Tag Archives: Feature

Gragson – From Short Track roots to the Xfinity Series in 2019

JR Motorsports announced Tuesday that Camping World Truck Series driver, Noah Gragson would be joining the organization in 2019. It was no ordinary Driver Reveal or Press Release as the team went full JRM 360 in their latest Facebook video as seen below titled “Credential Required”…

 

Noah Gragson started his NASCAR journey like most other young guns did in the sport, started racing Bandoleros at the Las Vegas Motor Speedway Bullring at the age of 13, eventually moving to compete in Late Models. Gragson also competed in the INEX Legends car series, winning the 2014 Young Lion Road Course championship.

Gragson competed in both the K&N Pro Series East and the K&N Pro Series West in 2016, winning a combined four races. On October 7, he was hired by Kyle Busch Motorsports to compete in the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series in 2017. In preparation, he drove the No. 18 Toyota from KBM at the Phoenix International Raceway and Homestead-Miami Speedway events in an entry fielded by Wauters Motorsports. In his debut at Phoenix, Gragson qualified 14th and finished 16th. Gragson raced at Homestead as well, qualifying 10th and finishing 15th. In 2017, he recorded his first career Truck win in the fall at Martinsville Speedway and finished tenth in points.

He returned to the No. 18 KBM truck for the 2018 season, while also making his NASCAR Xfinity Series debut in the No. 18 for Joe Gibbs Racing at Richmond Raceway as part of a three-race schedule that included further starts at Talladega Superspeedway and Dover International Speedway. His racing slate also included starts on the NASCAR Pinty’s Series and CARS Tour circuits in an effort to make himself a better driver via more seat time.

Noah currently sits 2nd in the NCWTS points (9/25/18) as he is still going for his first NASCAR Championship.

As the Video notes, Noah will be taking over the No.1 machine that has been piloted by Elliott Sadler since the 2016 Season. Current rumors are that Noah will be bringing his current sponsors, Switch and Safelite Autoglass with him as he joins JRM.

Article Photo by: Jason Wedehase

CARS Tour set for Road Course Debut in 2019

Mooresville, NC 9/25/18 – History will be made on Saturday, November 23, 2019 when the CARS Response Energy Tour hosts its first ever event on a road course at Dominion Raceway in Thornburg, Virginia. The Late Model Stock Car event, around the 12 turn course, will be a non-points race to close out the 2019 calendar year.

With anticipation building for this weekend’s NASCAR Cup Series ROVAL race at the Charlotte Motor Speedway, the CARS Tour along with Dominion Raceway, wanted to publicize the event just prior to the release of the 2019 CARS Response Energy Tour season schedule. With the addition of road course events being added to multiple stock car series schedules across the country, the timing for an attempt to see Late Models turning both left and right felt appropriate.

“This is one of the most exciting announcements in years for the world of Late Model racing.” stated Steve Britt, owner of Dominion Raceway. “The opportunity for the drivers of the CARS Tour to race on our two mile road course should have fans and competitors totally elated, and it could only happen at a facility like Dominion.”

The non-points race around the 2 mile track, which features eight of twelve turns as left handers, will be done in comparable format to a normal CARS Tour race with testing taking place on Friday November 22nd followed by the Saturday afternoon race on November 23rd. All aspects of the entry fee, testing, pit passes, and purse will be similar to that of a normal CARS Tour sanctioned race at an oval.

Testing for the event will take place over the next year in preparation for the race with CARS Tour and Dominion Raceway officials evaluating rules and requirements to keep costs down for competitors anticipating changes to their cars. An emphasis will be placed when testing to keep the cars and their components (transmissions, control arms, chassis parts, etc.) the same as what is normally used at ACSR Tour events.

“I think this is going to be an awesome event. There’s no secret that Jack and I, probably more so me, are all about trying to be fluid with ideas on how we can stand out and do something different,” noted Chris Ragle, CARS Tour Series Director. “I think this race and the way we are doing it, is the perfect way to introduce our competitors and fans to road course racing. Dominion Raceway is a beautiful facility that we are familiar with, and the amount of desire that Steve Britt has in him to make this work is hard to ignore. There’s all kinds of stock car series that host road coursed races, there’s no reason the CARS Tour can’t do the same, it just has to be done right, and we think we can make that happen on November 23rd, 2019.”

