|FRIDAY - AUGUST 25|
And the winner is . . . caution.
In a night of racing that saw at least one fan collapse from the heat and a number of frustrated drivers whose tempers wilted in the humidity, Southside Speedway last night had one of those nights that is frustrating, inevitable and -- thankfully not a usual occurrence.
Things started well with a 50-lap double points Late Model Sportsman race that featured the usual suspects. It was hard-fought and ended with Chris Dodson in first place, solidifying his hold on the division points lead as he held off Chris Hopkins and Bubba Hubbard -- who finished second and third -- in what basically was a three-car race for most of the way.
Hopkins gave Dodson a serious challenge on Laps 1-10 until Chris Hoylman spun out on the backstretch bringing out the first caution and pulling the field back together. Hopkins pretty much stayed on Dodson's bumper most of the way, but Dodson never gave him a chance to get around him.
The biggest challenge for Dodson and Hopkins came when they started to hit lapped traffic on Lap 35, but they cautiously made their way through until Jason Pittman's car burst into flames on Turn 3 of Lap 36 and brought them back to the field for a restart.
"It's great to win my seventh race of the year," Dodson said. "But it's not getting any easier. These other guys are getting better and better, and that showed in how close this race was.
"We weren't as good as usual tonight, and I don't know if it was the track or my tires.."
Then the cautions began.
In a 30-lap Grand Stock race won by Jamie Neely, four false starts and three yellow flags that held the race up for at least 15 minutes because of wreckage removals and track cleanup kept everyone from making it home for the 11 p.m. news. A 24-car field added to the problems. But sometimes, that's just racin'.
Chris Hopkins came back from a second-place finish in the first LMS race to win the second 50-lap event, J.B. Poates took the 25-lap Pro-Six race and Cameron Patrick won the 25-lap Legends race.
Late Model Sportsman No. 1 (50 laps, double points): 1. Chris Dodson; 2. Chris Hopkins; 3. Bubba Hubbard; 4. Ray Ashworth; 5. Steve Zuskin; 6. Chris Hairfield; 7. Greg Fernandez; 8. Russ Ellis; 9. Rob Jenkins; 10. Brian Carter; 11. George Pillsbury; 12. Greg Holt; 13. Wayne McGee; 14. Chris Hoylman; 15. Michael Hayes; 16. Ed Barrell; 17. Jason Pittman; 18. Dan Clatterbuck; 19. Brandon Hendrick; 20. Charles Lamb Jr.; 21. Joey Bryant
Late Model Sportsman No. 2 (50 laps): 1. Chris Hopkins; 2. Steve Zuskin; 3. Ray Ashworth; 4. Chris Hairfield; 5. Joey Bryant; 6. Chris Dodson; 7. Rob Jenkins; 8. Greg Fernandez; 9. Brandon Hendrick; 10. Greg Holt; 11. George Pillsbury; 12 Wayne McGee; 13. Russ Ellis; 14. Michael Hayes; 15. Ed Barrell; 16. Chris Hoylman; 17. Bubba Hubbard; 18. Jason Pittman
Grand Stock (30 laps): 1. Jamie Neely; 2. Jason Beck; 3. Ron Hester; 4. Chris Hott; 5. Todd Ruggles; 6. Tony Ingram Sr.; 7. Brian Myslivy; 8. John Mosby; 9. Brandon Vaught; 10; Brandon Vaught; 11. Ryan Boggs; 12. Keith Mackta; 13. Bradley Vaught; 14. Robert Lipford Sr. 15. Fred Key; 16. Mike Ganoe; 17. Tony Ingram II; 18. Daniel Shelton; 19. Chris Willoughby; 20. Matt Ashworth; 21. Dennis Powell; 22. Robert Wood; 23. Mark Jenkins; 24. Richard Lipford
Legends (25 laps): 1. Cameron Patrick; 2. Kevin Yeatts; 3. Brad Hancock; 4. Jim Buckingham; 5. Patrick Molesworth; 6. Robert French; 7. Jamie Laine; 8. Scott Henderson; 9. Bo Triplett; 10. Tyler Long; 11. Derek Miller; 12. Scotty Edwards; 13. Mike Solaimani.
Pro-Six (25 laps): 1. J.B. Poates; 2. Casey Sipe; 3. Wesley Harris; 4. Wayne Clark; 5. J.B. Sipe; 6. Timothy Lane; 7. Allen Purser Jr.; 8. Matt Settlage; 9. Brad Wrenn; 10. David Bryant