EASLEY, S.C. – official track release – GPS/Haley Wilbanks Photo –
Chase Purdy and Trey Gibson each won for the third time this season at Greenville-Pickens Speedway on Friday in the NASCAR Whelen All-American Series late model twin 75-lap features. Other winners were Ricky Burnett in the renegade division, Tim Sams in the super stocks, Buck Simmons in the pure stocks and Tommy Davis in the four cylinder class.
Eighteen cars started the first of the two 75-lap features for the late models. Cody Haskins in the No. 2 started alongside two-time feature winner Chase Purdy in the Hawk-McCall Motorsports No. 41 in the front row. Haskins grabbed the top spot and started to pull away early as Purdy and two-time winner Trey Gibson swapped second back and forth a couple of times before Purdy took over and settled in.
The early mover was Dylan Hall, as he had his No. 4 perking. Hall drove up into the top five within the first 20 laps, and then got by Rodney Howard for fourth three laps later.
Yellow waved over the speedway on lap 42 as Kenneth Headen stopped on the track in turn four. Headen pulled his No. 99 to the pits and out of the action. Haskins, Purdy and Gibson were the top three on the restart, which was short-lived as Tasha Kummer and Josh Dyer ended up getting crossed up in turn three bringing the caution right back out again.
Haskins took off on the restart but Gibson wasn’t about to let him get far. He dogged the back of the Haskins machine for seven laps until R.A. Brown brought out the third caution of the event on lap 49. For the restart, Haskins, Gibson, Purdy, Hall and David Roberts would be the top five with Mitchell Mote, Rodney Howard, Ryan Walker, Marty Ward and Anthony Alfredo rounding out the top ten.
Looking for his first win of the year, Haskins held the lead until Purdy took over second, caught him with ten laps to go and made some contact on lap 67, scooting out of turn two with the lead.
Purdy went on to his third win of the season with Haskins, Gibson, Hall and Roberts completing the top five.
Mitchell Mote got the second late model 75-lap main off to a rousing start as he developed a flat left rear tire right at the green flag. Fortunately, the other drivers managed to steer around him and he limped into the pits under the ensuring yellow flag. Rodney Howard and first feature runner-up Cody Haskins led the field to the start as Mote rejoined at the rear.
Haskins led the first three laps until the No. 112 of Trey Gibson snuck underneath and got by him. David Roberts in the No. 18 stopped on the track at the same time, bringing out the caution. Mote made a couple of pit stops under the yellow for adjustments. R.A. Brown pulled his No. 60 pitside and out of the race. Roberts returned to the race.
The yellow flag fever continued as Dylan Hall went around in turn two after the restart and Rodney Howard took his No. 16 to the pits for some repairs. Just four laps were complete at this time, with Gibson, Haskins, Purdy, Ryan Walker and Anthony Alfredo in the top five.
Gibson opened up a huge advantage over the next many laps, as Haskins, Purdy and Alfredo settled into the top four spots. Roberts, the defending champion in the division, worked his way back up to fifth by lap 16. Marty Ward had taken over sixth, with Ryan Walker, Emilee Riley, Rodney Howard and Dylan Hall in the top ten. Mote pulled out of the race for good on lap 20.
With 25 laps in the books Hall stepped up his pace and charged through to seventh, passing Riley, who was doing a yeoman’s job in her first time at the track. Marty Ward, running sixth, pulled his sharp no. 97 to the pits with mechanical issues at this time and retired from the race.
Purdy found his way by Haskins for second on lap 30 with an inside move, shuffling the deuce back to third. We’d seen this scenario previously this year, with Purdy running second to Gibson until late in the race and then striking like a snake for the win.
Rodney Howard pulled his no. 16 to the pits on lap 40 as Gibson had a 2.6 second advantage over Purdy. Haskins, Alfredo and Dylan Hall rounded out the top five at this time with everyone settling into a rhythm as the race went past halfway.
Alfredo reeled in third place Haskins on lap 52 and made the pass with an inside move as Hall drew in on both of them. Hall was the fastest car on the track at this point and took fourth on lap 56 but Gibson had a 3.3 second advantage over Purdy and was increasing that margin progressively.
Hall kept on coming, taking third on lap 59 and managed to run down second place Purdy from over a straightaway back by the end of the race, but had to settle for third as Gibson ended up with a dominant five second win over Purdy. Hall, Alfredo and Haskins rounded out the top five.
“It felt really good right there,” Gibson said. “We missed the stagger a bit in the first race but we got it right for the second. This is awesome!
The 20-lap Renegade feature found the No. 99 of Terry Thurston and the No. 14 of “Fast” Eddie Ray in the front row for Mark Turner’s green flag. Thurston was the fast qualifier. Ray grabbed off the early lead and held it until lap nine when he developed a problem on his machine and stopped in turn three, bringing out the first yellow flag of the evening.
