DILLON, S.C. – The Pro All Stars Series (PASS) South Super Late Models first started competing “South Of The Border” at Dillon Motor Speedway in 2008.
That race was held on a sweltering Sunday afternoon under the hot South Carolina sun and was won by the now retired Justin Wakefield. Since then, the South Carolina Clash at Dillon has been held in March to kick off the PASS South season and Ron Barfield’s four-tenths-mile speedway has grown to be a favorite stop for fans and competitors alike.
This Saturday night’s Wildcat 150, an event name harkening back to races held at Dillon Motor Speedway when the track was dirt in the 1970’s, will mark a series of firsts for the PASS South brigade. It will be the first time PASS South has ever raced at Dillon during the fall. It will also be the first time PASS has ever staged more than one Super Late Model race in the same year at the facility. Back in March, Maine youngster Austin Theriault took advantage of slower traffic to edge out veteran Preston Peltier for the win in the closest finish in PASS South history.
Like Theriault, Clete Caywood and Jody Measamer hope to snare their first career PASS South victories in this weekend’s Wildcat 150. Caywood, who hails from Easley in the South Carolina upstate, would love nothing better than to take his first series win Saturday night in his home state.
Competing in a partial schedule this year, Caywood backed up a solid sixth place finish in last year’s season-ending Mason Dixon Meltdown at Concord Speedway with an even more impressive fourth place finish in August at South Boston Speedway. Dillon’s egg-shaped layout proves tough for even the wiliest of veterans, but with strong finishes at equally challenging tracks, Caywood thinks the Wildcat 150 could be another opportunity to shine.
“This Kaytech/Phat Dogs Chevrolet has been really running good, we’ve been getting some help from Jeff Fultz, and we’ve really gotten this car turned around,” said Caywood. “It has a little bit longer straightaways, a little bit tighter turns than what we normally run, so you’ve really go to get the car to turn through the middle and get some bite coming off.”
Likewise, Sanford, N.C., veteran Jody Measamer has a lot to be excited about heading to Dillon. Since making the move up from the PASS Pro Late Model division last year, Measamer has three top five finishes in 2013, including a career best third place finish at Southern National Motorsports Park in August. And, Measamer has been able to secure funding from Aquavapor Electronic Cigarettes to finish out the 2013 PASS South Super Late Model season, with an eye towards possibly competing for the series championship next year.
But perhaps even more exciting for Measamer is the fact that he probably has more experience than any other driver competing Saturday night at Dillon Motor Speedway. Measamer raced extensively at Dillon in the local Supertruck division and that track knowledge has him optimistic for another strong showing.
“It’s a real tough race track, getting through turns three and four, really off four is important,” said Measamer. “We had some success there in the Trucks, but getting off turn four and getting a good run to the start/finish line is real important down there.”
While another good field of PASS South Super Late Models is expected, most of the attention Saturday night will be focused on the points battles. Jay Fogleman leads Kyle Grissom by 34 points heading to Dillon and this weekend Grissom has to tighten the gap if he hopes to repeat as PASS South champion.
Likewise, Georgia’s Spencer Davis looks to maintain his advantage in the Rookie-Of-The-Year battle over Cole Timm, Tate Fogleman, and Joseph Mursuli. Meanwhile, the PASS Pro Late Models will also be in action and points leader Trevor Noles will again be doing double duty racing the Super and Pro for Coulter Motorsports. Noles will also be looking to equal Harrison Burton, who has two PASS Pro Late Model wins at Dillon so far this season.