CHARLOTTE, NC — For his entire life in motorsports, Jared Irvan has had to live up to greatness. His grandfather, Vic, was a terror on the short tracks of California, while his dad, Ernie, found success on stock car racing’s biggest stage, winning the Daytona 500 back in 1991. At just 18-years-old, Jared Irvan was not around to see those triumphs, but he has certainly made a mark of his own in recent years. And this Saturday afternoon in the inaugural Southern Sizzler, Irvan hopes he can continue the streak of “no repeat” winners in PASS at Concord Speedway.
After graduating from Legends cars and open wheel midgets, Irvan made the step up to Pro All Stars Series (PASS) South Super Late Models in 2012. Irvan quickly became a front runner, finishing third in PASS South Super Late Model points in 2014, his only season competing for the championship. Last year, that elusive first PASS South win came at Anderson Motor Speedway.
Now driving for the Coulter Motorsports team and crew chief Randy Renfrow, Irvan reflected back on the start of his racing career, ironically at Concord Speedway. Living just down the road in nearby Midland, NC, Irvan raced at the quarter-mile track in Concord, just a few yards away from the fast, high-banked triangle he and the PASS South regulars will tackle on Saturday afternoon.
“It’s a ton of fun to race at Concord for multiple reasons,” says Irvan. “It’s one of the fastest tracks on the PASS South schedule, so that always makes for an interesting race. Also, the dogleg in the back straightaway sets up a challenge every lap of the race.”
With a third place already under his belt this season at the most recent PASS South event at Dillon Motor Speedway, Irvan again has high hopes heading to Concord Speedway. Irvan fought back from an extremely ill-handling car at Concord in May to finish fourth in the Old Glory 125. And, became the only driver to score top five finishes in both races there last year when he piloted the Coulter Motorsports entry to a fourth place finish in the North-South Shootout.
“I expect to run well this weekend,” said Irvan. “We ran well at Dillon and that should carry over some good momentum going into Concord. We ran well at Concord the last we were there in the #2 car and found some things that should make the car faster throughout the whole race, so it should be good.”
Irvan will be faced with another strong field at the Southern Sizzler led by defending PASS South Super Late Model champion, Tate Fogleman, and 2016 championship contenders Kodie Conner and Matt Craig, both from nearby Kannapolis. Former Mason-Dixon Meltdown winner, Trevor Noles, is entered, along with former North-South Shootout winner, Ryan Moore, as well as local favorite Clay Rogers. PASS South rookies Kyle Desouza and Vinnie Miller will each be looking for their first wins, as well as David Gilliland Racing driver Raphael Lessard.
All the action gets under way on Friday, March 18 at Concord Speedway with open practice for all competing divisions from 2 – 6 PM. On Saturday, March 19, practice will begin at 12:30 PM with qualifying starting at 3:15 PM for the PASS South Super Late Models, Mid-Atlantic Limited Late Models, Mini Stocks, and the NASCAR Whelen Southern Modified Tour followed by main events for the Southern Sizzler starting at approximately 4:30 PM.
Don’t forget to make plans as well for the upcoming Easter Bunny Weekend at Hickory Motor Speedway, featuring the PASS Super Late Models, South East Mini Stock Tour, and the debut of the Southern Modified Racing Series Presented By PASS.
PASS South Super Late Model entry forms and complete weekend schedules for the events at Concord Speedway, Hickory Motor Speedway, and Caraway Speedway can be found at ProAllStarsSeries.com.
-Pro All Stars Series Press Release
-Photo Credit: Pro All Stars Series