SOUTH BOSTON, Va. – Ross Kenseth led the most laps, but had to fend off a furious late race challenge from rookie Jared Irvan to win the Pro All Stars Series (PASS) South Super Late Model SoBo 100 Saturday night at South Boston Speedway.
With his win, Kenseth completed a sweep of both PASS South events held at South Boston Speedway this year.
“It’s always fun coming back here, heck of a job by Jared Irvan, he raced us really clean and it was fun racing him for the win,” said Kenseth after his fourth career PASS South Super Late Model win. “I felt like we were really good, but if we got pinched down to the bottom it would take us about two or three laps to get going. Real proud of the guys, we brought the same thing back here as last time and it work really good again.”
Defending PASS South champion Kyle Grissom set fast time in qualifying with a lap of 98.307 miles per hour when the race was originally scheduled on Aug. 17. Due to rain, that event was cancelled and the 24 car starting field was lined up based on that qualifying session from two weeks ago. The top 10 qualifiers redrew for their starting positions which put Kenseth and rookie Spencer Davis on the front row, while Grissom would be relegated to ninth.
At the drop of the green flag, Kenseth quickly jumped into the lead before the first caution of the night would wave on lap 3 for a spin by Justin Allison in turn three. Kenseth continued to lead, but the car on the move was Grissom. He made his way by PASS South points leader Jay Fogleman and Brandon Ward for second on lap 16 and set his sights on the leader Kenseth.
Following a spin in turn two by Clay Rogers on lap 20, Grissom moved around Kenseth for the lead on the restart. Grissom’s stay up front was short lived though, as Kenseth retook the top spot on lap 31. On lap 36, the lapped machine of Jerrick Johnson would spin in front of the leaders in turn two collecting the second and third place cars of Grissom and Fogleman. Both pitted with Fogleman having to make extensive repairs to the front end of his damaged Ford.
One of the hardest crashes of the night occurred on lap 39 when rookie Tyler Audie lost control of his machine and made hard contact with the front straightaway wall. Then, three laps later fellow rookie and PASS South title contender Spencer Davis would be sidelined when he broke a right front suspension after contact with Joseph Mursuli.
Kenseth continued to run out front with Jared Irvan now in second followed by Brandon McReynolds in third, who was also making his PASS South debut. Meanwhile, Fogleman and Grissom were making their way back to the front moving around Joe Ryan Osborne with 19 laps to go to take fifth and sixth respectively. Following another spin by Rogers in turn two on lap 91, Irvan moved around Kenseth to take the lead on the ensuing restart. But, the caution would wave one lap later for a multi-car incident on the front straight away involving Tanner Rumburg, Jerrick Johnson, John Batten, Tate Fogleman and Cole Timm.
Irvan and Kenseth led the field to the race’s final restart with eight laps to go with Kenseth taking over the top spot on lap 93. Kenseth held on for his second PASS South win of 2013 over Irvan, McReynolds, Clete Caywood, and Kyle Grissom. Following the race, Irvan and his Auramist team were extremely excited with their second place effort.
“Finishing second is as good as a win to us because I’m a rookie just trying to get my feet wet with the series,” said Irvan after his best career PASS South finish. “It’s a lot more fun to be in the front than in the middle, I just hate the caution came out because I think we would have been in really good shape.”
Rounding out the top ten at the finish were Jay Fogleman, Bobby Measmer, Jr., Rodney Brooks, Brandon Ward, and Osborne.