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311 Motor Speedway

Franklin ends Carolina Clash drought at 311

June 5, 2011, 4:03 am
From correspondent and track reports
Dennis Franklin celebrates at 311 Motor Speedway. (Gary Laster)
Dennis Franklin celebrates at 311 Motor Speedway. (Gary Laster)

MADISON, N.C. (June 4) — Reigning series champion Dennis "Rambo" Franklin of Gaffney, S.C., jumped into the lead from his outside front-row starting spot and led all the way Saturday at 311 Motor Speedway for his first Carolina Clash Super Late Model Series victory in two seasons. | Slideshow

Franklin earned $4,000 and also moved into the series points lead when Luke Roffers of Concord, N.C., spun out of the top five on the final lap. Roffers, a two-time winner this season, entered the event with a 26-point lead.

Randy Weaver of Crossville, Tenn., slipped by polesitter Johnny Pursley of Clover, S.C., on a late restart to get the second spot. Pursley settled for third while Ross Bailes of Clover was fourth and Ronnie Hoover of China Grove, N.C., rounded out the top five. Roffers ended up 17th.

Eighth-starting Chris Ferguson of Mount Holley, N.C., got into the outside fence on the initial start and went to the tail. He retired near the halfway point at the half-mile oval.

The most serious accident came wtih a nine-car pileup in turn four just before a restart. Jay Sessoms was knocked out of the race.

Notes: Franklin is sponsored by Cherokee Landscaping and Gilkey Lumber. ... His previous series victory came Sept. 19, 2009, at Wythe Raceway in Rural Retreat, Va. ... He has 19 career series victories, third on the all-time list. ... Instead of his normal No. 87, Ross Bailes piloted the No. B4 driven earlier this season by Petey Ivey. ... Randy Weaver fielded the Nichols Plumbing-sponsored Barry Wright Race Car. ... Noel Tucker won Crate feature. ... Steve Blackburn won the feature for steel-head engine Late Models. ... Drivers failing to make the lineup for the Carolina Clash feature: Keith Jacobs, Jimmy McCormick, Brian Moody, Robbie Bailey, Bubba McGee, Justin Simpson and Craig Shuffield. ... Carolina Clash competitors head to Fayetteville (N.C.) Motor Speedway on June 11

Carolina Clash @ 311: (1) Dennis Franklin, (2) Randy Weaver, (3) Johnny Pursley, (4) Ross Bailes, (5) Ronnie Hoover, (6) Scott Autry, (7) Kennie Compton Jr., (8) Chad Paxton, (9) Jeff Smith, (10) Mike Gault, (11) Dustin Mitchell, (12) Tim Allen, (13) Donald Bradsher, (14) Daniel Baggerly, (15) Travis Yow, (16) Ray Tucker, (17) Luke Roffers, (18) Justin Labonte, (19) David Taylor, (20) G.R. Smith, (21) Chris Meadows, (22) Chris Ferguson, (23) Jay Sessoms, (24) Mike Huey. Fast qualifier (among 31 cars): Johnny Pursley, 16.774 seconds. Heat race winners: Sessoms, Autry. Consolation winner: G.R. Smith. Provisional starters: Huey, Yow.

Carolina Clash points

(Through June 4)
1. Dennis Franklin - 944
2. Luke Roffers -903
3. Kennie Compton Jr. -886
4. Mike Gault - 883
5. Jeff Smith - 875
6. Johnny Pursley - 809
7. Tim Allen - 802
8. Chad Paxton - 790
9. David Taylor - 723
10. Dustin Mitchell - 701
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