Lucama, NC – A cold night to say the least down in North Carolina to kick off the annual Thanksgiving All-Star Classic at Southern National Motorsports Park. While some were up bright and early to stand in line and fight for their right to buy the $300 TV, others were packing up race car trailers and heading to North Carolina for some racing.
The ever popular Street Stock division was the highlight of the evening running a 50 lap feature. Jeff Melton set the fast time in qualifying with a time of 16.605 (86.721mph) only to be waisted 500 feet past the stripe. As the field took the green flag outside pole sitter Mike Keith must have spun the tires and immediately hooked left. Melton & Keith had a crash course with the inside retaining wall that took both cars out of contention. Mike Keith would attempt to return to the speedway but the damage was too much for the car. This would allow Ledbetter and Barnett to move up to the front row.
As the green flag was displayed to the field Gary Ledbetter nailed the gas – as most race car drivers do at that time of the evening – and took off into turns one and two with Greg Barnett on his flank. These two would build a pretty large over Ganoe and Council, who spent a good amount of laps nose to tail working on each other before Council finally got around him for third spot.
Things were pretty smooth sailing for the first half of the race as I would imagine some drivers were trying to save tires. Remember this was a little bit longer of a race than what some of these guys are used to. Greg Barnett was finally able to make the pass for the lead on lap 27 after hanging on to the rear bumper of Ledbetter. Just four laps later we got the nights first caution as the #10c of Chris Conner went for a solo spin in turn two.