‘Kid Quick’ picks up win at Laurens County Shrine Racelaurens
Enoree’s Zach Mitchell goes by the name “Kid Quick,” and he more than lived up to that moniker during Tuesday night’s Laurens County Shrine Race at Laurens County Speedway.
Mitchell, a member of the Carolina Clash Super Late Model series, won the pole for the 35-lap main event and eventually pulled away to victory in the main event itself. Jeff Smith finished second, defending champion Ross Bailes was third, Dennis Franklin was fourth and Johnny Pursley was fifth.
The victory is Mitchell’s third this season in the Carolina Clash series.
Mitchell set the standard in qualifying for the main event, posting a blistering time of 14.469 seconds to take the poll position. G.R. Smith just missed out on the pole, taking second at 14.538 seconds, and Michael Brown took third in qualifying at 14.724 seconds. Of the 18 qualifiers Tuesday night, seven of those were able to break 15 seconds during their qualifying laps.
In the main event Mitchell chose to start on the inside of Row 1, with Smith taking the outside position.
At the start Mitchell was able to power away to grab the lead from Smith as Jeff Smith, who started fifth, moved up to third place. A caution came out on the third lap to bring the field back together, but Mitchell continued to hold onto his lead after the restart. G.R. Smith, after the restart, ended up going higher on the track and gave Jeff Smith an opening to get by to take over second place before another caution came out on Lap 5.
Another caution came out on Lap 6 that slowed the race briefly, but two later incidents brought events to a halt. The first such incident happened on Lap 21 when G.R. Smith, who had come back to take second place for a time, was involved in an accident with Jim Manka as both driver’s cars made contact. Another driver, Billy Lambert, was stuck with nowhere to go and ended up hitting the G.R. Smith and causing damage to his back spoiler.
As the race resumed following the caution another major incident took place on the front stretch, right in front of the flagstand. Michael Brown spun out and came to a stop on the front, but Mike Kernells was stuck in the midst of the pack of drivers on the track and was left with nowhere to go – ultimately smaking hard into Brown’s car. Thankfully both drivers, Brown and Kernells, were able to get out of their cars under their own power.
After the race resumed Mitchell was again able to get out to a solid lead as Jeff Smith followed from behind, but at a fair distance. As the laps went by, however, Smith started to close the gap slightly, and made it appear as though he was ready to make a last-gasp charge in what would’ve been the final five laps. After the first of two cautions came out on Lap 31, Smith again was able to stay tight with Mitchell, but the race was brought to a halt. On the last restart of the race, again on Lap 31, Mitchell got a better start and was able to pull away to a lead of nearly nine-tenths of a second – and put the victory on ice.
Overall results: 1. Zach Mitchell; 2. Jeff Smith; 3. Ross Bailes; 4. Dennis Franklin; 5. Johnny Pursley; 6. Kenny Collins; 7. Josh Richeson; 8. Anthony Sanders; 9. Brett Hamm; 10. G.R. Smith.
11. Scott Shirey; 12. Billy Lambert; 13. David Yandle; 14. Michael Brown; 15. B.J. Cochcroft; 16. Jim Manka; 17. Mike Kernells; 18. Jim Rogers.
604 Crate: Trent Ivey posted the fastest lap in qualifying for the main event and used that momentum to pick up a victory in the main event. Larry Timms took second place, Dylan Brown was third, Goose Calvert was fourth and Ahnna Parkhurst was fifth.
Ivey qualifying first in 15.105 seconds to edge out Timms, who qualifying .153 seconds off Ivey’s pace to take the other spot on the front row. The main event got off to a rough start even before the green flag flew as Charlie Walker lost a tire in the warm-up laps and was knocked out of the race. When the race did start Ivey, known as the “Little Head Knocker,” jumped out to the lead with Timms quickly following in second place. Ivey continued to push the pace as Timms moved into a secure hold of second place. All of the front cars spaced out from each other, helping to prevent many pass attempts, before the cars ran into lap traffic.
Ivey was able to get through easily past the halfway mark in the 20-lap main event and put himself in position to grab the victory. The racers did catch up to the end of the field again in the final two laps of the main event, which gave Timms slight hope at a late comeback after he cut what was nearly a two-second lead in half, but the rally proved too little and too late.
602 Crate: Dale Timms moved into the 602 Crate Division for Tuesday’s Shrine Race and was the top driver in the field as he pulled away for the victory. Timms was followed by Mart Patterson in second place, Jeff Robinson in third place, Chris Patterson in fourth place, and Ahnna Parkhurst – who was fifth in the 604 Crate – taking fifth in this race as well.
The race was a stop-and-start affair that had caution after caution that cut off any momentum. Timms, through all the cautions, was able to maintain the lead with Mart Patterson and Robinson following behind Timms. The drivers finally hit a long stretch of green-flag racing on Lap 3 when Timms and Mart Patterson led the pack through the front stretch. Timms maintained a lead of about a half second through five laps in the main event, and as the race continued Timms was able to pull away from the field and end any chance of a late comeback by any of the other drivers.
Thunder Bombers: Dustin Morris took the victory in the main event of the Thunder Bombers Division, with Dylan Chappell in second and Scott Pulley in third.
Morris took the lead on the first attempted start before a caution brought the race to a halt. The race was able to get off to a cleaner start on its second attempt with Morris again taking the lead and Chappell holding second place and Lawson in third. Morris was able to open a bit of a lead and maintained the edge through the remainder of the race.
Monster Minis: Justin Morris grabbed the top spot in the main event, with Rod Tucker in second and Stacy Brock in third.
Morris took the lead from the start and built a fairly comfortable margin with Tucker doing his best to keep pace with the leader. Dusty Eaves found himself in a battle with Brock for third place, and did so for a time before Brock finally made the pass after the halfway mark of the race.
As for Morris, his race proved to be a smooth one as he opened up as big as a three-second lead and won going away.
FWD: Travis Jamieson powered from the back of the field and took home the main event in the Front-Wheel Drive Division. Mason Mack was second and Joel Powell was third.
Jamieson, who was unable to race in his heat race, started in the fourth and final spot in Row 2, but was able to get up to sixth place after one lap. As Scott Cloninger led the race Jamieson was able to continue making up ground and found his way to third place by the ninth lap. Jamieson then got past second following a restart on the ninth lap, and got into a battle for the lead with five laps to go. The field later was three-wide on the backstretch, with Cloninger unable to hold off Jamieson further. Once Jamieson took the lead, he held it the rest of the way and grabbed the victory.