latemodelamerica.com - Apr 17 - Clayhill Motorsports Park
LateModelAmerica.com by Sam Holbrooks

 
 

Dane Dacus

Enjoying his best ever early season to date, Dane Dacus scored a popular Southern All Stars win at the series' westernmost stop at West Tennessee's Clayhill Motorsports Park. The Memphis area driver held off a relentless top side charge from Chris Wall to garner the $7,500 win.  (Thomas Hendrickson)

Dacus Takes First Southern All Stars Win at Clayhill

By Brad Byrd

ATWOOD, Tenn. - April 17. . Most weekends Lakeland, Tennessee racer Dane Dacus has to drive three or more hours to compete in his super late model. However with the Southern All Stars Dirt Racing Series offering up $7500 right in his back yard at Clayhill Motorsports Park it was a short hour

Wall - Wallace

Chris Wall and #88 Wendell Wallace raced several laps door to door before Wall finally prevailed for second at Clayhill. (Thomas Hendrickson)

and a half trip he was glad to make. At the end of the night Dacus had found another 7500 reasons to be glad he made the trip. “This is our biggest career win. And it was more special to be this close to home where we could have a lot of our family and friends here with us. You know there wasn’t a ton of cars here tonight but there were sure some quality ones. So to outrun Chris Wall, Bloomquist, Wallace, Weaver and guys like that it’s pretty awesome. We have run second a bunch to Chris (Wall) so to beat him for one sure feels good.” Dacus said.

The evening kicked off with VP Race Fuels Race for the Pole Qualifying. Twenty cars signed in and all twenty took timed laps. In a bit of an upset it was National Dirt Late Model Hall of Fame inductee Freddy Smith of Seymour, Tennessee that put up the fastest time. The driver known throughout the country as “the Southern Gentleman”, tripped the clock at 14.971 seconds

 Akip Arp - Eric Jacobsen

West Coast ace Eric Jacobsen challenges #31 Skip before Arp drove to a fifth place finish at Clayhill.  Jacobsen took seventh. (Thomas Hendrickson)

around the 3/8ths of a mile West Tennessee oval. Batesville, Arkansas’ Wendell Wallace was second quick with a lap of 15.211 seconds. Terry English, Chris Wall and Southern All Stars Rookie of the Year contender Scott Creel rounded out the top five in qualifying. April Farmer, Scott Bloomquist, Eric Jacobsen, Dacus and defending Southern All Stars Champion Randy Weaver completed the top ten.

All drivers moved to one of three ten lap heat races. Hoosier Race Tires Heat Race One saw Chris Wall take the win over Bloomquist and Weaver. Freddy Smith who started from the pole position faded and ended up fourth. Hoosier Race Tires Heat Race Two had Wendell Wallace take the flag to flag win ahead of Jacobsen, Creel and Chris Ragan. The final Hoosier Tire Heat Race proved to

Tanner and Terry English

DLM newcomer Tanner English consults with Dad, veteran racer Terry English, before the father-son duo raced to 11th and eighth place finishes, respectively, at Clayhill. (Thomas Hendrickson)

Wall - Dacus - Wallace

Dane Dacus takes his #54 low on the track in a three-way fight for the lead with #71 Chris Wall and #88 Wendell Wallace in Southern All Stars action at Clayhill Motorsports Park.  (Thomas Hendrickson)

be the most exciting of the three heats. Dacus picked his way through the field from his second row starting position and took the win. Skip Arp came from deep in the field to bypass Terry English with bold outside move to take second. English was able to cross the line in third.

Wall and Wallace led the field to the green flag of the fifty-lap feature. Dacus showed his hand right off the bat as he made it three wide for the lead through turns one and two. Wallace led lap one while Wall and Dacus duked it out for second. Dacus rolled over the inside berm through turns three and four on the next lap and muscled his way up to go door-to-door with Wall. Dacus covered the second spot and entering turn one and nosed to the inside of Wallace for the point. As the leaders exited turn two Dacus shot ahead to take

Bloomquist - Weaver

Randy Weaver chases fellow East Tennesseean Scott Bloomquist, who faded out of contention befopre dropping out in 16th.  Weaver went on to get by Wendell Wallace and claim third. (Thomas Hendrickson)

over the lead. Wallace slid high exiting the turn, which opened the door for Wall to take the runner-up position down the back straightaway. Wall then set after Dacus.

Defending Southern All Stars Champion Randy Weaver was also on the move as he worked his way up to the fifth position from his fourth row starting spot. Weaver’s progress stalled a bit as he caught up to Bloomquist who rode in the fourth position. Weaver followed Bloomquist over the next few laps content to hold down fifth. But when Bloomquist slid a little high while taking a shot at Wallace for third, Weaver pounced at the opening. Diving his machine to Bloomquist’s inside, Weaver pulled ahead down the back straightaway and took over the fourth spot.

Up front Wall was trying to bring the topside in as he ran against the small cushion. Dacus and Wall appeared to be very evenly matched in a see saw battle. Dacus using the ultra low line couldn’t drive away from however Wall up

Chris Ragan

Area ace Chris Ragan picked up a strong sixth place with the Southern All Stars at Clayhill Motorsports Park. (Thomas Hendrickson)

on the cushion just couldn’t make up any ground. Skip Arp looked to use the best of both worlds as he would run right around the bottom on the turn one and two end of the speedway and then move up against the outside wall at the other end. The unusual line seemed to serve Arp well as he began to pick up spots after slipping backwards early in the event.

Wall reeled in the leader as they both entered into backmarker traffic. Wall snuck to the outside of Dacus as he worked on the Ronnie Cooper machine. But on this night Dacus would not be denied. He worked lapped traffic to perfection putting distance and a few cars in between himself and Wall. Dacus flashed across the line to take the six-car length win. “The lapped cars were tough to get by at times. It got a little tough to pass so you really had to pick and choose where to go to get by them. But it was a good race. That’s just a part of racing. Thanks to all these guys that work on the car and to my family. Its nice to get a win this close to home.” Dacus said after the win.

Dacus’ GRT by Bill Frye Race Car is powered by a SAS Spec Engine built by RPM Racing Engines and has sponsorship fromL Four Oaks Ranch, O.H. Hendricks Race Metal, Taylormade Performance, PROTEC Fire Systems, Hoosier Race Tires and Allstar Graphix.

Finish - SAS at Clayhill Motorsports

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