|Posted by: RaceRap on May 23, 2018 at 7:26am|
BRISTOL, TN (May 20, 2018) - The last trip Lee Pulliam made to Bristol Motor Speedway ended in a disastrous crash early in the event. On Saturday, he avenged his previous visit and exerted his might at the Last Great Colosseum in the Response Energy 100 for his second career tour win.
Myatt Snider, who won the tour's last race at Bristol a year ago, picked up where he left off by claiming the Hedgecock Racing Pole Position for the 100-lap feature. Upon the drop of the green flag, the driver of the No. 2 motored out to the lead but the intensity began to quickly increase.
With only 13 laps complete, rain was noted within seven miles of the speedway, meaning competitors knew they may be racing to halfway or shortly thereafter if the weather were to arrive prior to the checkered flag. A caution for Bradley McCaskill's stalled car in turn two on lap 32 hastened the nervousness and likely contributed to the turning point of the race.
As he often does in CARS Tour events, Snider picked to restart in the top lane of the .533-mile facility in hopes his momentum would rocket him past Pulliam. A mistake on the restart by Snider, however, allowed Pulliam to nose ahead into turn one and take the lead for the first time on the night. Snider's miscue also allowed Layne Riggs to bypass him for second.
Riggs continued to give chase to Pulliam over the next portion of the race, ducking high, low and anywhere possible when he had a run on the No. 5 who he ran down from multiple car lengths back. Riggs appeared poised to make a sure move for the lead when officials were forced to throw the caution for lightning in the area on lap 64, 13 laps past the 51-lap distance required to make a CARS Response Energy Tour race official.
Soon after lightning entered the area, precipitation did too, forcing track and series officials to call the Response Energy 100 just 36 laps short of its scheduled conclusion. As the leader, Pulliam was credited with the victory followed by Riggs, Snider, Ty Gibbs and Josh Berry in the top five.
"There are no words to describe it," Pulliam said following the event. "As a kid, I grew up idolizing all of these different racecar drivers, Dale Earnhardt specifically. One of his coolest wins to me was when he was down here at Bristol, when he moved Terry Labonte. It wasn't a popular win, and the fans went crazy, and it was one of the few times where you heard Earnhardt get booed by 90% of the people. It's a real cool memory for me as a kid growing up.
"Myatt was pretty good and he kinda used the momentum on the top at the beginning of the race, and got a good run on the top and just cleared me," he continued. "After a few laps, my car would start running him down and it would start overheating every time I would get close to him, and I would back off and try to get some fresh air on the nose. Finally, we had that restart, and he had a pretty good start, and we were pretty even, and we raced hard into turns one and two, and he tried to close the door going into 3, but I was there."
An old-school racer to his core, Pulliam is the type of racer who the U.S. Short Track Nationals was created for.
"I work on racecars and build racecars for other people," he said when asked about the magnitude of this race. "We have three of four cars that race out of our shop at different tracks, but I just really wanted this deal bad. It was one thing I had on my list, and it was real cool to check off."
The CARS Response Energy Tour late model stocks resume action at Ace Speedway on June 9 while the super late models will visit Anderson Motor Speedway in South Carolina on the same evening.
For more information on the CARS Tour, visit their website at www.carsracingtour.com. Fresh content and updates can also be found on the series Facebook page (@carstour), Twitter (@carstour), Instagram (@cars_tour), Snapchat (@carstour) and Youtube channel (/carstour). The series Roku app is also available for installation to see live and on-demand events by following the instructions available at www.carstour.tv.
NOTES OF INTEREST:
- Point leader Bobby McCarty was one of a number of drivers who brought "special cars" to Bristol. No, there wasn't anything exceptionally trick about it, but teams pulled out older and less-used cars to make the trip to BMS in case the unthinkable were to occur. While other teams owned their rides, McCarty and the Nelson Motorsports crew borrowed a chassis they felt was best-suited for the track and the situation. He ended the night in seventh spot.
- Local drivers came out in force to support the CARS Tour at Bristol, some of whom are expected to rejoin the tour in July when the series visits Kingsport Speedway for the first time. Among those drivers were former NASCAR Xfinity Series Rookie of the Year Danny O'Quinn, Jr., Joey Trent, Nik Williams, Paul Nogradi and Austin Peters. O'Quinn led the hometown heroes with a 16th place finish despite handling problems in his No. 96 ride.
- Cody Haskins wrecked his No. 2 Ford in qualifying, bending the rear clip of the machine beyond proper repair and forcing him to start in the rear for unapproved adjustments. A representative for the Kulwicki Driver Development Program and their 2017 Champion, Haskins did the Underbird proud with his never-give-up attitude. At a track where Alan succeeded more than most others, Haskins took his Ford to a top ten run before the rains came and was reeling in the competition for additional spots.
CARS Late Model Stock Tour
Response Energy 100
Bristol Motor Speedway - May 19, 2018
POS NUM DRIVER LAPS REASON OUT
1. 5 Lee Pulliam 64
2. 99 Layne Riggs 64
3. 2s Myatt Snider 64
4. 18 Ty Gibbs 64
5. 88 Josh Berry 64
6. 7 Justin Crider 64
7. 22m Bobby McCarty 64
8. 08 Deac McCaskill 64
9. 9 Sam Mayer 64
10. 2 Cody Haskins 64
11. 61 Justin Hicks 64
12. 23 Terry Brooks, Jr. 64
13. 77 Trevor Ward 64
14. 74 Ronald Hill 64
15. 9w Charlie Watson 63
16. 96 Danny O'Quinn, Jr. 63
17. 26 Joey Trent 59
18. 32 Nik Williams 53 Mechanical
19. 4 Mike Chambers 34 Mechanical
20. 07 Bradley McCaskill 31 Mechanical
21. 22 Grayson Cullather 31
22. 02 Paul Nogradi 16 Mechanical
23. 66 Austin Peters 16 Mechanical
24. 7r Brandon Rogers 5 Mechanical