SOUTH BOSTON, Va. -- Peyton Sellers finished seventh in Saturday night’s 100-lap Late Model Stock race at South Boston Speedway, a bit below the former national champion’s standards.
But that finish combined with some prerace strategy could go a long way towards keeping Sellers in the 2016 championship race.
Sellers took advantage of a new track rule for 2016 that allows a driver to drop back in the field from the position he qualified for to pick up “passing points” in addition to the regular points gained for the night.
Some drivers have used the rule to drop a few spots in the field this year to garner some extra points, but Sellers is the only driver to opt to fall all the way back to last place on the starting grid.
Instead of starting ninth, where he qualified, Sellers started 21st, shotgun on the field. He wound up finishing seven, which gave him 35 points on the night, just five less than Bobby McCarty got for winning. Although he remained fourth in points at the end of the night, he was able to close the gap much more than if he had not opted to drop to the rear.
“I hadn’t beaten Austin or Matt on the track all year, so I almost had to do this to close the gap some,” said Sellers. “I knew it was something I needed to do early in the season. It worked for me. It was like hitting the reset button for me.”
It worked out about as well as it possibly could have for Sellers. He made up 14 spots, and Thaxton got caught up in a mid-race wreck and finished 19th.
The former track champion realizes, though, it could have ended quite differently for him.
“It was risky. I could have been wadded up in the first turn of the first lap,” said Sellers. “We caught some lucky breaks. We had a plug wire come off and got a lap down, but we were able to fix it, catch the lucky dog and get back on the lead lap.
“As hard as it can be to pass cars, it was a gamble, but in the end it helped me a bunch.”
Racing returns to South Boston Speedway on Saturday night, April 30 with the NASCAR Late Model Twin 75s racing program. There will be seven races on the card, including a 50-lap Limited Sportsman Division race, a 30-lap Budweiser Pure Stock Division race, twin 25-lap races for the Modified Division and a 15-lap Budweiser Hornets Division race.
Grandstand gate open at 5:30 p.m., qualifying starts at 6 p.m. and the first race gets the green flag at 7 p.m.
Adult general admission tickets are $10 each, with youth ages 7-12 admitted for $5 and kids ages six and under admitted free with a paying adult.
-South Boston Speedway Press Release
-Photo Credit: Speed51.com