Motor Mile Speedway News
MORRIS DOMINATES SEASON OPENER
Apr 4, 2010 - updated Apr 4th, 2010 7:39pm
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FDJ Motorsports places two cars in top three in VMF
odds were in Frank Deiny, Jr.’s favor.
Instead, 2009 NASCAR
WHELEN All-American Series national champion and defending track titlist
Philip Morris bested a pair of FDJ Motorsports entries through a
green-white-checkered restart to claim the checkers in the Virginia
Metal Finishing 150.
Morris out-muscled the FDJ Motorsports
powerhouse that consisted of Rusty Skewes and Wayne Ramsey, winner of
the Motor Mile Speedway season finale last fall, in a race that went a
pair of laps past the scheduled distance.
“I didn’t want to see
that caution. It looked like we had set sail toward victory lane,”
Morris said. “It makes this win that much more exciting.”
won from the pole in Saturday night’s season opener, leading every
circuit en route to victory--- his second straight win on opening day at
the .416-mile oval.
While the No. 26 paced the race
uncontested, FDJ Motorsports quietly showcased strength in numbers.
Deiny, Jr.’s five-car stable had a stellar showing at MMS, with all but
one car under the FDJ Motorsports banner finishing inside the top ten. A
breakout performance by Skewes produced a third place finish; it was
the 60-year-old’s first top five since 2007.
“You don’t know
what that means to me,” Skewes said. “Frank Deiny’s stuck with me, and
it’s paid off. We’re tickled to death.”
2009 South Boston
Speedway champion Justin Johnson rallied from multiple on-track
incidents to finish eighth, and Dennis Holdren tallied a respectable
But the flagship driver was Ramsey.
Va., veteran led the FDJ Motorsports caravan Saturday night, overtaking
Skewes for second on lap 90 from his third place starting spot.
next gave chase to Morris.
“Man, we were faster than Philip
there for a little while…about lap 110 the car started getting out from
under me in the corner, and lapped traffic didn’t help me, either,”
A gaggle of lapped traffic began slowing the
speed of Morris’ lead machine---by race’s end, only ten of the 30
starters remained on the lead lap. Yet the same slower cars that
appeared to aid in Ramsey’s advancements proved to ultimately impede his
When the fourth and final yellow flag fell on lap
144, the gap between the pair of frontrunners had stabilized. The top
five positions remained unchanged following the restart on lap 150 and
the ensuing two-lap dash.
“To come out the first time in the car
and finish second feels like a win,” Ramsey said. “Philip…he’s not a
bad guy to lose to, he’s usually on top of his game.”
Dean completed a quiet night with a solid fourth place showing, and Mike
Looney -after earlier contact from Johnson’s No. 44- rebounded to post
an impressive fifth place finish.
“It’s frustrating, because we
always have a good car and it seems like for some reason we always go to
the back,” said Looney, driver of the No. 47 Weigh Station Chevrolet.
“There was a lot of wild racing going on. [The car] has all the fenders
on it, all the wheels are straight, and we’ll take that and get ‘em next
After recording finishes of third and eighth in his
first two starts of the season at South Boston Speedway, Saturday
night’s win is an injection of confidence for Morris and the No. 26
Clarence’s Steakhouse team in their quest for a third consecutive
"This is great," Morris said. "This is
what we're out here for and this is the way we like to start our season
off. This will build so much momentum for us."
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