Herring earns Late Model Stock Car Division win: Sellers Secures Needed Points to win NASCAR Dodge Weekly Series National Title
SOUTH BOSTON, VA. — Peyton Sellers knew what he had to do. And, he did it.
Sellers, who lives in Danville, Va., was aware heading into Saturday night's 150-lap race for the Barkhouser Late Model Stock Car Division that a third place finish or better in the event would lock up the NASCAR Dodge Weekly Series national championship.
Sellers had already clinched the Barkhouser Late Model Stock Car Division crown at South Boston Speedway as well as the NASCAR Dodge Weekly Series Division I crown prior to Saturday's featured attraction of the Champions Night race program.
Despite starting 11th in the 28-car field and not advancing into the top 10 during the opening half of the event, Sellers roared through the pack in the late stages of the race to gain a third-place finish and secured the needed points to lock up the national championship pending NASCAR's official announcement next week.
"This is definitely a big stepping stone right here for us," Sellers said after the victory. "It's every kid's dream to one day be a driver in the [NASCAR] Nextel Cup Series. I think this may be the first step to fulfilling that dream."
Sellers capped off the NASCAR points season with 12 victories at America's Hometown Track and 15 overall triumphs for the 2005 campaign.
"I grew up watching drivers like David Blankenship, Barry Beggarly and Maurice Hill compete," Sellers said. "We came out this year and competed with the likes of them and we showed that we can compete with the great drivers. This year's results are a testament to the hard work and dedication of this race team."
While Sellers was basking in the national limelight under a full moon at South Boston Speedway, Drew Herring of Benson, N.C., the runner-up in the Late Model title chase this season at the four-tenths mile oval, was collecting a hard-fought victory after starting from the third spot in the field. The win, Herring's fifth of the season, was worth a total of $4,500 for Herring, $1,500 of which came from a bounty to snap a five-race win streak by Sellers.
Herring inherited the lead following the sixth and final caution period of the race on lap 140. Pole position winner David Triplett, Jr. of Durham, N.C. led the opening 140 circuits before he got collected in a mishap that began when the lapped cars of Richard Storm and Tim Pinion went spinning in turn one. That moved Herring to the lead and Sellers into the critical third-place position.
"I really hated what happened to [Triplett]," Sellers said. "It worked out good for us, but he was running strong and running a good race. He didn't deserve to go home with a tore up racecar. I would have rather him collected that [bounty] money than anyone."
Jonathan Cash of Oxford, N.C. finished second for the event, while Brandon Butler of Petersburg, Va. scored a fourth-place run and was followed in the top five by Wayne Ramsey of Amherst, Va. in the fifth slot.
Jon Denning placed sixth for the night, while Ronald Hill of Rougemont, N.C. managed a seventh place run and was followed by Justin Johnson of Roxboro, N.C. in the eighth position.
Rounding out the top 10 drivers in the field was Rodney Cook of Reidsville, N.C. in ninth and Ryan Rhodes of Sanford, N.C. in the 10th slot.
After methodically making his way through the field, Sellers jumped into the top five on lap 128 with a pass of Ramsey. He then motored into the fourth slot by getting past Butler four circuits later.