Tim McCreadie left no doubt Saturday night during the Super Bowl of Racing at Golden Isles Speedway (GA). The Waterloo, New York driver sacked the competition, leading flag-to-flag on his way to winning the season-opening race for the Lucas Oil Late Model Dirt Series.
McCreadie started from the pole and went unchallenged throughout the 50-lap main event. His only scare of the race came on lap 14 when he entered turn one and narrowly avoided the stopped No. 87 car driven by Ross Bailes.
The driver known best as “T-Mac” captured $12,000 for the victory, which was the first win of his career at Golden Isles and his first triumph with a new race team owned by Donald and Gena Bradsher.
“They didn’t have to do this. We’ve said it before. This is out of the kindness of their heart,” McCreadie said on the MAVTV broadcast. “They wanted to do a race team like this. Donald has raced a bunch, he’s won a bunch, and for him to say to me, ‘I want to sponsor a North Carolina team, and you’re not from Carolina but we’ll take you,’ it’s pretty cool.”
McCreadie’s victory on Saturday night was one filled with emotion, as his father “Barefoot” Bob McCreadie has been dealing with health problems recently. After accomplishing his goal of getting to victory lane, McCreadie delivered the positive news that he believes his father’s health is taking a turn for the better.
“A bunch of us have had issues lately,” McCreadie said. “Donald lost probably his best friend, Spanky, a little bit ago. He was supposed to go longer and unfortunately didn’t. Then the stuff with my old man, too. It’s tough. My dad is turning the corner, though. When he started cracking and being rough on everybody with jokes, we knew he was getting better. They told me to come down here and if anything God forbid happens, I can go back home. I just want to thank all of the well-wishers. It’s not like we’re looking for sympathy or anything, but it truly shows the dirt track people are so good to each other.”
Brandon Overton impressed the crowd by charging to a runner-up finish after starting the race from 19th. Overton took advantage of late-race contact between Mark Whitener and Brandon Sheppard to move into second, but didn’t have the time to chase down and challenge McCreadie.
“We dug ourselves a hole in qualifying and didn’t really run well in the heat. We kind of turned it around in the B (Main). I felt like we had a really good car,” Overton said. “There’s a lot of people who come over here to watch me race, and I feel like every year I let them down. Congrats to Timmy. I don’t want to take anything away from them. I would’ve like to see a caution there late in the race. It felt really good but like I said, we just started too far back.”
Brandon Sheppard completed the podium with a third-place run, while Mike Marlar and defending Lucas Oil Late Model Dirt Series champion Jonathan Davenport completed the top five.
Mark Whitener’s impressive run came to a disappointing ending on the final lap when his car stopped in turn four, relegating him to a 22nd-place finish.
The Lucas Oil Late Model Dirt Series will return to action Monday night during the Winternationals at East Bay Raceway Park. Race fans can watch the action live on LucasOilRacing.TV.
1-McCreadie.T 2-Overton.B 3-Sheppard.B 4-Marlar.M 5-Davenport.J 6-Moran.D 7-Bronson.K 8-Owens.J 9-Erb.D 10-Clanton.S 11-Erb.T 12-Shirley.B 13-Richards.J 14-Zeigler.M 15-Junghans.C 16-Bruening.T 17-Eckert.R 18-O’Neal.H 19-Pearson.E 20-Buckingham.S 21-Moyer.B 22-Whitener.M 23-Scott.J 24-Scott.S 25-Bailes.R 26-Smith.G
-Story by: Brandon Paul, Speed51 Content Manager – Twitter: @Brandon_Paul51
-Photo credit: Longhorn Chassis