Worst to First, Griffith Prevails!
North Woodstock NH – Twenty-nine cars took the green flag for round two of the Pro All Stars Series (PASS) Super Late Model 2020 season at White Mountain Motorsports Park (WMMP) on a hot, sweltering day with temperatures in the mid to high 80’s. Starting dead last in the field was the familiar 12G of Derek Griffith. 150 grueling laps later, Griffith pulled off the very rare worst-to-first accomplishment to take home the checkers on the high banked oval. Chasing him across the line was Tamworth’s Jeremy Davis and teenager Gabe Brown to fill out the podium. Griffith was understandably pleased with the result.
“We started off the day with some decent practice times and really liked the way the car felt. A bad draw put us at the back of our heat and we got caught up with someone else. We missed our consolation race and had to start at the back of the second consolation race.” said Griffith. “The guys really worked their butts off to get it back together and it paid off.”
Oppressive heat became its own story line in the second half of the 150 lap contest. Many teams were plagued with mechanical issues, including overheating, that sidelined a bit over half the starting field.
Griffith anticipated a mix of issues and the usual skirmishes and approached the race determined to save his equipment. “We just wanted to save our stuff for as long as possible for a late race restart.”
Griffith got his opportunity on lap 139 and powered his way to the front while contact between Ben Rowe and DJ Shaw, both early race leaders, shuffled the deck. From that point the Hudson, NH resident never looked back and cruised to his first PASS win of the year.
Jeremy Davis capitalized on the aforementioned scuffle to vault into the runner-up spot. The veteran driver started his race back in the 17th spot. Much like Griffith, Davos methodically picked his way to the front, putting himself in position to garner his first top 3 finish of the year. Center Conway’s Gabe Brown finished on the podium in the third spot. The 2018 Oxford Plain Speedway SLM Champion started the race seventh and was never outside the top 10. DJ Shaw ended up forth and Ryan Kuhn made an impressive charge to round out the top 5.
The second half of the top 10 went to Alan Tardiff, Ray Christian III, Johnny Clark who led the first 76 laps before a flat, Ben Rowe who recovered from a late race spin, and Garrett Hall.
PASS MODS – Morse Holds Off All Challengers
Defending Pass Modified Champion Spencer Morse scored his first victory of the 2020 campaign. Morse held off the likes of two time champion Ben Tinker, June 10th winner Tyler King, and veteran racer Tracy Gordon making his first start in the Mike Nichols MOD.
“It was hot, it was miserable, but it was a blast! The caliber of cars and drivers in this division has jumped 10-fold in the last year. But every one raced me super clean.”
Morse made his way to the front around the mid point of the 50 lap contest. “The car was just OK, but we didn’t by any means have the fastest car. Once I got to the front I just hugged the low line and hoped I could hold em all off,” a jubilant Morse exclaimed in post race interviews.
Ben Tinker, making his return to the series after a year away racing Super Late Models, challenged Morse on two separate occasions but fell just short at the line. “There just wasn’t much of an outside groove today with all this heat, and exhausted Tinker noted, “and the #34 wasn’t about to give up the bottom. We will taake second and see if we can get em at OPS next week.”
Tyler King started near the back of the 19 car field but made scored his second straight top 3 finish of 2020 to retaint he point lead. Rounding out the top 5 were Juston Larson and Colby Benjamin.
Honey Badger Bar & Grill Street Stock Series –
Russell Denies Bowie The Double
A lap 45 power move around the outside of June 7th winner Zach Bowie propelled the # 4 Camaro driven by Jordan Russell to his second career Honey Badger Street Stock win. Bowie, who was racing with a heavy heart after the passing of his employer and friend, took over the lead at mid-race and held off all challengers until Russell made his way to the front.
Russell, who started the feature in the fifth spot, remained patient through the first half of the race. “Me and a couple of guys kind of agreed to try and get away from the pack at the start before we really battled each other,” said Russell, “I knew I didn’t have enough to go by all those guys on the outside so I was content to just ride until the last quarter of the race. When we had that late race restart, I really didn’t think I had enough to get by Zach, but when he made contact with the 17 car it gave me just enough to get by and get it down.”
Bowie held on for second to maintain his Honey Badger Series point lead. Some very hard racing between over the last half dozen laps saw the third through sixth spots change hands multiple times. In the end, Ryan Robinson brought home the third place trophy while Skip Stanley narrowly edged out Bobby Seger as those two rounded out the top 5.
The Pro All Stars Series is back in action next Sunday June 28th at Oxford Plains Speedway. While fans are still not allowed to attend that race, there will be a broadcast by NSNsports.net. Be sure to check OxfordPlains.com for more information.