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Hartwell Speedway

Cole tops Franklin for Clash win at Hartwell

June 1, 2008, 6:38 am
From series reports
Benji Cole races to his $4,000 victory. (George
Benji Cole races to his $4,000 victory. (George "Big Mack" Missita)

HARTWELL, Ga. (May 31) — Benji Cole of Canon, Ga., overtook polesitter Dennis "Rambo" Franklin of Gaffney, S.C., with 12 laps remaining at Hartwell Speedway for his first Carolina Clash Super Late Model Series victory of the season.

"The first part of the race my car was not that good," said Cole, who won $4,000. "But as the race went on it really came to me. Being able to win in front of my home crowd means the world. All my family is here, my kids, my dad, everybody. We race on the road so much that they don't get to see us race that often, so to win here is extra special."

Franklin, a three-time series winner and points leader, settled for second ahead of hometown driver Frankie Beard, who posted his best series finish. Deano Long of Saluda, S.C., and Ed Gibbons of Manning, S.C., rounded out the top five.

Notes: Cole's Russell Baker-powered DWB Race Car is sponsored by Cape Farms, Rock Hill Farms, Swiftco Motorsports, Kenner Construction and Turner Recycling. ... Drivers failing to make the feature lineup: Darryl Freeman, Brent Dixon, Ted Crumpton, Jimmy Ivester, Scott Shirey. ... Clash competitors are scheduled for a June 6-7 weekend with $4,000-to-win victories at Carolina Speedway in Gastonia, N.C., and Lancaster (S.C.) Motor Speedway.

Carolina Clash @ Hartwell: (1) Benji Cole, (2) Dennis Franklin, (3) Frankie Beard, (4) Deano Long, (5) Ed Gibbons, (6) Jeff Smith, (7) Ricky Weeks, (8) Casey Roberts, (9) Bob Robertson, (10) Scott Neighbors, (11) Doug Sanders, (12) Dion Deason, (13) Anthony Sanders, (14) Bruce Taylor, (15) Furman Parton, (16) Ethan Hunter, (17) Larry Timms, (18) Casey Barrow, (19) John Henderson, (20) David Smith, (21) Jonathan Davenport, (22) Michael Akeson, (23) Chesley Dixon, (24) Craig Shuffield. Fast qualifier (among 30 cars): Franklin.

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