For the first time since the running of the 47th Annual Snowball Derby, Super Late Models will roar to life this weekend in the Gulf Coast region. The Southern Super Series presented by Sunoco rolls into Pensacola, Florida’s Five Flags Speedway and Mobile, Alabama’s Mobile International Speedway this upcoming weekend to kick-off the first Gulf Coast weekend of the 2015 racing season.
The stars of the Southern Super Series will test themselves on the half-mile Pensacola oval on Friday, April 24 before traveling to Mobile to tackle the back end of the doubleheader weekend on Saturday, April 25.
Series director Tim Bryant, also the promoter at Five Flags Speedway and Mobile International Speedway, is anticipating a great pair of events this weekend for Super Late Model fans in the region. The pair of weekend races will be the third and fourth on the 15-race schedule.
“The fans are chomping at the bit to see some Super Late Models and especially after the first two races,” Bryant said from his Pensacola office while preparing for the big weekend. “Those first two races, the Rattler 250 and Federated Auto Parts 100 at Nashville, the competition has just been really keen. There are a handful of guys that are marked as contenders.
Numerous familiar faces are sure to make the on-track product exciting for the fans in the Gulf Coast region. Defending SSS champion Bubba Pollard, as well as four-time series winner Augie Grill, both have intentions to pull the weekend double.
They’ll be joined by a rising group of competitors that includes current Southern Super Series presented by Sunoco point leader Casey Smith, veteran Donnie Wilson, former Rattler winner Casey Roderick and Super Late Model star Kyle Grissom.
“It’s not just the Augie and Bubba show anymore,” Bryant said. “Those are two guys who are certainly hungry for a win. I think those guys will continue to be at the top of the list, but we’ve got a good solid group of guys that are going to be contenders.
“Kyle Grissom has been extremely competitive the first two events and has had a couple of good outings racing throughout the Southeast region. Casey Smith, I mean he has just done everything but win one. Donnie Wilson showed a strong hand at Nashville and he is due for win. You throw in the mix some dark horses like Jeremy Pate. He is a local Pensacola guy and knows his way around this race track. There are just a lot of different elements that will make it so that you have no idea who is going to win these races until the checkered flag waves.”
For competitors, the Gulf Coast weekend makes sense economically. It gives Super Late Model teams in the region the opportunity to race twice in two days for two separate purses.
“The doubleheader format has proved to be extremely popular and part of that is just because it makes good economic sense,” stated Bryant. “Super Late Model teams are able to run two races on a single weekend for two totally separate purses, as well as two separate point funds. It’s a series within a series with the Deep South Cranes Blizzard Series here at Pensacola and the Miller Lite Series over at Mobile keeping a separate points deal outside of the Southern Super Series.”
Despite having to race two days in two nights, there will be no half-footing it for drivers around Five Flags Speedway on Friday night. After all, every driver in the field wants to go fast and earn a victory at the “Home of the Snowball Derby.”
“What we don’t see is drivers riding around on Friday night so that they can make if to Saturday,” said Bryant. “Both races are flat out with drivers going for. A few of the teams with more resources bring backup cars when they come to the doubleheaders, and then there will be some guys that work late at night under the lights after Friday’s race to make repairs for Saturday.”
For more information on the Southern Super Series, visit SouthernSuperSeries.com. The Facebook page for the Southern Super Series is located at www.facebook.com/southernsuperseries. The series is also on Twitter at @SoSuperSeries. For advertising or sponsorship questions, please contact the track representatives. For media inquiries, please contact Matt Kentfield at 51 Sports via [email protected]
-Southern Super Series/51 Sports Press Release. Photo credit: Speed51.com