What started off as a dream and lots of high hopes culminated in a championship Saturday night at Hickory Motor Speedway for Brayton Haws and his Hawk McCall Motorsports race team.
Haws started the 2015 season with a goal of winning the first CARS Late Model Stock Car Tour championship. Still, through the course of a 10-race schedule with some of the nation’s top short track drivers battling every week, Haws knew a title would not be an easy task.
Even with three victories, Haws entered Saturday’s season finale second in the standings, three points behind Myatt Snider. A pole qualifying effort gained the 16-year-old Haws a bonus point, putting him only two markers away from a championship when the green flag dropped at Hickory. From there, Haws kept his Rheem-backed No. 41 near the front of the field while keeping other championship contenders in his rear-view mirror.
When the checkered flag waved, Haws finished fifth and locked down the series championship. The Hickory finish turned what was only a dream at season’s start into a reality.
“This is a dream come true for me, my team and everyone that helps me,” said Haws as he celebrated the championship. “It hasn’t set in yet. I can’t believe it.”
Haws finished the inaugural CARS Late Model Stock Car season with three victories and top-10 finishes in eight of the 10 races. But it wasn’t until the checkered flag waved Saturday at Hickory that the championship was in his grasp.
The pole qualifying effort put the field on notice that Haws was focused on the championship and he never wavered from that goal through the course of the 150-lap feature.
“That was my first ever pole in a Late Model Stock and it was just the right time to have it,” said Haws. “That gave me an extra point so when the green flag dropped, me and Myatt were really close for the point battle.
“Ever since then we just drove our race and held off everyone and came out with a championship.”
With the championship trophy now on his mantle, Haws will begin focusing on several big late-season open events. His next scheduled race will be the prestigious Myrtle Beach 400 at South Carolina’s Myrtle Beach Speedway on November 21, followed by the Thanksgiving Classic at Southern National Motorsports Park in North Carolina the following weekend.
For more information on Brayton Haws visit his website at www.braytonhaws.com, and follow him on Twitter at @BraytonHaws.
– 51 Sports press release
– Photo credit: Speed51.com