KINGSPORT, Tenn. — Robbie Ferguson used a lap 46 restart to claim his first win at Kingsport Speedway since 2002 in a dramatic finish.
Ferguson and Wayne Hale were on the front row for 60 laps of NASCAR Whelen All-American Series action.
Hale would quickly pull to the lead, with Kres VanDyke and Ronnie McCarty charging hard for second place real-estate. McCarty would push up the track at the exit of Turn 4, sliding him into fourth place.
VanDyke would settle into third, with Ferguson hanging into second and Hale staying in the lead. The first caution of the race would wave on lap 14 when the No. 51 of Nick Williams spun exiting Turn 2.
Hale and Ferguson again were on the front row for the restart. Hale would again jump to the lead, as VanDyke began getting pressured hard from Zeke Shell.
Shell and VanDyke would battle door to door for the third position, with Hale pulling away out front. Trouble for Rick Pannell would send his car spinning around in Turn 4, bringing the caution out once again.
Back under green, Hale would regain the lead and VanDyke would take over second place. Shell and Ferguson would make contact briefly, as Ferguson settled back into third and Shell in fourth.
Shell would pull to the inside at the exit of Turn 2 at halfway to take over third position from Ferguson. Out front, Hale would continue to lead, with VanDyke pressuring hard from second.
The caution would wave again on lap 32 when Joey Trent’s car blew a radiator cap, spraying water all over the backstretch.
With Hale on the inside and VanDyke on the outside for the restart, the duo would battle side by side. VanDyke would take the lead on lap 35 on the outside of Hale, exiting Turn 4.
Trouble for Hale on lap 45 when contact from Shell would cause the left front tire to go flat. The issue would force Hale to stop in Turn 4, forcing the yellow out once again.
For the restart, VanDyke chose the outside, placing Shell on the inside. VanDyke would rocket to the lead over Shell. Only one lap under green, the caution would wave again when Austin Peters went spinning off of the nose of Derek Lane’s No. 28.
Set for what would be the final restart of the race, Shell would jump straight to the lead over VanDyke.
A major battle would ensue after, as VanDyke would battle back and Ferguson would join the mix. The trio would go three wide entering Turn 1, with Ferguson taking over the lead in dramatic fashion.
With Ferguson in the lead, the dust still had not settled, as Shell, VanDyke, McCarty and Peters would engage in a four-car battle. The four would battle hard, making contact multiple times before the checkered flag waved.
Ferguson would take the win, his first Late Model Stock Car victory at any track since 2008. Shell, McCarty, VanDyke, and Hale would round out the top five.
“Chalk this one up for the old guys,” said Ferguson. “We don’t give up; we just keep digging.”
Ferguson was sure to thank his crew and sponsor Dalton Direct Carpets after the thrilling win.
“All of these guys at J and J Racing and Ken Daffron, I can’t thank them enough,” Ferguson. “It’s these guys, I just drove [the car].”
Nick Cole won the 30-lap Street Stock feature after a hard-fought battle with Mark Christian. Cole used a late-race pass to take the win over Christian.
The win was Cole’s first of the season.
William Hale and Chris Neeley were on point after the invert for the 25-lap Pure 4 race. Neeley quickly took over the lead on the opening lap from the outside lane.
On lap nine, Ben Barker tagged the left side of Kenny Absher’s machine. The incident would shred Barker’s front bumper and the rear bumper on Absher’s machine, bringing the caution flag out for debris.
Neeley would take the lead on the restart, with Byington scooting into second place. On lap 12, the remainder of Absher’s bumper would land in Turn 1, bringing the yellow flag out again.
With the green flag in the air once again, Neeley would once again pull to the lead over Byington. The caution would wave again on lap 17 when Bruce Crumbley slid up the track and collected the No. 4 of Kevin Darnell in Turn 2.
Set for the restart, Neeley would take the inside with Byington on the outside. Neeley would regain the lead as Byington felt pressure from teammate Absher. Absher would take the second position and set his sights on Neeley at the lap 20 mark.
Absher would pressure Neeley on the inside, as Neeley would wash way up the track at the exit of Turn 2 on lap 23. Absher would take the lead and go on to take the checkered flag over Byington and Neeley.
Chris Amburgey took the lead on the opening lap of the Mod 4 feature over Darrell Whitehead. Whitehead would begin to lose ground, allowing Jerry Miller, Kevin Canter and Rocky Yates to slip by, respectively.
Meanwhile out front, Amburgey would continue to lead. Yates would begin to work on Miller for the second position on the ninth circuit, taking the lead on lap 11 and driving to the inside of Amburgey for the lead.
Yates would take the victory over Miller and Amburgey.
Brandon Crumbley and Dennis Arnold made up the front row of the Pure Street feature.
At the drop of the green flag, Rob Austin quickly took the lead as Crumbley and Arnold dropped back and Marty Tunnell raced into the second position. The caution waved on lap four as Tunnell and Jamie Meadows made contact, sending Meadows into the outside wall on the frontstretch and Tunnell around in Turn 1.
Set for the restart, Austin would retake the lead and pull way ahead of the field. Austin would claim the win for the second week in a row.
Dillon Hodges claimed the victory in the Legend Cars feature.
-Kingsport Speedway Press Release
-Photo Credit: Randall Perry
Late Model Stock Car (60 laps):
1. #7 Robbie Ferguson
2. #50 Zeke Shell
3. #5 Ronnie McCarty
4. #66 Austin Peters
5. #15 Kres Vandyke
6. #19 Wayne Hale
7. #51 Nick Williams
8. #28 Derek Lane
9. #33 Rick Pannell
10. #76 Jamie Harrison
11. #14 Steve Deskins
12. #26 Joey Trent
13. #41 Danny Casteel
14. #72 Jerry Broyles
15. #8 Paul Shull