Five-Time NASCAR Whelen Modified Champion Doug Coby Expects Speed, Excitement For South Boston Race

Five-Time NASCAR Whelen Modified Champion Doug Coby Expects Speed, Excitement For South Boston Race

SOUTH BOSTON, Va. (March 19, 2019) – Doug Coby rolled into South Boston Speedway for the first time a week ago unsure what to expect.

After a day-long test session, Coby had a grin on his face and a good feeling about the NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour 150 at South Boston Speedway on March 30.

“We’re excited. We tested there last week. It’s going to be awesome,” Coby said of the NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour’s return to South Boston after 18 years’ absence. The NASCAR Whelen Southern Modified Tour ran 11 races at South Boston from 2009 to 2016.

“My first reaction was how nice the place is kept. From the way that place is kept up, I’m ranking it in the top three of any track I’ve ever been to and I’ve been to a lot.

“My reaction to how it drives … it’s made for Modifieds as far as I’m concerned. I think the locals are going to be very surprised at how quickly these guys learn and how quick we’ll get around that place.”

And Coby knows a bit about the NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour, which runs the bulk of its races in New England states.

He is a five-time Whelen Modified Tour champion, winning four straight titles from 2014-2017. He’s amassed 25 tour victories in his 17-year career and in 2016 won an amazing nine pole awards.

His most recent pole and race win came last Saturday at Myrtle Beach Speedway, the first of only two southern stops on the NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour this year. The victory wasn’t as easy as it sounds, though. Despite winning the pole, he had to start at the rear of the field after his team found a screw in a tire just before the race and made an unapproved tire change. He fought his way back through the field and took the lead for good on lap 122.

“It all worked out in the end, I’ll put it that way,” Colby said of the Myrtle Beach win. “We had a really good car and we made the right changes. That’s what led to the win.”

Coby said he knew the South Boston racing surface had been repaved a couple of years ago, but he was surprised at its smoothness and consistency during his recent test.

“There’s not a track we race on up north that can compare to South Boston. There are lots of little pieces of tracks that compare, but nothing just like it,” said Coby. “I think the pavement makes a big difference. With the smoothness of the new pavement and the grip to match … and the corners are wide and smooth. Most of our tracks have lots of bumps and character.”

Coby said fans need to expect more speed than they see in weekly shows. Peyton Sellers set a Late Model track record last Saturday afternoon, winning the pole with a time of 14.676 seconds around the .4-mile oval. Coby said during last week’s test session at South Boston cars were consistently in the low 14-second range and the 14-second mark was eclipsed several times.

“It’s all about the corner speed,” said Coby. “We are lighter with lighter tires. The south is so focused on Late Models, having a different type of racing, a different type of car ripping around there is going to be fun.”

Coby said South Boston is a perfect fit for his driving style.

“I love short tracks with grip. I tend to struggle on tracks that don’t have grip,” said Coby. “It suits my driving style as good as any could. But at the same time, I think it’s going to suit anybody’s driving style.

“I’m excited. I think it’s a great fit for me personally and a great fit for the tour.”

The NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour 150 on Saturday afternoon, March 30, will feature the 150-lap Modified race and a pair of 75-lap Late Model Stock races.

Advance adult general admission tickets are $10 each and will be available until 5 p.m. on Friday March 29 by stopping in South Boston Speedway’s office or calling 877.440.1540. Adult general admission tickets on race day will be $15. Children 12-and-under will be admitted free with a paying adult.

Grandstands open at 11:30 a.m. on March 30 with an autograph session at 1 p.m. and the first race of the day starting at 2 p.m.

MEDIA CONTACT:

Mike Smith

Relevant Public Relations
423.914.3009
msmith@prrelevant.com

South Boston Speedway Annual Open Practice Session Saturday Open To Public At No Charge

South Boston Speedway Annual Open Practice Session Saturday Open To Public At No Charge

SOUTH BOSTON, Va. (March 5, 2019) – Opening Day is still a couple weeks away at South Boston Speedway, but the track will rumble to life this Saturday with the track’s annual open practice, traditionally held one week before the season-opener.

For most of the drivers the season-opener on March 16 is the biggest day of the year, but this Saturday’s practice session isn’t far behind.

“It’s like a first date for all of us,” reigning South Boston Speedway Late Model Stock champion Peyton Sellers said of the upcoming open practice. “We’ll be adjusting to a few new rules, some new team members. And the track has been vacant for six months. There are a lot of changes that we have made in the off season that we feel will affect everyone, so it’s important to get ahead of the curve quicker than our competitors.”

Registration begins at 9 a.m. Saturday, with cars on track from 10 a.m. until noon when there will be an hour break for lunch. Cars will be back on track from 1 p.m. to 4 p.m. with the garage closing at 5 p.m. The practice is open to the public at no charge. All divisions, Late Model Stock, Limited Sportsman, Pure Stock and Hornets, will be practicing.

South Boston Speedway’s season-opener, the Danville Toyota NASCAR Late Model Twin 100s, is scheduled for Saturday, March 16 with gates opening at 12:30 p.m. and the green flag falling at 2 p.m. Admission is $10 for adults and children 12 and under admitted free.

Thomas Scott, who finished third in the 2018 Late Model points chase behind Sellers and NASCAR Whelen All-American Series national champion Philip Morris, said he hopes to break Saturday’s open practice into two separate parts.

“First we’ll just be shaking the car down to make sure there are no issues where it was completely disassembled over the winter,” said Scott. “We’ll be breaking in the refreshed engine, seating in the new brakes, stuff like that.

“Once all is good there, then we will work on the set up of the car, starting off with last year’s set up to see how much the track has changed over the past six months since we were on it last. I have some new stuff I want to try to see if it makes the car better or not.”

Not everyone can make it to Saturday’s day-long practice. Trey Crews, who is moving up to Late Models this season after winning a second Limited Division title in 2018, will be tied up with work and unable to make it to the track.

“We’ve worked hard in the off season getting ready to make a run at the Late Model division,” said Crews, praising the support of Stallings Collision Centers, Mincey Graphics, Elite Recycling and his dad, H.E. Crews. “I hope to test the Friday before the opening race. We already shook it down once and were pleased with the car.

“Our goal is to come out and have fun like last year and hopefully everything falls into place. We’re excited about the 16th (the opener) and hope our performance from last year rolls over into this season.”

Defending Pure Stock champion Jordan Pickrel isn’t sure he will make it Saturday either. He will, though, practice at least once before opening day on March 16.

“We will be looking to get back in the swing of things, getting myself back in rhythm,” said Pickrel. “We’ll try some things that we worked on over the winter and experiment. We’re not sure where the track is going to be due to aging over the winter. I expect we are probably going to have a little less grip this year so I’m sure that will be a learning curve.”

Tickets for the Danville Toyota NASCAR Late Model Twin 100s on the afternoon of March 16 may be purchased in advance by calling 877.440.1540 or by stopping by the office between the hours of 9 to 5 Monday through Friday.
PHOTO INFO: The pits will be full again this Saturday for the annual open practice day as teams prepare for the March 16 opener.

MEDIA CONTACT:
Mike Smith
Relevant Public Relations
423.914.3009
msmith@prrelevant.com