Bray earns $5,000 at Hartwell's Firecracker 100
HARTWELL, Ga. (July 4) — Outside front-row starter Royce Bray of Hull, Ga., overtook polesitter Brandon "Cornbread" Haley of Lavonia, Ga., on the 37th lap and led the rest of the way for a victory in the Fastrak Racing Series-sanctioned Firecracker 100 at Hartwell Speedway. Bray earned $5,000 for the victory in the caution-plagued race the winner thought might never end.
"If we didn't set a record for cautions, it sure felt like it," said Bray, the overall 2008 Fastrak champion who picked up his first touring victory of the season.
Hometown driver Parker Herring finished second followed by Haley, David Smith of Inman, S.C., and Bob Robertson of Evans, Ga., in the topless event.
The most serious incident among the many cautions was three laps from the finish when third-running Owen Osteen of Woodruff, S.C., hit a hole in turn four, lost a wheel and flipped onto his car's rollcage. He wasn't injured.
Notes: The top six qualifiers were locked into the main event. ... To promote the event, Fastrak teams and drivers started the day with an autograph sessions at the local McDonald's, then paraded through the streets of Hartwell in their race cars. ... Half of the 22 starters were running at the finish. ... The next Fastrak touring event in the region is a $5,000-to-win race on July 11 at Cherokee Speedway in Gaffney, S.C.
Firecracker 100: (1) Royce Bray, (2) Parker Herring, (3) Brandon Haley, (4) David Smith, (5) Bob Robertson, (6) Hunter Peacock, (7) Lee Cooper, (8) Brent Dixon, (9) Kenny Collins, (10) Gene Nasworthy, (11) Danny Sanders, (12) Blake Bentley, (13) Brain Connor, (14) Owen Osteen, (15) Greg Pilgrim, (16) Grant Jordan, (17) Chris Steele, (18) Larry Timms, (19) Johnny Pursley, (20) John Pursley, (21) Steve Cook, (22) Brad York. Fast qualifier (among 32 cars): Haley, 17.352 seconds. Heat race winners: Conner, Timms, D. Smith. Consolation winners: Parker, Cooper.