Winston-Salem, N.C. – Dillon Bassett, and the No. 44 Butler Trailer Manufacturing/Roush Yates Performance/Rex Younger Galleries Bassett Racing team reached victory lane an unprecedented two times in just two days this past weekend at Motor Mile Speedway and Hickory Motor Speedway. This was also Bassett’s first ever career start at Motor Mile, and the first time he had ever stepped foot inside the famed .416 mile Speedway. The two wins moved Bassett’s total to seven NASCAR Whelen All-American Series (NWAAS) wins of the season, and his 16th top-5 finish in 19 races.
On Friday at Motor Mile Speedway, Bassett was able qualify with one of his best efforts of the season, a 2nd place starting position. With that qualifying effort, Bassett began to drop back and conserve his equipment, knowing he had a really good long green-flag run car. The No. 44 dropped back to the fourth position with only 35 laps to go, but quickly began to reel in the leaders when Bassett wanted to go to the front. With only seven-laps remaining the two leaders (Matt Bowling and Lee Pulliam) made contact with each other, which opened the door for Bassett to compete for the top spot. The final seven-laps had the entire crowd at Motor Mile Speedway on their feet as Dillon Bassett raced side-by-side with two-time defending NASCAR Whelen All-American Series National Champion Lee Pulliam for the race win, with both drivers not giving the other an inch of room. It all came down to the last lap as Bassett on the inside and Pulliam on the outside began leaning on each other, still side-by-side Bassett drove into turn three farther than Pulliam, pulled ahead by a nose, and moved him up a lane on the track. This strategy allowed Bassett to complete the pass and came across the finish line just feet ahead to take the win.
On Saturday Bassett’s the No. 44 Butler Trailer Manufacturing/Roush Yates Performance/Rex Younger Galleries Bassett Racing team pulled into Hickory Motor Speedway for the Hendrick Honda of Hickory 100-lap event. Bassett practiced extensively on old tires, recording the 22nd fastest lap time out of the 23-car field, but he nor the team were worried. Bassett qualified in the 17th position and the team was happy with the result. As soon the green-flag flew Bassett made it perfectly clear that he was going to challenge for the win. On lap 11 he had passed five cars, up to the 12th position, on lap 20 he was up to the eighth position, and on lap 30 he had moved into the fifth position. All positions were uncontested until he made his way to the second position, as the battle for the lead waged on for the rest of the night. By lap 65 the No. 44 was solidly in the top spot, but each of the ensuing cautions brought another battle for the lead. Although caution periods gave a chance for the rest of the competition to take the win from the No. 44, they were no match for Bassett, as he led the last 41 laps to take the win after starting from the 17th position.
“What a great weekend for my entire Butler Trailer Manufacturing/Roush Yates Performance/Rex Younger Galleries Bassett Racing team at Motor Mile Speedway and Hickory Motor Speedway. We had a really good long run car at both Motor Mile and Hickory Motor Speedway, which we knew in practice and I have to give credit to my crew chief Seth Smith who made all the right calls to get me to this point. Racing in the NWAAS in the Southeast is so hard and the competition around here is so great that it’s really difficult to get one win, let alone have seven wins already this season. It just goes to show what kind of people and the kind of equipment we have at Bassett Racing. I’d say the win at Motor Mile Speedway was one of the best of my career with only leading the last 100 yards and how hard I had to drive to make it to the front in such short of time. The win at Hickory Motor Speedway on Saturday was just evidence of a great car underneath me that I could conserve tires all while passing and making my way to the front. Really looking forward to bringing this momentum into Caraway next week for the Rusty Harpe Memorial.”
The next NASCAR Whelen All-American Series event on the schedule for Dillon Bassett will be the Rusty Harpe Memorial 171-lap event at Caraway Speedway.