BRIAN LOFTIN SCORES FIRST WHELEN SOUTHERN
CAREER WIN SATURDAY NIGHT AT CARAWAY SPEEDWAY
NASCAR Whelen Southern Modified Tour driver Brian Loftin did something
Saturday night that no other driver has been able to do the last five
races at Caraway Speedway – beat L.W. Miller.
Loftin dominated the Whelen Southern Modified Tour 150 on
Saturday night to score his first career Whelen Southern Modified Tour
win which ended a five-race winning streak for the current championship
Loftin’s win came in front of an emotional group of friends
and family that included his tearful wife, Melissa.
“This is a longtime coming and this team has worked hard to
get to this point,” said Loftin, a native of Lexington , N.C. “We came
to win the pole and the race tonight and we pulled off both of those
goals. It’s been a while since we won a race and I was starting to
wonder if we were ever going to be able to do it again.”
One of the other main stories heading into the night centered
on the battle for the Whelen Southern Modified Tour championship with
only two races remaining. L.W. Miller held the top coming in spot by 55
points over Tim Brown.
The top-five finishers on Saturday night were Frank Fleming
after a fierce battle with Brown who ended up third, followed by Jason
Myers and L.W. Miller.
All L.W. Miller has to do in the season finale in two weeks
at Caraway is finish ninth or better and the 2007 Whelen Southern
Modified Tour will be clinched as he now holds the lead by 45 points.
“We didn’t want to finish fourth like we did – but I will
take it,” L.W. Miller said. “Something happened to the car early on. I
usually ride around until Lap 50 and then it’s time to go. When we got
to Lap 50 tonight I tried but I couldn’t go. I just want to come back
here in two weeks and win both the race and the championship.”
Loftin set a new Whelen Southern Modified Tour track record
in Bud Pole qualifying when he circled the .455-mile short track at a
speed of 103.783 mph. Following the eight-car draw-redraw, the top eight
positions were shuffled which put Fleming on the front row to the inside
The first caution of the night came when rookie Wesley
Swartout went for a harmless spin coming off the second turn on Lap 30.
Shortly after the restart, Loftin began to show his muscle as he took
the lead from Fleming on Lap 36.
The second yellow flag of the evening was displayed on Lap 51
for a three car spin in the first turn involving George Brunnhoelzl, Jay
Mize and Dean Ward. All three cars were able to continue on.
At the halfway point – or Lap 75 – the top-five was made up
by Loftin, Fleming, Brown, and brothers’ Jason and Burt Myers. L.W.
Miller was just behind in the sixth position.
Loftin was setting sail and had a half a straightaway lead
that vanished on Lap 125 when Swartout went for a spin coming off the
fourth turn. That allowed second-place Fleming to close the gap in
second, followed by the top-five of Brown, Jason Myers and L.W. Miller.
The restart final restart came with 20 laps remaining, but
when it was all said and done there was simply no denying Loftin and his
No. 23 L&R Transmission Chevrolet’s trip to victory lane.
The Whelen Southern Modified Tour wraps up the 2007 season
Saturday night, Oct. 6, at Caraway where this year’s champion will be
NASCAR Whelen Southern Modified Tour
Whelen Southern Modified Tour 150 Results
Saturday at Caraway (N.C.) Speedway
Asheboro , N.C.
Lap length: 0.455 miles
(Start position in parentheses)
1. (4) Brian Loftin, Lexington , N.C. , Chevrolet, 150 laps, 85.047 mph,
2. (1) Frank Fleming, Mount Airy, N.C., Ford, 150, $1,500.
3. (2) Tim Brown, Cana , VA. , Chevrolet, 150, $1,125.
4. (6) Jason Myers, Walnut Cove, N.C., Chevrolet, 150, $1,250.
5. (8) L.W. Miller, Mooresville , N.C. , Pontiac, 150, $1,000.
6. (10) John Smith, Mount Airy, N.C., Chevrolet, 150, $850.
7. (11) Brian King, Burlington , N.C. , Chevrolet, 150, $750.
8. (12) Brandon Hire, Winston-Salem , N.C. , Chevrolet, 150, $790.
9. (14) Gene Pack, Myrtle Beach , S.C. , Chevrolet, 150, $590.
10. (5) Junior Miller, Pine Hall , N.C. , Dodge, 150, $550.
11. (20) Zach Brewer, Winston-Salem , N.C. , Chevrolet, 150, $775.
12. (3) Burt Myers, Walnut-Cove , N.C. , Chevrolet, 150, $500.
13. (18) Thomas Stinson, Chester , VA. , Chevrolet, 149, $485.
14. (13) Brian Pack, Walkertown , N.C. , Chevrolet, 149, $460.
15. (19) Jay Foley, Stuart , VA. , Chevrolet, 149, $445.
16. (15) Earl Baker, Winton-Salem , N.C. , Chevrolet, 149, $430.
17. (17) Johnny Sutton, Harrisburg , N.C. , Chevrolet, 148, $420.
18. (9) Dean Ward, Winston-Salem , N.C. , Chevrolet, 147, $410.
19. (16) Wesley Swartout, Stroudsburg , Penn. , Ford, 142, $400.
20. (7) George Brunnhoelzl, Babylon , N.Y. , Dodge, 115, steering, $390.
21. (21) Jay Mize, Clemmons , N.C. , Chevrolet, 61, steering, $380.
Time of Race: 48 minutes 9 seconds
Margin of Victory: 1 second
Caution Flags: 3 for 15 laps.
Lead Changes: 2 among 3 drivers.
Lap Leaders: T.Brown 1-2; F.Fleming 3-35; B.Loftin 36-150.
Standings: 1. L.W.Miller, 1780; 2. T.Brown, 1735; 3. B.Myers, 1675;
4. J.Miller, 1658; 5.
B.King, 1580; 6. J.Myers, 1536; 7. F.Fleming, 1530; 8. B.Pack, 1442; 9.
G.Pack, 1344; 10.
Mitchell/NASCAR WSMT PR
September 22, 2007