MERIDIAN, Miss. – Tim Busha took the win in a wild finish of the Nelson Hall Chevrolet 50 for the Chevrolet Performance Super Late Model Series on Saturday night at Whynot Motorsports Park driving the Kilpatrick Racing GRT.
Lap 49 saw two lead changes, contact, and the top three positions change hands before the checkered flag fell.
Busha led the first 48 laps of the race, holding off the inside challenges of point leader William Thomas in the Alexander’s Industrial Service GRT, who was looking for his third straight Chevrolet Performance Super Late Model Series win. After field took the two laps to signal, business picked up at the front of the pack.
Thomas got alongside Busha as they came off the second turn, and going down the backstretch, Thomas took the lead. National Dirt Late Model Hall of Fame Inductee Ronnie Johnson is closing fast from the third spot in the Tommy Pope Construction Warrior as they entered turn three.
As the lead trio exited turn four, Thomas left just enough of the inside groove open for Busha to dive under Thomas. Busha hit a utility tire that marks the inside of the racing surface, and that impact sent him careening into Thomas. After the contact, Busha drove under Thomas to retake the lead as the white flag was in the air.
By the time Thomas regained control, Johnson got under him for the second spot in turn one. Busha came around to take the checkered flag and win the $3,000 top prize with a .389 second margin of victory over Johnson, with Thomas salvaging the third spot.
“I gave William plenty of room on the inside when he passed me for the lead off turn two, but when I tried to go underneath him in turn four, I got so far to bottom to keep from hitting him, I hit the tire,” Busha said. “That knocked me into him, and I hate that it happened. I think William knows me well enough to know that I don’t race like that and it wasn’t intentional.”
Thomas was obviously upset about losing the race, but at the same time was poised enough to see the big picture after the third of ten races in the 2013 Chevrolet Performance Super Late Model Series season.
“All I know is I got hit coming off the fourth turn,” Thomas said. “I’m just glad we were able to hang on and come out of here with a third-place finish because we’re in this to win the Championship. We’ll go on to the next one and try to win it.”
Thomas left Whynot Motorsports Park still with the point lead and a ten point advantage over Johnson. The win moved Busha up to the third spot in the Chevrolet Performance Super Late Model Series standings, four points behind Johnson.
Brent Barrett finished fourth in the Custom Spraying, Inc. GRT and Matthew Turner took the fifth spot in the J.T. Kerr Racing Equipment Special.