Earlier this year, Logan Roberson debuted a new car for his Pro Late Model program. However, “Thugg Nasty” had a hunch that his old, faithful steed could still get the job done at the FASTRAK Prelude to the World Championship at Virginia Motor Speedway Saturday night.
That hunch proved to be spot-on, as Roberson charged past series points leader Carson Ferguson with two laps to go in the 40-lap feature to score a $3,000 win.
More importantly, the win gives Roberson momentum and confidence entering the $50,000 FASTRAK World Championship on September 13-14, where he will be defending his title from one year ago.
“This is my old girl,” Roberson said in victory lane. “I have something like 180 races on it. Something told me to bring it back, not to let the new one out. Hopefully she’s got one more ride in her, we can win that 50 grand and burn it down.”
The race came down to a late battle between Ferguson and Roberson over the final five laps. Roberson completed the pass with a slide job in turns three and four, making slight contact before pulling away for the checkered flag.
“We were racing hard,” said Roberson. “I didn’t mean to get into [Carson]. We were racing for three grand. I appreciate him racing me clean. He’s a really good friend. Thank you for the respect, I really appreciate it.”
Ferguson echoed Roberson’s sentiments, also thanking the Virginia driver for racing him with respect.
“I’ve got to thank him for racing me clean,” said Ferguson. “It’s fun racing with him.”
It was not an easy race for Roberson, as he was shuffled from the fifth starting spot by early chaos around him. It took a cool head and a calming voice of reason to settle down the young driver.
“Well, I was running 87th place at one point,” said Roberson. “My dad had to calm me down, just told me to chill out and relax.”
Meanwhile, there was little time for Ferguson to relax, with both a win and a points battle on his mind. Coming off a rough doubleheader weekend in West Virginia in July with the series, the second-place finish provides some valuable points for the North Carolina native.
Fortunately, when Ferguson returns to Jamaica, Virginia in three weeks’ time, he won’t have to worry about those championship tallies.
“You’re always thinking about points in the back of your mind, but I’m a racer,” said Ferguson. “I want to win every race I can. I’ll do whatever it takes to win. The $50,000 isn’t a points race, so if we’ve got to throw elbows, we will. We learned a lot more than we have here from this trip, so I think we’ve got something to build on.”
Corey Almond outdueled Justin Williams in the closing laps to take the final podium position. Walker Arthur rounded out the top five.
FASTRAK teams will be back in action next week, competing three times over Labor Day weekend in the East Coast Rumble. The East Coast Rumble kicks off Friday, August 30 at Princeton Speedway (WV), with features also taking place Saturday and Sunday at Tyler County Speedway (WV). After a one week break, FASTRAK will return to Jamaica, Virginia for the $50,000-to-win FASTRAK World Championship.
Fans who missed Saturday’s Prelude to the World Championship can click here to watch highlights from the event on the Speed51 Network.
Unofficial Results – Prelude to the World Championship
-Story by: Zach Evans, Speed51.com Southeast Editor – Twitter: @ztevans
-Photo credit: Speed51.com