Tag Archives: Mark Wertz

Mark Wertz Wins Innagural Shawn Balluzzo Memorial 100; Becomes Just the Fourth Different Modified Champion in fourteen Year

Mark Wertz celebrates in Dale Lemonds Victory Lane Saturday 10/31/20 as the winner of the inaugural Shawn Balluzzo Memorial 100. His victory also secured him the 2020 track title. 📸 Bill Carnes/Given to Fly Photography

Hampton, VA – The final race of the 2020 season at Langley Speedway was finally here and it was a little bittersweet. Champions would be crowned in eight divisions along with the running of the inaugural Shawn Balluzzo Memorial 100 for the Modified division.

Mark Wertz – who stepped down from a full-time racing schedule at the end of 2019 – actually entered the evening with a 19 point lead over Matt Carter in the championship standings. This meant Wertz would have to finish no less than 20 positions behind Carter to win the championship. With 24 cars entered into the Carter still had a mathematical chance to steal the title but certainly would need some help from the full moon that shined over turn one. Chris Johnson, Michael Johnson, and Rick Gdovic also were battling for a top-five finish in points.

26 Modifieds showed up to honor Shawn Balluzzo and put on a great show for the fans. Balluzzo’s son in-law, T.J. Largena planned to bring his car out for the first time this season and honnor his late father in-law by running large Mighty Mouse graphics on the door panels but a broken rear end during practice sidelined him from doing so. Matt Ashworth was the second car in practice that was unable to answer the bell. Matt Carter continued his season long speed and grabbed the pole with a time of 16.085 (88.405 MPH). Chris Johnson, Mark Wertz, Brad Adams, and Adam Medek rounded out the Fast Five. 

Due to the longer race length for this event, race control would split the feature into 3 segments with cautions coming on lap 35 and lap 75. Minor adjustments and adding fuel was the only thing allowed. Tire changes were not permitted unless flat, and if that be the case, the car would have to change the tire the lap after the break was over. Additionally, before the start of the race, at the request of the Balluzzo family, Shawn’s ashes rode with long-time friend, Mark Wertz, for a final three laps around the track, the fans gave a standing ovation as they went around the track.

On the initial start pole sitter, Matt Carter, jumped the start according to race control which prompted a complete and total restart. Take two was a clean one and Chris Johnson took the lead out of turn two. Going into turn three, Wertz, Carter, and Adams went three-wide resulting in Carter making contact with Adams and spinning around. This would bring out the caution and amazingly, everyone was able to avoid Carter who was facing the wrong way. Onto the next restart and it was Wertz this time going to the lead down the backstretch. Cautions came early and often as drivers fought for prime real estate on the racing surface with more than $2,000 and a three-foot trophy on the line, caution number three would be displayed on lap 7 after Jordan Wood – making his Modified debut after competing in the Champ Kart feature earlier in the evening – spun in turn three. Wertz would go back to the lead on the restart, as Adams had a rough one and fell from third to fifth.

Paul Debolt, after starting eighth, made his way up to third and challenged Chris Johnson for second. By lap 11, Debolt took the lead from Wertz and put a sizable lead over the field. After spinning early, Carter had worked his way up to 13th position in just 16 laps. A four car battle heated up for third between Adams, Chris J, Rick Gdovic, and Jamie Sample. Only for that battle to come to a vault as a caution came out for Billy Grimes facing the wrong way in turn two. This also caused Gdovic to make contact with Sample sending him around and cutting his own tire. Both would go to pit road and fix their damages.

Chris Humblet worked his way into the top five as well after starting ninth. Humblet began applying pressure on Chris Johnson for third that they both got caught up and almost passed by Mike Rudy on the outside. A caution came out on lap 31 for Adams going for a spin in turn three. Gdovic, Sample and Eric McPherson all were involved as well. This caution would end up being the first break allowing teams to work on their cars for five minutes. The top five at the break was Debolt, Wertz, Chris J, Rudy, and Chris H.

