PENSACOLA, Florida (June 26, 2020) — Stephen Nasse came away with the victory in the #Forever11Tribute 100 at Five Flags Speedway on Friday night, the first of two nights of racing to open up the 2020 Blizzard Series season, and continue the ongoing Southern Super Series season. Nasse led the final 23 laps clean and free from Hunter Robbins, who led the majority of the event.
“They definitely made me work for it there at the end,” Nasse told Five Flags Speedway’s Bill Roth in Victory Lane. “I was holding my breath with all the things we’ve been through here recently, to come off as strong as we have this season, speaks volumes about this team. They worked their tails off and I think there’s a lot more coming. I do think that we can win tomorrow night as well.”
Nasse took the lead with 37 laps to go, briefly lost the spot with 23 to go before having it given back due to a caution. From there, he set sail to the win, claiming a truck load of prize money and getting a little bit of redemption after having crossed the finish line first in the 52nd Snowball Derby, only to lose in post race technical inspection.
Following the race, Nasse drew a can of Rowdy Energy Drink with the number of the invert to set the top twelve for tomorrow’s race. The number Nasse drew… 12, meaning he will start from 12th on Saturday and Kyle Plott will lead the field to the green in the Rowdy Energy 100.
And now… The Race Rundown…
Kyle Plott was the fastest in practice, and the fastest qualifier, but after the top eight redrew, it would be Hunter Robbins starting from the pole in the Ronnie Sanders owned machine.
The initial start of the race began with a pile up in turn one, collecting multiple cars from the middle of the field on back. Donnie Wilson, Jack Dosey, Kyle Sieg and Colton Nelson were among those involved.
When the race did get going, Hunter Robbins quickly showed that he would be a contender for the win, solidifying his place at the front early.
Lap 22 saw Robbins get his first real challenge on the night, in the form of reigning Southern Super Series Champion Casey Roderick. Roderick found something in the high lane and used it to pass Willie Allen for second before setting his sights on the leader. Robbins would hold onto the lead as the race found its second caution on lap 31 for Preston Peltier, who made heavy contact with turn four wall.
During this yellow, Roderick pitted, from second, as his team’s attention went to the rear of the car. There was fluid leaking from the rear end, and after the team patched up the car, Roderick returned to the field, restarting at the tail.
At this point, Robbins continued to lead as Nasse began working his way to put himself in position for his run to the lead. Meanwhile, on lap 44, Roderick had already moved up to 13th and was picking cars off quickly as he climbed up the leaderboard.
With 52 laps to go, the race’s third caution flew for Friday Hassler Jr, who had some kind of failure that led to a small fire in his car. Hassler stopped at the entrance to pit road, bringing out the caution.
At the halfway mark, as Robbins continued to lead, Roderick methodically gained spots lap by lap, moving around Willie Allen with 40 to go, to take the fourth position.
At the front, with 37 laps to go, Stephen Nasse passed Hunter Robbins for the lead in turn three.
On lap 68, Roderick moved past Bubba Pollard to take third, while Robbins found his way back to the bumper of Nasse, passing to retake the lead with 24 laps to go.
Robbins brought Roderick along with him, but as Roderick moved into second, a puff of smoke billowed from the rear of the Roderick machine, and the caution quickly flew.
Track officials brought Roderick down pit road, and after a quick look under the rear of the car, Roderick’s night was over after having flew through the field and up to second place.
The caution reverted back to the last completed lap, putting Stephen Nasse back into the lead.
Nasse cleared Robbins off of turn two on the restart, and cruised to the win leading the final 23 laps uncontested.
Robbins, in turn, held off a brief charge by Bubba Pollard to finish second, with Pollard in third.
OUTLAW STOCKS: San Antonio’s John Heil picked up the win in the 35 lap Outlaw Stock feature, passing Pensacola’s Bubba Winslow with nine laps remaining. Winslow led the majority of the race with Heil in hot pursuit as the pair was long gone from third place Todd Jones. The first lap of the race was marred by a pile up on the frontstretch that took Jason Welch, points leader Bill Touchstone and Jay Jay Day out of contention. Day would return to the race, but would be involved in another incident with Kevin Chase a few laps later, ending his night.
PURE STOCKS: After starting sixth, Jerry Goff quickly found his way to the lead, passing Dylan Courtney for the lead with 19 laps to go in the 25 lap feature for the Pure Stock division. Courtney would lose second to Darrell McDonald III a few laps later, as Goff set sail, winning by 2.464 seconds, scoring his second Pure Stock victory of the season.
Unofficial Results from the Forever 11 100 at Five Flags Speedway
|1.||51 – Stephen Nasse|
|2.||18 – Hunter Robbins|
|3.||11 – Bubba Pollard|
|4.||21 – Jeremy Pate|
|5.||14 – Carson Hocevar|
|6.||26 – Willie Allen|
|7.||14 – Connor Okresik|
|8.||35 – Jake Garcia|
|9.||7 – John DeAngelis|
|10.||66 – Logan Bearden|
|11.||7 – Jackson Boone|
|12.||4 – Kyle Plott|
|13.||88 – Perry Patino|
|14.||43 – Daniel Dye|
|15.||45 – Kodie Conner|
|16.||53 – Boris Jurkovic|
|17.||14 – Austin Nason|
|18.||44 – Bob Lyon|
|19.||8 – Colton Nelson|
|20.||14 – Chris Davidson|
|21.||21 – Jesse Dutilly|
|22.||51 – Michael Atwell|
|23.||25 – Casey Roderick|
|24.||17 – Nick Nerri|
|25.||53 – Kyle Ivey|
|26.||10 – Kayden Honeycut|
|27.||15 – Friday Hassler Jr.|
|28.||36 – Terry Senneker|
|29.||54 – Preston Peltier|
|30.||03 – George Gorham Jr.|
|31.||9 – Hudson Halder|
|32.||39 – Kyle Sieg|
|33.||20 – Jack Dossey III|
|34.||2 – Donnie Wilson|
|35.||15 – Sheflon Clay|
– Daniel Vining, Twitter: @danielvining
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