Clay Jones Finds Victory Lane In Limited Late Model Feature

LLM Winner_Clay Jones

Kenly, NC – You would think the theme was “Yellow” for Day 2 of the 2015 Thanksgiving All-Star Classic at Southern National Motorsport Park. No, not because a majority of the cars were yellow, or the track did some kind of yellow out commonly found at football games. It was more so due to the fact the yellow flag wave four to five times as much as the green and checkered flag – combined. Now that’s no real fault of the track, its just the nature of the game when you put big money, contingency awards, and bounty’s out in multiple divisions. Money draws cars and cars draw cautions. Honestly though, how can you be mad at thirty plus Legends and over twenty UCARS?

Not only the nightcap but also the headline of night number two, the Limited Late Model division. True Limited’s mind you, not the hybrid division created and run this past season to help cut cost and drive car counts. A total of 18 cars showed up for this weekend’s big event while only 16 cars finished the race. Clay Jones, qualifying on the outside pole, bested only by Ronald Renfro, wasted no time early grabbing the lead and running away with things. Louis White, who has always been a very strong car took over second just as fast and he too almost never let go.

Thankfully the divisions only caution of the night came early from a solo spin down low in turn. To this moment I still have not been able to confirm who exactly it was – I know bad media person! Thought we were going to run into some trouble on the ensuing restart as Renfrow – who elected to use the cone and restart in the second position – got the restart of his life. I was all but ready to see the caution lights come back over the speedway. Guess that’s why I stay downstairs in the media booth and let Mr. Ellis handle the heavy stuff upstairs. We stayed green for the rest of the race and watched some pretty intense battles for position through the field.

Jones, who had honestly been the class of the field all night, said in victory lane after the race that he was glad there were no more cautions. “We had a great car and took off a little snug and got going and I kind of burnt the right rear up trying to stay in front. I was just hanging on right there at the end,” said Jones. “They kept telling me Joe was coming but I was just doing all I could to stay there. Thank God there wasn’t a caution. I can’t thank these guys enough. They put a rocket under me again. They’re making me look good. I can’t thank them enough.” It looked like Louis White was a shoe in for the runner up position but a late race slip up out of two made him chase his machine up the hill and allowing Joe Heigl to get by.

Legend

A division where I haven’t seen more than eight cars on any of the three tracks I visited this past season, you could understand my excitement when we learned we had over 30 register for todays race. So many cars in fact drivers voted at the drivers meeting to change up the race procedure just a tad bit. Instead of running all thirty some cars at the same time – now looking back at it was probably the best move of the evening – the top fifteen cars would be locked into the newly created A-Main on time. The remaining fifteen drivers would compete in a 30-lap B-Main with the top five transferring over. A B-Main that took just over 40 minutes to complete 30 laps – Chris Lilly, Zack Brown, Stephen Ford, Eddie Massengill, Trevor Collins were the five cars to transfer.

In a much cleaner A-Main feature – only being slowed twice, once by a three car red flag and a single car caution – Dillion Spain sat on the pole and 19 drivers behind him hunting for his proverbial head as Southern National placed a $300 bounty for any driver who could beat him this weekend. Was a nice gesture just did not have anyone who could seal the deal, the win was Spains fifth consecutive win at Southern National. The closest car that would have truly been able to complete the bounty was the #87 car of Tommy Jackson, Jr., one of the many cars representing the 757 in this years race. Yes, yes I know Will Bristle could have satisfied the rules of the bounty, but does it really count if they are teammates?

 

UCARS

Yet another race where the clock ran higher than the lap counts. Seriously let me put it to you this way the best speed during the race was set by Buckshot Jones at right around 79 MPH – The average speed during the race was just a tick over 17 MPH! Seriously, you name it, we probably saw it during the UCAR feature. It was actually a shame because there were some pretty big names who have raced each other hard this yea all throughout the field of 24 cars.

If we could ever get some serious green flag racing in like I said we were really in for a treat with guys like Buckshot Jones, Tyler Horne, Travis Miller to just name a few running up front. Ultimately the leaders – Jones & Horne – would make contact off two while racing side by side that damaged both cars. Horne came to a stop in three to bring out one of the bazillion caution flags of the evening. They both made it to pit road and to the attention of their crew but by that time caution laps were counting and they were never able to catch back up.