 

-CARS Tour PR-

Nelson Sweeps Wild Full Moon Night at Jennerstown

Fate smiled upon one particular competitor who has seen his share of disappointments in 2018 during Saturday’s eventful Super Cup Stock Car Series Twin 50s at Jennerstown Speedway. Petersburg, West Virginia’s Brent Nelson had all the breaks go his way en route to an evening sweep, the second time in which such a feat occurred for him at the Pennsylvania facility.

Nelson’s sixth and seventh career SCSCS victories came with a new sponsor on board.

“To come home winning with Royal Purple on the hood, I can’t ask for a better night,” Nelson remarked.   “We’ve had rotten luck about everywhere we’ve gone this year.   We’ve run well, but wrong place at the wrong time and as they say, that’s racing.”

Nelson’s No. 80 Royal Purple Synthetic Oil / Airtek Inc. / Steam Turbine Services / Precision Auto Collision / Atkinson Welding Chevrolet qualified a close second to Bob Schacht, who won his season record-tying fifth Pole Award.

It was 2017’s top rookie Jerod Brougher, in his first appearance of the year, who drew the pole. Cars were required to take evasive action almost immediately, as the Scottdale, Pennsylvania driver’s machine suddenly slowed in the initial corners on the opening lap. July’s second Twin 50 winner J.P. Crabtree was the only car to sustain cosmetic damage as a result of the left front fender falling off his No. 42 USA Tire / J.R.’s Landscaping / Stagger Pros / Support The Troops / Don Gnat Racing Ford.

Crabtree was able to continue and followed Schacht by local former Street Stock champion Andrew Kostelnik for second in the opening laps and then by early leader Toby Grynewicz shortly after.   It was a yellow flag for the expired engine of John Komarinski on lap 19 that changed the complexion of the first race and entire night.

On the restart lap, contact ensued between Crabtree and Schacht, and resulted in Schacht being sent for a spin and his No. 75 Engineered Components / Bob Schacht Motorsports Chevrolet backed into the turn four wall. The aftermath collected an innocent Kevin Kromer as well, ending the Walnutport, Pennsylvania racer’s night abruptly.

Crabtree was sent to the rear for the contact, but recovered to a runner-up result.   Schacht lost some laps, but the SCSCS overall points leader got back on the track to salvage an eighth place finish in an attrition-filled 50-lap event.

Both drivers, who had a history of contact with each other from earlier in the season, offered their point of view on what they felt had occurred.

“It was just hard racing for the lead,” Crabtree explained. “I had my front end down in there on him and I guess he thought he was going to close the door on me and it wasn’t going to affect him, but I stayed in it.”

“For whatever reason, the 42 car just took me out and I wound up backwards into the fence,” Schacht commented. “I don’t know what his problem is, if he’s got issues with Midvale and what happened or whatever, but if he’s got a problem with me then he’s messing with the wrong guy.”

All of the mayhem under the full moonlit sky opened the door for Nelson, who was riding solidly in the top five beforehand and led the rest of the way.   He would additionally give the birds-eye point of view he had of the altercation after the race.

“Going in I was running my own line and they got in there; I don’t know if J.P. slipped up,” Nelson described. “He did get into the left-hand quarter panel and turned Bob, but call it a racing incident, call it that he took him out, I don’t know the answer.   Only J.P. knows that.”

Following Nelson and Crabtree to the line were Kostelnik and Grynewicz.   Marc Jones turned in a best career fifth place finish and scored his third Hard Charger award of the season.

Third-year driver Jason Schue survived to finish sixth, earning the driver of the No. 3 Peckie’s Auto Body / Larry’s Lawn Mower Repair / 1st Choice Computer Solutions / Rage Karts Chevrolet his first ever attempt at participating in the redraw for the front three rows for the second Twin 50, in which the Littlestown, Pennsylvania driver drew the third starting position.

Nelson and Kostelnik redrew the front row, but one driver would be absent from the second feature.   Director of Competition, Joe Schmaling, provided the reasoning for his call to park Crabtree following the first Twin 50.

“We went on just watching the 42 knowing what was done and how he does stuff and I decided at the end of the race it’s time for him to go home,” Schmaling answered.   “He’s leading our Northern points, which is kind of a shame, but if he calms down he will be welcome back.”