Back to green and Debolt picked right back up from before the break and shot to the lead. Carter had worked his way up to seventh now. Caution would come out on lap 39 for Whitesell and Gdovic making contact forcing Gdovic around. Grimes would also get collected. Back to green and Wertz took the lead from Debolt on lap 40. Problems occurred for Debolt as he came to a stop on the track to bring the caution out on lap 44. Would later find out issues with the rear end would end his hopes at a victory. Chris Humblet would work his way to the lead by lap 53 after getting around Wertz. Another caution would come out on lap 72 for Grimes going around once again. Race control would also use this caution as the second race break. The top five at this break was Chris Humblet, Mark Wertz, Mike Rudy, Chris Johnson, and Danny Harrell. As the break was coming to an end crews noticed Humblet’s left rear tire going down. He would end up giving up the lead to Wertz to change the tire.

Back to green and things got physical quick with less than 30-laps to go. Mike Rudy and Mark Wertz made contact going through one and two which sent Rudy into the outside wall ending his hunt for the victory. Jeff “Stickman” Bowen handed out plenty of caution flags during the final segment as drivers were fighting for every inch one the racing surface they could get. Wertz would go on the lead the final 10 laps and win the inaugural Shawn Balluzzo Memorial 100 race and also win the 2020 Larry King Law Modified championship. Chris Johnson, Jimmy Humblet, Chase Burrow, and Adam Medek rounded out the top five finishers.

Shawn Balluzzo Memorial 100 Results

  1. #19 Mark Wertz; 100
  2. #36 Chris Johnson; 100
  3. #11 Jimmy Humblet; 100
  4. #0 Chase Burrow; 100
  5. #29 Adam Medek; 100
  6. #47 Brenden Queen; 100
  7. #02 Jordan Wood; 100
  8. #20 Chris Humblet; 100
  9. #78 Matt Carter; 100
  10. #28 Jamie Sample; 100
  11. #5 Kyle Fowler; 100
  12. #38 Michael Johnson; 100
  13. #44 Shawn Adkins; 100
  14. #70 Curtis Hughes; 100
  15. #95 Danny Harrell; 100
  16. #64 Rick Gdovic; 99
  17. #3 Brad Adams; 99
  18. #23 Peyton Ferree; 83
  19. #70 Jeremy Gerstner; 83
  20. #49 Todd Whitesell; 76
  21. #50 Billy Grimes; 72
  22. #8 Mike Rudy; 72
  23. #16 Eric McPherson; 72
  24. #78 Paul Debolt; 43

Featured Image: Bill Carnes/ Given to Fly

Greg Edwards Shakes Losing Monkey; Mark Wertz Continues to Ride Momentum to Dale Lemonds Victory Lane

Mark Wertz returns to victory lane in the Taylor Waste Service Late Model’s as a part-time competitor for 2020. (📸 Sara Langley)

Hampton, VA – It was a cool, chilly night, but the action on the track was hot and intense. The Taylor Waste Services Late Models were back in action to headline the evening with twin 50-lap features. 13 Late Models showed up for an action-packed night. With just eight races left on the season, it was time for teams crackdown and focus on the championship. Brenden Queen came into the night with a 9 point lead over Casey Wyatt, and an 11 point lead over Danny Edwards Jr.

Queen put his machine on the pole earlier in the afternoon with a lap of 15.774 (90.148 MPH). Danny Edwards, Greg Edwards, Casey Wyatt, and Mark Wertz rounded out the fast five. The field doubled up and got the green flag for the first of two 50 lappers. Queen jumped to the lead and after just one lap the field went single file. Wertz gave Wyatt a little nudge for the fourth but couldn’t get the momentum to get around him. Lap 16, Greg got to the inside of Danny for second and took it away. By lap 20 Queen had a two-car length lead over the field.

A battle between Rodney Boyd and Craig Eastep began for the tenth position. The two made contact but both held onto it, Eastep would get the tenth spot while Boyd battled back. With 15 laps to go, Bubba Johnston and Thomas Marks began to battle for the eighth spot to see who would start on the pole for the second 50 lap race. Greg had caught up to Queen and got to his inside to battle for the lead. His momentum came to a holt as the caution came out for Johnston and Marks going for a synchronized spin in turn one. Queen would take the outside for the cone, allowing Greg to start to his inside. On the start, Queen didn’t go allowing Greg to take the lead. Danny took over second and Queen fell to third. Wyatt got the short end of the deal and fell from fourth to tenth. Greg Edwards would go on to get his first victory of the season. Both Queen and Wyatt would come to a stop at the start-finish line, exiting their machines, and showing their displeasure to both the starter and the tower expressing that Edwards (who was not the control car) went before the restart line in turn four.

