Tag Archives: TheClassic

Dillion Spain Back Behind the Wheel; Dillion Spain Back in Victory Lane

Dillion Spain celebrates a flag-to-flag victory in the INEX Legends division on night one of the 2017 Thanksgiving Classic at Southern National. (Justin Kern/TheWeeklyRacer)

Lucama, NC – Even though Dillion Spain took a small step back over the summer to help focus on setting up other racecars, it did not mean he forgot how to wheel one or where victory lane was at Southern National Motorsports Park.

Spain ultimately beat out teammate Will Bristle during their second round of practice, which also doubled as their qualifying session, to earn yet another front row starting position. Twenty-one cars would put lap times down to line up behind the multi-time SNMP Legends winner. Caleb Day, Alec Webb, and Tommy Jackson Jr. were the fastest five qualifiers.

The 25-lap feature turned into a game of survival as it took the field just over thirty minutes to reach the halfway point of the race as some drivers decided to play bumper cars with each other while others had mechanical issues and burst into flames. The forty-five-minute feature witnessed nine different cautions, none of which phased or bothered the front two of Dillion Spain and Will Bristle.

Caleb Day and Alex Webb, however, found themselves fighting back through the field after a spin for Day and being sent to the rear after race control saw contact between Webb and Diaz on one of the many restart attempts. Caleb was able to fight his way back to a podium finish when the checkered was displayed. Alec Webb had fought his way back into the top five at one point but, ultimately would settle for sixth. Tommy Jackson Jr., of Poquoson, Virginia who was quiet but fast all evening finished fourth.

Emily Day, who completed two of her four scheduled races in Friday night’s portion of the 2017 Thanksgiving Classic, dominated the weekends opening 20-lap INEX Bandolero feature opening up over a two-second lead at one point over the field. She too had to hold the field off on a late race restart but it was very clear, there was no one in the Lucama, North Carolina that was going to deny her of her second career win.


Legends UNOFFICIAL Results

  1. #7 Dillon Spain; 25
  2. #91 Will Bristle; 25
  3. #83 Caleb Day; 25
  4. #87 Tommy Jackson, Jr.; 25
  5. #81 Lee Jordan; 25
  6. #5 Alec Webb; 25
  7. #11 Chris Stancil; 25
  8. #82 Caleb Heady; 25
  9. #14 Conner Jones; 25
  10. #63 Josh Kurtz; 25
  11. #55 Chris Floars; 25
  12. #88 Ryan Center; 25
  13. #18 Emily Day; 25
  14. #12 Eric Courtney; 15
  15. #94 Brad Hancock; 9
  16. #4 Jason Austin; 9
  17. #88 Zack Brown; 9
  18. #24 Mason Diaz; 8
  19. #B1 Brenton Irving; 1
  20. #44 Wayne Austin; 0


UNOFFICIAL Bando Results;

  1. #18 Emily Day; 20
  2. #18g Matthew Gurganus; 20
  3. #51 Ethan Johnson; 20
  4. #8 Jacob Derrick; 20
  5. #42 Jacob Bradley; 20
  6. #5b Payton Lee; 20
  7. #04a Cameron Murray; 20
  8. #5w Bobby Elder; 20
  9. #02 Jacob O’Neal; 20
  10. #18b Autumn Weaver; 20
  11. #44 Kaleb Bradley; 20
  12. #9r Ayden Millette; 19

Dillon Spain Doubles Down at 2016 Thanksgiving Classic

Dillion Spain celebrates in victory lane for the second night in a row at Southern National Motorsports Park. (Justin Kern/TheWeeklyRacer.com)

Dillon Spain celebrates in victory lane for the second night in a row at Southern National Motorsports Park. (Justin Kern/TheWeeklyRacer.com)

Lucama, NC – When the bounty comes out you know you have a driver who is on a hot streak. So much so a promoter or track owner is willing to put extra money on the line for someone to beat that driver. For Southern National and the INEX Legends that driver is none other that Dillon Spain. A $300 bounty was put on the driver of the #7 machine giving a grand total of possible winnings up to $700.