Nelson got out to an impressive lead from the get go in the second Twin 50, but maneuvering toward the front with his patched up car was Schacht.   On lap 41, Nelson slipped high in turn four which allowed Schacht to speed by for the top spot; however, two circuits later things would turn much worse.

Throughout the course of the caution free feature, Schacht’s car noticeably displayed sparks going through the turns. With seven laps remaining, the right front tire loudly popped sending the Mooresville, North Carolina driver hard into the turn four outside wall.   Schacht was okay.

Nelson was not home free yet with some new challengers on the final restart, Kostelnik and Brougher, hungry to claim their first victory. The veteran driver held them off over the closing laps to sweep the night.

“I don’t know if I got in some marbles up there but honestly I thought I had a right rear tire going down,” Nelson said about his car late in the going.   “The car was extremely loose after that and I followed Bob and backed off a little bit and just rode it out. I thought, well, he could have a little bit of bad luck and lo and behold going into turn three his night turned pretty bad.”

“I knew how my car was driving getting into the corner and I drove it in pretty deep,” Nelson added regarding the final restart. “I didn’t know if they were going to come in that hard or not.   It worked, we were able to get off of two and get to the outside and here we are.”

Brougher was able to get by Kostelnik to finish a best career second in his first outing of 2018.   After what turned out to be a hydraulic throw-out bearing issue in the first race, the Scottdale, Pennsylvania driver could not have been more thrilled with the rally from the rear to second.

“This thing was flying,” Brougher noted about his No. 71 Make It Spark Ltd. / Donegal Auto Body / Parry Custom Homes Chevrolet. “We had fresher tires than everybody out there because we went in with a mechanical failure on the first lap of the first feature, so I knew we had a little bit of an advantage there. I can’t thank everybody enough for all the help we got these past couple weeks putting this car together. This thing was in pieces 14 days ago.”

The beginning of Kostelnik’s SCSCS career continued on a good note with his third third-place finish in four starts. It was more than an eventful day for the entire Minjock Racing crew behind-the-scenes, changing the rear end gear twice and repairing a fuel pump.

“I knew I didn’t have third gear when I lost it in the first race and in the second race I kind of knew on that restart was going to be a little sketchy and on top of that the tires were going away,” the driver of the No. 41 Blackberry Smoke / Moody Premium Guitar Straps / Spherical Solutions / Waterway Fire Hose Testing / The Allegheny Group Chevrolet recapped. “It was a bit of a handful there. I think we’re definitely getting there now.”

Grynewicz turned in another fourth place result in his No. 40 T&T Plumbing / Winsupply / Global Safaris Chevrolet and defending Jennerstown Street Stock champion Lauren Butler stayed out of trouble to round out the top five in the No. 53 Edlin Automotive Services / Cornwell Tools / Motive Parts of Homestead Inc. / Fleegle Graphics / #TeamChampion Chevrolet.

-SCSCS PR-

Mayer wins big at the bullring

Saturday’s CARS Response Energy Late Model Stock Tour event at Wake County Speedway produced a huge first-time win for a rookie driver.

Sam Mayer held off JRM teammate Josh Berry and Lee Pulliam to score his first career CARS Response Energy Tour victory.

Mayer said this win was a huge relief and lifted weight off his shoulders. After several top five finishes in 2018, Mayer was finally able to celebrate a win.

Mayer started 10th in the 20-car field at the “bullring”  Mayer had fallen back to 11th where he was forced to work his way through the field before taking the lead on lap 75 of the feature.

Mayer had gapped 2nd place runner Josh Berry, until the caution flew with two laps to go for a single car spin in turn 4. This allowed Josh Berry, who started last, among others such as Pulliam and Layne Riggs one last shot to get by Sam Mayer.

“I used up my tires a little early, I think,” Mayer said about the restart. “I had to start in fourth gear just to avoid spinning my tires on those restarts. I was still able to get a good jump, because the gearing is so small at this small track. We were able to go and get clear.

“Pulliam gave me a shot and said ‘I gave you all I got, man.’ It was a great feeling going into three being clear. Coming to the checkered flag is a great feeling, putting my hand up in the car.”

Along with running the full season in the CARS Tour, Mayer has recorded starts in the ARCA Racing Series and NASCAR K&N Pro Series along with numerous Super Late Model starts.

