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Dawson Brothers Experience Thrill of Victory, Disappointment of Three Battered Race Cars All in One Night at South Boston

By Joe Chandler

Director, Public Relations

South Boston Speedway

SOUTH BOSTON, VA (May 20, 2024) – Racing is filled with highs and lows. There is the elation of winning, and the dejection that comes on a night derailed by incidents resulting in battered, damaged racecars.

Brothers Drew Dawson, Justin Dawson and Jared Dawson of Nathalie, Virginia, their Dawson Motorsports team, and family members experienced those and the full gamut of emotions in the double 30-lap Budweiser Limited Sportsman Division races on Saturday night, May 11 at South Boston Speedway.

Drew Dawson started the night by winning the first 30-lap race to snap a two-year winless streak and his brother, Justin Dawson, finishing second a couple of car lengths behind. It was the first time since the three brothers had been racing in the same division at South Boston Speedway that there had been a one-two finish in the family.

“It was really depressing going two years without a win knowing that we could get a win,” Drew Dawson pointed out. “It means the world to me to get my family, my dad, and my crew chief, Stephen Trickey, in Victory Lane. I can’t thank everybody enough that helps me get here. I can’t thank God enough for blessing me with a good win like that.”

While Drew Dawson’s win was plenty to celebrate, the one-two finish by brothers Drew and Justin that gave the family its first-ever one-two finish was even more reason to celebrate.

“That’s a true miracle blessing right there,” Drew Dawson remarked. “I wanted to go grab Justin and give him a big hug and celebrate. It was awesome. It’s so hard to get a win here at South Boston Speedway. It’s even hard to get a top-five finish with the competition we have here. We’ve been trying to do that (go one-two) the past two years, and we hadn’t succeeded at it. I don’t know if you will ever see it again, but we can hope.”

Justin Dawson pointed out “to finish first and second makes a dream become a reality. That was something we marked off our bucket list. For a little small-town race team like we have, to finish first and second at South Boston Speedway is huge to us. We’ve been a top-five car, and normally there is one out of the three of us that runs in the top five. Very seldom do we get two of our cars in the top five. To have two of our cars finish first and second is unbelievable.”

While Jared Dawson had to settle for a 12th-place finish in the race he shared the joy of the accomplishments of his two brothers.

“That was a huge moment for Drew and Justin,” Jared Dawson said. “I was thrilled for both of them. If one of us does well it’s a good night for all of us. We always cheer one another on when we’re racing each other.”

Drew Dawson pointed out Justin did not make the win easy for him.

“Justin wanted it (the win) just as badly as I did,” he pointed out. “It would have been his first-ever Limited Sportsman win. You could tell he had a lot better car than me in the center of the corners. He would roll up and put his nose up in my mirror.

I had a gut feeling that all he had to do was put that (front) bumper to me just a little bit. I felt like he would have probably done that if the 17 (Jason Myers) would have been putting it to him. I think Justin would have pushed the issue harder if that had happened.”

Justin Dawson tried his best to capture what would have been his first career win in the Budweiser Limited Sportsman Division.

“The first 20 laps I really put the pressure on Drew,” he pointed out. “Drew never skipped a beat. I looked under him. I tried to go high, and he never bobbled or made a mistake. With 10 laps to go, I went to watching the mirror making sure Jason (Myers) wasn’t catching me. If Jason started putting pressure on me, I was going to put a lot more pressure on Drew.”

About two hours later the emotions of the drivers and their family changed during the night’s second 30-lap race. All three of the Dawson brothers saw their race ended prematurely as the result of crashes.

Justin Dawson and Jared Dawson’s cars were sidelined in a multi-car crash in the third and fourth turns on the fifth lap of the race that left Justin Dawson finished 12th and Jared Dawson finishing 13th. Drew Dawson’s car was damaged in a mishap with seven laps left in the race that forced him to the sidelines and left him with an eighth-place finish.

At the end of the night the Dawson brothers left the speedway with three battered and damaged racecars.

“It sucks being able to win like that and getting torn up the same night,” Drew Dawson said. “It really sucked, knowing how fast a car I had, not only me, but Justin too, and then knowing at the end of the night we’ve got three cars to put back together. That shows you how the highs and lows can change very quickly in racing.”

“I didn’t have anything to say after the race,” admitted Justin Dawson. “After the race, we just all sat on the wall in disbelief. We couldn’t believe that all three cars were torn up after having had such a great run in the first race. I guess that’s just a part of racing.”

Perhaps Jared Dawson summed everything up the best.

“It ended in a bad way, but all in all it was still a great night,” he remarked. “I would put it as it was still a great night for Dawson Motorsports.”

The next event at South Boston Speedway will be the Oak River Realty Race Night event on Saturday night, June 8. The first race will start at 7 p.m.

Six races are scheduled with double 75-lap races for the Sentara Health Late Model Stock Car Division headlining the night’s action. A 50-lap race for the Budweiser Limited Sportsman Division, a 25-lap race for the Southside Disposal Pure Stock Division and double 15-lap races for the Virginia State Police HEAT Hornets Division will round out the night’s slate of races.

The Saturday, June 8 Oak River Realty Race Night event schedule has registration and pit gates opening at 2 p.m. Practice will run from 3:30 p.m. to 5:15 p.m. Frontstretch spectator gates will open at 3:30 p.m.

Qualifying is set for 6 p.m., pre-race ceremonies are scheduled for 6:45 p.m. and the first race of the night will start at 7 p.m.

Advance tickets for the June 8 Oak River Realty Race Night event are priced at $12 each. Advance tickets may be purchased online on South Boston Speedway’s website, or by calling the speedway office at 434-572-4947 or toll free at 1-877-440-1540 during regular business hours.

Tickets at the gate on race day will be $15 each. Seniors ages 65 and older, military, healthcare workers, and students (with ID) can purchase tickets for $12 each at the gate on race day.

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