Last year at the last race of the season the track felt the Hobby Guys got the “short end of the stick” so to speak, and was determined to make it up to them. Well with the March 24th season opener rained out, and the March 31st show with the Ultimate Super late Model Series, this was the first chance the track had.
All Hobby Drivers got in free and the winners purse was doubled! And the race was on!
With Mother Nature not in attendance this week, the track looked good, weather was superb, and everyone was ready to sling some mud. With a couple new cars showing up including the grandson of many time winner and NGS legend, Milton Brown, Caleb Patton showed that the apple didn’t fall far from the tree, as he took his hobby car and showed he was a fast learner at getting around the famous 1/3 mile clay oval.
With a pair of heats in Econo the #7 of Justin Thomas took the first win with the 14 of Langston and the 64 of Grimsley giving chase to the line, the second heat saw the 10 of Bo Allison and the 20 of Joe Dockery leading the field to the checkered setting the field for Allison and Thomas to lead the feature to the line, well when the time rolled around for the feature, it was wide open racing and a field of cars determined to take home the big money, with Thomas and Langston battling behind the leader of Allison lap after lap, and Thomas working to get his nose in the battle as well, the 64 of Grimsley with a brand new look to “The Reaper” who had spun, was charging hard from the back to get up there to battle with the leaders, coming from the back 2 times to find himself battling for the lead, coming off of turn 4 on the final lap it was Langston, Allison and Grimsley 3 wide crossing the line! With Langston taking the win, Allison was promptly dq’ed for being too light at the scales. But the fans got to see the closest race I have seen at NGS in years, 3 WIDE at the start finish line less than a fender separating the top 3 cars. What a way to start the night of features!
Mod Hobby was next with 2 heats of cars challenging for the double pay out to the winner, with Devin Stuart taking the early lead and walking away with the heat followed to the line by the 11 of Mark Bishop and Brandon Stansfield, the second heat was more exciting as the duo of Johnny Hughes and Derek Chapman battled for the heat win with a young hot shoe named Caleb Patton (Grandson of legendary Milton Brown) who started at the rear of the field by choice coming home 3rd in the heat.
But come time for the “Double Down 20 “ feature it was the 20 of Devin Stuart and the 14 of Johnny Hughes jumping out front and they seemed to be the class of the field as they battled lap after lap, before hard cantact between the two sent Hughes to the pits, with bent wheel and rear damage, leaving Stuart to lead the field back to the restart, Bishop and Patton and Stansfield were not going to let him run off and hide and set sail after the blue 20 car of Stuart, but at the line it was the 20 car of Stuart crossing the line first, but the drama was just starting as the 11 car owners of Bishop protested the 20 car and after a lengthy teardown the 20 car was deemed “Illegal” and he was disqualified. Placing the 11 car of bishop in the Winners Circle for the win of the 2nd Double Down 20, bishop was followed to the line with the 57 of Caleb Patton 2nd in his first race , and Brandon Stansfield 3rd.
The Crates were out next with Jeff Smith and Grayson York on the front row and they put on a battle as the laps wound down it looked like another Jeff Smith win, but, Aaron Wheat made a late race charge and come up short in the last few laps, with Smith taking the win Wheat second, Kizzar 3rd and York after starting on front row brings home 4th.
The Limiteds rolled out next with qualifying and it was Spencer Singleton on the pole with a 14.47 lap, but the B4 of Brian Jackson was hot on his heels with a 14.51 lap putting them on the front row, but it was the S14 of Aaron Wilson who was quick to show the limiteds that he was there to race, and just walked away with the race in the later laps following Wilson to the line was the 71 of Singleton and the B4 of Jackson the 06 of T.J. Britton made a strong show for 4th.
When the supers rolled onto the track it was the 00 of Johnny Chastain on the pole with a 13.349 fast lap and the 99 of Derek Ellis and his 13.462 lap giving him his share of the front row. The Ditchdigger Derek Ellis was not to be denied as he walked away with the win in the super feature, followed to the line by a pair of Chastains, the 00 of Johnny Chastain, and the X15 of Shaun Chastain and 15 time Track champ Gary MacPhearson rounding out the top 4.
When the pony’s took the track Billy Callahan and Matt Leonard lead the field to the line and the 32 of Callahan seemed like he was going to walk with another, but the 7 of Bama Bash winner and last weeks defending winner Caleb Howard had other idea’s and he set sail chasing the 32 down, an ask the 7 of Howard was starting to reel the 32 of Callahan in, the 32 broke and dropped , giving the win to Caleb Howard for his second win of the year, at NGS and his 3rd of the year total. Caleb has really been doing his home work this year in the off season, showing he is ready to be a force to be reckoned with!.
In all, it was a great night of racing, lots of fans got to take home some door panels from race cars , that were given away by the drivers and track, a lucky fan got to wave the green on the Mod hobby race, and everyone was done and gone at a reasonable hour, all in all it was a great night of Racing at NGS, some make your plans now to be there this coming weekend for a full race program except the pony class will have the night off…