Even after the spin in the first race, Thomas Marks worked his way back to an eighth-place finish to put him on the pole for the second twin. Bubba Johnston, Craig Eastep, Connor Hall, and Mark Wertz were the starting five. The Green flag flew and the first caution came out for Casey Wyatt making contact with Rodney Boyd, sending Boyd hard into turn one wall. We would later find out that Wyatt’s throttle hung going into the corner. Back to green, and Eastep had the issues getting going causing the bottom row to stack up. Johnson jumped to the lead going into turn one. Hall began to battle Marks for second while Queen joined in. Queen ended up pushing Hall past Marks before eventually working his way around as well. With the battle for second going on, Johnston had built a sizable lead on the rest of the field.

The first caution of the second feature would come at the hands of Craig Eastep spinning through the backstretch grass on lap 13. The tride and true saying of cautions breed cautions were true this weekend because no sooner than the race restarted the field was slowed yet again. This time due to Eastep spinning the 9 of Brock between turns one and two. Back to green and the field made it one lap this time before the third caution was displayed. Contact between Johnston, who looked to try and pull up in front of Hall after losing the lead, and Connor Hall going into turn one cause early depatures for both competitors.

Back to green once again, Queen jumped to the lead with Wertz falling in line in second. Another caution would come out on lap 22 for Wyatt’s machine coming to a stop in turn four. Later reports would confirm Wyatt once again had issues with his throttle and decided to shut the car down to avoid further issues and bring the car to the garage. Wertz took the cone again and would restart on Queens outside. Wertz would clear Queen on lap 24 to take the lead. The two battled side by side for nearly the rest of the race with Greg riding in third waiting for his opportunity to make his move. His opportunity wouldn’t come, Mark Wertz went on to pick up his first Late Model win of the season.

 

Farley Financial UCARS

With a very impressive field of 13 cars, everyone was still chasing Michael Waters. Jamie Hite grabbed the pole by .003-seconds over Michael Waters. Rookies Christian Keller, Robert Dezero, and Nicholas Deans rounded out the fast five. Hite jumped to the lead in the start while Keller stuck his nose to second with Waters falling to third. Waters made his way around Keller for second and wasted no time to get to Hite. Hite and Waters made contact coming out of turn four causing Waters to get loose and almost went nose-first into the inside wall. Waters night would be over sooner than he had hoped meaning there would finally be a new winner this season. The second caution came out for Zachary Lindsey, Tyler Borden, and Bill Eaker getting together in turn three, this wreck ended Lindsey’s night. Back under green, on lap 9, Keller took the lead from Hite. A battle for third heated up between Davis, Deans and Dwight Nikles. Lap 15, Keller was still holding off Hite for the lead. On lap 22, Hite finally reclaimed the lead. Jamie Hite would hold on to pick up his first win of the season.

 

 

Taylor Waste Service Late Model Race 1 Results;

 

  1. #21 Greg Edwards; 50
  2. #26 Danny Edwards Jr; 50
  3. #03 Brenden Queen; 50
  4. #55 Mark Wertz; 50
  5. #77 Connor Hall; 50
  6. #25 Craig Eastep; 50
  7. #19 Bubba Johnson; 50
  8. #88 Thomas Marks; 50
  9. #29 Casey Wyatt; 50
  10. #9 Rodney Boyd; 50
  11. #9 Alex Brock; 50
  12. #71 Jared Clark; 49
  13. #68 Terri O’Connell; 13

Taylor Waste Service Late Model Race 2 Results;

 

  1. #55 Mark Wertz; 50
  2. #03 Brenden Queen; 50
  3. #21 Greg Edwards, 50
  4. #26 Danny Edwards; 50
  5. #88 Thomas Marks; 50
  6. #9 Alex Brock; 50
  7. #25 Craig Eastep; 50
  8. #71 Jared Clark; 49
  9. #29 Casey Wyatt; 21
  10. #19 Bubba Johnston; 14
  11. #77 Connor Hall; 14
  12. #9 Rodney Boyd; 0

 

Farley Finacial UCAR Results;

