Two of the most notable drivers in Super Late Model racing clashed during the closing laps of Saturday’s CRA SpeedFest at Crisp Motorsports Park. While battling for the lead with less than 15 laps remaining, Bubba Pollard and Stephen Nasse traded blows as they attempted to win the 200-lap ARCA/CRA Super Series race.
The battle between the two drivers occurred following a restart with 18 laps remaining in the race. Nasse, as the leader of the race, elected to restart from the outside with Pollard to his inside. During the four laps following the restart, Nasse and Pollard didn’t give an inch as they battled hard for the lead. With 13 laps to go, Pollard made contact with Nasse in turn two that moved Nasse up the race track. As the two drivers raced down the backstretch, Nasse closed the gap on Pollard before making contact with his rear bumper in turn four.
As a a result of the contact, Pollard spun in front of the field, while Nasse was penalized by Champion Racing Association (CRA) officials for his role in the incident.
Both drivers returned to the race track following the incident and collided once again with 11 laps to go. This time, contact from Pollard sent Nasse spinning off of turn two. From there, both drivers retired from the race early before a confrontation took place on pit road between the two crews and drivers.
“Fifteen to go, good hard racing, bouncing off of each other. He was pinching me down, I was using him up,” Pollard told Speed51. “Fifteen to go, $10,000, that’s what you’re supposed to do. He was doing what he needed to do to win the race; I was doing what I needed to do to win the race. When I cleared him, he dumped me. That’s it. That’s the way I see it.”
After climbing out of his race car and showing his displeasure to Pollard with two middle fingers in the air, Nasse didn’t hold back his words when asked for his take on what occurred.
“Listen, Bubba Pollard is a good race car driver. He’s done a lot in his career and I will not take that away from him. But he is the biggest crybaby in this pit area. I’d say that to his face; I’d say that anywhere,” Nasse began. “When you try to hook me and send me head on full speed into the infield wall because what, I beat you? When he passed me on the outside on that restart when I gave him the top, I didn’t touch him. I didn’t touch a single car coming through this field today. But then that jacka– wants to come over there and act like a bonehead, for what? Because he thinks he’s king Jesus around here?”
When asked about the second round of contact that sent Nasse spinning, Pollard didn’t deny his actions.
“I turned him around. Ain’t no ifs, ands or buts about it,” he stated.
As two drivers who travel around the nation competing in major Late Model races, Pollard and Nasse will likely meet on many occasions throughout the 2020 season. After what occurred on Saturday night, the two drivers had different takes on how they’ll race each other moving forward.
“Listen, there’s going to be another thing coming,” Nasse said. “Me and Bubba can handle it here or we can handle it at any race track in this f—— country. Excuse my language. I don’t even know what to do with this. I’m going to wreck a lot of stuff getting back at that guy. We can do it however he wants. I just don’t understand. Mad because I out ran him? Come on.”
“I come out here to race and win. I’m not worried about him or anybody else,” Pollard said. “I’m here to do one thing, and that’s win. I’ve won 100 and something to races. If I’m a crybaby and that’s the way he sees it, that’s fine with me. I come here to race with my race car, I don’t come here to worry about anybody else. It is what it is. Looks like we were racing pretty good there, so I don’t see how he thought he was beating me. I’m just a lot smarter than him and I save my stuff, where they run out their like squirrels and be a bunch of idiots. Yeah, he had a good racecar. He had a good enough racecar where it didn’t have to end like that. It’s good hard racing, and I’m not a push over.”
Following the dramatics between Pollard and Nasse, rising star Corey Heim prevailed in a thrilling finish over Kyle Plott to earn his first major Super Late Model victory. Heim was driving as a teammate to Nasse with the Jett Motorsports team.
Earlier in the day, Nasse won the 125-lap JEGS/CRA All-Stars Tour Pro Late Model race in another thrilling finish with Willie Allen.
Speed51 will have additional coverage of CRA SpeedFest 2020, including a look at Heim’s big victory, in the coming days.
A full video replay of Saturday’s pay-per-view broadcast, including the incident between Pollard and Nasse, can be viewed now on Speed51 by clicking here.
-Story by: Brandon Paul, Speed51 Content Manager – Twitter: @Brandon_Paul51
-Photo credit: Speed51