Tough Choices in Fans’ Challenge at Bowman Gray
 

(Bowman Gray Stadium, Winston-Salem, NC) There were some very good reasons why last event’s Modified race was a tense nail-biter...9,000 reasons, to be exact.
            With the Fans’ Challenge award going unclaimed in the first two 100-lappers this season, the prize pool entering last event had built up to a massive $9,000. “It’s major. That’s more than 90% of the teams get for a sponsorship for the year,” said Burt Myers.
            The top four qualifiers from each 100-lapper are given the choice of randomly drawing for starting position with the rest of the field or electing to take the challenge and start in the rear. If a competitor starts in the rear and then climbs to a top-four finish, the prize pool is theirs.
            Tim Brown of Tobaccoville, John Smith of Mount Airy, Lee Jeffreys of Winston-Salem, and Burt Myers of Walnut Cove were the four fastest. Brown and Myers were tempted by the opportunity - but with last event awarding double points, they opted to not head to the rear.
            “My sponsor told me we’re never taking this challenge,” said Brown. “We come over here to win, and it’s a lot of money – so it’s hard not to.”
            Myers was torn but went with his intuition. “It’s just a gut decision. Some of my guys are saying to go, some of them are saying not to. You just weigh the options,” said Myers. “My wife came down, we talked about it for a little bit, and she said you better ask God to give you an answer real quick.”
            “You’re a hero or a zero. If you go for it and make it, they say that you’re the greatest thing walking,” said Myers. “If you go for it and don’t make it, they say, ‘Oh that was stupid – why’d you throw away the points?’ The bottom line is I value the opinion of my crew, I value the opinion of my sponsors, and I value the opinion of the fans - but ultimately at the end of the day, it’s mine and my wife’s decision and whatever God puts in my heart to give me that gut decision to make that final yes or no.”
            “It doesn’t necessarily have to do with the money. It has to do with the fact that if I say no and then draw in the back and then make it to the top four, you feel like you gave the money away,” said Myers – who ended up having to deal with that regret.
            “Hindsight’s 20/20. If I knew what I know now, I probably could have taken the challenge,” said Myers after the race, pointing out how he didn’t expect as many cautions and opportunities to pass. “I probably could have taken the challenge and been all right, but you never know. It depends on which lane you pick. I picked the wrong lane once, and it cost me two spots. And I ended up making them up on another one.”
            John Smith and Lee Jeffreys elected to take the challenge and start in the rear. Both had a roller coaster ride of a race as they fought forward. Smith finished seventh, but the fans erupted in cheering as Jeffreys was able to pull off a fourth place finish to grab the $9,000.
            “We got a good start in the race, gained several positions and then we got in that wreck. So we lost back, and I thought right then that we were going to be doomed,” said Jeffreys. “But then we just kept chipping away and chipping away.”
            “We’ve been struggling this year with a few things on the car. We lost a little side bite tonight,” said Jeffreys. “The money’s great, but we’d like to win. So we’re going to take that money and see if we can’t help win some now.”
            The accomplishment was timely for Jeffreys as he and his family and crew have struggled with the declining health of his father, former Modified Champion Robert Jeffreys. “This is the best medicine of all for him. You can see his face light up when we start running well,” said Lee Jeffreys about his father. “We had a good car tonight – a good top-five car. We just ended up getting lucky into a fourth place finish. Any medicine like that is good for him. The man above is looking out for him and us on the race team, and that’s all you can ask for.”
            Although he didn’t grab the $9,000, Burt Myers did grab another second place finish to maintain his points lead. Tim Brown stays in second, with Jason Myers of Walnut Cove dropping down to fourth.
            In the Yates Grading & Paving Sportsman Series, Zack Clifton of Walnut Cove grabbed more points than any other Sportsman competitor to pad his points lead. Derrick Rice still leads in the Q104.1 New Country Street Stock Series. A.J. Sanders flew through the field to now tie Billy Cameron, Jr. for the points lead in the McDowell Heating & Air Stadium Stock Series.
            This Saturday night is the night you’ve been waiting for – it’s the annual Great Clips Night of Destruction. The adrenaline will be pumping during the Monster Truck Car Crushing Exhibition, and the night ends with the crashing thrills of the 109 U-Pull-It Demoltion Derby. Plus there will be racing as always for the Modifieds, Sportsman, Street Stock, and Stadium Stock Divisions.
            Gates open at 6:00 for practice, and the first race begins at 8:00 PM – this Saturday night. Ticket prices, directions, and more information can be found online at www.bowmangrayracing.com or by calling (336) 723-1819.



POINTS

Brad’s Golf Cars Modified Series Current Points Standings

RANK

CAR

DRIVER

POINTS

GAINED
LAST EVENT

1

1

Burt Myers

425

96

2

83

Tim Brown

382

92

3

77

Lee Jeffreys

372

88

4

4

Jason Myers

370

80

5

53

John Smith

348

76

6

04

Brandon Ward

320

72

7

5

Randy Butner

291

56

8

50

Michael Clifton

250

68

 

66

Ronnie Clifton

250

48

10

18

Daniel Yates

225

52

11

27

Joe Ryan Osborne

214

0

12

16

Chris Fleming

198

84

 

87

Mike Speeney

198

0

14

2

Joseph Brown

180

0

15

71

Dean Ward

165

0

 

Yates Grading & Paving Sportsman Series Current Points Standings

RANK

CAR

DRIVER

POINTS

GAINED
LAST EVENT

1

81

Zack Clifton

434

88

2

21

Tommy Neal

427

84

3

4

John Holleman

394

84

4

07

Kevin Neal

391

86

5

0

Michael Adams

381

82

6

68

Robbie Brewer

376

86

7

26

Michael Tilley

371

68

8

7

Dylan Ward

363

80

9

3

Jeff Garrison

311

60

10

55

Zack Ore

310

72

11

28

Billy Gregg

308

54

12

70

Noah Triplett

185

0

13

12

Justin Taylor

153

0

14

31

Mike Robertson

152

0

15

86

Taylor Branch

140

60

 

Q104.1 New Country Street Stock Series Current Points Standings

RANK

CAR

DRIVER

POINTS

GAINED
LAST EVENT

1

20

Derrick Rice

412

92

2

22

Brian Wall

370

100

3

50

Austin Edwards

362

80

4

30

Blake Shupe

350

96

5

19

Tom Zachary

318

44

6

40

Taylor Robbins

306

84

7

97

Jeremy Warren

274

68

8

0

Kirk Sheets

270

64

9

14

Aaron Hylton

248

48

 

52

Fletcher Whaley

248

88

11

1

Jasper Sumner

242

56

12

7

Jamie Byrd

238

0

13

13

Kevin Gilbert

230

60

 

69

Gerald Robinson Jr

230

52

15

10

Zach Linville

218

76

 

McDowell Heating & Air Stadium Stock Series Current Points Standings

RANK

CAR

DRIVER

POINTS

GAINED
LAST EVENT

1

24

A.J. Sanders

408

96

 

76

Billy Cameron Jr

408

88

3

97

Bryan Sykes

394

100

4

8

Shane Southard

360

80

5

30

Stephen Sanders

344

92

6

62

Kevin Hedgecock

336

68

7

06

Derek Sheets

316

76

8

10

David Hopkins

300

64

9

02

Wesley Thompson

272

8

10

83

Shane Tuttle

262

60

11

09

Tim Evans

260

40

12

81

Chuck Wall

256

0

13

40

Brandon Brendle

248

0

14

38

Christian Joyce

242

16

 

71

Auston McElveen

242

0