This would leave Bobby Emory as your leader and looking for win number three on the season. Ricky Burnett was now in second, with Terry Thurston, Shane Hill and Larry Nabors rounding out the top five. Burnett was the hot hand after the restart and stayed side by side with Emory for a couple of laps before powering off the outside and into the lead. The race stayed green until lap 17 when Joe Allen looped his No. 0 in turn three, bringing caution back to the speedway.
Burnett was not to be denied as he held off all comers in the final few laps to take home his first win of the season. At the stripe it was Burnett with the victory. Shane Hill came on for second, Emory got third, Thurston fourth and Parker Jameson finished in fifth.
The 12-lap Pure Stock feature provided the interlude between the two late model runs. Buck Simmons and Freddy Hale led the field down to the green flag but the race started with a loud bang as Hank Hutto and Dannon Esco tangled on the front straightaway. Hutto went hard into the inside wall, doing heavy damage to his No. 88. He was towed into the pits and out for the evening.
Simmons got the better start and grabbed the early advantage, opening up a straightaway lead at one point over Hale. Charlie Meinders charged through the field into second, and got a break when Chris Meinders brought out the yellow on lap 9, but it wasn’t enough. At the finish it was Simmons, Meinders, Spencer Morgan, A.J. Davis and Charlie Meinders in the top five.
Tommy Davis and Chad Redding brought the 15-lap four cylinder feature to the green flag with Davis taking control early. Redding stayed with him as Don Tavernia looked on from third. Hunter Evans and Dannon Esco were fourth and fifth for much of the event.
The first yellow came out on lap 7 when Manual Molleda stopped in turn two. He took off after the yellow and rejoined the tail of the field. When the race resumed, Michael Cross made a bold move up the inside in his No. 44 and charged all the way to fourth. Davis was also on the move, grabbing the lead back from Redding.
The remainder of the 15 laps went green and Davis walked away from Redding and took the checkered flag. Redding finished second with Don Tavernia, Cross and Esco completing the top five finishers.
Just four super stocks answered the call for their 25-lap feature, and Tim Sams led flag to flag to return to “Double Aught” Brian Ramey victory lane. Mike Mote finished second followed by Stanley Pressley and Dale Stancill.
Next Saturday night, Greenville-Pickens will play host to a 75-lap feature for the limited late models, with the Renegades, Pure Stocks, Four Cylinders and Super Stocks all on the card. Gates open for spectators at 4pm, with the first race getting underway at 7pm. The following week, on Saturday, April 23rd, the Southeast Limited Late Model Series will be joined by the Southeast Super Truck Series plus the Renegades and Four Cylinders.
For all the latest updates from Greenville-Pickens Speedway, including start times and admission prices, visit the track website at www.greenvillepickens.com, ‘Like’ them on Facebook by searching Greenville-Pickens Speedway or follow them on Twitter @GP_Speedway.
STAT ZONE – FEATURE FINISHES
RENEGADES: Ricky Burnett, Shane Hill, Bobby Emory, Terry Thurston, Parker Jameson, Larry Nabors, Daniel Jameson, Joe Allen and Eddie Ray.
LATE MODEL RACE ONE: Chase Purdy, Cody Haskins, Trey Gibson, Dylan Hall, David Roberts, Rodney Howard, Marty Ward, Ryan Walker, Anthony Alfredo, Mitchell Mote, Emilee Riley, R.A. Brown, J.P.Dyar, Kenneth Headen, Will Burns, Tasha Kummer, Kevin Vassar and Neil Meredith.
PURE STOCKS: Buck Simmons, Charlie Meinders, Spencer Morgan, A.J. Davis, Chris Meinders, Freddy Hale, Dannon Esco, Ashley Granata, Zack Meinders and Hank Hutto.
LATE MODEL RACE TWO: Trey Gibson, Chase Purdy, Dylan Hall, Anthony Alfredo, Cody Haskins, David Roberts, Emilee Riley, J.P. Dyar, Ryan Walker, Rodney Howard, Marty Ward, Mitchell Mote, Kevin Vassar and R.A. Brown.
FOUR CYLINDER: Tommy Davis, Chad Redding, Don Tavernia, Michael Cross, Dannon Esco, Hunter Evans, Chad Tavernia, Ray Mullinax, Sandra Tavernia and Manuel Molleda.
SUPER STOCK: Tim Sams, Mike Mote, Stanley Pressley and Dale Stancill.
Root’s Tire Late Model Pole Award: Rodney Howard.
Other fast qualifiers: Pure Stock: Buck Simmons, Renegades: Terry Thurston, Four Cylinders: Tommy Davis, Super Stocks: Tim Sams
CREDIT: Greenville-Pickens Track PR