Talladega Short Track
Brindle inherits $2,500 StormPay victory at TST
By Roby HelmStormPay.com Dirt Late Model Series
EASTABOGA, Ala. (Oct. 27) — Chip Brindle of Chatsworth, Ga. was awarded a StormPay.com Dirt Late Model Series victory at Talladega Short Track after the car of the apparent winner Mike Head of Ellenwood, Ga., was found to have illegal tires. Brindle made what proved to be the winning pass on lap 38 of the 40-lap main event when he passed polesitter and early leader Johnny Stokes of Columbus, Miss. The win was the third of the season for Brindle and his second of the season at TST. He won the Ice Bowl back in January to open the season. | Slideshow
With the victory, Brindle moved up to fourth in the point standings and clinched the series rookie of the year title, worth $5,000 and a new GRT Race Car.
“I hate it for Mike Head, but we’ll take a win any way we can get it,” said Brindle, who pocketed $2,500. “The car really came to life there at the end of the race. Talladega Short Track has been very good to us this season.”
Stokes finished second after leading the first 28 laps of the race and setting fast time among the 61 entrants. Rick Hixson of Soddy Daisy, Tenn., finished third and StormPay.com Weekly Racing Series East Region Champion Logan Yates of Delta, Ala. ran right with the leaders in the closing laps of the race and finished fourth.
The defending series champion David Gentry of Lewisburg, Tenn., started 18th and finished fifth to earn the NeSmith Chevrolet Hard Charger of the Race award. Gentry also extended his point lead to 34 points over Jay Blair of Angie, La., who started 14th and advanced just two positions. Larry Boutwell, Jeff FIelds, Curt Cline, Frankie Beard and Ted Lackey rounded out the top 10.
Stokes took the lead at the drop of the green flag followed by Head, Boutwell, Adam Martin and Lackey. The first of three caution flags waved on lap three when Dustin Stewart spun in turn four.
After the restart, Lackey got past Martin for fourth, but he wouldn’t be there long as Lackey spun in turn four on lap six for the second yellow. The field went green for two more laps before Kenny Gaither of spun off the second turn on lap eight.
Stokes led Head, Boutwell, Martin, Brindle, Hixson and Yates for the restart. Hixson got by Brindle for the fifth spot on lap nine, and then closed in to battle Martin side-by-side for the fourth spot on lap 10. By lap 15, Stokes was in heavy lapped traffic, as Head began to close the gap between first and second.
At the halfway point, Head was beginning to look to the inside of Stokes to challenge for the lead, as the frontunners worked lapped traffic. The battle for the lead was slowed by the caution flag on lap 22 when Matthew Turner and Tyler Hurst tangled in turn four.
The final caution flag appeared on the restart when the fourth-running Martin spun in turn two. Stokes led Head, Boutwell, Brindle, Hixson, and Yates back to green.
Yates stepped to the outside and picked up three positions in two laps,ï¿½ getting by Hixson, Brindle, and Boutwell to settle into the third spot by lap 24. On lap 27, Yates caught Head and Stokes. Meanwhile, Head was looking to the inside of Stokes to challenge for the lead while Yates set sail on the outside.
Lap 28 saw a three-wide battle for the lead ensue with Head on the inside, Stokes in the middle, and Yates up on the outside cushion. Head took the lead away from Stokes on lap 29 in turn two. Yates tried to get around the outside of Stokes going down the backstretch on lap 32, and the two cars made contact, and Yates bounced off the backstretch wall.
That was enough to kill the handling on Yates’ race car, and Brindle was now the man on the move, taking over the third spot on lap 33. Brindle caught Stokes going down the backstretch on lap 38, and made what would turn out to be the winning pass.
Brindle's GRT Race Car is sponsored by CSC Trailer Repair and Brindle Brothers Auto Parts. ... David Gentry has 1,732 points to lead Jay Blair (1,698), Derrick Rainey (1,672) and Brindle (1,596). ... The final points race is scheduled for Nov. 24 at Columbus (Miss.) Speedway, a 50-lapper paying $3,000 to the winner.