Derek Thorn Will Start from Pole in 52nd Snowball Derby

Derek Thorn flies past the start/finish line while on his pole winning run at the 52nd Snowball Derby in December 2019. (Ben Kilcrease/PixelatedSPEED

PENSACOLA, Florida (December 7, 2019) — Derek Thorn took advantage of the Florida weather tendencies to strike hard with and blistering lap that placed him on the pole for the 52nd Snowball Derby.

All was well at Five Flags Speedway in Pensacola, Florida for the majority of the day. Late in the afternoon, however, Florida did Florida things. A shower made it’s way over the area, dumping just enough moisture to delay on track events by about two hours. 

After lengthy track drying efforts, and Modifieds of Mayhem Tour qualifying, the Super Late Models took center stage for Country Pleasin’ Sausage Pole Night at the Derby.

The shower and accompanying moisture in the are hung around just long enough to give some teams trepidation going into the session.

For Derek Thorn, however, the precipitation situation went in favor of the California driver as he laid down a pole winning 16.277 second lap early in the session.

“The Snowball Derby Queen drew a nine for me,” said Thorn. “I didn’t think that was going to be the best time to go out but I think the conditions we were under helped. We were 30th today in our first practice session.”

“We did plenty of mock runs trying to get some speed and the team worked hard to find something for us and it paid off in qualifying,” he added.

Thorn bested Cole Butcher, who will start on the Snowball Derby front row for the second year in a row.

Other notables on the qualifying results list include Josh Berry, making only his second Super Late Model start and the “hotshoe” Corey LaJoie.

The PixelatedPICKS all finished well in qualifying, with Bubba Pollard claiming the top spot,  Casey Rodderick in ninth, and Giovanni Bromante in 14th.

52nd Snowball Derby Qualifying Results:

  1. Derek Thorn 16.277
  2. Cole Butcher 16.379
  3. Corey LaJoie 16.381
  4. Kyle Plott 16.387
  5. Bubba Pollard 16.398
  6. Josh Berry 16.401
  7. Matt Craig 16.412
  8. Jeff Choquette 16.419
  9. Casey Roderick 16.427
  10. Chandler Smith 16.454
  11. Jesse Dutilly 16.457
  12. Jeremy Pate 16.461
  13. Preston Peltier 16.476
  14. Giovanni Bromante 16.480
  15. Jake Garcia 16.497
  16. Kaden Honeycutt 16.497
  17. Hunter Robbins 16.510
  18. John DeAngelis Jr 16.528
  19. Jeremy Doss 16.533
  20. Derek Griffith 16.534
  21. Augie Grill 16.545
  22. David Gilliland 16.553
  23. Ty Majeski 16.556
  24. Michael Atwell 16.558
  25. Connor Okrzeisk 16.563
  26. Cole Moore 16.570
  27. Corey Heim 16.572
  28. Derek Kraus 16.579
  29. Dalton Zehr 16.582
  30. Travis Braden 16.590
  31. Carson Hocevar 16.619
  32. Casey Smith 16.624
  33. Michael House 16.640
  34. Johnny VanDoorn 16.642
  35. Trey Bayne 16.659
  36. Stephen Nasse 16.672
  37. Dan Fredrickson 16.679
  38. Harrison Burton 16.682
  39. Mason Mingus 16.689
  40. Rodrigo Rejon 16.699
  41. Jett Noland 16.701
  42. Kyle Bryant 16.710
  43. Lucas Jones 16.722
  44. David Rogers 16.725
  45. Brad May 16.725
  46. Austin Nason 16.748
  47. Jack Dossey III 16.751
  48. Rich Bickle 16.753
  49. Chris Davidson 16.772
  50. Boris Jurkovic 16.808
  51. Jordan Anderson 16.809
  52. Steven Davis 16.835
  53. Jerry Artuso 16.841
  54. Colten Nelson 16.856
  55. Tim Curry 16.934
  56. AJ Wernette 17.904

The top 30 advance to Sunday while everyone else will have one more opportunity to make the race in the Last Chance race on Saturday.

– Daniel Vining, Twitter: @danielvining

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PixelatedSPEED is a motorsports news and views website covering all things racing and has been going "Beyond the Headline" since 2018”.