Preston Peltier has established himself as the driver to beat year after year when the Pro All Stars Series (PASS) Super Late Models visit Hickory Motor Speedway for the Easter Bunny 150. This Saturday, he will make his way to the 14th Annual Easter Bunny 150 looking to make it a six-pack of victories in the traditional Easter weekend event.
Now residing in Brighton, Colorado, Peltier will trek east to North Carolina having won the race a staggering five times in 13 years, including three out of the last four.
The former Hendrick Motorsports fabricator made the Tar Heel State his home during his time in NASCAR. During that period, he became one of the top competitors on the east coast, having won both the PASS South and the PASS National championships in 2010 and winning the World Crown 300 at the now-defunct Gresham Motorsports Park in 2013.
Peltier has made a countless number of laps around the Newton, North Carolina oval, where he learned how to drive a long-distance race against some of the best competitors on the east coast.
“When I cut my teeth there, I did it against guys like Ben Rowe and Mike Rowe and Freddie Query,” Peltier said Monday during Speed51’s The Morning Bullring. “In my younger days, most of those races were a hundred, hundred twenty-five to a hundred fifty laps. If it was a fifty-lap race, I would murder everybody, but unfortunately they weren’t and it took me a little while and those guys taught me a lesson in tire management.”
With five Easter Bunny 150 wins to his credit, Peltier has made himself a perennial favorite anytime he makes the trip to the track billed as “The World’s Most Famous Short Track.” He says the track presents a unique challenge on any given race day and it suits his driving style.
“I think that’s it, it’s just my driving style,” he admitted. “It’s just really rough and its got multiple grooves, so you can move around and find some grip. From day to day, that place changes. There’s times we’ve gone there and I’ll be on the bottom and around the top, be like, there’s some nice grip there, I’ll wait until the opportune time to use it and show my hand. It’s kind of a unique place, it suits me.”
Peltier has been competing for two race teams for the past several years, with Generator Source Racing out west and Roger Newton on the east coast. He says his relationship between himself and both teams allows him to be flexible as he competes in major Late Model races throughout the country.
“Originally, the plan was to take the Rowdy (Manufacturing) car to Nashville, then drive straight out and run Newton’s car,” he said. “The thing is, between Generator Source and Newton Concrete, we have a good relationship to where we go out and run the big shows and the stuff on the west coast with Generator Source Racing, and most of the east coast stuff with Newton Concrete.”
Peltier contributes his recent success to what he believes is the best equipment he’s had in his racing career. He says it’s a once-in-a-lifetime deal and he is grateful for the opportunities.
“We’ve had a lot of success with both teams and really, as far as the cars go, I’m in the best equipment I’ve ever been in. I’ve got to thank both Roger Newton and Ed Vecchiarelli, this is something you can only dream about in a lifetime and here, I get to do it. It’s pretty cool, I really appreciate those guys a lot.”
Race fans unable to make it to Hickory Motor Speedway this weekend will be able to Peltier chase a sixth Easter Bunny 150 via a live pay-per-view broadcast on Speed51.com. Live video tickets can be purchased today for just $19.99 by clicking here.
-Story by: Koty Geyer, Speed51.com State Editor (IN & MI)
-Photo credit: Pro All Stars Series