Tag Archives: ECMS

Louis White Scores Emotional Victory in East Carolina Motor Speedway’s Season Opener; Jeremy Bohne Dominates Physical Charger Race

Louis White and crew celebrate their first win of 2019 in victory lane at East Carolina Motor Speedway. (Justin Kern/TheWeeklyRacer.com

Robersonville, North Carolina – Thirty years ago East Carolina Motor Speedway opened its doors for racing in the small North Carolina town as a 3/8-mile oval. Louis White was one of the first competitors to make laps here at the speedway in a Super Late Model. Matter of fact, Louis White ended up winning the track championship that year. Fast forward to 2019 and he hasn’t really slowed down.

After struggling so much in 2018 battling a tight race car as well as sending one through the guard rail in turn one, victory lane was just what the doctor ordered to get the 2019 season started.

After qualifying third earlier in the afternoon it didn’t take long for White to take the second position from Wesley Johnson and set his sites on Burbage, who actually set the pole earlier in single-car qualifying with a 15.098 – just one-thousandth of a second quicker than Johnson. White settled into a rhythm knowing that tire management is probably the single most important thing here on this worn out surface. However, White would catch a huge break when a large puff of smoke erupted from the nine-car forcing NASCAR to throw the yellow and for Burbage to come down pit road.

On the ensuing restart, White lined up on the inside of Jeff Shifflett and wasted zero time getting back to the gas once they entered the restart zone. From there it was lights out. Shifflett made an honest attempt and pulled within about three cars of White but you could see the car get visibly tight which caused him to fade. From there, it was lights out. Louis White would cruise to victory while Kenneth Mercer and Wesley Johnson put on a hell of a show for third.

During White’s victory lap, he drove the car right over to the spot he went through just last year as a reminder that he was still victorious.

“After last year this win ranks right there at the top after all we went through last year,” White said in victory lane. “We destroyed a brand new car. I didn’t know if I was going to race again. I said I was done. Then we had a deal with our business where we lost a contract so between that and losing this brand new car I didn’t know what I was going to do.”

Come back and win. That’s what Louis White does. He has been winning races here for thirty years now and still enjoys doing it even at 60.

“I have been fortunate to have good cars and great guys to help me work on,” Louis went on to say. “You can take a bad driver and put him in a good car and he can do good with it, maybe that’s what it is.”

One thing we know at The Weekly Racer is that when it comes to Louis White and East Carolina Motor Speedway, there isn’t anything bad when it comes to his driving.

“After what happened going through the wall I just wanted to go over there and park it to let it know it didn’t win.”

As we concluded we asked Louis if this win means he will compete here full time this season and go for another championship.

“I don’t know. Whatever the crowd wants to do. We have another race track we want to run at some. I have been coming here so long and like to support Mr. Perry because he has put so much money into this track and I am going to do all I can to support him.”

Louis White walks back from the spot he went through the outside guardrail over a year ago. (Justin Kern/TheWeeklyRacer.com)

Late Model Stock Car UNOFFICIAL Results;

  1. Louis White; 50
  2. Jeff Shifflett; 50
  3. Wesley Johnson; 50
  4. Kenneth Mercer; 50
  5. Madyson Mulligan; 49
  6. Thomas Burbage; 15



At the end of the day, it was Jeremy Bohne who landed in victory lane for the 35-lap Charger feature. Though he was not the fastest car during qualifying – that honor went to former Bando driver Ethan Johnson – he was the one to get out front and avoid the mess that went on behind him.

It took Bohne over half the race to actually catch and pass Johnson for the lead and when that happened it seemed like things went south quick for the young guy as Bohne set sail. On a restart following a caution for fluid from the 14 of Ryan Miller things seemed to go downhill for Johnson who was slow to the restart which forced a three-wide situation between him, Roberson, and Langley and let me tell you something, three wide doesn’t work out of turn two.

Johnson’s car got the worst of it with heavy front-end damage, however, it wasn’t over there. Johnson struggling to get the car back under him looked to make contact with Mike Jones who was plowed into by Bill Price putting fluid all over the speedway. As the cars were going through the mess under caution Melvin Langley and Travis Roberson decided to exchange a few words, using their cars.

Once the track was clean and racing resumed Jeremy Bohne jumped back out to the lead and never looked back. Travis Roberson took over second place with Langley behind him. Ethan Johnson was able to make it back up to fourth with Greg Worley rounding out the top five.

