ON THE MONEY

pulliambarnburnervictory

Pulliam victorious in the Inaugural BAIRD Drywall & Acoustics BARNBURNER presented by LINE-X of the Blue Ridge – JW Martin

 

 

The only thing better than winning $10,000.00 dollars? Winning a national championship, too.

 

Semora, NC, native Lee Pulliam clinched his second consecutive WHELEN All-American Series national title Saturday night by scoring the victory in Motor Mile Speedway’s richest race of the season.

 

“This is the biggest win of my career besides Martinsville,” said Pulliam, winner of the BAIRD Drywall & Acoustics BARNBURNER presented by LINE-X of the Blue Ridge. “Man, this ranks right up there. We’re gonna remember this one for a long time.”

 

The marquee race of the season showcased the top two contenders in the national title race, with Pulliam starting alongside Price’s Body Shop pole award winner Deac McCaskill.

 

McCaskill paced the race uncontested through the first two cautions of the contest, surrendering the point to 2005 national champion Peyton Sellers on lap 67 following the latter restart. The early circuits proved promising to both McCaskill and Sellers, but as all 27 competitors realized, it would be a tale of two races.

 

Intermission at lap 125 provided for a random-draw inversion of the top eight cars. 2010 Motor Mile Speedway track champion Brandon Dean would restart from first; McCaskill and Sellers were among the drivers with a lamentable redraw, starting seventh and eighth, respectively.

 

The inversion proved to play a pivotal role in the outcome of the race. On lap 141, Pulliam –after restarting fifth – would take command of the top spot. Five laps later, Sellers and Tommy Lemons, Jr. tangled in turn four while racing for the fifth position. The ensuing collision brandished the event’s third caution, and would sideline both Sellers and Lemons from contention.

 

In an instant, two of Pulliam’s chief threats were relegated to the garage.

 

“He just tagged us,” said Lemons. “I just feel like Peyton was a little bit too aggressive, with it so early in the second half.”

 

After leading 57 laps, Sellers was left wondering what if.

 

“We were better than we were the first half. I saw Lee getting away, and I was trying to stay with him, and the hole wasn’t there,” Sellers explained. “I was just racing hard; might have been a little bit impatient, but I was just trying to get to the front.”

 

At lap 170, the fourth and final caution unfurled for McCaskill after the engine on the No. 08 expired abruptly on the front straightaway.

 

The attrition provided an opportunity for a new contingent of challengers up front, with Matt Bowling and Brandon Dean securing second and third, respectively, entering the final 80-lap stint. But as the laps dwindled, both drivers failed to mount an assault on Pulliam.

 

Following a remarkable rally from the rear of the field, Bowling trailed Pulliam at the finish by 1.38 seconds. Dean placed third.

 

“This was a heckuva race for us,” Bowling stated. “We were in last place at one time. We came in and worked on it, and we had something for them. [Pulliam] is so tough on the long runs here; it’s hard to do anything with him. But we were close.”

 

The outing marked Dean’s best performance of the season with a strong third place effort.

 

“We’ve struggled all year, and we’ve got a little more work to do. We’ll come back stronger, and try to get us a win,” Dean said.

 

Defending Motor Mile Speedway track champion Josh Berry notched fourth, and Garrett Campbell authored a spirited comeback to finish fifth, but was disqualified in post-race inspection. Trey Jarrell was credited with the spot.

 

The win marked Pulliam’s 34th victory lane appearance at Motor Mile Speedway in 47 career starts. It was undoubtedly Pulliam’s biggest triumph, earning $10,000 for his efforts in the track’s biggest prize-money event since the ownership change in 2004.

 

The national championship implications added to the magnitude of Pulliam’s accomplishment. By virtue of the victory, Pulliam has solidified the NASCAR WHELEN All-American Series national championship with one week remaining in the 2013 season. He joins elite company, becoming just the third driver in the history of the NASCAR WHELEN All-American Series to earn multiple national championships.

 

“It’s unbelievable. To put us in the same sentence as Philip Morris and Larry Phillips as a multi-time champions, it’s an unbelievable deal,” exclaimed Pulliam. “At 25 years-old, that’s a dream come true. Never thought I’d get the opportunities I’ve been given; a lot of people help us, a lot of people support us, and a lot of people stand behind us every week, and this is for all of those unspoken heroes.”

 

Pulliam has an opportunity to further his historic season by becoming the first driver ever to collect track championships at Motor Mile Speedway and South Boston Speedway in a single season. Championship night is slated for September 21st at MMS.

 

OFFICIAL RESULTS

 

Finishing Position

Driver

Car #

Qualifying Position

1

Lee Pulliam

1

2

2

Matt Bowling

83

12

3

Brandon Dean

5

8

4

Josh Berry

88

11

DQ’D

Garrett Campbell

12

27

6

Trey Jarrell

14

6

7

Mike Looney

47

9

8

Derrick Lancaster

25

18

9

Ashley Huffman

7

25

10

Dennis Holdren

2

15

11

Kelly Kingery

57

17

12

Bobby McCarty

6

13

13

Jason Lawrence

98

22

14

Kyle Dudley

51

19

15

Michael McGuire

10

16

16

Philip Sisson

24

26

17

Deac McCaskill

08

1

18

Tommy Lemons, Jr.

27

5

19

Peyton Sellers

99

3

20

Adam Long

3

4

21

Anderson Bowan

29

14

22

Kris Bowen

80

21

23

Chad Finchum

19

10

24

Brodie Kostecki

40

7

25

Aaron Deplazes

02

24

26

Myatt Snider

8

20

27

Andrew Thomas

96

23