JEFF FULTZ BECOMES ALL-TIME WIN LEADER SATURDAY NIGHT AT KENTUCKY SPEEDWAY IN SOUTHEAST SERIES AND MIDWEST SERIES RACE SPARTA, Ky. (Sept. 10, 2005) -- The quest to be the best at Kentucky Speedway is now over, at least until next year anyway.
JEFF FULTZ BECOMES ALL-TIME WIN LEADER SATURDAY NIGHT AT KENTUCKY SPEEDWAY IN SOUTHEAST SERIES AND MIDWEST SERIES RACE
SPARTA, Ky. (Sept. 10, 2005) -- The quest to be the best at Kentucky Speedway is now over, at least until next year anyway. Jeff Fultz became the most victorious driver at Kentucky Speedway on Saturday night when he scored his fifth career NASCAR AutoZone Elite Division, Southeast Series victory at the 1.5-mile track that the Cincinnati, Ohio native calls home.
Fultz's victory allows him to move out of a tie with ARCA veteran Frank Kimmel who has four trips to the winner's circle at Kentucky Speedway. Saturday night's race was a combined event with the Southeast and Midwest Series drivers going head-to-head against one another in the Charlie Daniels Fall Classic.
"This win means the world to me," Fultz said. "To win four races here meant a lot, but I put a lot of pressure on myself to win this fifth one. We had a job to do and we all did as best as we could. To come from right down the road and going to school in this area, plus I bet I had 200 fans here, I can't really put it into words. It's probably going to really hit me later on. This victory is very special to me."
Current Southeast Series championship leader J.R. Norris had a good night following his runner-up finish to Fultz. Rounding out the top-five were Kevin Prince, Greg Pope and Stanley Smith.
"It was a good points for us," Norris said. "When you think Kentucky, you think of Jeff Fultz. I knew coming in that he was the guy to beat and I had to settle for second place. I'm trying not to think to hard about the points lead and just take it one race at a time."
The top Midwest Series driver was Tim Schendel who finished sixth.
It certainly didn't take long for the racing action to get heated just after the race was started. Dusty Williams led the first lap after winning his second Bud Pole award of the season, but just behind him there was an incident involving Southeast Series regulars Chris Davidson and Pat Brewer as well as Midwest Series competitor Andrew Morrissey.
Williams clearly had one of the cars to beat and was extending his lead until the second caution of the night for a harmless spin sent the majority of the 32-car field down pit road. Justin Diercks stayed out on the track to take the lead with Fultz lining up just behind for the restart. Unfortunately for Williams, he'd developed an oil leak and his crew had to raise the hood to make quick repairs before he returned to the track still in contention but at the back of the field.
On the ensuing restart, Fultz moved into a very familiar position at Kentucky Speedway -- the lead -- when he made his way past Diercks before the fourth yellow flag of the evening was thrown for Stanley Smith who went for a spin off the fourth turn.
With 20 laps to go and Fultz still in command, the leader saw exactly what he didn't want to see -- the caution for a spin involving Robert Richardson -- which erased his advantage. On the restart with 15 laps remaining, Fultz took the green ahead of Norris, Prince and Schendel.
The Southeast Series returns to action Sept. 24 at South Georgia Motorsports Park in Cecil, Ga. as the half-mile track hosts its inaugural McDonalds 200. The Midwest Series' next race is Oct. 8 at LaCrosse Fairgrounds Speedway in West Salem, Wis.