SES: Valdosta: Jason Hogan race notes

Jason Hogan Doing It Right, Both On and Off the Track Driver Has Great Race at South Georgia, Visits with Hurricane Families CLEVELAND, GA (September 26, 2005) -- Jason Hogan has never claimed to be a fan of the rock band Meatloaf. In...

Jason Hogan Doing It Right, Both On and Off the Track

Driver Has Great Race at South Georgia, Visits with Hurricane Families

CLEVELAND, GA (September 26, 2005) -- Jason Hogan has never claimed to be a fan of the rock band Meatloaf. In fact, he wasn't even born when the group came out with its infamous "Bat Out of Hell" album in 1977. But he was singing the tunes of one of their more famous songs after this past weekend's NASCAR Southeast Series race at South Georgia Motorsports Park.

Hogan had three goals coming into the Big Mac 200 on Saturday; he wanted to win the pole; he wanted to win the race and he wanted to make up some ground in the NASCAR Southeast Series point standings. Well, as Meatloaf would say, "Two Out of Three Ain't Bad."

Hogan captured the pole for the Southeast Series event at the new racetrack in Valdosta, GA, and then proceeded to finish a very close second to rival Jeff Fultz as the checkers flew. With his second-place finish, Hogan moved from fifth to third in the SES point standings with just two races left in the season.

"We had an awesome racecar," said Hogan of his #92 Hogan Lumber Chevrolet. "We practiced good and qualified extremely well. We had to start eighth after the inversion, but that is ok, cause I like going for that Powerade 'Power Move of the Race' money (the award that goes to the driver who improves the most positions from the start of the race to the finish) and we got it again."

Hogan's weekend wasn't filled with just racing either. He also had a very special Sunday.

"We got invited to go to the Flint River Baptist Camp (just outside Atlanta) and hang out with a bunch of evacuees from New Orleans," said Hogan. "With all of the stuff that is going on in the world today, all of the racing stuff seems to take a back seat to what is going on and what these people are going through. So it was cool to get to hang out with them and talk to them and show them our car. They were a super nice group of people and they really help you put all of the things in your life into perspective."

Hogan's visit, or even his effort in Saturday's race, is nothing compared to the efforts made by the American Red Cross in the wake of the American tragedy brought on by Hurricane Katrina, but he did put the 200-lap race into perspective.

"It was an eventful second-place finish, to say the least.  We ended up,
about 10 laps into the race, getting hit from behind.  I was passing
Justin Wakefield and Josh Hamner was trying to pass me.  Josh made it
three-wide and got into me.  I think I broke something in the rear-end
after that hit.  The car just wasn't as good.

"I got together with Kevin Prince too, while we were battling for second after a round of pit stops. There were just three of us on the lead lap, so we were both chasing Fultz. I got under him to pass him. I drove in the corner and got on the flat stuff, the car slid up the track and got into him. It didn't really hurt either one of us. It was just good, hard racing.

"I made a run on Fultz at the end. I got up under him for a couple of laps after a late caution, but I couldn't make the pass. The car was just way too tight off the corner. If it hadn't been for that early hit that broke something in the rear, I think I could have been able to get by him. He had an awesome car, but we had a car that could have beaten him there."

Coupled with problems for JR Norris, Dusty Williams and Gary Helton, Hogan was able to move up to third in the point standings. He trails Fultz by 69 points for the top spot, with Norris riding in second.

"We still have an outside shot at the title," added Hogan, whose second-place run was his best finish in SES competition this season. "We need Jeff and JR to have some bad races, which is uncommon for those guys. I think we have a good shot on second place for sure. Jeff seems to struggle at Nashville, so I think we can gain some points on him there. But then again, Nashville is a place that stuff happens and changes fast. We just need some top-three finishes and maybe some wins to have a shot.

"We really want to win in the series this year. We've tasted victory in this series and this year in our other cars, so we know what it is like. We just want to put it all together. We want to grab a win, but we are big-picture racing too. When JR fell out and Dusty fell out, I knew we could gain some points. I wasn't going to go in there and crash my car, though, because I wouldn't gain any points that way."

The next NASCAR Southeast Series event for Hogan is at the Music City Motorplex in Nashville, TN, on October 16th.

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Drivers Jeff Fultz
Teams Williams