Smith Wins Clash South Inaugural at Lancaster

By: Alex Cummings

LANCASTER, S.C. - April 4. Jeff Smith won the battle to win the first ever Clash South Tour Race at Lancaster Motor Speedway. Smith was able to bring home a cool $4,000 payday for the win in the 40 lap main event. 

”I had great horsepower under the hood and we were fast tonight” said Smith in Victory Lane.

Ross Bailes in his #87 set fast time in qualifying with a time of 18.540, a new track record. Johnny Pursley was second fastest, and as the Clover, S.C. front row came to the green; it was Bailes taking the early lead after choosing to start on the outside pole. Bailes was able to pull out to a solid lead, with the big battle happening behind him for second through sixth.

On lap five, Pursley caught Bailes going into turn two and made the pass on the inside going down the backstretch. Bailes came back and passed Pursley in turn two the very next lap, with the #18m of JSmith passing Pursley in turn three. Then it was Smith taking the top spot on lap eight with an inside pass. For the next nine laps, Smith and Bailesfought tooth and nail for the top spot. but Bailes was never able to make the pass.  

Four early cautions slowed the race, with Tim Allen breaking something in the rear-end on lap two, and cautions for the spinning cars of Craig Shuffield and Donald Bradsher. Then on the very next lap, the #10 of Scott Shirey spun and hit the inside wall, causing heavy damage to his front end. Shirey had to be put on the hook.  

On the restart on lap 18, it was Smith still at the point, and on lap 19, Pursley was able to get around Bailes for the second position. Bailes would then drop to sixth position over the next three laps until lap 28, when he brought out the caution for a flat right-rear. 

On the restart, Smith was able to motor back out front again with Pursley right on his back bumper. The two would run nose to tail until the final caution on lap 36, when Bailes spun in turn three. Again on the restart, Smith was able to motor out front but this time, he was able to get a cushy lead and coast to victory for the win in the first ever Clash South Tour race.

Lancaster Clash South Finish

 

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