Hardeeville race report 2001-08-04

Great Night of Racing at HMS on Coke Night HARDEEVILLE, S.C. (August 4, 2001) - Racing at the Hardeeville Motor Speedway on Saturday Night was the "Real Thing" for Coca Cola Night at the Races. A night of exciting racing action had Tommy...

Great Night of Racing at HMS on Coke Night

HARDEEVILLE, S.C. (August 4, 2001) - Racing at the Hardeeville Motor Speedway on Saturday Night was the "Real Thing" for Coca Cola Night at the Races. A night of exciting racing action had Tommy Porter, Jr., Corey Fletcher, Glenn Mappus, Mark Terry, Scott Thorne, Raef Judd, Jimmy Lang and Michelle Oaks all visit victory lane.

Nine O.C. Welch Ford-Lincoln-Mercury Late Models took to the 1/3-mile track for the 50-lap main. Tom Haidon from Hilton Head, S.C. jumped out to an early lead and led until lap 18 when Tommy Porter, Jr. of Savannah, Ga. took over the top spot. Haidon followed Porter until lap 30 when he spun in turn 4. Haidon then began working his way back to the front and with a late race caution on lap 47, he found himself in second spot when Skeeter Godbee of Sylvania, Ga. and Leland Prewitt of Savannah, Ga. both spun in turn 4. Porter was able to hold off Haidon for the last three laps to earn the victory. Haidon finished in second place and Mickey Carter of Savannah, Ga. wrapping up third position.

Mark Terry of Rincon, Ga. took one more step closer to winning the Hardeeville Motor Speedway Mini Stock Track Points Championship with a convincing win over Johnny Brown of Bluffton, Ga. Terry took the lead on lap 7 from Danny Bagwell of Lexington, S.C. who ended up finishing in third. Stephen Moore of St. George, S.C. maintained second position in the points championship despite not being able to compete because of a cracked engine block that he discovered upon arrival to the track.

In the Street Stock division, Jeff Merritt of Ridgeville, S.C. grabbed the lead on lap 2 from Bob Gossett of Hilton Head, S.C. Glenn Mappus from Ridgeville, S.C. overtook Merritt on lap 9 and held on for the final 11 laps to win his second feature of the season. Point leader, Ellis Huggins of Richmond Hill mounted a late race charge but was unable to pass Mappus at the end. A late race caution on lap 17 could not help Huggins as Rick Hunter from Savannah, Ga. followed for third. With three more point events remaining, Huggins appears to be on his way to a HMS track championship.

Raef Judd of Summerville, S.C. won the uneventful Open Wheel Modified feature. Dan Shultz of Beaufort, S.C. and Richard Branton of Summerville, S.C. rounded out the top three. The Open Wheel Modifieds return on Saturday night, August 18th. Modifieds from Florida and North Carolina may soon be making appearances at the Hardeeville Motor Speedway as many drivers have inquired about the rules during the past couple of weeks.

A combined Pro, Masters and Semi-Pro division Legends Cars feature saw 18 cars take the green flag. Starting from the pole, Terry Mathis from Cummings, Ga. led the first 17 laps. The first caution flag waved on lap eight for the spinning cars of Jonathan Haidon of Hilton Head, S.C. and Walter Reardon of Savannan, Ga. On lap 19, after Corey Fletcher of Bloomingdale, Ga. took the lead from Mappus, the engine from Tommy Wrape's car burst into flames. Wrape, a native of Heath Springs, S.C. escaped injury. Fletcher held on for the win followed by Mathis and John Metts from Cordova, S.C.

An unusual caution-free Xtreme Stock Feature found the "Problem Child" Scott Thorne returning to victory lane. Unusual because this division is a "full contact" racing division. The 20-lap feature event began with Thorne jumping out to the early and never looking back. Although the event went caution-free, there was plenty of contact dished out, particularly to the car driven by Ray Smith of Early Branch, S.C. Almost every car in the field except for the O.C. Welch Ford-Lincoln-Mercury pace truck swapped paint with Smith. Bob Gossett, driving in three different divisions, finished second followed closely by Don Dean of Sheldon, S.C. Tim Dasher of Bluffton, S.C. continues to hold onto the top spot in the HMS Xtreme Stock Car points battle, however Dean appears to be mounting a late season charge with three races remaining in the point season. Fan favorite, Christine Anderson from Ellabell, Ga. was absent from competition.

An exciting Lady Legends feature saw Christie Haidon of Hilton Head, S.C. and Michelle Oaks also from Hilton Head, S.C. swap the lead five times during the 15-lap feature. On the last lap, Haidon tangled with the lapped car of Wanda Sondles from Johns Island, S.C., giving the feature win to Oaks. Tish Mock of Ridgeland, S.C. and Nina Cox from Savannah, Ga. finished second and third respectively.

Jimmy Lang of Bluffton, S.C. picked up his third season victory in the Legends Cars Young Lions race. Lang led flag-to-flag of the 15-lap feature race, with Billy Tysinger of Hardeeville, S.C. finishing in second position. Trey Carr finished third.

Next weekend, it will be Hawaiian Night at the Hardeeville Motor Speedway. The first 500 fans through the gate will receive a free Hawaiian lei. The highlight of the evening will be the "Big Kahuna Street Car Showdown" featuring off-the-street entries in one-on-one one lap drag races on the 1/5 mile oval. The five divisions of racing featured will be the O.C. Welch Ford-Lincoln-Mercury Late Models, Legends Cars, Mini Stocks, Street Stocks, Xtreme Stock Cars. Everyone is encouraged to wear their flowered shirts and join the staff of HMS for a fun and exciting evening.

Grandstands open at 5:00 p.m. each Saturday. The green flag waves at 7:05 p.m. for qualifying races, followed by the feature events. Hardeeville Motor Speedway is located three miles southeast of I-95 on Highway 17. Ticket prices are $10 for adults, with reduced rates for seniors, military and children. Children under five are admitted free. Information is available at online at www.hardeevillespeedway.com or by calling (843) 784-RACE (7223).


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