Less than 24 hours after starting from the pole and completely dominating at Five Flags Speedway (FL), defending series champion Bubba Pollard climbed his way to the front at Mobile International Speedway (AL) on Saturday to claim his 10th career Southern Super Series presented by Sunoco win and complete the Gulf Coast sweep.
Pollard finished qualifying by grabbing his 14th career pole but drew a five for his starting spot.
After falling outside the top-five when his car jumped out of gear in turn two just shy of the halfway mark of the 100-lap race, the Senoia, Georgia driver began his march to the front.
“I didn’t know what happened,” Pollard said of his early setback. “I shoved it back in gear and we got it going again. I had to run most of the race holding it in gear.”
By then, Oklahoma City, Oklahoma’s Donnie Wilson, who started from the pole, had opened up a full straightaway advantage on the field. With no cautions in the opening two-thirds of the race to bunch the field back up, Pollard had his work cut out for him.
After methodically working his way through the field, Pollard ran down Wilson who was losing the handling on his No. 2W machine. Running a full three-tenths quicker than Wilson by lap 69, Pollard took the inside lane, given to him by Wilson, in turn one and pulled away with the top spot.
“That’s why I like running this series,” Pollard said, pointing out the amount of respect the competitors have for one another.
“Donnie (Wilson), we caught him and he let us go. You’re not going to find too many drivers that’ll do that.”
For the second straight race, a long green flag run would set the tone for the race as just one caution slowed the event for a single car spin on lap 70.
Kyle Grissom, series winner from Five Flags Speedway back in April, restarted third and shot down to the inside of Pollard in turn one and held the advantage up front out of turn two and down the backstretch. But Pollard’s car was just too dominant and regained the advantage by the time they hit the stripe.
In taking the win, Pollard becomes the first Southern Super Series driver to record 10 career wins. The win also served as his 21st career Late Model wins at Mobile International Speedway.
“This is one (track) that I always look forward to coming to. I don’t know what it is about this place, it just fits my driving style.”
As Pollard drove away from the field over the final 30 laps, the story became young Garrett Jones in the Tracy Goodson Racing No. 1. After starting 13th, Jones picked his way through the field to pull into the top-five late in the race.
Behind Pollard, the podium was rounded out by series points leader Casey Smith, who drove from fourth to second in the final 15 laps, and Grissom.
Jones was trailed by early leader Wilson as they crossed under the checkered flag to round out the top-five.
The next race for the Southern Super Series will be back at Mobile International on Saturday August 22 for the 150-lap Lee Fields Memorial. Formerly a Pro Late Model event, 2015 will make the first time that the Super Late Models will honor the late Mobile International Speedway owner and operator.
(Editor’s Note: A full Trackside Now replay of Saturday’s Southern Super Series event at Mobile can be viewed by clicking here.)
-Southern Super Series/51 Sports Press Release.
-Photo credit: Speed51.com
Southern Super Series Official Results
Mobile International Speedway – July 25