Over 18 drivers had 40 circuits around the .400-mile high-banked oval to get the job done. Spain certainly did not make it easy on anyone after qualifying on the pole with a 16.894 (85.237 mph) second lap over Mason Diaz, Alec Webb, Will Bristle and 2016 Dominion Raceway champion Tommy Jackson Jr.

It did not take long for Spain to flex his muscle and jumped out to a commanding lead. Alec Webb made things interesting when he dove under the #91 of Bristle and left him out to dry on the top side, Bristle would eventually fall back in line just outside the top five. Tommy Jackson Jr. looked to turn up the wick in hunt of that $700 pay out just past the halfway point of the feature, trying to use lap cars to his advantage. However, Jackson would run out of laps and would have to settle for a second place finish in the 2016 Thanksgiving Classic.

“Yea we got a lot of laps here so we pretty much knew where to go for the race,” Spain commented in victory lane. “The car was really solid yesterday so it was a great test and tune for today. Going into that second round of practice we broke the trailing arm so that kind of screwed up our afternoon. We got everything back together and put it back where it needs to be and sat on the pole. We had a good run there with Mason the first ten laps, I was excited to be able to get to work with him this weekend.”

We asked Spain what it felt like going into these races knowing he has a bounty on his head and if it changed his strategy at all.

“Honestly I don’t feel like I deserve it,” Sapin commented about the bounty. “We do good but I don’t know if we really deserve a bounty. It is an honor to be able to have tracks think I deserve it though.”


Stancil Products – 40 Laps

1) #7 Dillon Spain
2) #87 Tommy Jackson Jr.
3) #24 Mason Diaz
4) #0 Alex McCollum
5) #5 Alec Webb
6) #91 Will Bristle
7) #10 Justin Mitchell
8) #71 Chris Hildebrand
9) #84 Kyle Beattie
10) #12 Eric Courtney
11) #6 Chris Hammett
12) #88 Zack Brown
13) #76 Brandon Johnston
14) #83 Caleb Day
15) #3 Joseph Sanoske
16) #1 Steven Chapman
17) #63 Kris Kurtz
18) #99 William West

Lee Pulliam Checks the Thanksgiving All-Star Classic Off His Bucket List with Emotional Victory

Pulliam Victory Lane

Kenly, NC – The field was set for the 15th running of the Thanksgiving All-Star Classic hosted by Southern National Motorsports Park. A race that has slipped through the grasp of multi time NASCAR Whelen All-American Series National Champ Lee Pulliam. After winning his third national title, fifth South Boston 200 race in a row, finally winning the Hampton Heat 200, Pulliam set his sights on the VA Triple Crown, All-Star Classic, and the unofficial “Grand Slam” of Late Model Racing.

Pulliam, a threat to win at just about any track he pulls into, has an extensive notebook and plenty of laps to boot here at SNMP so you knew he was going to be strong. Setting the third fastest time in group qualifying Saturday afternoon and holding that position during the heat race, that is where he rolled off for today’s 200-lap feature event.


P1. #27 Tommy Lemons, Jr.
P2. #08 Deac McCaskill
P3. #5 Lee Pulliam
P4. #2 Myatt Snider
P5. #77 Connor Hall

Once the green flag was displayed to the field it almost looked to get ugly and fast through turns one and two. Pole sitter Tommy Lemons, Jr. got a tad bit squirrely through the corner. With the quality of drivers behind him, they all allowed him gather himself up back up and get to some pretty good green flag racing. Pulliam would actually spend the first quarter of the race hanging out in third just biding his time before he would make his move to the front, the caution on lap 50 would help with that as it allowed him to take the inside of the cone and restart right on the bumper of race leader Tommy Lemons.

Pulliam would spend the next twenty-five laps sizing up his opponent; making what looked like “mock runs” on the race leader figuring out what move to make to take the top spot away. Finally pulling the trigger out of two as the field worked lap 74, Pulliam pulled even to Lemons door and it was a drag race down the backstretch. With the top groove just about non-existent here this weekend, Pulliam was able to motor his Kiker Tree Services #5 Chevy to lead at lap 75 and never looked back!

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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.

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