It’s not a stretch to say that in the 2014 version of The Rattler 250 at South Alabama Speedway (AL) that Bubba Pollard was the man to beat. He led 109 laps, but crashed on lap 119 and was relegated to a 20th-place finish in last year’s Southern Super Series season opener.
It’s been a year, now, and Pollard is looking for a bit of redemption. He wants that second win in that race on March 15. And there’s a good chance he gets it considering how 2015 has started for him.
“I think momentum and confidence are the two biggest keys to racing,” Pollard told Speed51.com powered by JEGS. “We’ve got a few races on our belt ahead of everyone else and a few wins already. That definitely helps me and helps my team push and motivate us to go out and try to win.”
Pollard won the first Super Late Model race of 2015 when he claimed the Red Eye 100 at New Smyrna Speedway (FL), he finished second in the Pro Late Model 125 at SpeedFest at Watermelon Capital Speedway (GA), came within five laps of winning the Super Late Model portion of SpeedFest just a couple hours later, and just made a trek of over 2,000 miles to California to win the inaugural $25,000-to-win Winter Showdown at Kern County Raceway Park.
Out of all of his performances so far in 2015, his Winter Showdown win is the one he’s the most proud of, and that has his confidence soaring as he heads to The Rattler as a result.
“I think going out there and doing well in a different part of the country and racing against those guys definitely helps me in going into The Rattler,” Pollard said.
Pollard described the 4/10-mile oval that is South Alabama Speedway as a “racey race track,” and one place that he loves to go to.
“It’s one of my favorite places to go and race,” Pollard said. “We enjoy going down there. It’s one of the places we look forward to going to every year.”
Already a winner once in 2012 at The Rattler, Pollard badly wants to add his name to the short list of drivers who have won the prestigious event multiple times.
“There are not many drivers that have won it twice,” he said. “You look at the names of the drivers that have won it twice like Augie Grill and Ronnie Sanders and all those guys. It would definitely be cool to try to do that.”
He knows how difficult this race is to win. At 250 laps, it’s one of the longest Southern Super Series races of the year. It’s also a survival race track. But there’s another element that adds to the difficulty level for this year.
“I think this year will be the most competitive year for the Rattler that we’ve seen in several years,” he said. “There are a lot of good race car drivers that have been down there in the past and a lot of competition the last several years. I think it will be no different this year.”
-By Rob Blount, Speed51.com Northeast Editor -Twitter: @RobBlount
-Photo Credit: Speed51.com Photo