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Pass Series Racing

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Fogleman Looks For New Beginning With PASS In 2009
Mar 4, 2009 - updated Mar 4th, 2009 3:26pm
Web posted by Alan Dietz

Charlotte, NC. --

For Immediate Release: March 4

Jay Fogleman has seen a lot of things come and go in a racing career that has spanned the last 25 years. The Durham, NC, native has been racing for most of his 42 years. The 2009 season will see him embark on a vastly different journey through the racing world. Fogleman plans to race the entire 2009 season with the Pro All Stars Series (PASS) South Super Late Model division. The sleek, fast, PASS South Super Late Models are unique when compared to anything Fogleman has raced before, but they do compliment a common theme in Fogleman’s racing resume’. He has always enjoyed racing cars and in divisions that were on the cusp of breaking new ground.

When Fogleman first began racing in 1982, he started out driving cars in an unknown division called Late Model Stock cars. For years, the top division at paved race tracks throughout the Mid-Atlantic was the NASCAR Late Model Sportsman cars. This division was just a step below NASCAR’s Grand National division, known now as the Sprint Cup Series, and was dominated by legendary short track drivers like Red Farmer, Jack Ingram, Tommy Houston, and Sam Ard. NASCAR, along with a few car owners, looked to create a division that would race weekly at local short tracks and would help racers save money. Initially, only a few tracks including South Boston Speedway and Orange County Speedway, embraced the new division. Fogleman and others jumped on board and, as the years went by, Late Model Stock cars pushed the Late Model Sportsman cars out as the premier division in the South. Fogleman quickly established himself as one of the top Late Model Stock drivers in the country winning races at speedways throughout the Carolinas and Virginia. While Late Model Stock cars thrived, the Sportsman cars perished and drivers like Fogleman never had the chance to compete in them.

“We just really never had the opportunity besides Concord and a few racetracks to run the Late Model Sportsman and eventually the Super Late Model-type cars,” said Fogleman. “I just had never been around them and a lot of people in this area have never had the opportunity to drove those cars and be around them and I think that’s why they had a lot of trouble in the Carolinas throughout the 1990’s.”

Following Fogleman’s success in the Late Model Stock division, he felt it was time for a new challenge; the chance to show his talent to a broader, more national audience. Like many racers, the finances and opportunities never presented themselves to move up into one of NASCAR’s premier national touring divisions. But, that all changed in the late 1990’s when the Hooter’s Restaurant chain looked to start an entirely new racing division, catering solely to short track racers. The USAR Hooter’s Pro Cup Series provided a more affordable short track series, paying healthy purses to attract racers like Fogleman, who was looking to do something new.

“That was the thing I really liked about Pro Cup when it first started was that Bobby Gill, myself, and [Jeff] Agnew and Johnny Rumley and a lot of those guys would race and then we would have [Joey] Logano and all of these young kids coming through,” said Fogleman. “It was a good mix and it made it really exciting for the fans. People like to see the young guys and the guys, like myself, who have been around for a while going at it.”

The USAR Hooter’s Pro Cup Series ushered in a tremendous period of growth for short track racing and saw Fogleman and others like him reach a new group of fans. However, like so many things, Hooter’s decided to drop its sponsorship of the series at the end of the 2008 season due to the economic downturn. After numerous wins with the series, including one last year at Southern National Raceway Park that propelled him to a third place finish in the final point standings, Jay Fogleman was again looking for something to do.

Fogleman had followed the PASS Series and realized that this might be an opportunity to again get in on the ground floor of a growing series. Late in 2008, PASS approved Pro Cup engines for use in the series and that was the sign that told Fogleman what he needed to do.

“We have four engines built for our Pro Cup cars and we can take the same engines in both cars and make it work out to where we don’t have to build engines for each type of car,” said Fogleman. “We can keep them in rotation and basically build half the engines of what we would have had to if we had to build engines for each division.”

Knowing of the problems facing the Pro Cup Series, Fogleman dabbled with PASS in 2008. He led laps and finished fourth at Dillon Motor Speedway and then went on to score his first PASS South win in an attrition filled race at the Newport Speedway.

“The cars are fun to drive and I’ve raced a little bit of everything,” said Fogleman of his initial impressions of PASS. “This was really my first time in a Super Late Model…it’s just good racing and it’s doing pretty well now in the area we live at.”

Racing with PASS in 2009 will also give Fogleman a chance to return to many of the tracks he cut his teeth on when he first started racing Late Model Stocks in the early 1980’s.

“A lot of these people going to these races have seen me drive a stock car from the time I was 15 until now, so it’ll be nice for them to be able to come see you run and not have to go to Florida or New York or someplace like that,” said Fogleman. “We usually have a big fan base at Orange County and South Boston, all of them are an hour or so from my house…we’re just really looking forward to that.”

Jay Fogleman and his racing career have definitely come full circle,from seeing the demise of Super Late Model racing to its resurgence with PASS. And, it’s a comeback Fogleman does not see ending any time soon.

“I think the competition level will be as good or better than it’s ever been,” said Fogleman. “I know the economy’s off a little bit, but it’s bringing a lot of people to PASS. The last couple of years, it’s just gotten bigger and bigger.”

The PASS South Super Late Models kick off the 2009 season with their second trip to the Dillon Motor Speedway on Saturday, March 14th with the 4th Annual South Carolina Clash. Last year’s race was contested in August and was won by Woodstock, GA’s Justin Wakefield. Action kicks off on Friday, March 13th with gates opening at 1 PM and practice from 2 PM to 6PM. On Saturday, practice will be from 11 AM to 1:30 PM, qualifying will be at 2:30 PM, and racing will start at 3 PM. In addition to the PASS South Super Late Models, the South Carolina Clash will see the debut of the PASS Late Model Trucks. Late Model Truck regulars from Dillon and throughout the Carolinas will race for 75 laps in the Nation’s newest touring division. Dillon Motor Speedway is located on SC Highway 9 just off Interstate 95 exit 193. For more information go to dillonmotorspeedway.com or racewithpass.com.


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