MOORESVILLE, N.C. (August 18, 2020) — On Saturday night, the Solid Rock Carriers CARS Tour will make its first-ever visit to Franklin County Speedway in Callaway, Virginia for the AutosByNelson.com 250. Both the Late Model Stock Cars and the Super Late Models will race in the event, which replaces the Mid-Atlantic Classic originally scheduled at Orange County Speedway.
Franklin County Speedway is a gritty, high-banked three-eighths mile bullring that is known for thrilling racing. Throughout its history, Franklin County Speedway has seen many legendary racers compete, and on Saturday, two more drivers will add their names to a long and illustrious list of winners.
In the most recent LMSC event at Dominion Raceway, Jonathan Findley won his first CARS Tour race over Mini Tyrrell, who is riding a wave of momentum following a pair of podium finishes. Meanwhile, the Super Late Models return to action for the first time since Hickory on August 1, where Matt Craig picked up his seventh career CARS Tour victory.
Jared Fryar leads the LMSC standings by nine points over Layne Riggs and 12 points over rookie Connor Mosack, while Matt Craig leads the Super Late Model title fight by 21 points over Carson Kvapil.
AUTOSBYNELSON.COM 250 NOTES & QUOTES
Track and Location: Franklin County Speedway — Callaway, Virginia
Length: 0.375 mi (0.604 km)
Laps / Distance: 125 laps / 46.875 miles / 75.5 km
- Practice: LMSC 1:00 p.m. – 1:30 p.m., SLM 1:35 p.m. – 2:05 p.m., LMSC 2:10 p.m. – 2:40 p.m., SLM 2:45 p.m. – 3:15 p.m.
- Single-Car Qualifying: LMSC 5:15 p.m., SLM 5:45 p.m.
- Race: 7:00 p.m., SLM (125 laps), followed by LMSC (125 laps).
– CARS Tour TV (www.carstour.tv) will have the LIVE race broadcast.
– Speed51 (speed51.com) will provide Trackside Now live coverage.
– Race22 (race22.com) will provide Raceday Live coverage.
Late Model Stock Car Entry List (23 total):
|08||Justin Johnson||Raleigh, NC||Boyce McCaskill||Chevy||Puryear Tank Lines, Bobby Gregory Welding|
|1||Nolan Pope||Harrisonville, MO||Lee Faulk||Chevy||Lee Faulk Racing and Development|
|2||Brandon Pierce||Oak Ridge, NC||Lee Pulliam||Chevy||Fremont Properties, Discount Oil Co., Grand Atlantic Ocean Resort|
|2s||Jonathan Shafer||Ashland, OH||Barry Nelson||Toyota||AutosByNelson.com, ThunderExhaust.com|
|4||Jonathan Findley||Bristow, VA||Lee Faulk||Chevy||Lee Faulk Racing and Development|
|4d||Kyle Dudley||Roanoke, VA||Michael Dudley||Chevy||Rose Dudley Realtor|
|8||TBA||Mooresville, NC||Jr. Motorsports||Chevy||TBA|
|14||Jared Fryar||Trinity, NC||Jimmy Mooring||Ford||Sterling Building Group, Asphalt Services, ADI/PDM|
|16||Chad McCumbee||Ocean Isle Beach, NC||Robert Elliott||Ford||Elliott Properties, Heritage Transportation|
|17||Chris Carroll||Lynchburg, VA||Chris Carroll||Chevy||Charles Anderson Lawn Care, Anderson Turf Inc|
|17p||Stacy Puryear||South Boston, VA||Stacy Puryear||Chevy||Puryear Race Parts, Solid Rock Carriers|
|18||Ricky Gillespie||Floyd, VA||Robert Gillespie||Ford||The Great 611 Steak House, Gillespie Trucking, PaPa’s Pizzeria|
|19||Deac McCaskill||Raleigh, NC||Marcus Richmond||Toyota||R and S Race Cars, Puryear Tank Lines|
|19c||Jessica Cann||Thomasville, NC||Bill Petroff||Ford||Black Acid Apparel, American Sign Craft, Davis Performance|
|22||Bobby McCarty||Kernersville, NC||Barry Nelson||Toyota||Autos By Nelson, Solid Rock Carriers|
|51||Matt Cox||Longs, SC||Robert Elliott||Ford||Aarons Sales & Lease, Renegade Performance, Elliott Properties|
|63||Tyler Matthews||Beulaville, NC||Steve Matthews||Toyota||Dorwarts Garage|
|74||Ronald Hill||Rougemont, NC||Ronald Hill||Chevy||Gardner Marsh, Mincey’s Graphics|
|78||Corey Heim||Marietta, GA||Lee Pulliam||Chevy|
|81||Mini Tyrrell||Manassas, VA||Timmy Tyrrell Racing||Chevy||Mini T’s Fastest Grease in the East|
|87||Mike Looney||Catawba, VA||Billy Martin||Chevy||A-1 Heating and Cooling, Hopkins Lumber|
|88||Connor Mosack||Mooresville, NC||Jr. Motorsports||Chevy||All Things Automotive|
|99||Layne Riggs||Bahama, NC||Scott Riggs||Ford||Puryear Tank Lines, Romeo Guest Construction|
Super Late Model Entry List (11 total):
|7||Justin Crider||Statesville, NC||Robin Crider||Chevy||JDS Glass, Service Partners, Metal Roofing Systems|
|15||Mike Hopkins||Hermon, ME||Gary Crooks||Chevy||Port City Racecars, JM Builders|
|22||Trevor Noles||Fuquay-Varina, NC||Donnie Willson||Toyota||Noles Cabinets|
|26||Bubba Pollard||Senoia, GA||Bubba Pollard||Ford||HarrisonsWorkwear.com, TM Ranch|
|35||Jake Garcia||Monroe, GA||Jake Racing, Inc.||Ford||Arrow Creek Investments, Wilwood Racing|
|35k||Carson Kvapil||Mooresville, NC||Travis Kvapil||Chevy||Wehrs Machine|
|45||Kodie Conner||Kannapolis, NC||Kodie Conner||Toyota||Accent Imaging, Pro Source Fitness, Kodie Cuts Lawn Mowing|
|49||Jeff Batten||Nashville, NC||Bobby Batten||Chevy||Batten Ceramic Tile, Digital Repair|
|51||Sammy Smith||Johnston, IA||Kyle Busch||Toyota||TMC Transportation|
|54||Matt Craig||Kannapolis, NC||Jeff Craig||Chevy||C&C Boiler Sales and Service|
|56||Gus Dean||Bluffton, SC||Dean Racing||Chevy||Mashonit Apparel Company|
Hometown hero Mike Looney to make CARS Tour debut
Mike Looney has become one of the most prolific drivers in Late Model Stock Car racing after winning the ValleyStar Credit Union 300 at Martinsville Speedway in 2016 with an underfunded team. Now, the 42-year-old from Roanoke, Virginia is hoping to get a victory in his first CARS Tour race at a track where he has enjoyed plenty of success over the years.