  1. #12 Jamie Hite; 25
  2. #6 Christian Keller; 25
  3. #3 Austin Davis; 25
  4. #03 Nicholas Deans; 25
  5. #7 Dwight Nikles; 25
  6. #46 Nicholas Hurt; 24
  7. #00 Robert Dezero; 23
  8. #22 Bill Eaker; 12
  9. #50 Zach Fredrick; 4
  10. #36 Michael Waters; 3
  11. #03 Zachary Lindsey; 3
  12. #20 Mike Parker; 3
  13. #2 Tyler Borden; 3

 

*Featured Photo: Greg Edwards and team celebrate first win of the 2020 season following a controversial late-race restart. Photo: Sara Langley

Mark Wertz Doubles Down in Modified’s After Emotional Return to Racing at Langley Speedway

Mark Wertz celebrates win number one with custom and honorary Shawn Balluzzo checkered flag during his victory lap Saturday night 7.25.20 (Photo: Sara Langley)

Hampton, VA – With a sold-out crowd for the second straight week, the Modifieds were back in action at Larry King Laws Langley Speedway with twin 30 lap features. Last races winner, Matt Carter, set the fastest time of the day in qualifying with a 16.123 (88.197 MPH) to set on the pole. That lap being four-tenths faster than the entire field proving he’d be the man to beat for the night. Mark Wertz, Adam Medek, Chase Burrow, and Chris Johnson rounded out the fast five. With the passing of Shawn Balluzzo two weeks ago, the speedway paid homage to the 11-time champion with the missing man formation during the pace laps. The cars lined up double file with two laps to green but left the first position open for Balluzzo. The scoreboard lit up with 48’s, and flagman Shane Snyder waived a checkered flag with a 48 printed on it.

The field went back normal and got ready for the green flag. The first caution didn’t take long as it came on lap 1 for Jamie Sample having problems. Next restart and Carter shot to the lead down the backstretch with Wertz right in line with him. Medek got stuck on the outside causing him to fall back to the fifth position. The second caution would come out this time for Medek going for a loop in turn one. During this caution period, leader Matt Carter’s machine lost power and came to a stop on track, ultimately ending his hopes of winning the first race. We would later learn transmission issues sidelined the defending race winner. This handed the lead over to Wertz. With 10 laps to go, Wertz had opened the lead up to half a straightaway over Michael Johnson. A late-race charge for Gdovic let him battle Michael for second. The checkered flag flew and Mark Wertz picked you his first Modified win on the season.

With the NASCAR mandated eight-car invert, Eric McPherson inherited the pole with Adam Medek, Chase Burrow, Brad Adams, and Chris Johnson the new starting five. Instead of starting eighth Wertz dropped to the rear of the field. Once the green flag was displayed, Medek jumped to the lead while McPherson fell to third. Burrow would also fall back to sixth after a rough start. The first caution came out for Matt Carter looping it around in turn one. Under caution, this time Chris Johnson had issues and pulled his machine to pit road ending his night.

On the ensuing restart a pileup happened in turn two involving McPherson, Burrow, Carter, Gdovic, and Shawn Adkins. Winner of the first race Wertz, merely missed the incident to continue his hopes of winning again. Gdovic and Adkins were able to continue while everyone else’s night was over. Medek took off with the lead once again on the restart. Michael Johnson slid up the track out of turn two slowing all the momentum Wertz had. Wertz made his way around Michael for second on lap 15 and set his sights on Medek.

With five laps to go, Medek was holding a lead that made it seem like he’d get the win, however, that lead would disappear as the caution lights came on for Adkins spinning in turn one. Wertz took the cone to lineup on Medeks outside for the restart. Wertz made the outside line work and cleared Medek going into turn two for the lead. Mark Wertz would hold on and double down and win the second 30 lap feature of the night for the Modifieds.

“Hey I am semi-retired so I love this one,” Wertz said in victory lane following an emotional moment with the Balluzzo family. “Sorry to see Matt broke but that was good racing. This one is for my buddy. Can’t thank Corvette Parts enough, Dunkin Donuts, Bubba Johnston for letting me run his car, Pro turf. My crew worked hard today, we knew we were kinda behind, [these] wins are getting hard to get so I’ll take one. I actually gotta thank the Hubbard family tonight. That last race I didn’t use up the right rear about halfway through that one. I was really having to eggshell the pedal and I just kept thinking Dixieland, Dixieland, Dixieland! Lift early, roll, and it really paid off!”