Chargers UNOFFICIAL Results;

  1. Jeremy Bohne; 35
  2. Travis Roberson; 35
  3. Melvin Langley; 35
  4. Ethan Johnson; 35
  5. Greg Worley; 35
  6. Mike Jones; 23
  7. Daniel Vuncannon; 23
  8. Bill Price; 23
  9. Ryan Miller; 20
  10. Austin Ferrell; 17

In the Legends division, Cameron Murray took home the hardware. Chris Conner won his first ever Street Stock race of his career and Patrick Arch was victorious in the Mini Stock class.

Thomas Burbage Ready to Defend East Carolina Motor Speedway Title – Sets His Eyes on a Threepeat

Thomas Burbage works off Turn 4 during an afternoon practice session at East Carolina Motor Speedway. (Justin Kern/TheWeeklyRacer.com)

With spring officially upon us here in the Mid-Atlantic Racing region it means two things; 1) We are all going to be sneezing uncontrollably for the next month and a half and, 2) Its time to go back racing! Hickory Motor Speedway kicked off their, and North Carolina’s, NASCAR Whelen All-American Series (NWAAS) last weekend with Jacob Heafner and Adam Lemke finding their way into victory lane. One week later East Carolina Motor Speedway (ECMS) is ready to dust off the marbles and get back to racing. One driver in particular is certainly ready to get back on track and defend his title.

ECMS is a rather unique, 3/8-mile high banked D-shape oval located in the small town of Robersonville, North Carolina just off route 64. The speedway was built back in the early ’90s and has a track surface that would rival that of Myrtle Beach. However, that’s not really it’s a most unique feature, in ours and most drivers we talk to opinion. How one navigates turn two can be the key to landing you in victory lane or it can be the reason you find yourself stuffed in the outside retaining wall.

Over the last two years, Thomas Burbage has really hit on something at ECMS and with some of the changes over the offseason, he looks to keep that momentum going.

“We changed a few things,” Burbage told The Weekly Racer when asked about the offseason. “Been looking at different setup packages to try and get better. We get the super sucker carb plate back and we changed a few things on the engine package to give us a little more horsepower.  Hopefully, everything works out and we can defend our title.”

Even though Burbage is going into 2019 as the two-time defending LMSC champion he knows that he and his team has to be on their game week in and week out if they want a third.

“I would say there are three to four good teams that are front runners,” Burbage said about the competition. “Louis White is always strong when it counts. Kenneth Mercer really came on strong last year and has a great long run car. Wesley Johnson fought hard all year long last year and I’m sure will be up there again this year.  We always go to the race track with the mindset of being on our game because any given weekend we can be the one chasing the leader for a win.”


Jesse Council Hangs Up Helmet to Spend Time with Family

For the past few years, the Street Stock division at East Carolina has been dominated by Hobgood, North Carolina driver Jesse Council. However, in 2019 we are guaranteed to see new faces in victory lane as well as the opportunity for a brand new champion. Council has decided to hang up the helmet and driving suit to spend more time with his family.

“I have sold my car and most everything I had associated with racing,” Council told The Weekly Racer. “Last year was a high note to end on. We only lost two races at East Carolina all season. Everything is great. I just want to spend more time with my wife and kids.”

With Council not returning this season, it will certainly open the door for new faces to make their trip to victory lane. Could we see Travis Roberson pull double duty in both the Street Stock and Chargers? Will Chris Connor come back from the offseason stronger than before? One thing is for certain, we will find out this Saturday afternoon when the green flag waves.


Charger Division Open for the Taking as Well

Doug Warren, who won the 2018 Charger track champion, will not return full time in 2019 to defend his title. In fact, Warren will make the step up to running a limited schedule in the Late Model Stock Car division. Can Travis Roberson take the top spot this year at his home track? Or, will Jeremy Bohne or Michael O’Brien step up to the plate to take the title?

Of course, titles are on the line for the Bando’s, Mini Stocks, and Bombers starting this Saturday. Cameron Murray, David Willis, Mike Parrish are all looking to defend their titles this summer respectfully. Also, making their return to East Carolina will be the INEX Legends.

Registration will open Saturday morning at 9:00 AM EDT with a two-hour practice session starting at 10:00. Qualifying is scheduled to get underway at 1:00. Bando’s will start based on their practice time, Jr Bombers & Bombers will draw for positions. Mini Stock and UCAR’s will group qualify while Street Stock, Legend, Chargers, and Late Model will all go out for single-car qualifying.

