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Carolina Clash at Fayetteville Motor Speedway - 6/6 Results (Read 1266 times)
Carolina Clash at Fayetteville Motor Speedway - 6/6 Results
06/06/15 at 10:57pm
Fayetteville Motor Speedway
June 6, 2015
Ben Watkins Paces Fayetteville Clash Race to First Career Super Late Model Win
Fastest-qualifier survives two opening race mishaps to become 64th different series winner.
by Mark Huey
FAYETTEVILLE, NC (June 6) - One year ago, Ben Watkins and the Sandwood Racing Team came to Fayetteville Motor Speedway for a Carolina Clash race. Ben Watkins fished 11th in that event. Perhaps what was unknown from the June 7, 2014 event was what happened after the Clash race ended. Ben Watkins and Sandwood Racing scored his first ever victory with the team at Fayetteville Motor Speedway with the weekly late models in the steel-head car they had also brought to the track.
One year ago, Watkins won at Fayetteville in the weekly steel-head late model on June 7, 2014 . On the exact night (one day earlier) the following year later, Watkins won at Fayetteville again - this time as his first ever super late model victory with the Carolina Clash Super Late Model Series, becoming the 64th different driver to win in series history. The win also put Watkins in full command of the series point championship contention and Renegade Race Fuels Rookie of the Year battle. If this trend continues, Watkins will be first driver ever with Clash to win both awards in the same season.
He also was the fastest-qualifier of the race, with a fast time of 17.509.
The race was halted twice in the first two start attempts as the front row failed to adhere to starting markers at the entrance of the front stretch. Finally, the race successfully began as Watkins powered to the lead over Zack Mitchell.
Mitchell, who ironically finished third in the same event last year, rebounded nicely from early season woes for a strong Fayetteville run, one of his better tracks statistically.
Johnny Pursley, and former Fayetteville winners, Scott Autry to finish third and fourth. Autry, in his first race since April 2014 sustained a late race charge from Tim Allen, also a former winner at Fayetteville, who finished 5th.
Several incidents halted the event, which lasted just over 46 minutes, including a lap three melee triggered when Luke Roffers and Johnny Pursley tangled in turn one. Roffers was able to pull away, but was ordered pitside after a caution-period brush up with Pursley. After the dust and tempers were settled, racing resumed.
Chatsworth, Georgia native Aaron Ridley, a newcomer to the Carolina Clash tour, started from the third place position. While battling with Zack Mitchell on a lap 10 restart, Ridley's car jolted left into the side of Mitchell, sending Ridley spinning in front of the field. Everyone was able to get by him with minimal damage to any machine. The restart came on the heels of a near catastrophe in turns one and two when Dean Bowen lost control of his car while running third with Ridley and Scott Autry. Several cars made significant contact, including Autry and Doug Sanders, but all were able to continue. Ridley finished 8th behind Dean Bowen.
The race ran green past halfway when Travis Hairr rolled to a slow stop in turn two. Hairr was down for the rest of the event and finished 13th.
Lancaster, SC young gun Josh Langley came out of the box fast during the hot lap session and was nearly identical with Watkins' times in hotlaps. He began experiencing overheating on lap 9 and pitted, finishing a disappointing 14th. Langley was the recipient of the Heintz Performance Hard Luck Award and received $100 credit toward purchases at Heintz Performance.
The last casualty of the race was Joey Coulter of Miami Springs, FL when he pitted with mechanical problems on lap 33. The remaining nine cars finished on the lead-lap.
The Safety-Kleen "Hard Charger of the Race" went to Anthony Sanders of Spartanburg, SC. He started from the 13th position and raced up to 6th, his best run of the season.
1 1 16 Ben Watkins Rock Hill, SC (40)
2 2 57 Zach Mitchell Princeton, NC (40)
3 8 09 Johnny Pursley Clover, SC (40)
4 9 A1 Scott Autrey Fayetteville, NC (40)
5 6 17 Tim Allen Kannapolis, NC (40)
6 13 421 Anthony Sanders Spartanburg, SC (40)
7 3 15d Dean Bowen Whiteville, NC (40)
8 4 81 Aaron Ridley Chatsworth, GA (40)
9 14 618 Kevin Wilson Stoneville, NC (40)
10 7 2 Joey Coulter Charlotte, NC (33)
11 15 72 Mike Parker Fayetteville, NC (32)
12 11 42 Doug Sanders Springwood, NC (28)
13 12 8 Travis Hair Fayetteville, NC (22)
14 10 7 Josh Langley Lancaster, SC (10)
15 17 360 Craig Shuffield Fayetteville, NC (7)
16 5 21R Luke Roffers Concord, NC (3)
17 16 11 Lance Brasington Fayetteville, NC (1)
1 16 Ben Watkins Rock Hill, SC 17.304
2 7 Josh Langley Lancaster, SC 17.315
3 A1 Scott Autrey Fayetteville, NC 17.776
4 09 Johnny Pursley Clover, SC 17.804
5 21R Luke Roffers Concord, NC 17.894
6 81 Aaron Ridley Chatsworth, GA 17.909
7 2 Joey Coulter Charlotte, NC 17.972
8 17 Tim Allen Kannapolis, NC 18.193
9 15d Dean Bowen Whiteville, NC 18.227
10 8 Travis Hair Fayetteville, NC 18.379
11 421 Anthony Sanders Spartanburg, SC 18.559
12 42 Doug Sanders Springwood, NC 18.622
13 72 Mike Parker Fayetteville, NC 18.756
14 618 Kevin Wilson Stoneville, NC 19.021
15 57 Zach Mitchell Princeton, NC 20.986
16 11 Lance Brasington Fayetteville, NC no time
17 360 Craig Shuffield Fayetteville, NC no time
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