PASS Late Models: PASS South Pilots Eye Over The Mountain 150 at Hickory

RaceChaser Staff Carolinas Racing, Northeast, Southeast 0 Comments

CHARLOTTE, NC (September 10) – As the temperatures begin to cool and the days shorten, Pro All Stars Series (PASS) South Super Late Model teams know it’s time to for their second trip of the season to Hickory Motor Speedway.  The Over The Mountain 150 Presented By CV Products is always a favorite stop for the South’s top short track touring drivers.  Hickory has long been a stomping ground for some stock car racing’s most talented drivers.  And, for PASS South Super Late Model racers, it has been a place that both veteran and young drivers could show case their talents. 

Jared Irvan first stepped behind the wheel of a PASS South Super Late Model at last year’s Over The Mountain 150.  Driving a black and red #28 reminiscent of the Havoline paint schemes his father Ernie piloted from 1993 through 1997, young Jared was impressive throughout the weekend ultimately finishing seventh in his series debut.  After a slow start to the 2013 season, Irvan has come on strong as of late finishing third at Caraway Speedway in May and falling just short of his first win by finishing second to Ross Kenseth at South Boston Speedway.  Despite his recent success, Irvan knows that racing can be cruel at times.  After all, he failed to qualify at this year’s Easter Bunny 150 at Hickory.

“I’ve raced there a few times before in the PASS series and that helps, especially since all the other tracks we go to are new to me,” said Irvan, driver of the #28 Auramist Chevrolet.  “Qualifying is not my strong suit so we’ll definitely have to pick up on that at Hickory.  There’s always a lot of cars at Hickory and it will be really important to get locked into the top 20 after qualifying.”

A driver hoping to turn his season around at the Over The Mountain 150 Presented By CV Products will be Brandon Ward.  After a stellar 2012 season that saw Ward win twice and finish fourth in PASS South points, the Winston-Salem, NC veteran has struggled this year.  Despite being seventh in points, Ward has finished no better than sixth at Myrtle Beach Speedway back in March.  With high hopes on scoring a good run at Hickory, Ward knows that Hickory will present a unique challenge to him and his fellow competitors.

“It’s a racetrack that draws a lot of cars because a lot of different combinations can work there,” said Ward.  “I don’t think the place changes a whole lot.  I think it’s always a situation at Hickory where you’re looking for two things: you’re looking for grip and looking to make the car last the whole night and be good there at the end.”

Ward has raced many types of cars at Hickory Motor Speedway, but feels the power to weight ratio of a PASS South Super Late Model presents a tough scenario when faced with figuring out the track’s worn surface.  And that has been particularly tough for Ward’s New Day Motorsports team, who has yet to score a top five finish at Hickory.  But the team has been steady over the years and Ward hopes he has the combination to crack Hickory’s multi-grooved code.

“In the past it does seem like it opens up and becomes a two groove racetrack”, said Ward of Hickory’s unique design dating back to 1951.  “A lot of guys seem like they can get good across the bottom and have good forward drive up out of the corner.  And then you get your guys like Andy Loden in the past who can run on the top all night long and make it work.  I still think when the race starts this Fall you’ll see the cars spread out and we’ll have at least two grooves.”

Action gets underway on Friday, September 20th at Hickory Motor Speedway with rotating practice for the PASS South Super Late Models, PASS Pro Late Models, CCS Modifieds, and CCS Legends from 3 PM – 6:45 PM.  On Saturday, September 21st, practice rolls from 12:30 PM – 3:30 PM, qualifying begins at 4:15 PM, followed by the Pit Party at 5:30 PM.  Main event racing is slated to begin at 6:15 PM.

Entry lists, entry forms, and schedules for this weekend’s PASS 400 Weekend at Beech Ridge Motor Speedway and the Over The Mountain 150 at Hickory Motor Speedway can be found at ProAllStarsSeries.com.

The PASS South Super Late Models and PASS Pro Late Models will see action in October at Dillon Motor Speedway for the Wildcat 150 on October 5th and the Orange Blossom Special at Orange County Speedway on October 19th.  Then, a huge month of November kicks off with the North-South Shootout at Caraway Speedway on November 9th.  Two weeks later on November 23rd, the PASS South and PASS National Champions will be crowned at Southern National Motorsports Park as part of the 8th Annual Mason Dixon Meltdown, which will also feature the Must See Xtreme Racing Winged Sprint Cars.

The Pro All Stars Series is recognized as North America’s premier sanctioning body for asphalt Super Late Models and boasts such marquee events as the PASS Northwest Triple Crown at Wenatchee Valley Super Oval, PASS South’s Easter Bunny 150 at the historic Hickory Motor Speedway, the Autobus La Qubecoise Triple Crown at Autodrome Chaudiere, and the legendary TD Bank 250 at Oxford Plains Speedway.  For technical information concerning all PASS divisions please contact Scott Reed at 207-625-3230 or scottreedpass@yahoo.com.  For media or marketing questions, please contact Alan Dietz at 704-231-2039 or alandietzpass@live.com.  Please visit ProAllStarsSeries.com for more information and don’t forget to “Like” the Pro All Stars Series on Facebook to keep up with breaking news as it happens.

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