Racing is scheduled to kick off at 3:00 PM EDT. Make sure to follow The Weekly Racer’s Twitter feed for LIVE coverage beginning with qualifying.


Thomas Burbage Wins Fourth Annual Ronnie Barnett Memorial and East Carolina Motor Speedway Championship.

Thomas Burbage dials in the #9 Oak Ridge Metals machine during the second round of practice at East Carolina Motor Speedway. (Justin Kern/TheWeeklyRacer.com)

Robersonville, NC – A typical race season for any driver, in any division, is never easy. Going through the heat of the summer battling other like-minded individuals all gunning for the same thing.  Throw in a broken shoulder towards the end of an already hot and grueling summer and you really have your hands full with a racecar. Thomas Burbage, however, was not going to let that get in the way of his season.

As the NASCAR Whelen All-American Series points came to a close so did the individual track points. For the fourth year in a row, East Carolina Motor Speedway hosted its Ronnie Barnett Memorial race to close out the season. Burbage, from Washington, North Carolina, was the fastest man in town winning his ninth pole of the season needing just one lap to do so. Wesley Johnson, a recent winner at East Carolina under Limited Late Model rules during the 6th Annual Mischa Sell Memorial race, and Maddy Mulligan would qualify in the top three.

Burbage continued his domination of the weekend picking up the victory leading all 50-laps of the feature. Wesley Johnson would work his way around Louis White in the closing laps for a second place finish. Jeff Shiflett would also benefit and earn the final spot on the podium. Burbage’s six wins at East Carolina was enough to allow him to clinch the 2017 Late Model track championship, his second career track title and first under the NASCAR banner, and punch his ticket to Charlotte.

“I definitely want to thank my crew – my racing family,” Burbage told The Weekly Racer. “The guys that 150% made this a reality and definitely my sponsor Oak Ridge Industries and Kevin Boyd for keeping my dream alive.  I want to thank my best friend Chris Smith for busting his tail at the shop by himself while I’ve been injured.  He stepped up and told me that he would do everything in his power to help me win this championship if that’s what I wanted to do and here we are.  Pretty sweet to do it with one arm tied behind your back.”

After he and his wife welcomed their new baby boy into this world Burbage had a freak accident prior to race weekend where he broke his shoulder, grabbing the win at the Ronnie Barnett Memorial along with the championship was just the ending to a wild and crazy year he needed.

Burbage will look to take some time off from the race car to allow his shoulder to fully heal. He told us that he has all intentions to run Carteret in October with the hopes of running the Thanksgiving Classic at Southern National Motorsports Park or even Ace Speedway.

East Carolina Motor Speedway Cancels US Cellular Summer Sizzler 225 Due to Forcast

Robersonville, NC – With the potential of rain, strong storms and extreme heat this weekend in North Carolina, ECMS is the second track in the Mid-Atlantic to pull the plug on their Saturday night event the day prior. ECMS officials have decided that in the best interest of the drivers, crews, fans, and staff that they cancel the July 15th event at the 3/8-mile high bank speedway.

East Carolina will be back in action August 5th with twin Late Model features along with Street Stocks, UCAR, Bando, Bombers and Chargers. Head over to http://www.ecspeedway for a complete schedule and ticket options.

East Carolina Motor Speedway Kicks Off 2017 Season Tonight with Twin Late Model Features

Robersonville, NC – Coming off one of the best seasons’s arguably in the track’s history, Wayne Perry and his staff look to open the gates to fans and competitors alike for another season of racing in the NASCAR Whelen All-American Series. The high-banked, tri-oval speedway witnessed some of the biggest crowds as well as car counts with high-intensity racing where the Late Model division was decided by just a couple of points.Though the Late Models were the top tier division at the speedway this did not take away from some of the best racing in the Street Stock division where Jesse Council had his work cut out for him to take the title over Kevin Benton and Travis Roberson. Oh, and let’s not forget about the tension and rivalries that were either reignited or born on the track – one of the many

Though the Late Models were the top tier division last year, this did not take away from some of the best racing in the Street Stock division in the region. Jesse Council, the 2016 Street Stock champion, had his work cut out for him to take the title over Kevin Benton and Travis Roberson. Oh, and let’s not forget about the tension and rivalries that were either re-ignited or born on the track – one of the many by-products of Saturday night short track racing.

