JEGS/CRA All-Stars Tour Pro Late Models hit the track for their first practice session of the weekend at the Short Track U.S. Nationals at Bristol Motor Speedway (TN) on Friday and there was a surprise at the top of the leaderboard.
Car owner Scott Neal topped the charts overall for the day with a time of 14.864 seconds, but will not race in the 100-lap event Sunday; he was simply shaking the car down for its actual driver, Dalton Armstrong.
“Dalton’s the driver, absolutely,” Neal said after his fast lap in the final practice session. “I’ve hit my head and had too many concussions so my equilibrium is off and I can’t drive. I almost got sick in the car out there shaking it down and I only ran four laps.”
“We benefitted from learning from the Super Late Model in the last practice, so that’s why the Pro Late Model was better. We can also input some of the things we learned in the Pro Late Model and use them in the Super Late Model, but the Super Late Model gets into the corner a lot harder so you can’t get crazy with it,” Armstrong explained.
Dillon Oliver led the first session with a time of 15.033 seconds, a time that would also be the fastest of the day for Oliver.
“The car is pretty good. We came and tested last week and it was good, but we still had to make a few adjustments,” Oliver said. “We were out there on 50-lap tires, but it’s turning good. The last session I only ran a lap down on the apron and we broke the radiator bracket out of it.”
Also at the top of the leaderboard on a consistent basis was Cole Williams, who turned a fast lap of 15.021 seconds in the third and final session of practice, good enough for fifth fastest overall. Young Eddie Fatscher, making his JEGS/CRA All-Star Tour PLM debut was also near the top of the charts, turning in a time of 15.077 seconds as his fastest of the day.
To catch up to speed with all the action from day one of the Short Track U.S. Nationals, tune into our Trackside Now coverage from the day here.
The Pro Late Models are scheduled to have two more practice sessions tomorrow before their qualifying session, which you can watch live on Speed51.com starting at 3:30 p.m. Race fans can save $9.99 on two-day video tickets by ordering before 11:59 p.m. tonight here.
-By Reese Nobles, Speed51.com Mid-Atlantic Correspondent – Twitter: @RNoblesSpeed51
-Photo credit: Speed51.com