 

Larry King Law Modified Race 1 Results;

  1. #19 Mark Wertz; 30
  2. #38 Michael Johnson; 30
  3. #64 Rick Gdovic; 30
  4. #36 Chris Johnson; 30
  5. #3 Brad Adams; 30
  6. #0 Chase Burrow; 30
  7. #29 Adam Medek; 30
  8. #16 Eric McPherson; 30
  9. #50 Grant Blasingame; 30
  10. #44 Shawn Adkins; 30
  11. #49 Todd Whitesell; 30
  12. #78 Matt Carter; 14
  13. #18 DJ Valente; 14
  14. #28 Jamie Sample; 1

 

Larry King Law Modified Race 2 Results;

  1. #19 Mark Wertz; 30
  2. #29 Adam Medek; 30
  3. #38 Michael Johnson; 30
  4. #64 Rick Gdovic; 30
  5. #3 Brad Adams; 30
  6. #50 Grant Blasingame; 30
  7. #49 Todd Whitesell; 30
  8. #44 Shawn Adkins; 30
  9. #36 Chris Johnson; 6
  10. #0 Chase Burrow; 6
  11. #16 Eric McPherson; 6
  12. #78 Matt Carter; 6
  13. #28 Jamie Sample; 2

 

[Featured Photo courtesy of Mark Wertz Racing]

Woody Howard and Mark Wertz Pick First Win of the Season; Looney’s National Title Hopes Slip Away

Hampton, VA – With National Championship points on the line, Mike Looney and Phillip Morris made the trip back to Langley Speedway in hopes to win the title. Looney came into the weekend with a ten-point lead of MidWest drivers Jacob Goede and Nick Panitzke with Morris sitting fourth. Looney needed to win the first twin race to knock everyone but Goede out of contention. Morris needed to start worse than ninth and win both twin races to win the title. Looney went on to finish 10th and 12th gaining zero points, Goede won both races at Elko Speedway in Minnesota and gained 14 points on Looney to take the points lead and UNOFFICIALLY win the NWAAS National Championship.

Mike Looney snagged the pole with a time of 15.811 and CE Falk did a time of 15.815-seconds to grab second. Woody Howard, Phillip Morris, and Greg Edwards rounded out the fast five out of twenty cars. Morris dropped to the rear of the field for bonus points and a chance to win the National Championship.

Once the green flag dropped, Falk got a perfect start and took the lead out of turn two with Looney going to second and Hall and Howard battling for third. Falk was putting down a blistering pace early on as he had almost a straightaway lead over Looney on lap 5. After starting last, Morris had made his way up to the 12th position only 15 laps in.

With track championship points still on the line as well, Hall and Greg battled for the fourth position. Greg got Hall loose coming out of turn four but Hall was able to regroup and hold onto fourth. Justin Carroll sought on the opportunity and joined in on the battle as well. On lap 25, Falks lead had grown to a full straightaway over Howard. Greg finally was able to get around Hall for fourth on lap 26. Greg’s car took off as he caught Looney on lap 32 to take third away.

As Falk continued to put a blistering pace on the field, he caught lap traffic as they were battling for position. Howard used this to cut the lead back down to a little less than half a straightaway. Hall had caught Looney and used the outside line to take fourth away. Then Justin got to the inside of Looney and Looney got shuffled all the way back to ninth. Once Falk got clear of the lap traffic he was on cruise control once again. Howard in the other hand had trouble getting around the lap traffic allowing Greg to catch him.

The one thing Falk didn’t want to see happen. The first and only caution came out on lap 66 for Rodney Boyd going in the grass and coming to a stop. On the restart, Falk shot to the lead into one and Howard shot the bottom in second. Into turn three and Howard shoved Falk up the track into the marbles and took the lead. Falk would fall to fifth and looked to gain whatever he could in four laps. Greg got the inside of Howard and a side by side battle for the lead began. Howard was almost in the third groove, which Langley doesn’t have, trying to hold the lead. Coming to the white flag Greg and Howard were dope to door. The checkered flag flew and out of turn, four Woody Howard edged Greg Edwards to win his first race of the season. Connor Hall, CE Falk, and Justin Carroll rounded out the top five.

