BRASSTOWN, N.C. — Second-generation racer Jake Knowles claimed victory Tuesday night as the Schaeffer’s Oil Southern Nationals Series presented by Sunoco Race Fuels returned to Tri-County Race Track.
Knowles won a thrilling battle with Kenny Collins in the late stages of the event to claim the $3,500 payday. Knowles win made him the fifth different winner in six series this summer.
The win for Knowles would be his first career Schaeffer’s Oil Southern Nationals Series presented by Sunoco Race Fuels victory and would make him the 40th different driver in tour history to visit victory lane.
Knowles took the lead at the start of the event, trailed by Kenny Collins, Tanner English, Brandon Overton and David Payne. Overton drove past English on lap two for the third position, but disaster would strike Overton two laps later when he pulled his machine to the infield with a broken quick-change rear-end gear.
The only caution of the event would wave on lap six when Kip Cochran would make contact with the outside guardrail on the back chute. Back underway, Knowles would maintain the top spot, followed by Collins and English, while Michael Chilton would take fourth from Payne on lap seven and Casey Roberts would take the fifth position on lap nine.
Knowles started working slower traffic on lap twelve and would hold a comfortable advantage with twenty laps complete. Knowles would catch some more traffic at this point and Collins would close in on Knowles to challenge for the lead and by lap 25, Knowles and Collins would begin to battle for the race lead and the pair would go back and forth, with Collins momentarily taking the lead after a slide job pass of Knowles on lap 30, but Knowles reclaimed the lead as the pair crossed the start/finish line.
The final five circuits would see the duo continue to battle side-by-side around the track, but Knowles would use the top groove of the track to perfection in the final laps to claim the victory, with Collins settling for the second position.
Chilton finished third, with Roberts and Tanner English completing the top five.
Jake Knowles, Kenny Collins, Michael Chilton, Casey Roberts, Tanner English, David Payne, Donald McIntosh, Shawn Chastain, Kurt English, Jamie Oliver, Tyler Clem, Jacob Anderson, Levi Hicks, Cody King, Cla Knight, Rusty Jordan, Craig Greer, Hot Rod Lamance, Kip Cochran, Danny Ledford, Brandon Overton, Glenn Barnett.