OCALA, FL – The 2015 NeSmith Chevrolet Dirt Late Model Series Touring Division season starts now with an open practice session tonight at Bubba Raceway Park. Tonight’s practice session precedes three straight nights of point races on Wednesday, Thursday and Friday, with the rescheduled 10th Annual Chevrolet Performance World Championship Race on Saturday.
The 2015 NeSmith Late Model season opener at Bubba Raceway Park will be Wednesday night with a 40-lap $2,000-to-win race. On Thursday night, it will be a 50-lap $2,500-to-win event, and then on Friday night, it’s 50-laps $3,000-to-win.
After being postponed by rain on November 22, 2014, the 100-lap $10,000-to-win 10th Annual Chevrolet Performance World Championship Race will be run on Saturday night as a non-points race. The first 16 starting spots were determined through heat races on November 21, 2014. The back half of the starting field will be determined in B-Main races on Saturday night. Drivers that did not compete in November, may enter the race and tag on the tail of a B-Main race.
Two-time and defending NeSmith Late Model National Champion Ronnie Johnson of Chattanooga, TN will return looking for his third straight title. Johnson earned Fast Time honors for the Chevrolet Performance World Championship Race back in November and will start the Saturday night show from the fifth starting spot.
At 59-years-old, Johnson will be joined by 61-year-old Johnny Stokes of Columbus, MS, who finished third in last year’s point standings, as the leading veterans going into the 2015 season. Other drivers from the 2014 Top 10 NeSmith Late Model point standings expected to return for 2015 action are Michael Blount of Sumrall, MS, Marcus Minga of Shannon, MS, and Chase Edge of LaFayette, AL.
Justin McRee of Woodstock, AL finished tenth in the 2014 NeSmith Late Model standings, and has also earned a spot in the World Championship Race starting field. J-Mac won the fourth heat race and will start the 100-lap $10,000-to-win race on Saturday night from the fourth starting spot.
Darrell Lanigan of Union, KY is scheduled to start on the pole position for the World Championship Race with Jacob Hawkins of Fairmont, WV on the outside of the front row. Dennis Rambo Franklin of Gaffney, SC will start third. NASCAR star Joey Coulter of Charlotte, NC is scheduled to start outside of Johnson in row three.
Also locked into the World Championship Race starting field are Carter Stokes of New Smyrna Beach, FL, Mark Whitener of Middleburg, FL, Keith Nosbisch of Valrico, FL, Walker Arthur of Forest, VA, Kyle Bronson of Tampa, FL, Matt Henderson of Loudon, TN, Jonathan Davenport of Blairsville, GA, Ivedent Lloyd Jr. of Ocala, FL, Doug Horton of Wimamma, FL, and Tyler Clem of St. Petersburg, FL.
Lloyd and Horton are former World Championship Race winners. Henderson and Clem have already thrown their respective hats in the ring for the 2015 NeSmith Late Model Rookie of the Year Award. At 12-years-old, Clem is the youngest driver to ever qualify for the Chevrolet Performance World Championship Race.
On Wednesday, NeSmith Late Model Pre-Race Registration and Technical Inspection will begin at 2 p.m. with the Drivers Meeting at 6 p.m. Hot laps are scheduled for 6:30 p.m. with racing at 7:30 p.m. Drivers are encouraged to be at Registration early in order to complete their 2015 NeSmith Racing paperwork.
The printable 2015 NeSmith Racing Registration/Membership Forms can be found online at www.nesmithracing.com under the Driver’s Info tab at the top of the home page. Drivers may print this form and completely fill it out ahead of time to avoid any delays during Registration.
On Thursday, Friday and Saturday, NeSmith Late Model Pre-Race Registration and Technical Inspection will begin at 3 p.m., with the Drivers Meeting at 6 p.m. Hot laps are scheduled for 6:30 p.m. with racing at 7:30 p.m.
Bubba Raceway Park is located north of Ocala, FL at 9050 N.W. Gainesville Road, Ocala, FL 34482. For more information call 352-622-9400, or visit the track web site at www.bubbaracewaypark.com and on Facebook at Bubba Raceway Park.
For more information and rules about the NeSmith Chevrolet Dirt Late Model Series, visit the series web site at www.nesmithracing.com, or visit the series on Facebook at NeSmith Racing. Becoming a fan of the NeSmith Racing Facebook page will make you eligible for special prizes that will be given away each month. You can follow us on Twitter @NeSmithRacing.
-NeSmith Dirt Late Model Series Press Release. Photo credit: Schnarzy photo for WoO
10TH ANNUAL CHEVROLET PERFORMANCE WORLD CHAMPIONSHIP RACE “SWEET 16” STARTING LINE-UP:
1L Darrell Lanigan – RJ1 Jacob Hawkins
2 Dennis Franklin – 25 Justin McRee
5 Ronnie Johnson – 2c Joey Coulter
33 Carter Stokes – 58 Mark Whitener
02 Keith Nosbisch – 87 Walker Arthur
40b Kyle Bronson – H2 Matt Henderson
49 Jonathan Davenport – 33x Ivedent Lloyd Jr.
11 Doug Horton – 14 Tyler Clem
SATURDAY NIGHT B-MAIN LINE-UPS (Top 3 Transfer To Main Event):
27p Mike Pegher Jr. – 12 Ryan Montgomery
40r Josh Richards – 17ss Shan Smith
27 Michael Lake – 18 Chase Edge
B69 Bryan Bernhardt – 44 John Ruggiero
22 Cecil Eunice – 17s Jeff Smith
110 Brent Barrett – 21 Mario Gresham
45 Damon Flowers
51 Mack McCarter – 33 Jeff Mathews
101 Forest Trent – 56 Eric Hickerson
56n Chris Noah – 19 Marcus Minga
1 Johnny Stokes – 77 Charlie Flowers
08 Justin Shipley – 66 Jake Knowles
10 Ryan Crane – 121 Michael Blount
21 Jamie Pickard