“The Place Your Mama Warned You About” hasn’t always been kind to Brandon Overton. “Big Sexy” admits that he’s struggled at Cherokee Speedway in the past, but lately it seems as though he’s starting to have a better relationship with the challenging Gaffney, South Carolina race track.
Overton is hoping to improve his relationship with the track even more this Sunday during the 28th Annual Blue Gray 100, which will be broadcast live via a pay-per-view broadcast on Speed51.com.
“When I was little I kind of struggled there a lot,” Overton told Speed51.com. “I went out and ran that World of Outlaws deal and got my cars better and learned what to do at the right time. (Now) it just kind of fits me. They usually have it kind of wet early in the heat races and it’s hard to pass, but in the feature it usually widens out and you move wherever you want to go. I just go where everybody isn’t.”
The Georgia driver said he learned a big lesson in the 2014 Lucas Oil Late Model Dirt Series race at Cherokee. He lost that race to Don O’Neal because he got hung up behind a slower car while running the bottom line.
“I led for a long time and O’Neal passed me on the outside. I got hung up behind a lapped car and O’Neal passed me to win the race. I remember I was so mad and upset that I didn’t win that race. Every other time since I’ve come back I don’t make that mistake. If I get behind somebody slower, I’ll go to the top or go where they’re not.”
Overton has had success at Cherokee since then, scoring the second of his four career Lucas Oil Late Model Dirt Series victories at the track in 2017.
Now, Overton is hoping to continue that kind of success at Cherokee in Sunday’s Blue Gray 100 for the Carolina Clash Super Late Model Series. Sunday’s race will be Overton’s second start in the Blue Gray 100. He finished fifth in his one and only Blue Gray start prior to this weekend in 2014. Scott Bloomquist won that race.
If Overton is to get the win this weekend, he’ll have to go through the aforementioned Bloomquist to get the win, but Overton said he thinks there’s other drivers that will be just as challenging to beat.
“I think people kind of underestimate the guys in the Carolinas and how good they are,” Overton said. “They might not go to other places and run and win, but when you go to their backyard they’re really tough. Everyone that races at that level now has got good stuff. There’s no junk running around. No matter who shows up, you’ve got the track to deal with, which is always kind of tricky, and then you add the local guys and you add Madden and Scott (Bloomquist) and Ferguson is always good there. You’ve got a lot of guys that can win that race.”
The weather has been less than stellar all week long with rain inundating the Carolinas. Overton said he doesn’t expect the abundance of precipitation to cause any sort of issues for the track surface at Cherokee for Sunday, as he believes the track crew does a solid job of preparing the race track.
“I don’t think it’s going to hurt it. Jason who preps that thing does a really good job. If anything, it’ll probably just help it if I had to guess. He usually has it pretty wet over there anyway to start off. So I don’t think it’ll do anything except make it even better.”
The good track surface and strong competition are two of the reasons why Overton is excited to head back to the Blue Gray 100 this weekend.
“Hell, I just enjoy going over there. Period.”
Race fans can watch “Big Sexy” Brandon Overton race in Sunday’s Blue Gray 100 live on Speed51.com with our pay-per-view broadcast. Fans can purchase their online video ticket by clicking here.
-By Rob Blount, Speed51.com Associate Editor – Twitter: @RobBlount
-Photo Credit: Brian McCleod