BRUNNHOELZL BATTLES TO HICKORY WIN
Seventh career win for 2009 Southern Tour champ
Brunnhoelzl III saved his best for last to win the Hickory 150 Saturday
night at Hickory Motor Speedway in NASCAR Whelen Southern Modified Tour
After starting third on the Lap 151 restart in a green-white-checkered
finish, Brunnhoelzl passed James Civali to collect his second win of the
season. It was the eighth career win for the 2009 Whelen Southern Modified
“It was a great win for us and for Ideal Racing,” said Brunnhoelzl, who was
able to take advantage of some contact between the leaders and pilot his No.
09 Phoenix Pre-Owned/Triad Auto Sales Chevrolet to the win. “I probably
waited too long to make my move [to the front] trying to save my tires, but
it worked out.”
Zach Brewer also worked past Civali to finish second while Civali settled
for third. John Smith and Thomas Stinson finished fourth and fifth,
Although Brunnhoelzl celebrated in Victory Lane, it appeared Brewer was on
his way to his first win in his No. 11 Phoenix Pre-Owned/Triad Auto Sales
Chevrolet as he was making a pass by Civali late in the race when Frank
Fleming spun in Turn 1 to bring out the sixth and final caution flag of the
On the restart, Civali chose the outside lane with Brewer on the inside.
Brewer and Civali made contact on the restart, which allowed Brunnhoelzl to
make his move and lead the final two laps of the race.
Brewer felt bad about getting into Civali, but said he really didn’t know
what happened on the restart when he accelerated.
“I just thought we spun the tires, I don’t know I’ll have to see some video
or something of it,” Brewer said. “I definitely want to talk to James. I
don’t want him thinking I wanted to wreck him. If it is my fault it is
something I will have to take responsibility for.”
Although Brewer did make contact, he felt if not for the final caution he
might have been celebrating where his teammate wound up.
“We’ve given a couple [races] away but our day is coming,” Brewer added. “We
can’t give but so many of these away. We will get a win soon if we keep
For Civali, he felt his No. 79 Hill Enterprises/Coors Light Pontiac was good
enough for the win.
“On the restart I picked the outside because that’s where we were better and
when we came to the restart line he [Brewer] just turned right and banged
wheels with me and just took off,” Civali said. “It’s like what are we doing
Rookie Patrick Emerling surprised the field when he was consistently the
fastest car in practice, and backed it up by winning his first 21 Means 21
Pole Award presented by Coors Light with a record lap of 14.186 seconds
(92.119 mph). Emerling led 65 of the first 66 laps, only giving up the lead
on Lap 40 to Jason Myers.
Emerling’s car started going away a little allowing another Sunoco Rookie of
the Year contender to take over the point.
Jonny Kievman shot to the front and led the next 52 laps before mechanical
woes hit his car. Kievman later said the battery or alternator went away
which forced his stall that brought out the caution on Lap 133.
Civali took over the top spot and led all but one lap until the decisive
restart at the end of the race.
Andy Seuss came home sixth, Jason Myers seventh and Burt Myers eighth. Renee
Dupuis rebounded from a spin earlier in the race to finish ninth in her
first start on the southern tour and Josh Nichols completed the top 10.
Brewer won the Featherlite Most Improved Driver Award for advancing 15
positions in the final standings from Caraway to Hickory while Seuss won the
Coca-Cola Move of the Race Award for improving six positions in the Hickory
Michael Speeney finished highest among the rookies – 13th overall – to take
home Sunoco Rookie of the Race honors.
The race featured six lead changes among six drivers and finished with a
season-high 14 drivers on the lead lap when the checkered flag was
The NASCAR Whelen Southern Modified Tour will return to action for the South
Boston 150 at South Boston Speedway on Saturday, April 16. The event will be
a doubleheader with the NASCAR K&N Pro Series East.
Whelen Southern Modified
Tour-Hickory 150 Unofficial Results
Saturday At Hickory Motor Speedway, Newton, NC
Lap length: .363 miles
(Start position in parentheses)
1. (4) George Brunnhoelzl III, West Babylon, NY, Chevrolet,
153 laps, 66.914 mph
2. (3) Zach Brewer, Winston-Salem, NC, Chevrolet, 153
3. (5) James Civali, Meriden, CT, Pontiac, 153
4. (8) John Smith, Mount Airy, NC, Chevrolet, 153
5. (10) Thomas Stinson, Chester, VA, Chevrolet, 153
6. (12) Andy Seuss, Hampstead, NH, Chevrolet, 153
7. (2) Jason Myers, Walnut Cove, NC, Ford, 15
8. (6) Burt Myers, Walnut Cove, NC, Ford, 153
9. (7) Renee Dupuis, Glastonbury, Conn., Chevrolet, 153
10. (16) Josh Nichols, Winston-Salem, NC, Chevrolet, 153
11. (13) Mike Norman, Lewisville, NC, Ford, 153
12. (15) L.W. Miller, Dushore, PA, Chevrolet, 153
13. (18) Michael Speeney, Newtown, Pa., Chevrolet, 153
14. (11) Frank Fleming, Mt. Airy, NC, Ford, 153
15. (1) Patrick Emerling, Orchard Park, N.Y., Chevrolet, 150
16. (9) Tim Brown, Cana, VA, Chevrolet, 136, handling
17. (14) Jonathan Kievman, Deerfield Beach, FL, Chevrolet, 133, electrical
Time of Race: 49 minutes 48 seconds
Margin of Victory: .299 seconds
Fastest Qualifier: P.Emerling * (92.119 mph, 14.186 seconds)
Caution Flags: 6 for 25 laps.
Lead Changes: 6 among 6 drivers.
Lap Leaders: P. Emerling 1-39; J. Myers 40; P. Emerling 41-66; J.
Kievman 67-118; J.Civali 119-150; Z. Brewer 151; G. Brunnhoelzl III 152-153.
Standings: 1. G. Brunnhoelzl III, 370; 2. J. Civali, 325; 3. T.
Stinson, 320; 4. J.Smith, 310; 5. J. Myers, 297; 6. L. Miller, 292; 7. A.
Seuss, 292; 8. Z. Brewer, 287; 9.T. Brown, 285; 10. B. Myers, 273.
Source: Timothy Southers / NASCAR