Naples, ME 6/30/09- Race fans, teams, and officials will all prepare for a double header this weekend as the PASS South super late model series will invade the Greenville-Pickens Speedway on Friday July 3rd for the Firecracker 125 followed by a Sunday night shootout at the famed Hickory Motor Speedway on Sunday July 5th for the first ever Independence 150. The double header will mark the first of its kind for the five year old series and with the anticipation of several newcomers expected to make their 2009 PASS South series debuts, it’s shaping up to be one of the best Fourth of July weekend races in the country.
Race one of the double header will be featured at the Greenville-Pickens Speedway, a paper clip shaped half mile track known to produce some tight racing. Last year’s winner, Alex Haase, will not be in attendance to defend his win but his Kyle Busch Motorsports team with youngster Bryce Walker behind the wheel will. Another driver to watch is Justin Wakefield, the exact guy who battled the #51 machine for the win just a season ago before a wreck ended his night early. Three time winner Preston Peltier, along with Ben Rowe, Heath Hindman, and Ryan Blaney are among the championship contenders that will have to fend off a list of drivers making their return to the series in 2009 that include Clete Caywood, Dean Clattenburg, and J.R. Norris. An expected capacity size crowd along with a stellar field of race cars as well as one of upstate South Carolina’s largest fireworks shows to conclude the night’s activities adds up to produce one of the best Fourth of July celebrations for any race fan around.
An open practice for the Firecracker 125 will kick off Thursday July 2nd from 6-8pm then the following day the cars and stars of the PASS South super late model series will take to the track for the 125 lap event set to go off at 7pm. For more information including how to get your hands on tickets to the Firecracker 125 visit the Greenville-Pickens Speedway at www.greenvillepickens.com.
The second leg of the double header concludes at the first ever Independence 150 at the Hickory Motor Speedway. The race will mark the second of three events that the PASS South series has planned at the famed oval in 2009, making it a facility the championship contenders must run well at in order to have a shot at the championship. Always producing strong car counts at Hickory makes for impressive side by side racing and with this event being the first during the month of July one can bet that a slick race track will produce some wild racing action.
Having won the 2009 version of the Easter Bunny 150 earlier in the year, Maine’s Ben Rowe has to be considered a favorite heading into this weekend. Several drivers such as Jeff Bolen and thirteen-year-old Chase Elliot, who is the son of NASCAR star Bill Elliot, will be making their first career PASS South series starts. In addition, Corey Williams (2008) and Tennessee native Heath Hindman (2007) have to be thrown into the mix as each has scored a win at the Hickory, North Carolina track. Hickory also marks the only track so far this season that current hot shoe Preston Peltier has struggled at. Early in the year, Peltier posted only a seventeenth place finish but since then has racked up three series wins and moved into third in the series standings just forty points out of the top spot.
The Independence 150 at the Hickory Motor Speedway kicks off Sunday July 5th with racing set to begin at 6:15pm. For directions and ticket information visit the track’s website at www.hickorymotorspeedway.com.