East Alabama Motor Speedway
Davenport builds points lead with EAMS victory
PHENIX CITY, Ala. (July 20) — Returning to the site of his richest victory, Jonathan Davenport of Blairsville, Ga., led all 35 laps Tuesday at East Alabama Motor Speedway to extend his points lead on the Southern Nationals Series. Davenport added his $3,500 payoff to the $20,000 he won at November’s unsanctioned National 100 at the 3/8-mile oval. | Video | Schedule
“We were really good in hot laps and the car was just perfect in the feature,” said the 26-year-old Davenport. “We worked off our notes from the National 100 last November, and it worked out for us. We've been here three times, and had a completely different racetrack each time. That made us a little unsure on tires, so we gambled and went a little harder than everyone else, and that worked out.”
Chris Madden of Gray Court, S.C., another former National 100 winner, rallied from ninth to second but never seriously challenged Davenport with most drivers running single file the final 10 laps. Clint Smith of Senoia, Ga., advanced from his 11th starting spot to third while 10th-starting Chris Brown of Spring, Texas, and Brian Booze of Marion, Pa., rounded out the top five on a track that allowed multigroove racing until the race's late stages.
The most significant of five slowdowns of the night came on the 21st lap when reigning series champion Tommy Kerr of Maryville, Tenn., and Stacy Holmes of Munford, Ala., battled for the second spot in front of Madden. Holmes slid in front of Kerr exiting turn two and the car the right front of Kerr's car got hung up on the left rear of the Holmes machine. They came to a grinding halt in turn three after running down the backstretch in tandem for an accident that knocked both drivers out of contention and brought out a red flag.
Notes: Davenport’s Barry Wright Race Car is sponsored by Mega Plumbing, Cabinets By Design, EnCompass Solutions, AES Racing, Nichols Plumbing and Baird Transport. ... Davenport has two career Southern Nationals victories; his first came July 14, 2009, at Carolina Speedway near Gastonia, N.C. ... Davenport is undefeated in three trips to East Alabama; he also won last September's Alabama State Championships at EAMS. ... Tuesday night racing is nothing unusual for East Alabama, which runs several midweek events throughout the summer. ... The track’s top Late Model class at regular events is NeSmith Chevrolet-sanctioned Crate Late Models. ... Bub McCool of Vicksburg, Miss., slid over the turn-two banking to draw a lap-four caution. ... Clint Smith’s 11th-to-third run paid $50 for PPM Racing Products Hard Charger honors. He nursed an overheating car in the race's late stages. ... The series heads to Swainsboro (Ga.) Raceway on Wednesday for a makeup of Friday’s rained out $5,300-to-win event.
Southern Nationals @ East Alabama: (1) Jonathan Davenport, (2) Chris Madden, (3) Clint Smith, (4) Chris Brown, (5) Brian Booze, (6) Terrance Nowell, (7) Austin Dillon, (8) Kenny Compton Jr., (9) Ronny Lee Hollingsworth, (10) Vic Hill, (11) Bub McCool, (12) Jake Knowles, (13) Tony Knowles, (14) Montana Dudley, (15) Donald Bradsher, (16) Mike Collins, (17) Tommy Kerr, (18) Brian Nuttall Jr., (19) John Henderson, (20) Lavon Sparks, (21) Stacy Holmes, (22) Brian Reese, (23) Mark Sims, (24) Casey Roberts. Fast qualifier (among 26 cars): Davenport, 14.52 seconds. Consolation race winners: C. Smith, Dillon. Provisional starters: Roberts, Sims.