With the invert of eight, Danny Edwards started on the pole with Brenden Queen lining up to his outside in second. The first start was called off by Race Director Shane Laws as he felt the front row went before the starter. The second start would prove to be better and Queen jumped to the lead with Danny, Wertz, Falk, and Greg the top five. Wertz got around Danny for second and set his sights on the lead. Queen would hold the lead up until lap five when Wertz made his way around him.

Falk took third from Danny and went to the bumper of Queen for the second position. Falk got the inside of Queen into turn three but didn’t clear him until the next lap into turn two. Hall and Justin battled for the sixth position resulting in Hall getting it on lap 10. Howard also took seventh from Justin. Lap 17 and Wertz had put a half a straightaway lead over Falk. Danny and Queen had a door to door battle for third for about 10 laps.

Queen, Danny, Greg, Hall, and Howard all battled for the third through seventh positions without giving any room for error. Howard decided to try the outside line again and it was a success. Howard passed Hall and Greg. Howard tried his luck with Danny but couldn’t pull it off. Lap 40 and Wertz was still on cruise control as Falk couldn’t seem to catch him. Howard slipped back to fifth as Greg worked his brother Danny for fourth. Greg got the spot and instantly went to the inside of Queen for third. Hall took his shot at the inside of Danny for fifth and took it.

Queen has the outside line setup perfectly put together again this week as Greg couldn’t get around him on the inside. Hall was getting impatient waiting for a hole to open so he made one. Hall moved Greg out of the way to take fourth and drove right under Queen for third. Hall would power passed Queen and drove away. With just 10 laps to go Wertz was hoping there wouldn’t be a repeat from the first race. That wouldn’t happen as the checkered flag came out and Mark Wertz picked up his first victory of the season. CE Falk, Connor Hall, Greg Edwards, and Brenden Queen rounded out the top five.

 

Taylor Waste Services Late Model Stock UNOFFICIAL Race #1 Results;
  1. #41 Woody Howard; 70
  2. #21 Greg Edwards; 70
  3. #77 Connor Hall; 70
  4. #40 CE Falk; 70
  5. #91 Justin Carroll; 70
  6. #55 Mark Wertz; 70
  7. #03 Brenden Queen; 70
  8. #26 Danny Edwards Jr; 70
  9. #01 Phillip Morris; 70
  10. #87 Mike Looney; 70
  11. #29 Casey Wyatt; 70
  12. #7 Michael Hardin; 70
  13. #88 Thomas Marks; 70
  14. #7 Zach Lightfoot; 69
  15. #90 Terry Carroll; 69
  16. #10 Madyson Mulligan; 69
  17. #9 Rodney Boyd; 69
  18. #2 Craig Eastep; 37
  19. #81 Travis Byrd; 35
  20. #87 Preston McGhee; 15
Taylor Waste Services Late Model Stock UNOFFICIAL Race #1 Results;
  1. #55 Mark Wertz; 70
  2. #40 CE Falk; 70
  3. #77 Connor Hall; 70
  4. #21 Greg Edwards: 70
  5. #03 Brenden Queen; 70
  6. #26 Danny Edwards Jr; 70
  7. #41 Woody Howard; 70
  8. #91 Justin Carroll; 70
  9. #88 Thomas Marks; 70
  10. #7 Zach Lightfoot; 70
  11. #90 Terry Carroll; 70
  12. #87 Mike Looney; 70
  13. #01 Phillip Morris; 70
  14. #7 Michael Hardin; 70
  15. #2 Craig Eastep; 69
  16. #9 Rodney Boyd; 69
  17. #10 Madyson Mulligan; 68
  18. #29 Casey Wyatt; 50

Thunder Road Harley Davidson 200 “Who to Watch”

Ladies and gentlemen. Boys and girls. It’s that time! Time for some big time Late Model Stock Car Racing. Round one of the 2019 Virginia Triple Crown series kicks off this evening at South Boston Speedway for their annual Thunder Road Harley Davidson 200. Thirty plus cars have converged on the .400-mile Speedway all bunting for the big pay day.

As always The Weekly Racer will have you covered from the start of practice to the checkered flag. You can follow all the action here at this link ->> https://www.24live.co/live/2289885268277396739. Coverage will begin approx. 1:00 PM EDT.

