All kinds of fun occurred on Tuesday evening at Tracy Goodson’s Beef O’ Brady’s in downtown Pensacola to officially begin the week of festivities for the 48th Annual Snowball Derby. For the second straight year the Snowball Derby Kickoff Party presented by Anderson’s Maple Syrup was available to watch live on Speed51 TV for those not able to attend.
Perhaps stealing the show was the intense competition and rivalries building outside in the game of cornhole. Fans participated, but the most intense battle featured Speed51.com’s Bob Dillner and his pick to win this year’s Snowball Derby, California’s Derek Thorn.
One year after earning bragging rights over Super Late Model star Bubba Pollard, Dillner won the featured cornhole match for the second year in a row. But that was just the start of the drama.
Before the show concluded, “Supershoe” Corey LaJoie called out Dillner, wanting his shot at the crown. Unfortunately, the driver of the No. 07 LFR Chassis couldn’t back up his smack talk, as Dillner prevailed in a close match.
Pollard, who suffered an embarrassing defeat one year ago, wanted a rematch against Dillner, but a late start to his trip delayed his appearance at Beef O’Brady’s until later in the evening. There will always be next year for any aspiring challengers.
In addition to the intense cornhole battles, a talented group of regional stars such as Slinger Nationals winner Dennis Prunty, multi-time PASS South Series winner Zane Smith, and successful west coaster Jeremy Doss all talked about their expectations heading toward the weekend of competition.
Young phenom Todd Gilliland, fresh off a debut victory in the NASCAR K&N Pro Series West, was a guest along with two-time defending ARCA Midwest Tour champion Ty Majeski. Midwest teenage racer Caleb Adrian as well as members of Dalton Armstrong’s Scott Neal Racing team were among those that took advantage of getting in a game of pool.
Following the show, hosts Dillner and Adam Mackey talked with Champion Racing Association Managing Partner R.J. Scott in an exclusive announcement of the ARCA CRA Super Series and JEGS All-Stars Tour 2016 schedules.
All of the participants move to Five Flags Speedway (FL) on Wednesday morning to get down to business with the beginning of the hauler parking and technical inspection process.
The 48th Annual Snowball Derby weekend kicks off with the Cat Country/WEAR-TV3 Green Flag Party on Wednesday, December 2. On-track activities start Thursday, December 3, for the opening practice rounds for the Snowball Derby Super Late Models and Snowflake 100 Pro Late Models. The Five Flags Butler U-Pull-It Bombers and Beef ‘O’Brady’s Sportsman divisions will also have feature events on Snowball Derby Thursday.
The top Snowball Derby starting spots will be set on Friday, December 4 during WXBM 102.7 Pole Night at Five Flags. The Five Flags Faith Chapel Super Stocks and Modifieds will also battle in their Snowball Derby features after Super Late Model qualifying.
The Allen Turner Hyundai Snowflake 100 takes center stage on Saturday, December 5 as the top Pro Late Model racers in the country qualify and battle for 100 laps at Five Flags. In addition, Saturday’s action features the final 50-lap qualifying event for Snowball Derby drivers to make one last effort to qualify for the 300-lap Super Late Model race. The Better Built Tool Box Pro Trucks will also have a 50-lap feature on Snowball Derby Saturday.
Then on Sunday, December 6, the green flag will drop on the 48th Annual Snowball Derby at 2 p.m. CT at Pensacola, Florida’s Five Flags Speedway.
Fans unable to make it to Pensacola, Florida for the Snowball Derby can watch all of the action through a live online TV style pay-per-view broadcast on Speed51 TV. A four-day video ticket can be purchased now for $59.99 allowing fans to watch all of the action from Five Flags Speedway. Single-day video tickets are also available. Visit Speed51.com for more information.
– By Aaron Creed – Twitter: @aaron_creed
– Photo credit: Speed51.com