“There are so many talented drivers and powerhouse race teams in the CARS Tour,” Looney said. “It’s cool to go somewhere and see how you stack up with those guys. When a race this big comes to our backyard, we can’t miss out on it.”
Franklin County is as close to home as it gets for Looney, who recorded his first start and first win at the track. He also won the 1998 track championship in the Pure Stock class. However, he doesn’t see himself as a surefire favorite for the victory on Saturday. Looney respects the competition that the CARS Tour will bring to Franklin County.
“I’ve got more laps around that track than anybody in that series, but series regulars have such stellar equipment and great teams and are really fast,” he said. “They’re going to adapt really quickly. The similarities with Hickory are so strong, I feel like the cars that run strong at Hickory are going to adapt right off the bat and be favorites to win. It’s a fast place and I’m anxious to see how these young kids do on the high banks at home.”
While Looney wants to win, he feels no pressure from team owner Billy Martin to go out and do so. He feels that’s what makes him and his all-volunteer race team so successful.
“We’ve been really blessed and fortunate to get it right every once in a while,” Looney said. “It’s a lot harder than we make it look. We work so hard and do everything we can do with what we’ve got. The cool thing is Billy Martin doesn’t put any pressure on me or the team. We go out and do the best we can. We want to win, but it’s not a job for anybody and we’re not making any money. That might be the difference that makes up for the deficit in budget and resources.”
Gus Dean hoping to score first series win at Franklin County
Multi-time ARCA Menards Series winner Gus Dean will make his first CARS Super Late Model Tour start since August 2019. Dean is excited to get back to the track in his Super Late Model and hopes to get his first victory in the CARS Tour.
“It would be huge to win,” Dean said. “I definitely want to win in the Super Late Model there. With the bigger cars and stuff I’ve been doing as of late, the SLM has unfortunately been on the back burner. I’m ready to get that turned around and get our program in the direction it needs to be in. A win at Franklin would be some great momentum moving forward.”
Dean is teamed up with DLP Motorsports for this weekend and has confidence that the team can have a strong run.
“We haven’t been in a Super Late Model in a while, so I think we have some bugs to shake out, but I think we’ll have a good chance to win,” Dean said. “I feel very confident about it. I work well with [David “Buggy” Pletcher] at DLP Motorsports and I’m looking forward to being at the track with him and Petey Hinson, who has been my crew chief in the Super Late Model for the past five years.”
Dean won a race in 2014 at Memphis Motorsports Park in the old X-1R Pro Cup Series, prior to the successful relaunch of the CARS Tour in 2015. Dean has raced off-and-on with the CARS Tour since then and always enjoys coming back to the tour.
“We’ve been racing with Mr. McNelly for quite some time,” Dean said. “He has a great series and is always fair. I liked the Pro Cup but the CARS Tour has a lot of the same people. I’m always excited to come back and race with the CARS Tour again.”
CARS Tour Policies to Prevent Spread of COVID-19 Continue
The CARS Tour’s COVID-19 policies will continue to be in effect for this weekend’s race at Franklin County Speedway. They include (but are not limited to) the following:
- All personnel will have their temperature screened before entering the race track.
- Driver Intros will not be held amongst the crowd, per usual; instead, drivers will be introduced from their cars on the grid.
- Trailers will be spread out across the infield to maintain proper social distancing.
- Spotters will be required to wear masks during the race.
- Masks will be strongly recommended for those who are in the infield and required for all Victory Lane celebrations.
About the CARS Tour
The Solid Rock Carriers CARS Tour is one of the premier short track series in the United States. Drivers compete in Late Model Stock Cars and Super Late Models at the best short tracks across the Carolinas, Georgia, Pennsylvania, Tennessee and Virginia. The CARS Tour can be found on Facebook at “CARS Tour”, on Twitter @CARSTour, and on Instagram as @CARS_Tour. For more information, visit www.carsracingtour.com or call their Mooresville, N.C. offices at 704.662.9212.