove away in the caution free race.  Daniels’ victory was vindicating after being wrecked in the July 11th race off the front bumper of Andrew Grady.  The win was Daniels’ first win of the season at Southern National and his second overall Late Model win of the season.

“It feels great to come back and win, especially with an old car that we haven’t run here all year” Daniels said.  “We came back and made a little adjustment from the first race and got us a win.  It feels awesome, it does.  It feels great to be back to winning form.  Now we have to do it the rest of the year to make [NASCAR Whelen All-American Series] state points all we can.”

Mike Darne started at the rear of the second race in hopes of collecting a bonus that he would have won if he had scored the victory.  The races were $1,000-to-win but, if the winner of the first race started at the rear of the field for the second race and won, he would’ve collected and additional $500.

“I should have thought about it more,” Darne stated.  “I mean, 35 laps to get it done.  I really wish we would have got a late race caution but we didn’t.  If I had a few more laps, we could’ve got to him.”

Kate Dallenbach backed up her fourth place finish in the first race with a third place finish in the second race.

“We came pretty close that second race,” Dallenbach explained.  “We were just pretty loose in the center and a little bit tight off so that made it a little tough getting around.  Yeah, I’m happy.  We had a good night.  In the first race, I don’t think I used the tires up too bad.  At least it wasn’t 50 laps so I’m thankful for that.  We did go pretty hard in the first race.  The tires we got, the team couldn’t get them staggered just right so that didn’t help us out too well.”

Andrew Grady finished in fourth in the second race while Jonathan Findley, who finished one spot behind Grady in the first race, finished fifth.  The two finishes allow Grady to extend his lead in the championship.

There has been a feeling of inevitability in the Bandolero division all season surrounding Kailey Murray.  That feeling was confirmed as Murray finally scored the victory she had appeared destined for all season long, leading every single lap in the Bandolero feature.  Murray did have to hold off Josh Kossek on a green-white-checkered finish t0o score the win.

“It feels pretty good to get a win this year,” Murray said.  “We’ve been waiting for it for a long time.  We finally got it.  We’ve been treated really bad this year but we finally got the win and we’re all excited.  I’m really thankful that I finished it that good.”

Chris Stancil prevailed in a wild Legends feature, a race that ended in a photofinish.  Dillon Spain and Will Bristle started on the front row but both cars, which are fielded by Dillon Spain Motorsports, were forced to retire early with mechanical issues.  The throttle cable broke on Bristle’s car while the fuel pump gave up in Spain’s car almost simultaneously.

Their retirements allowed Mason Diaz and Billy Hall to inherit the top two spots.  Both Diaz and Hall ended up getting together in an accident after the caution came out for a spin in front of them.  A few minutes later, Diaz’s motor erupted in flames but he was able to get out of the car quickly, however his race was over.

A few laps later, Timmy Mangini, who was leading the race, was sent to the rear of the field for jumping a restart.  Stancil drove away in a two lap sprint, holding off Tony Mangini in a photofinish while Zack Brown finished third.

“I just have to thank my sponsors and my team for building me a new car,” Stancil stated.  “Looks like we messed up something in that first wreck but I just held on to it and got the win.  One driver said I was blocking too much but, whatever, that’s just racing.”

The U-CAR feature race also came down to the wire with Travis Miller edging out Ronnie “Buckshot” Jones, who started at the rear of the field, for the victory with Tyler Horne finishing in third.  James Stroud and Joseph Pittman rounded out the top-five.

Wayne Goss dominated the Charger feature but was disqualified in postrace technical inspection for being too light.  Paul Williamson inherited the victory as a result of Goss’ disqualification.  Nicholas Fulgham was moved to the second position while Tom Sauls picked up a third place finish.

Four-time Southern National Motorsports Park Street Stock champion Greg Barnett got past Jeff Melton in the closing stages of the 50 lap Street Stock feature race to score the victory in the first Street Stock race in 2015.  Sonny Schoffen finished in third while Danny Brewer and Jonathan Kornegay rounded out the top-five.

Jimmy Rice scored the victory in the Vintage Sportsman class in the Southern Ground Pounders Vintage Racing Club feature while Chase Parsons won in the Vintage Modified class.

Southern National Motorsports Park will return to action in two weeks when the Monster Trucks invade for a spectacular show that will entertain kids and adults.  The Monster Trucks will be joined by Legends and Bandolero divisions which are competing in an INEX/US Legends Cars National Qualifier race.  The U-CAR division will also hold a feature race on August 15th.  Moreinformation about the Monster Truck Show can be seen on the Southern NationalMotorsports Park website.

Race Results

Late Model Stock Car – Race 1

1.        #14 Mike Darne
2.       #16 Rusty Daniels
3.       #63 Tyler Matthews
4.       #25 Kate Dallenbach
5.       #1 Andrew Grady
6.       #4 Jonathan Findley
7.        #44 TJ Barron
8.       #29 Melvin Langley
9.       #2 Joshua Yeoman
10.    #97 Brian Henderson
11.      #59 Johnny Petrozelle

Late Model Stock Car – Race 2

1.        #16 Rusty Daniels
2.       #14 Mike Darne
3.       #25 Kate Dallenbach
4.       #1 Andrew Grady
5.       #4 Jonathan Findley
6.       #44 TJ Barron
7.        #2 Joshua Yeoman
8.       #63 Tyler Matthews
9.       #97 Brian Henderson
10.    #59 Johnny Petrozelle
11.      #29 Melvin Langley

Street Stock

1.        #8 Greg Barnett
2.       #6 Jeff Melton
3.       #75 Sonny Schoffen
4.       #4 Danny Brewer
5.       #33 Jonathan Kornegay
6.       #32 Gary Ledbetter, Jr.
7.        #3 Travis Roberson
8.       #38 Chris Conner
9.       #66 Ron Flynn


1.        #29 Paul Williamson
2.       #77 Nicholas Fulgham
3.       #45 Tom Sauls
4.       #74 Jeff Rogers
5.       #06 Al Coombs
6.       #61 Michael O’Brien
7.        #6 Mike Jones
8.       #31 Wayne Goss – DQ


1.        #11 Chris Stancil
2.       #7 Tony Mangini
3.       #88 Zack Brown
4.       #84 John Davis
5.       #39 Grayson Massey
6.       #2 Timmy Mangini
7.        #8 Gerad Miller
8.       #12 Eric Courtney
9.       #29 Brandon Rice
10.    #110 Kade Lambert
11.      #10 Justin Mitchell
12.     #24 Mason Diaz
13.     #30 Billy Hall
14.    #7 Dillon Spain
15.     #91 Will Bristle


1.        #99 Travis Miller
2.       #4 Ronnie “Buckshot” Jones
3.       #28 Tyler Horne
4.       #4 James Stroud
5.       #08 Joseph Pittman
6.       #18 Aaron Miller
7.        #00 Aaron Crumpler
8.       #89 John Ordiway
9.       #1 Scott Liles
10.    #99 Mickey Connor
11.      #31 Wayne Goss


1.        #81 Kailey Murray
2.       #44 Josh Kossek
3.       #25 Dustin Yeoman
4.       #110 Kade Lambert
5.       #51 Ethan Johnson
6.       #06 Camryn Rice
7.        #3 Tyler Roberson
8.       #19 Jaiden Reyna
9.       #12 Savannah Beasley
10.    #42 Jacob Bradley
11.      #11 Tailar Wilson
12.     #24 Kaleb Bradley

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