“Everything this year has been learning. I’ve been going to new tracks like here every single weekend. It’s just all about learning and getting ready for next year and the rest of my career.”

The CARS Response Energy Tour will host two more races this season. The series returns to action in two weeks at Orange County Speedway. The season finale will take place November 3 at South Boston Speedway (VA).

 

Pos # Driver
1 9 Sam Mayer
2 5 Lee Pulliam
3 99 Layne Riggs
4 22 Deac McCaskill
5 88 Josh Berry
6 07 Bradley McCaskill
7 22 Bobby McCarty
8 2 Brandon Pierce
9 74 Ronald Hill
10 22 Eric Winslow
11 18 Ty Gibbs
12 9 Charlie Watson
13 44 Thomas Beane
14 47 Alex Fleming
15 43 Sammy Pacitti
16 17 Zachary Marks
17 2 Cody Haskins
18 4 Dylon Wilson
19 1 Mike Chambers
20 2 Randy Renfrow

Double Payout & Bonuses for Charger division at SNMP

Lucama, NC –

The charger division is known for great racing and being an affordable class to compete in. Well this weekend at Southern National Motorsports Park, the charger drivers will have a lot of reasons to come and compete.

SNMP announced that the Charger division will have a twin races for August 18th, September 8th and September 22nd. Each race of the night will pay $600 to win and $100 to start. Along with the payout comes a few added bonuses including the following awards…

  • $125 for Best Average Finish
  • $65 for 2nd Best Average Finish
  • $35 for 3rd Best Average Finish
  • $25 for Last Place
  • $50 for Longest Tow
  • $100 Random Spot Bonus

There will be a different tire rule in affect for these 3 events. Normally this division has a 4 “Scuff” Tire rule where teams will receive 4 used tires to qualify and race on. These events will still have the 4 scuff tires as well, but will also come with 1 new tire to go along with them.

The purse for the events are as follows…. (Per Twin race)

1st – $600, 2nd – $350, 3rd – $275, 4th – $200, 5th – $150, 6th to Last – $100

For more information visit http://www.SNMPark.com

Parsons to make CWTS Debut at Bristol

Mooresville, NC (August 7, 2018) – Premium Motorsports is proud to welcome Stefan Parsons, NASCAR Whelen All American Series and CARS Tour Series driver, to the team as he makes his NASCAR Series debut at Bristol Motor Speedway. Parsons will pilot the #15 Chevy Silverado in his first ever NASCAR Camping World Truck Series race. Phoenix Construction Services, Inc. will serve as Parsons’ primary sponsor in Thursday night’s ‘UNOH 200’.

Stefan Parsons has racing in his blood. He has been around the sport his entire life as the son of former NASCAR driver/Cup Series team owner, now Fox Sports 1 race commentator, Phil Parsons and nephew to NASCAR Hall of Famer, Benny Parsons. He now looks to make a name for himself in the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series.

“I’m super excited to make my truck debut at Bristol. I can’t thank Jay Robinson and everyone at Premium Motorsports enough as well as James Finch & Phoenix Construction for giving me this opportunity. I’m excited to work with Mike Hillman Sr & Peter Sospenzo as I make my NASCAR debut in the #15 Phoenix Construction, Chevy Silverado. This is something I’ve been dreaming about my whole life and I can’t put into words what this means to me. My family has a history of winning at Bristol and I hope to continue the tradition.” – Stefan Parsons

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CCS to host $8,000 to Win Limited Late Model race

Carteret County Speedway posted on Facebook that they will be hosting their Annual Labor Day race this year once again, but this time with a change to the payout.

CCS announced that they will be paying $8,000 to win the limited late model portion of the Labor Day event on Sunday September 2nd. Along with the boosted purse, CCS officials also announced they will be paying a $1,000 Pole award and a $100 bonus to any drivers who run a Throwback scheme.

The last time the track hosted a large Limited Late Model event, Layne Riggs came out on top picking up the $15,000 Payday in the Solid Rock Carriers 150. We could expect to see Layne along with many other Late Model Stock regulars.

The track made a point that ALL Late Model racers are welcome at this event as there was some confusion dealing with drivers not knowing if they were eligible for the latest event.

For more information visit http://www.CarteretSpeedway.com

-Carteret County Speedway Photo-