SAMSULA, FLORIDA -- Wayne Anderson won the season opening FASCAR Sunbelt Super Late Model Series race Saturday night winning the Orange Blossom Pete Orr Memorial 125 at New Smyrna Speedway with room to spare. Anderson of Wildwood, FL put his Pro...
SAMSULA, FLORIDA -- Wayne Anderson won the season opening FASCAR Sunbelt Super Late Model Series race Saturday night winning the Orange Blossom Pete Orr Memorial 125 at New Smyrna Speedway with room to spare.
Anderson of Wildwood, FL put his Pro Shocks Chevrolet on the point by lap two and had just too much muscle and car set up for the rest of the remaining field of 36 starting Sunbelt Super Late Models.
"I'll tell you my race car is the same as I've had since '96," said Anderson. "In 1999 I won quite a few races with it and this is the first time since then that it has felt this good. The car had such a good feel -- it was on a rail tonight."
Were there any problems at all for Anderson?
"I haven't run here (New Smyrna) in quite awhile and I didn't know how bad the tires were going to be, but they stayed under me good."
The former NASCAR All Pro Series champion, Anderson, is planning to run the balance of Sunbelt 2003 races as a full time competitor.
Justin Drawdy of Ft. Pierce, FL set fast time on the one-half mile New Smyrna Speedway track posting a time of 17.937 seconds or 100.35 mph in his Drawdy Brothers Construction Chevrolet. Drawdy would finish second.
"We really didn't have anything for Wayne (Anderson) tonight," said Drawdy. "The car was pushing real bad, but we had a pretty good race. We set it up and had a few problems with the rear end, but there's always next time."
James Powell of Astor, FL took the quick lead off the pole with Anderson quickly following and the pair raced side-by-side. Powell had the early straightaway speed and Anderson had the turns covered.
Anderson took the point quickly on the outside after a hot pursuit of Powell during lap two. Having the third quickest car Powell didn't have a good evening all away around after having irritating debris in his eye before the race.
In lap 31, Anderson was closely pursued by Powell, who was followed by Drawdy and Barry Willoughby of Port St. Lucie, FL in his smooth running Pennzoil Chevrolet. Fifth was David Froehlich of Loxahatchee, FL followed Jack Cook of Daytona Beach, FL. Willoughby would finish third.
"We got a little time off this winter and worked on the car," said Willoughby. "Finally the team is all thinking the same and Pennzoil came out and helped us a little more."
Anderson still maintained his lead as Powell left the in lap 43 with mechanical problems, moving Drawdy into the second spot followed by Willoughby and Froehlich.
Cook was now fifth after a stout run into the top five and passed Froehlich for fourth and then set his sites on Willoughby for third on the inside to no avail.
Anderson held a five car lead in lap 75 over Drawdy. Following in third was Willoughby and fourth was Cook.
Cook headed to the pits in lap 82 changing the top five once again. Anderson was still out front in lap 83 followed by Drawdy, Willoughby, Bobby Beauchemin of Davey, FL and Travis Kittleson of Merritt Island, FL.
Beauchemin worked Willoughby hard for third and tried an inside move on a restart, but it was a slick driving Willoughby, who did the fancy driving and held on to third place. Beauchemin had his hands full as well as Kittleson hotly pursued him.
During lap 110, Kittleson let Beauchemin know he was still around and took over fourth and a slick driving Mike Good of Lake Mary stayed active and moved into fifth following Kittleson.
Anderson crossed the stripe followed by Drawdy and Willoughby.
Rounding out the top five were Kittleson and Good.
The next FASCAR Sunbelt Super Late Model 125 will be at Ocala Speedway on March 14, 2003.