Brenden “Butterbean” Queen Puts On Clutch Performance To Win At North Wilkesboro Speedwayby Hunter Thomas May 18, 2023 1 comment
NORTH WILKESBORO, N.C. – Brenden “Butterbean” Queen added yet another accolade to his racing resume when he won the CARS Tour Late Model Stock Window World 125 at North Wilkesboro Speedway on Wednesday night.
The last half-year of grassroots racing in the southeast has been owned by Queen. Last year at Langley Speedway, he earned nine wins, and since making the move to Lee Pulliam Performance, the Virginia native won the South Carolina 400 at Florence Motor Speedway back in November, the Battle of the Stars at New River All-American Speedway in March and now the prestigious CARS Tour race at the historic North Wilkesboro Speedway, and he did so in “Butterbean” fashion.
Queen sat on the pole with a record lap of 19.125 seconds, and he raced his way through the field on several occasions. On the final restart of the night, he was clutch. Queen got out in front of the field and held on to win his second-career victory in the CARS Tour.
“Man, as a driver you dream of winning races like Martinsville, Hampton Heat, places like that,” Queen said. “This is exactly like that. I knew when I won the pole that I had my work cut out for me. Anything can happen. Our car was so good early on, I was trying to not get over-anxious and race the track, not the other drivers. That last pit stop, putting on some fresh tires helped. I didn’t want to rough anybody up and we were so good at getting off Turn 4 well that once we got the lead, I felt good about it. This is something that, I can look at 40 years from now and say, ‘Man, I won at North Wilkesboro.’”
The victory was a great comeback from last August, when his hood came a part in the previous CARS Tour visit, and he was forced to give up valuable track position. Of course, on Wednesday night when he finally earned the win, Queen celebrated the prestigious victory at Waffle House, which has become his signature post-race celebration.
“It’s the biggest win of my life right now,” Queen said. “All eyes were on it, and we got it done. I’m speechless really.”
Ryan Millington held on to finish second in a car that had sustained quite a good bit of left-side damage. Millington’s damage came from when he slowed up for a crash early in the race, and Deac McCaskill made contact. Despite the damage, though, Millington continued to battle. During a controlled caution with 35 laps to go, Millington gained valuable track position by staying out.
“There wasn’t much saving on my end,” Millington said. “It was an all-out battle from the get-go. (Getting damage) didn’t seem to bother the car much. I was a bit surprised to run as well as we did with the car torn up like it was, but it wasn’t too bad. It always feels pretty good to come here and run well.”
Jared Fryar finished third. Following the race, Fryar discussed how important it is to formulate a strategy at North Wilkesboro Speedway.
“It’s tough,” Fryar said. “I don’t feel like I did a good job with knowing the strategy until the end of the race. It takes a lot of good strategy to run well in this type of race.”
Connor Hall and Kaden Honeycutt rounded out the top-five. Completing the top-10 was Layne Riggs, Chase McCumbee, Carson Kvapil, Zack Miracle, NASCAR Cup Series driver Chase Briscoe.
Other notable drivers in the field included Kevin Harvick (11th), Brad Keselowski (12th), Daniel Suarez (15th), Dale Earnhardt Jr. (16th) and Ross Chastain (19th).
The CARS Tour will visit Tri-County Speedway in Granite Falls, North Carolina on Saturday, May 27.
Photo Credit: Mitchell White/TheFourthTurn.com