Myrtle Beach race story

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE AUGUST 10,1997 SOCKWELL TOPS AT MYRTLE BEACH Brian Sockwell, of Brown Summit, NC took the lead at the start of the 100 lap NASCAR Goody's Dash Series feature at Myrtle Beach ...



Brian Sockwell, of Brown Summit, NC took the lead at the start of the 100 lap NASCAR Goody's Dash Series feature at Myrtle Beach Speedway Saturday night and went on to win his third Dash event of the 1997 season just edging out Mike Swaim Jr. at the finish. "This thing was fast right out of the hauler." said Sockwell. "We changed a few things during practice but the changes slowed us down so we went back to the set up we put under it at the shop and left it alone." The box setup apparently, was perfect for the cool conditions at the Grand Strand oval, as Sockwell first, broke his own track record during the qualification runs and then went on to lead every lap of the main event. It was a much different situation for many of the other competitors in this race. No less than eight entries were forced to retire early as a result of accidents and many of the cars running at the finish were showing some signs of the extremely close racing . Charlotte winner, Christian Elder was one driver who found himself watching the finish of this one from the infield following an incident in turn four of lap 68 which involved practically everyone from third place, back. The incident was triggered when Robert Huffman, running fourth at the time, made contact with the rear of Charles Powell III's car sending Powell spinning and setting off a chain reaction pile up as the tightly packed field tried to scatter to avoid the accident. The incident brought out a brief red flag period to clear the track and earned the 1990 Series Champion, Robert Huffman, a two lap stay on pit road for rough driving. Although most of the cars involved were able to recover and continue racing, along with Elder, Junior Miller and Ernie Yarborough were eliminated from competition. Huffman was later involved in another incident with the leader, Sockwell, this time making heavy contact with the inside retaining wall on the back stretch. Huffman ended up finishing 13th, three laps down to the leader. Will Hobgood. winner of the Spring race here, was another one of those drivers who found the going much tougher this time around as he and Monk Gulledge tangled in turn four sending both cars to the outside retaining wall and eliminating both from further competition in this event. Amidst all the problems for many of the drivers, a few roses did manage to bloom. This race saw the return of B.J. Mackey to the field after missing most of the season because of lack of sponsorship. Mackey started 13th on the grid and had worked his way to 6th prior to being caught up in the incident that brought out the red flag on lap 69. Despite having to restart at the back of the field, the young Rock Hill, SC native worked his way back to the front to finish fourth. Charles Powell III of Goose Creek, SC also recovered from his incident to finish third. Powell also received Rookie of the Race honors for being the highest finishing rookie. Jake Hobgood was another driver who recovered from that lap 68 incident. He was able to fight his way back through the field to finish fifth. Rounding out the top ten in Saturday's race were veterans, Ned Combs and Mickey York, Rookie of the Year candidate Greg Dodgens picked up his best finish of the season and two newcomers to the NASCAR Goody's Dash Series, Jimmy Gross and Rusty Wise each picked a top ten finish. The next event for the NASCAR Goody's Dash Series is the Cooks Moving Service 100 at the historic Langley Raceway in Hampton, VA August 16. Please note the new starting time for this race is 6:30 sharp. This race will be taped by ESPN 2 and will be aired Wednesday evening at 10:30 pm eastern time. -30- For more information contact NASCAR Public Relations, Tim Myers at 919-552-5823.

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Drivers Christian Elder , Junior Miller , Robert Huffman , Brian Sockwell