SES: Event #13, Kingsport Race Report

Kingsport, Tenn. - August 7, 1999 -Coming into the 1999 Slim Jim All Pro Series, NASCAR Touring season, Naples, Fla.'s Billy Bigley, Jr. had three career victories. When he parked his Peerless Woodworking Chevrolet in victory lane at Kingsport...

Kingsport, Tenn. - August 7, 1999 -Coming into the 1999 Slim Jim All Pro Series, NASCAR Touring season, Naples, Fla.'s Billy Bigley, Jr. had three career victories. When he parked his Peerless Woodworking Chevrolet in victory lane at Kingsport Speedway on Saturday night he had earned his third win of the year to bring his career win total to six. Bigley earned $8,065 of the $41,000 race purse. "Don Jacobson, Diane his wife, and all of the other people associated with our sponsor Peerless Woodworking, they didn't put too much pressure on me, they said I just had to go win," kidded the happy winner in victory lane. "We qualified 10th, we had a really good car in practice. Hal (Goodson) was real tough at the beginning and I knew that if I just dogged him real hard hopefully I'd have something for him at the end. He started getting real loose, I don't know if his brakes gave up on him or what," stated Bigley. While Bigley started 10th Mooresville, N.C.'s Rodney Childers started from the Bud Pole position for the second time in 1999. The Cleaver Brooks/C&C Boilers/Honeywell Chevrolet driver established the track qualifying record with a lap time of 15.027 seconds at an average speed of 89.838 mph, just 0.007 seconds faster than outside front row starter David Reutimann. Rookie Childers grabbed the early lead when the green flag fell and set the pace for the first 60 laps. On lap 61 Bigley took command for his first of three tours at the front. Bigley's reign at the front was short-lived as Goodson was hounding him and ultimately motored his Nortel Networks Chevrolet into the lead on lap 79. Goodson stayed out front through the race's halfway point, picking up the $400 Gatorade Front Runner Award for leading on lap 100 for the third time this season. Bigley continued to pressure Goodson, with the lead duo's brake rotors glowing red-hot as they raced nose-to-tail and side-by-side for many laps. On lap 139 they came to the start-finish line with Bigley briefly getting the lead for two laps before Goodson, running the preferred line, retook command on lap 141. All the while a huge battle raged for the third position amongst numerous drivers. Reutimann's Pennzoil Chevrolet was getting a thorough workout as four rookies, Coy Gibbs, Childers, Benny Gordon and Patrick Lawler, along with points leader Wayne Anderson, Lee Tissot, Randy Gentry, Scott Kilby and Steven Howard all took their turns at grabbing a top five finishing position. On lap 164 Bigley finally took the lead for good, utilizing Gordon's Elliott Trucking Pontiac as a pick to get past Goodson. Bigley then opened up a five-car length advantage while Asheville, N.C.'s Tissot emerged out of the multi-car battle for third to pressure Goodson for the runner-up position. On the white flag lap Tissot appeared to have gained the position then he and Goodson made contact handing the second position to Easley, S.C.'s Gentry. Gentry took his Carolina Painting/Milliken Cleaners Chevrolet to a career-best second place finish while Anderson, after registering an unspectacular 16th place qualifying position, rallied to finish third in his Jani-King Chevrolet. Childers grabbed the fourth finishing position while Kilby earned a hard-earned fifth place finish after a late pit stop to grab fresh Hoosier tires for his Arndt & Herman Windows Chevrolet. Tissot recovered from his tangle with Goodson to finish sixth while Goodson was assessed a time penalty for the last-lap altercation that placed him directly behind Tissot in the final rundown. Reutimann was shuffled back to an eighth place finish while Gordon was the last car to finish on the lead lap in ninth. Laurel, Miss.'s Robert Burroughs rounded out the top 10, completing 199 of the 200 laps around the concrete 0.375-mile oval. The Don Hill Pontiac 200 served as the inaugural run for the Slim Jim All Pro Series at Kingsport and as a result the race record time was set when the checkered flag waved after one hour, four minutes and 41 seconds of exciting late model racing. Bigley's winning average speed was 69.570 mph and his margin of victory was a hefty 6.382 seconds after Gentry picked his way through Tissot and Goodson's fandango. There were a total of six caution periods for 33 laps and a total of five lead changes among three drivers. Nineteen of 24 starters were running when the checkered flag waved. Anderson maintained a solid points lead with his 13th top five finish in as many starts. With three races remaining on the 1999 series schedule the Wildwood, Fla. resident has 2143 points to Bigley's 2021. Goodson trails Bigley by 46 points while Ronnie Burkett continues to hold down the fourth position, trailing Goodson by 83 points. There was a change for the fifth position as Kilby has now overtaken Howard, but holds a narrow seven-point advantage over the Greer, S.C. driver. Bigley's third win of the season earned his father, crew chief and spotter Bill, Sr. the $300 Jasper Engines & Transmissions Crew Chief-of-the-Race Award and the points race for the category's annual award tightened up as well. Anderson's head wrench Augie Grill leads the elder Bigley by 14 points. Goodson took the lead for the annual Gatorade Front Runner Award with the five points he was awarded for leading at the race's halfway point. He now has a slim three-point advantage over Howard while Anderson lurks in the third spot, three points behind Howard. The Rookie-of-the-Year battle is getting very exciting as Childers earned Rookie-of-the-Race honors for the fourth time this season. Gibbs leads Childers and Colleyville, Tex.'s Lawler by seven points as the trio battles for the honor of top first year driver. For the second time in 1999 Slim Jim All Pro Series teams will race at Greenville-Pickens Speedway in Greenville, S.C. next Saturday night. The Upper State Fair 200 represents the 14th of 16 races on the 1999 series schedule and is the fourth race in as many weekends for series competitors. Bud Pole qualifying will get underway at 6:00 p.m. with the racing program getting the green flag at 8:00 p.m. On April 24, Darlington, S.C.'s Hal Goodson grabbed the victory at Greenville-Pickens.

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Drivers Robert Burroughs , Coy Gibbs , Billy Bigley , David Reutimann , Patrick Lawler , Wayne Anderson