At the time all of those shenanigans took place, Lee Horner was in the right place at the right time and immediately upgraded his third place stay to a first place stay! Only issue was there were plenty of hungry drivers hunting for that prize money given away at the end of the race. Horner was able to survive – which seemed to be the keyword for that race – two late race restarts and grab his first win at Southern National Motorsports Park.

 

Mini Stocks

What ended up being one of the cleanest, and honestly most exciting races of the evening just happened to be the same race we used to refuel, recharge and stretch our legs. Please excuse me as we use an excerpt from Southern Nationals official press realease.

AJ Sanders, who has won races all over the Carolinas and Virginia, scored the victory in the Mini-Stock race in dominant fashion, but not without his fair share of challenges from Motor Mile Speedway (Virginia) competitor Doodle Lang and local favorites Ronnie “Buckshot” Jones and Michael Rouse.

“I was worried about [Jones],” Sanders said. “Under that caution, I radioed and said ‘give me my lap times’ and ‘I want to know what my lap times are the last two or three versus what his lap times were’. We were enough there that I kept my momentum and kept hitting my spots, we were going to be alright. That’s what I had to do, just keep my mind focused.”

 

Results

Limited Late Model

P1. #15 Clay Jones
P2. #15 Joe Heigl
P3. #7 Louis White
P4. #51 Chris Chapman
P5. #29 Paul Williamson
P6. #21 Tim Allensworth
P7. #55 Kevin Floars
P8. #07 Ronald Renfrow
P9. #98 Malik Koonce
P10. #98 J.D. Eversole
P11. #51 Corey Walker
P12. #31 Wayne Goss
P13. #24 Mason Diaz
P14. #43 Sam Pacith
P15. #34 Lance West
P16. #2 Josh Yeoman

 

Legends:

P1. #7 Dillion Spain; 40
P2. #91 Will Bristle; 40
P3. #87 Tommy Jackson, Jr.; 40
P4. #77 Alex Pacheco; 40
P5. #10 Justin Mitchell; 40
P6. #24 Mason Diaz; 40
P7. #71 Chris Hildebrand; 40
P8. #7 Spencer Saunders; 40
P9. #11 Chris Stancil; 40
P10. #18 Caleb Day; 40
P11. #84 Kyle Beattie; 40
P12. #1 Eddie Massengill; 40
P13. #27 Chris Lilly; 40
P14. #31 Trevor Collins; 39
P15. #88 Zack Brown; 39
P16. B1 Brenton Irving; 35
P17. #86 Stephen Ford; 16
P18. #07 Matt Dail; 14
P19. #22 Ryan DeMartini; 14
P20. #3 Ryan Polentz; 14

 

UCAR:

P1. #60 Lee Horner; 41
P2. #99 Travis Miller; 41
P3. #08 Joseph Pittman; 41
P4. #4 James Stroud; 41
P5. #03 Greg Wood; 41
P6. #77 Jesse Council; 41
P7. #12 David Wiggins; 41
P8. #48 Duane Walker; 41
P9. #5 Jesse Jones; 41
P10. #1 Jeff Dunn; 41
P11. #29 D.J. Huffman; 41
P12. #88 Daniel Bentley; 41
P13. #88 Brandon Ennis; 41
P14. #21 Chris Wheeler; 41
P15. #8 Ashlyn McCaskill; 40
P16. #28 Tyler Horne; 35
P17. #12 Mickey Connor; 33
P18. #4 Buckshot Jones; 33
P19. #71 Jon Pritt; 22
P20. #12 Austin Milam
P21.#5 Michelle Willingham; 13
P22. #00 Aaron Crumpler; 13
P23. #32 Cassie Congleton; 2
P24. #86 Brandon Allen; 1

 

Mini Stock:

P1. #24 A.J. Sanders; 40
P2. #53 Michael Rouse; 40
P3. #4 Buckshot Jones; 40
P4. #7 Brandon Clements; 40
P5. #48 Duane Walker; 40
P6. #22 Doodle Lane; 40
P7. #21 Kevin Jackson; 40
P8. #19 B.J. Thrasher; 40
P9. #33 Jessie Duke; 40
P10. #4 James Stroud; 40
P11. #08 Joseph Pitman; 40
P12. #77 Jamie Tucker; 40
P13. #99 Travis Miller; 40
P14. #16 Michael Tucker; 34
P15. #60 Lee Horner; 27
P16. #00 Thomas Poole; 23
P17. #35 Gary Murphy; 15
#119 Buster Thrasher; DNS
#12 David Wiggins; DNS

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