Tonight is the night that everyone in eastern North Carolina has been waiting all winter long. The Advance Auto Parts 220 will kick off the 2017 season with a pair of 50-lap late model races. A new season brings a new attitude and new opportunities. Thomas Burbage will return to the 3/8-mile track he has called home for another shot at a NASCAR track champion. Burbage showed plenty of speed last season but ended up running into more than his fair share of bad luck throughout the season. “Figure we get a new look for a new year,” Burbage said. “The goal, win every race and take home a championship at the end of the season.”

A new addition to the ECMS schedule this year is the Charger division. For those who have attended races at Southern National these cars, very similar to a Limited Late Model, have limited tire rules as well as different body requirements. This is a great division for those looking to climb the ladder of stock car racing that

A new addition to the ECMS schedule this year is the Charger division. For those who have attended races at Southern National these cars, very similar to a Limited Late Model, have limited tire rules as well as different body requirements. This is a great division for those looking to climb the ladder of stock car racing that has come from a lighter car or maybe even something that was front wheel drive.The grandstands will once again open to fans starting at 2:00 PM. Qualifying is schedule to begin around 5:15 with an approx.. 7:00 PM green flag. General Admission tickets are still just $12 while kids 6-12 years old are only $5. Little race fans under six years old are free. Family packs are also available at the ticket box.

The grandstands will once again open to fans starting at 2:00 PM. Qualifying is schedule to begin around 5:15 with an approx.. 7:00 PM green flag. General Admission tickets are still just $12 while kids 6-12 years old are only $5. Little race fans under six years old are free. Family packs are also available at the ticket box.


Advance Auto Parts 220 Schedule:

Bandos: 15 laps

UCAR: 25 laps

LMSC: 50 laps

*Green Machine Race*

Chargers: 35

Street Stock: 35

LMSC: 50

East Carolina Motor Speedway Looking Forward to Growth in 2017


east carolinaComing off one of the best seasons of racing under the NASCAR banner, if not one of the best seasons in the track’s history, East Carolina Motor Speedway (ECMS) is looking to carry that momentum into the 2017 season. With one of the largest schedules we have seen, ECMS ran from April through September on alternating nights for the most part with neighboring 4/10th-mile oval, Southern National. With an impressive ten division schedule, East Carolina crowned first-time champions in seven of those ten divisions. Brenden Queen, 19-year old driver out of Chesapeake, Virginia, not only won his first race in a Late Model at East Carolina but also dethroned veteran Jeff Shiflett to grab his first ever Late Model Stock track title. ECMS also crowned a new champ

ECMS also crowned a new champion in the INEX Legend division with Dillion Spain, Sammy Gaita in the Super Streets, Chris Flowers in the Grandstocks, Trevor Battoia in the Super Trucks, Justin Fuller in the Pro Six, and Richard Quinn for the ever popular Bomber division. A few drivers found their way back to the top of the points standing when the season came to capture another track championship. Blaise Brinkly put on a clinic once again to take the ECMS championship along with Duane Walker in the UCAR division. Jesse Council had a trying year and overcome a ton to grab another Street Stock title.

East Carolina will look to retain all but one division – INEX Legends – when racing continues in 2017. Including those divisions who were displaced when Hampton, Virginia’s Langley Speedway closed its doors in 2015. It is too early to tell but ECMS schedule is built to host a few special events if they were to come up during the winter months. There as also been talks throughout a few social media groups that the Wing Champ karts are looking to make their debut at East Carolina along with three other tracks in the southeast.

The green flag is set to fly Saturday, April 1st – nope that’s not a joke – with a packed night for fans to enjoy. It has also been confirmed via the schedule the track released on their website that every event will be twins for the NASCAR Late Models. In addition, the date for the annual Ronnie Barnett Memorial has not been set just yet, I will tell you this, you may want to stay tuned to The Weekly Racer to learn what night that will be run. Speaking with track owner Mr. Perry and his son Chris Perry at this year’s awards banquet they are looking to make this a show for those to remember.

A full list can be found below with dates and divisions. Lap counts for each class have yet to be announced and as always, this schedule is subject to change at any time.



