Jason Hogan Gets First Career NASCAR SES Win The 21-Year-Old Is Humble About His Biggest Racing Win To Date CONCORD, NC (April 26, 2004) -- NASCAR Southeast Series point leader Jason Hogan is known for having a wild, take charge attitude, but ...
Jason Hogan Gets First Career NASCAR SES Win
The 21-Year-Old Is Humble About His Biggest Racing Win To Date
CONCORD, NC (April 26, 2004) -- NASCAR Southeast Series point leader Jason Hogan is known for having a wild, take charge attitude, but he's always been pretty humble about his successes on the track. However, the 21-year-old couldn't hold his emotion in on Saturday night at the historic Hickory Motor Speedway (NC) as he picked up his first career NASCAR Southeast Series victory.
"Man I'm pretty pumped up right now," said an exuberant Hogan after the win. "I went to Nashville (on April 17 in the SES opener) and finished second, so to come here and win and back that run up shows it wasn't a fluke. I think now they know they have a title contender on their hands."
Hogan, the 2001 Southeast Series (formerly All Pro Series) Rookie of the Year, extended his point lead over Erik Darnell, whom he battled side-by-side with for the race win. After starting fifth, it took Hogan only 61 laps to find his way to the front, a spot he wouldn't relinquish the entire evening.
"My confidence is way high right now. We've run three races so far this year (two SES races and one Southern All Stars show) and we have two seconds and now a win. That's not too bad.
"There are so many great drivers that have raced with this series and moved on to even greater stuff. Rick Crawford, who is one of my good friends, was here tonight and he is just another of the greats who have come from this series and has gone on to have success (Crawford is a regular in the Craftsman Trucks Series with multiple wins to his credit). Rick was talking with me on the radio and watching the race from our trailer. He gave me those little words of wisdom, 'be smooth and don't tear your car up.'
"Just to know people like Rick, Jason Keller, Billy Bigley and Freddie Query have all come out of this series and have found plenty of success elsewhere is awesome and I just hope I can be as successful as one of those guys someday. This series is tough and there is a lot of competition here."
Since Hogan started racing with the Southeast Series, he's been very close to that first win on several occasions, but was never able to come out on top. Now, that is all history.
"All I was thinking is that I hope this son of a gun doesn't blow up before we cross that line. Last year, stupid stuff would just keep happening to us. I think we led the third most laps of anyone last year but never got a win. Coming to take the white flag was nerve-racking. You can hear everything in the car clunking and clattering. You look up in the mirror and there is nobody really close to you but you know they are there. You kinda just hold on for that last lap and give it everything you've got.
"It was my first win in the Southeast Series and I hadn't been able to throw any water bottles yet, so when I got out of the car I just started opening up things and throwing them. I looked over and here comes a big cooler being thrown at me. We brought the car through the tech line and there was probably about six inches of water in the seat. It's all good, though, because it feels great. I just hope we didn't hurt my pretty paint with all of that Powerade."
Hogan will have little time to soak in the victory as the series is in the middle of a four-week stretch of races to open up the year.
"They say the second win is the hardest to get. There isn't any single win in this series that isn't hard. Winning here is big for our momentum. We are in this four-week stretch with Nashville (TN), Hickory, Greenville-Pickens (SC) and Houston (TX) and we have to be on top of our game. We want to bring this brand new car to every one of those races so we have to keep it in one piece and keep it up front.
"Winning a race in this series is certainly different, but I know I have to keep calm about it because next week we will come back and I'll have 15 other cars gunning at me because we won this week. The win will probably sink in on Monday and hopefully by Tuesday that emotion will be gone and we will be focused and ready for racing again."