Breakthrough Driver Dylan Newsome Upsets Mini Stock Field at Southern National

LUCAMA, NC – Dylan Newsome has been something of a breakout star on the short track scene in 2017 with wins at four different tracks in just nine races – his latest coming Friday night at Southern National Motorsports Park.

The 19-year-old from Goldsboro, North Carolina came into Friday night’s race on a bit of a hot streak after scoring wins in recent weeks at Carteret County Speedway in Swansboro, North Carolina, Ace Speedway in Burlington, North Carolina and Florence Motor Speedway in South Carolina.  He continued that hot streak when he rocketed past Joseph Pittman in the closing stages of Friday night’s Mini Stock feature and held on for his first Southern National Motorsports Park victory.

“We’ve definitely been on a roll,” Newsome said in victory lane.  “We’ve got a great car and a great team.  I’m only 19, this is my ninth race and I’m definitely looking forward to getting some more action.  It’s really exciting to win these races since my dad (Jack Newsome) used to race so that means a lot to me.”

Newsome’s victory was all the more impressive as he beat out names such as local drivers Joseph Pittman and Ronnie “Buckshot” Jones as well as Mini Stock standout Brandon Clements, a veteran driver who has scored wins all across the region.  Pittman finished the race in second while Lynn Waller finished third.

Dylan Newsome wasn’t the only driver to score a breakthrough victory.

Justin Mitchell, a former multi-time winner in the Legend Cars division at Southern National, was able to capitalize on the misfortunes of the front row starters to pick up his first career Charger division victory in only his second start.

Brian Obiedzenski got the lead early from Robert Arch, but the two drivers tangled in turn one, resulting in Obiedzenski going around.  After the race, Obiedzenski said it was just a racing incident.  A couple laps later, Arch would have difficulties and drift up the track and into the wall, falling a lap down and out of contention, which paved the path for Mitchell to score the win.

“I would have loved to get to race Robert tonight, he’s a heck of a wheelman,” Mitchell proclaimed after the race.  “I guess he had his chance and we had ours.  These cars are so much easier to drive than a Legend, I love them.  It’s just, turn the wheel and step on the gas.  Short Track Engineering does a great job setting this thing up.”

Jonathan Kornegay finished in second while Obiedzenski rebounded from his troubles to finish third and close in on Jeremy Bohne in the championship standings.

Zach Lightfoot’s well-documented journey reached another milestone in the Legends race.

The 14-year-old from Smithfield, Virginia was diagnosed with Asperger’s Syndrome, a mild form of autism, at an early age, but he races anyway.  Last year, he was injured in a crash at Dominion Raceway and sidelined for several months before making his return to racing at Southern National Motorsports Park last fall.

On July 5th, the highlight of his journey came when he picked up his first career Legends victory at Carteret County Speedway.  One month later, Lightfoot would pick up his second win in dominating fashion at Southern National Motorsports Park, holding off Chris Stancil and Chris Floars for the win – his first at the Lucama, North Carolina track.

“I want to thank the good Lord for my talent,” Lightfoot stated in victory lane.  “It’s not my talent.  He blessed me with it.  I thought [Stancil] was going to pass me or, at one point, I thought he was going to bump me going into the corner and move me out of the way and that’s racing.  I would like to thank him for racing me clean, I really appreciate it.”

Stancil finished the race in the second position while Floars finished third.

The Mike Darne Racing dominance continued in the Late Model Stock Car division, this time with Jonathan Findley as the headliner for the team.

Findley swept Friday night’s twin 40 lap races, dominating in the first race but having to fight and claw his way through the field in the second.  After the race, Findley was relieved to score the win and break a streak of bad luck that had plagued him in recent weeks.

“We’ve had bad luck the past couple races we’ve been out here,” Findley remarked.  “Broke an axle one weekend and, back on July 8th, we had a spark plug come off while we were leading the race.  A win is a good way to get the monkey off our back.  I don’t know what to say, this car was on a rail all day.  We struggled a little bit but eventually got it back in tune.  Overall, a good night.”

Despite the victories, Findley feels a second track Late Model championship is out of reach, at least this year.  When Southern National Motorsports Park’s season resumes on August 19th, Findley will compete in twin Pro Late Model races instead of in the Late Model Stock Car races.

Points leader Mason Diaz finished second in both races.  Rusty Daniels came home in third in the first race while Paul Williamson scored the final spot on the podium in the second race.

Parker Frazier looked like he was on his way to his first Southern National win, but issues with three laps to go opened the door for Ethan Johnson and Cameron Murray to pass him.  Johnson went on to score the victory, his fourth win of the year at Southern National over Murray and Frazier.  Meanwhile, Dakota Tomlinson scored the win in the Any Car feature race over Jake Martin and Jason Smith.

The next race at Southern National Motorsports Park will be held on August 19th when twin Pro Late Model races and twin Late Model Stock Car races headline the Back to School 325.

Official Results

Late Model – Race #1

  1. Jonathan Findley
  2. Mason Diaz
  3. Rusty Daniels
  4. Paul Williamson
  5. Andrew Grady
  6. Gerald Benton
  7. Ryan Haddock
  8. Chris Chapman
  9. Eric Winslow
  10. Bobby Morris

Late Model – Race #2

  1. Jonathan Findley
  2. Mason Diaz
  3. Paul Williamson
  4. Chris Chapman
  5. Ryan Haddock
  6. Eric Winslow
  7. Rusty Daniels
  8. Gerald Benton
  9. Andrew Grady
  10. Bobby Morris

Charger

  1. Justin Mitchell
  2. Jonathan Kornegay
  3. Brian Obiedzenski
  4. Michael O’Brien
  5. Nicholas Fulghum
  6. Robert Arch
  7. Jeremy Bohne

Mini Stock

  1. Dylan Newsome
  2. Joseph Pittman
  3. Lynn Waller
  4. Lee Horner
  5. Thomas Brander
  6. PJ Flowers
  7. Jason Beck
  8. Ronnie "Buckshot" Jones
  9. Brandon Clements
  10. Chris Hales

Legends

  1. Zach Lightfoot
  2. Chris Stancil
  3. Chris Floars
  4. Zack Brown
  5. Kade Lambert
  6. Eric Courtney

Bandolero

  1. Ethan Johnson
  2. Cameron Murray
  3. Parker Frazier
  4. Camryn Rice

Any Car

  1. Dakota Tomlinson
  2. Jake Martin
  3. Jason Smith

For more information about Southern National Motorsports Park, check out SNMP’s website at www.snmpark.com“like” Southern National Motorsports Park on Facebook or “follow” @SNM_Park on Twitter.