April 01: LMSC, Street Stock, UCAR, Bando, Super Streets, Trucks, Bombers

April 15: LMSC, Street Stock, UCAR, Bando, Trucks, Pro Six, Bombers

May 06: LMSC, Street Stock, UCAR, Bando, Super Street, Trucks, Bombers

May 20: LMSC, Street Stock, UCAR, Bando, Trucks, Pro Six, Bombers

June 03: LMSC, Street Stock, UCAR, Bando, Super Streets, Trucks, Bombers

June 17: LMSC, Street Stock, UCAR, Bando, Trucks, Pro Six, Bombers

July 01: LMSC, Street Stock, UCAR, Bando, Super Streets, Trucks, Bombers

July 15: LMSC, Street Stock, UCAR, Bando, Trucks, Pro Six, Bombers

August 05: LMSC, Street Stock, UCAR, Bando, Super Streets, Trucks, Bombers

August 19: LMSC, Street Stock, UCAR, Bando, Trucks, Pro Six, Bombers

September 02: LMSC, Street Stock, UCAR, Bando, Super Streets, Trucks, Bombers

September 16: LMSC, Street Stock, UCAR, Bando, Trucks, Pro Six, Bombers

From Rookie of the Year to State Champion – Tyler Matthews Making a Name for Himself

Oh how much difference a year can make. One year your struggling, the next you find your self on top of the world. One year your the lapped car, the next your lapping cars. Things are not always that extreme, sometimes you find yourself like Tyler Matthews, a 19 year old Richland, North Carolina native, who is slowly making a name for himself within the Late Model Stock Car community. Matthews began his journey in this crazy lifestyle we like to call Late Model racing last year in in 2015 and wound up winning the North Carolina Rookie of the Year award at just 18 years old.

Matthews, a two sport athlete in high school – Football & racing ATV’s found himself in a pretty tough spot with some decisions to make. Starting off in the world of racing ATV’s Matthews spent most of his Friday’s traveling to race. Once he started playing football with his high school, Friday travel days to the race track were all but impossible to make. Instead of giving up on one of the sports he loved Matthews just made an adjustment.

“I used to race atv and we were traveling on Fridays,” said Matthews. “Then I started playing football we couldn’t travel around to races so we started doing something closer to the house that we can race on Saturdays and not have to travel all day Friday”

Matthews played middle linebacker, tight end and fullback for his now alma matter Richland Hights High School while driving his Late Model Stock Car. “I had some DII football offers to play in college but turned them down to go racing,” Matthews told The Weekly Racer.

One year later Matthews found himself at the top of the leader boards again – this time as the North Carolina State points champion. Competing in thirty-four races between two tracks, Matthews – who calls East Carolina Motor Speedway home – found himself with with four wins, eighteen top fives and twenty-eight top tens to edge out fellow competitor Brenden Queen by just two points, and Late Model veteran Louis White by fourteen points. Crediting ECMS with the top three drivers in the state who listed East Carolina their home track in 2016.

Though Matthews found himself finishing third in the season finale at ECMS behind Louis White and Brenden Queen, (Louis White Wins Second Ronnie Barnett Memorial at East Carolina Motor Speedway) it was just enough to lock up the sophomores second NASCAR accomplishment in just his second year of racing. “You know it really hasn’t set in just yet,” Matthews spoke about winning the title. “Last year it didnt set in till we got to Charlotte and you walk and your surrounded by all these great drivers. Last year we finished fifteenth in the state which wasn’t really all that bad and locked up rookie of the year.”


Tyler Matthews celebrates a second place finish in the first of two 40-lap twins along with girlfriend Kodie Drake. (Justin Kern/TheWeeklyRacer.com

Matthews started the season out strong running between his home track East Carolina Motor Speedway where he picked up a couple wins while visiting Southern National on the off weekends. “We came out this year and lead the state early,” Matthews told us. “Mainly because we just had more finishes than every body. We hit a lot of bad luck there in the middle of the season and didnt really get the finishes that we wanted. We put a strong run there though specially with guys like Matt Bowling coming down and trying to get full field wins. We definitely couldn’t have done it with out him last week. To split [a win] with him, thats probably one of the biggest weekends of my career yet. Not sure how his night went but if he locked up the National title thats going to feel pretty awesome to split with a national champ this late in the season.”

NASCAR took just a little bit longer than their normal Tuesday to release the points information, our guess was just to take the time to check and re-check points to make sure they were correct. Matthews told us in our interview that he was blessed to be able to call himself a state champion.

“Not many people have one those you know,” Matthews spoke about state championships. “In racing or even high school sports, its pretty cool to be able to say you are a state champion.”

The season isn’t quite over the young driver however as he has even more opportunity for achievements. Matthews enters this weekend as the Southern National points leader. A hefty 50 point advantage over Ricky Jones. With national points concluded Matthews merely just needs to start the races and he will also be able to add “Track Champion” to his resume of things he has accomplished in young career as a Late Model Stock Car driver. Gates will open tomorrow at SNMP at 5 PM with racing getting underway around 7 PM.




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