Need to know who to keep your eye on tonight. We got you covered there too! Here are our top five picks for tonight’s race. What about you? Who do you have coming home the winner?

1:30 PM: Practice

4:30 PM: Euro Qualifying

5:30 PM: On track Fan Appreciation

7:00 PM: GREEN FLAG

  • Hornets: 20
  • Pure Stock: 40
  • Late Model: 200
  • Limited Sportsman: 75

To Follow: Fireworks

Josh’s Pick 5

Phillip Morris – It’s Phillip Morris, how could you not pick him as a favorite? Yeah he’s had an up and down season, but when you put Morris and a big race at SoBo together, you’re going to get the best Morris there is. After finishing second to Sellers last year in this race, Phillip looks to get that one extra position to put him in victory lane this year.

Lee Pulliam – He’s put all his dedication into South Boston this season by running a full season there. He’s fourth in points at the track and has two wins, he’s coming off a last place finish in the most recent Late Model race. He’ll be looking to turn his luck around with a strong finish.

Bobby McCarty – Bobby has ran the CARS tour series for a few years now and he won the championship last season. Anywhere McCarty goes, he’s a top three runner. This will be McCartys first appearance at South Boston since last years 200 lap race where he finished fifth.

Peyton Sellers – Sellers will be looking to defend his title as last years winner this year. He’s the points leader at the track, he’s had strong runs at multiple tracks and wins at multiple tracks this season. Being first in national points also gives him a boost to run his best with a big car count expected for more points towards a national championship.

Josh Berry – Berry has been strong in every single CARS tour race this season. Late race luck just hasn’t been on his side, but the other drivers know who’s been the top performer. After breaking through and picking up the win at Dominion last weekend, Berry looks to continue his dominant performances going into this weekend.

Dark Horse:

Thomas Scott – Scott runs well in any big race he goes to. He’s third in points at South Boston, five out of nine races this season he’s finished in the top five with two runner up finishes. He had a chance to win the inaugural Grass Roots 200 at Langley Speedway earlier this year, until a late race wreck ended his night. He finished 17th last year, he’s looking to improve that stat a lot this year.

Justin’s Pick 5

Peyton Sellers – You would be crazy to count Peyton Sellers out of any race he shows up to. It would be even more wild to count him out at his home track of South Boston. Sellers is your current points leader at the speedway as well as NWAAS points. Sellers also posted times in the low 15’s yesterday during practice. Keep your eyes in that white and orange two-six come race time.

Philip Morris – I would have to second Josh’s statement from above. It’s Philip Morris, how can you not pick this man as a favorite. He has won at just about every track he’s been to. You could also argue that Morris is not hitting on all cylinders this year like he was last year. Either way, Morris will certainly be a front runner and a contender at the end of the feature.

Mike Looney – The saying strike when the iron is hot comes to mind with this pick. The former ValleyStar Credit Union 300 winner knows how to deal with pressure in these big races and has certainly been hitting on something out at his home track in the mountains of Virginia. Last week he picks up a win in his first visit to Langley Speedway. Look for Looney to ride that momentum into tonight feature.

Timothy Peters – So he hasn’t been in a Late Model Stock much this year but it’s Timothy Peters. Not to mention when you have the backing of Berry Nelson you know your going to have some of the best equipment out there. If Peters can keep the nose clean he will most certainly be a car to watch in the closing laps.

Brenden Queen – You might say this is more suited for a dark horse or sleeper pick but let me take a second to tell you why we don’t think so. Queen has always done well in these long distances races. He has also been more determined than ever this year to perform. He has also teamed up with car owner Andre Grier which, despite some obvious growing pains and learning the car, has proven to be a good partnership. Queen will need to focus on keeping tires under his machine and make the right moves at the right time. If he can do that there is a chance we may see him in victory lane.

Dark Horse

Mark Wertz – Yup, I said it! Don’t sleep on the Chesapeake native. Wertz stepped back from full time competition this year to assist in the development of Connor Hall. One thing this has allowed him to do is pick and choose the races he wants to run. What’s the benefit in that? Focused attention. Wertz has plenty of experience at South Boston to be a real threat. With him stepping away from full time driving it’s just enough for other drivers to “count him out” which makes him dangerous.

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