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Peltier Wins Meltdown at Concord; Fogleman and Grissom Snare PASS Titles

Peltier Wins Meltdown at Concord; Fogleman and Grissom Snare PASS Titles

by November 26, 2012 0 comments

CHARLOTTE, NC (November 25) – Preston Peltier took the lead from Landon Cling on a lap 136 restart and pulled away for his first win in the Thanksgiving Classic/Mason Dixon Meltdown at Concord Speedway.  The win was Peltier’s third of 2012 and pushes his Pro All Stars Series (PASS) South Super Late Model win total to a series best of nine.  Peltier’s first PASS South win at his home track propelled him to second in points, just four points shy of capturing the series championship from Kyle Grissom who finished second.

“This car was just awesome right there at the end, we just missed the championship there by a few points, but I just really enjoy racing these guys and we’ll be back even better next year,” said Peltier, after his fourth top 5 finish in five PASS South races at Concord.  “I was a little bit scared because I thought we pitted a too early and I wasn’t sure we would have enough tire left at the end.  Luckily, everything played in our favor and we were able to get the win.”

Earlier in the day, Texas driver Trey Mitchell scorched the half-mile triangle in qualifying with a lap of 15.575 seconds for his first career PASS South pole.  But, after the top 10 qualifiers re-drew for their starting positions in the Thanksgiving Classic/Mason Dixon Meltdown, Mitchell would start back in 10th.  PASS South championship contender Brandon Ward and Landon Cling led the field down for the start with Ward jumping out to an early lead.  The first caution flag flew on lap 14 as Mitchell and Peltier were battling for sixth position and made contact.  Mitchell went for a spin in turn one and was narrowly missed by several drivers who had to take evasive action.

In the early going, PASS South points leader Kyle Grissom struggled mightily with the handling on his Harrison’s Workwear Chevrolet, falling out of the top ten just 34 laps into the 200 lap race.  While Grissom struggled, Landon Cling appeared to be in a league of his own.  Cling took the lead from Ward on lap 48 and set sail, leading the field by up to two seconds at times during the race.  By lap 94, Ward had fallen out of the top ten as he struggled with an ill handling car.

Local Concord favorite and former PASS South winner Roger Lee Newton ran as high as second, but stopped on the track with a mechanical problem to bring out the fifth caution of the race with 82 laps to go.  Under this caution period, Cling led all but three of the lead lap cars onto pit road for four fresh Hoosier tires and fuel.  Nate Caruth, Mark Reedy and Cole Timm pitted on a lap 78 caution and would inherit the lead on the ensuing restart.  It only took Cling two laps to dispense of Caruth and retake the lead.  But, as the field entered turn three on lap 121, Reedy slowed after contact from another car resulting in a melee behind him.  Ward and Ben Rowe spun collecting Bill Catania, Timm, and Steve Laking in a cloud of smoke and fluid.  With the track blocked, the red flag waved as clean-up crews rolled to out clear the track of cars and debris.

On the next restart, the lead pack encountered more problems with Caruth and Gray Gaulding going for a spin in turn one resulting in major damage to the machines of PASS South championship contender Jay Fogleman and Brandon Jones.  Fogleman continued on although his car had suffered significant body and suspension damage, while Jones went behind the wall and finished 18th.

Cling continued to have the dominant car, but gave up the lead to Peltier on a lap 135 caution to pit for an engine problem.  Despite the setback, Cling’s Brad Keselowski Racing Dodge made its way back into the top five and appeared to still have a shot at the win.  With less than 20 laps to go, Cling’s machine almost spun exiting turn three due to a broken axle, ending his chances for victory.  Cling still managed to finish ninth though due to high attrition in the second half of the event.
Peltier was able to stretch his lead in the waning laps as a spirited battle for second waged between Grissom, defending race winner Colt James, and Trey Mitchell.  Although he appeared to have a faster car, James showed great respect in racing Grissom, who was on the verge of his first PASS South championship.

Peltier proved to have the dominant car in the late going and cruised to the win finishing two seconds ahead of Grissom.  James finished third, ahead of a spinning Mitchell, and Fogleman.  Although he came up short in his bid to win the PASS South championship, Fogleman held on to win his first PASS National championship, the first touring championship in the storied career of the North Carolina veteran.

“It’s great to win the PASS National Championship, we really have worked hard the last few years to win it,” said Fogleman, who ended the year with wins at Motor Mile Speedway and in the North South Shootout at Caraway Speedway.  “We really, really, really were hunting that PASS South Championship though and it’s just a bad disappointment to not get a chance to race for it.”

For Grissom, the PASS South Championship was certainly a goal at the start of the 2012 season, but he and his Greg Marlowe led team came into the year as unknowns.  After all, both had made their names racing in the heavier Late Model Stock cars that compete predominantly in the Carolinas and Virginia.  Prior to 2012, neither Grissom nor Marlowe had raced in more than five Super Late Model contests in total.  But, after a dominating win in the Easter Bunny 150 at Hickory Motor Speedway, it was clear that Grissom and his team had what it took to be a factor for the rest of the year.  And, that they were, winning a record tying five PASS South Series races in 2012.  Despite some late season problems, Grissom had built up enough of a cushion to take his first championship.

“This Marlowe Racing Chassis has just been flawless all year long and it’s been incredible that we’ve been able to build a car and go out here in our first year and do all this…We’ve had a lot of fun this year and it’s just been awesome,” said Grissom.  “I had always heard how competitive the PASS South Series was, there’s a lot of young guys and guys who’ve been doing it for a while, it’s just unbelievable that we were able to get off to the start that we did and even more amazing that we could hold on and win the championship.”

Although the 2012 season has ended, there is a lot of excitement about the 2013 season.  Schedules for the PASS South and PASS North Super Late Models have been released and the schedules for the PASS National Series, PASS Pro Late Models, PASS Modifieds, and PASS Sportsman will be coming out soon.  For complete schedules and all the information you need to know about the upcoming season, please visit ProAllStarsSeries.com and also be sure to “Like” the Pro All Stars Series on Facebook.  For technical information on any PASS division, please contact Scott Reed at 207-625-3230.  For marketing or media related questions, please contact Alan Dietz at alandietzpass@live.com or 704-231-2039.

Press Release
Press Release, source information and photo credits are located at the bottom of the article.

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