Hiett collects $3,000 in March Madness opener
GAFFNEY, S.C. (March 1) — Starting on the outside of the front row, Jason Hiett of Oxford, Ala., outgunned polesitter Casey Roberts of Toccoa, Ga., for the lead at the drop of the green flag and held it for all 30 laps en route to a $3,000 victory in the opening event of Cherokee Speedway’s March Madness. | Slideshow
Roberts, who briefly took the lead from the 30-year-old Hiett on the third lap before the move was negated by the race’s first of two cautions, settled for second, while sixth-starting Brent Dixon of Elberton, Ga., eighth-starting Dale McDowell of Chickamauga, Ga., and seventh-starting Dennis Franklin of Gaffney rounded out the race’s top-five finishers.
This weekend’s pair of events at Cherokee are the first apart of Ray Cook’s Southern Nationals bonus races. March Madness action continues Sunday with another complete program paying $10,000 the winner. The drivers’ meeting is scheduled for 1 p.m. with hot laps to follow.
Notes: Hiett pilots a Barry Wright Race Car powered by a Clements Racing Engine with sponsorship from HHM Racing, Freestyle Graphics, Old Man’s Garage, Timken, Hoosier Racing Tire and Schaeffer's Racing Oil. … Hiett made only his second start of the 2014 season, with his previous coming in Talladega Short Track’s Ice Bowl on Jan. 4-5. … Only six drivers completed all 30 laps; the feature lineup was set directly from time trials. … Several drivers competing Friday-Saturday at East Alabama Motor Speedway's 17th annual Bama Bash in Phenix City, Ala., are expected to make the journey to Cherokee for Sunday's event.
March Madness: (1) Jason Hiett, (2) Casey Roberts, (3) Brent Dixon, (4) Dale McDowell, (5) Dennis Franklin, (6) Kevin Wilson, (7) Dale Hammond, (8) Frankie Coates, (9) Colby King, (10) Douglas Davis, (11) Gabe Wilson, (12) Donald McIntosh, (13) Kennie Compton Jr., (14) Kenny Collins, (15) Zack Mitchell, (16) Austin Smith, (17) Johnny Pursley, (18) Anthony Sanders. Fast qualifier (among 18 cars): Roberts, 15.018 seconds.