Since Lee Tissot and J&J Racing joined forces midway through the 2012 racing season, it’s been a great relationship. They’ve been very competitive and legitimate threats to visit victory lane in each event entered.
Kingsport Speedway kicked off the Memorial Day weekend last Friday “Celebrating The Stars That Protect Our Stripes,” with NASCAR Salutes: United States Armed Forces Night at the Races.
For the 44-year-old Tissot, from Asheville, N.C., it was his night to shine. The veteran racer jumped into the lead at the start from his outside front row starting spot in the 60-lap NASCAR Whelen All-American Series Late Model Stock feature and proceeded to lead flag-to-flag for his first victory of the season, in a race that ran caution-free.
“Oh man, what a great feeling to finally get our first win,” said Tissot following victory lane ceremonies and once the car passed post-race technical inspection last Friday. “To be quite honest with you, I didn’t think it would take us until Memorial Day weekend to get our first win of the season. We’d been knocking on the door, just oh so close to getting a victory with a runner-up, a third and fourth-place finishes. While we’ve ran good in each race, we also had a couple of deals that cost us opportunities of being in contention to win before now. But I guess that’s just a part of racing, you’ve got to take the bad along with the good. Overall, though, we’ve had more good than bad.
“All I know is, it’s great to get our first win and I really believe you’re going to see us parked in victory lane on other occasions as the season progresses. We’ve put together four solid top-five finishes, capped off with the win. I can’t thank Jeff Herron and Jason Herron enough for giving me the opportunity to drive for them, along with all the guys that work on the car and also the great sponsors we have onboard. I know Ken Daffron (Dalton Direct Carpet) was really excited as he came down out of the grandstands for victory lane ceremonies. That’s what it’s all about, having a good time and winning races and getting to celebrate with your friends.”
Besides the Kingsport Speedway victory, Tissot has also won two other events during the month of May. He won the Late Model feature at Newport Motor Speedway and captured the Southeast Super Truck Series win at Tri-County Motor Speedway in Hudson, N.C.
The Southeast Super Truck Series will be in action on Friday, June 6 at Kingsport Speedway, and Tissot can’t wait.
“Oh yeah, I’m really looking forward to the Southeast Super Truck Series race at Kingsport Speedway,” Tissot said. “Jeff’s (Caldwell) got a really good truck and with the laps I have around the track, to be quite honest, I’ll be disappointed if we’re not parked in victory lane. But there are several strong truck teams in the series, so we’ll have our work cut out for us.”
Since Kingsport Speedway reopened for weekly racing in 2011, Tissot has recorded a total of 10 victories at “The Concrete Jungle” which includes a United Auto Racing Association-Southern Touring Asphalt Racing Series win.
Ken Daffron, owner of Dalton Direct Carpet in Kingsport (Bloomingdale community), has been involved in local short-track racing around Northeast Tennessee for many years, sponsoring such drivers as the legendary John A. Utsman and 2002 Kingsport Speedway Late Model Stock champion Robbie Ferguson.
”I’m really excited being back as sponsor on a race car,” said Daffron, who for the past two seasons was Kingsport Speedway’s Late Model Stock divisional sponsor. “Some might look at it as I won every race the last two years, with Dalton Direct Carpet across top of the windshield as sponsor of the class. But to me that’s just not the same as having your (business) name on the side of a race car. I like the competitive part of racing, being associated with a car and driver and winning races.
“I’ve known J&J Racing owner Jeff Herron for a good while, and he’s got a good team put together from Lee Tissot as driver, to all of the guys on the pit crew. My business is located in the Bloomingdale community, and J&J Racing is just two blocks away. I’m a local business and they’re a local race team. Some might wonder why I got back involved sponsoring a race car again instead of a division of racing? Well, I guess you could say I just got a case of ‘racing fever’ again. I’m having fun and can hardly wait each week until Friday rolls around and I’m back at the racetrack.”
Tissot and the J&J Racing team will be back in action this Friday, May 30 at Kingsport Speedway. An exciting six-division NASCAR Whelen All-American Series racing program is scheduled featuring Late Model Stock (60 laps), Street Stock (30 laps), Pure 4 (25 laps), Mod 4 (20 laps), Rookie Pure 4 (15 laps), and Legends (10 laps) action. The grandstands and tier-parking gates open at 5:30 p.m., with practice scheduled to begin at 6 p.m., to be followed by qualifying at 7 p.m. and green flag racing at 8 o’clock. Adult grandstand admission $10, with kids 12-and-under admitted free.
J&J Racing is owned by father and son, Jeff and Jason Herron. Kenny Hunley serves as crew chief and also handles shocks and setup, Mark Williams is car chief, with David Ball chief mechanic, while Kevin Morgan is tire specialist and also spots for Tissot.
Supporters of J&J Racing on the No. 7 Ford Fusion include Ken Daffron’s Dalton Direct Carpets located in the Bloomingdale community, First Kingsport Credit Union, Jeff’s Auto Sales (Leicester, N.C), Northeast State Community College Motorsports Program, Hunley Built Shocks, Five Star Race Car Bodies, Hess Racing Products Inc., Ford Racing, and Signs by Roach Graphics
For more information regarding marketing opportunities with J&J Racing, contact Jason Herron at (423) 367-9636 or Lee Tissot at (828) 243-8549.